FORT COLLINS, CO – The Fort Collins Symphony under the direction of Maestro Wes Kenney continues its Season of Diversity on Saturday, February 3, 2018 a riveting program appropriately titled “Beaks, Tweak & Shrieks.” The concert features a return visit from talented guest violist Nokuthula Ngwenyama performing Paul Hindemith’s striking Der Schwanendreher.
The evening will begin with the performance of Welsh composer Hilary Tann’s spirited With Heather and Small Birds. Joseph Haydn’s Symphony No 94, also known as Surprise, is a tongue-in-cheek homage to dozing concert patrons. The fun continues with Hindemith’s spectacular Schwanendreher Concerto, and concludes with Jacques Ibert’s Divertissement, a circus-like ballet.
Born in California of Zimbabwean-Japanese parentage, Nokuthula Ngwenyama studied at the Colburn School’s Community School of Performing Arts before attending the Curtis Institute of Music. As a Fulbright Scholar, she attended the Conservatoire National Superieur de Musique de Paris, and received a Master of Theological Studies degree from Harvard University. Ms. Ngwenyama came to international prominence when she won the Primrose International Viola Competition and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions at age 17. Plaudits followed her debut recital at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. Ms. Ngwenyama has since performed with the Atlanta, Baltimore, Phoenix, and Indianapolis Symphonies, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the National Symphony Orchestra. Recent highlights include an appearance with the Sinfonietta Cracovi, at the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia and on the People’s Concert Series in New York City. She also appeared with Bruno Mars on Saturday Night Live.
Maestro Wes Kenny is now in his 15th season as the Music Director of the Fort Collins Symphony and director of orchestras at Colorado State University. In addition, he was named as Music Director of Opera Fort Collins. He currently conducts four to five professional or collegiate operatic productions as well as numerous orchestra concerts and dance performances each season throughout Northern Colorado. Former positions include Associate Conductor of the Virginia Symphony, Music Director of the Oakland Youth Orchestra, and faculty conducting positions with the College of William and Mary as well as San Francisco State University. Mr. Kenney is a graduate of the University of Southern California and San Francisco State University and was awarded the prestigious Carmen Dragon Conducting Prize in 1992.
Tickets for the concert may be purchased by calling the Lincoln Center at 970.221.6730 or by visiting fcsymphony.org. The Fort Collins Symphony’s Season sponsors are the City of Fort Collins Fort Fund and Dr. Peter Springberg, and the Masterworks 3 concert and B Sharp sponsors are EKS&H, Kenneth and Myra Monfort Charitable Foundation, Community Foundation of Northern Colorado, and Kaiser Permanente.