Thomasville Times Enterprise

June 7, 2014

Exciting new concert season on tap for TEF


CNHI News Service

THOMASVILLE — Thomasville Entertainment Foundation's 2014-2015 Concert Series is brimming with award-winning artists, intriguing programs, and some of the most treasured music of all time.

    "It is astonishing that TEF can present a concert series of such high quality in a town the size of Thomasville. Many cities ten times our size do not have the cultural awareness to support a season of performances such as those TEF regularly brings.

It is particularly gratifying to see the variety of performers who will appear in the 2014-2015 season—from my former colleagues at the Metropolitan Opera, to the charming and extraordinarily talented young members of the Dover Quartet, to the venerable, popular pianist, Peter Nero. The centenary of the 1914 World War I Christmas Truce, to which Cantus' November concert will pay tribute, still has a lot of resonance in 2014. 

The concerts cover a broad range of musical genres and this season's lineup should be especially appealing to teenagers, as well as to their parents and grandparents. I would like to see this magnificent season totally sold out!," TEF board member Raymond Hughes said.

All concerts will begin at 7:30 PM and five of the six performances will be staged in the intimate, 500-seat auditorium of the Thomasville Center for the Arts. The November 20 performance by Cantus and Theater Latte Da will take place at First Baptist Church, Thomasville.

The new season begins on Thursday, October 23, with a performance by four celebrated artists. Metropolitan Opera soprano Susanna Phillips, the Met's principal hornist Erik Ralske, and Emerson String Quartet violinist Philip Setzer will join the renowned collaborative pianist Warren Jones in a program of cherished works by Schubert, Strauss and Brahms. Richard Termine of Opera News described Phillips' voice as "gorgeous" and "free of operatic artifice" and the San Francisco Chronicle called Jones "the single finest accompanist now working."

On Thursday, November 20, the all-male a cappella ensemble Cantus and actors from Theater Latté Da will perform "All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914." Acclaimed in Fanfare magazine as "the premier men's vocal ensemble in the United States," Cantus is known for the group's engaging programming. This program will bring to life in song and word the heart-warming World War I event when men laid down their arms and met their enemies in No Man’s Land to sing songs, exchange gifts, play soccer, and bury each other's dead. The production, presented in the sanctuary of First Baptist Church, will reinvest the words "Peace on Earth" with their true meaning.

The Dover Quartet performs on Thursday, January 22. Formed in 2008 at the Curtis Institute when each member was just 19 years old, the Dover is one of the most remarkably talented string quartets ever to emerge at such a young age. In addition to winning the Grand Prize and all three special prizes at the 2013 Banff International String Quartet Competition, the ensemble has won awards at the Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition and participated in many prestigious music festivals.

On Saturday, February 14, the Boston Brass and Enso String Quartet will bring a program entitled "Notes from the Balcony: Romeo and Juliet in Music." This entertaining evening will feature music from familiar works by Prokofiev and Kabalevsky, Bernstein's West Side Story, Costello's Juliet Letters, and Zeffirelli's Academy Award-winning film. For 27 years, Boston Brass has captivated audiences of all ages with their one-of-a-kind musical experiences. Their performances with the acclaimed Enso ensemble allow each group to shine in a wide selection of musical styles and unique arrangements, provided in a friendly, fun setting.

TEF will celebrate the "Music of George Gershwin" with piano legend Peter Nero on Thursday, March 5. The New York Times stated "Nero is a polished, skillful and imaginative pianist with taste and a sense of humor." The Grammy Award-winning pianist blends classical, Broadway, and jazz—all performed with virtuosity, authenticity, and wit. Hailed as one of the premiere interpreters of Gershwin, Nero has been awarded six honorary doctorates and the prestigious International Society of Performing Arts Presenters Award for "Excellence in the Arts."

The Australian Chamber Orchestra with artistic director Richard Tognetti and clarinet soloist Martin Fröst concludes the season on Tuesday, April 14. One of the world's most lauded chamber ensembles, the Orchestra is renowned for its inspired programming and unrivalled virtuosity, energy and individuality.

The young Swedish clarinetist Martin Fröst has established an international reputation as one of the most engaging instrumentalists of his generation. A review in The Guardian stated "if there's a better chamber orchestra in the world today, I haven't heard it," and The Times asserted "until you've heard Martin Frost, you really haven't heard the clarinet."

"This season brings some of the world's finest musicians to Thomasville and represents a tremendous value in ticket prices," stated TEF Board of Trustees member Karl Barton.

To purchase tickets or request further information, contact the TEF box office at 229-226-7404 or tef@rose.net. To purchase tickets online after July 1, visit the website at TEFconcerts.com. Single-event tickets are $38 for the general public and $15 for students. Season tickets purchased before September 15 are $90 for three performances and $170 for all six.

Thomasville Entertainment Foundation, Inc. is a volunteer-led, non-profit organization founded in 1936. In addition to presenting an annual concert series featuring internationally acclaimed artists, the organization provides scholarships for outstanding students in the performing arts, student tickets, and educational outreach programs for children and youth.