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Chamber orchestra Sphinx Virtuosi to kick off 2021-22 Concert Series on Sept. 30

Posted: 09/09/21

Chamber orchestra Sphinx Virtuosi to kick off 2021-22 Concert Series on Sept. 30

Critically acclaimed chamber orchestra Sphinx Virtuosi will perform on Sept. 30 at 7:30 p.m. in Shannon Hall at Memorial Union as part of the Wisconsin Union Theater’s 2021-22 Concert Series

In addition to marking the beginning of the Concert Series season, Sphinx Virtuosi will be the first classical music concert with an in-person audience held in Shannon Hall since March 2020. 

Eighteen of the nation’s most renowned Black and Latinx classical musicians comprise this dynamic, self-conducted orchestra. The members of Sphinx Virtuosi not only dedicate themselves to perfecting rich musical compositions but also to prioritizing diversity in the arts. Since the group’s founding in 2004, it has worked to transform the lives of its audiences as well as the world of classical music by emphasizing the importance of representation in music. The ensemble will celebrate 25 years of music and making a difference in 2022. 

The orchestra’s program “Tracing Visions” aims to challenge and adapt traditional interpretations of America’s history to create a richer, more honest story that highlights the experiences of Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). “Tracing Visions” will include the following selections: 

  • Xavier Foley, “Ev'ry Voice”
  • Florence Price, String Quartet No. 2 in A Minor, arranged for Sphinx Virtuosi
    • II. Andante cantabile
  • Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, “Four Novelletten”
    • I. Allegro moderato
    • III. Andante con moto
  • Jessie Montgomery, “Banner” for String Quartet and String Orchestra
  • Andrea Casarrubios, “Seven” (for Solo Cello)
  • Ricardo Herz,“Inocente”and “Mourinho”
  • Alberto Ginastera, Concerto for Strings, Op. 33
    • IV. Finale furioso

“For more than 20 years, the Sphinx Organization and its founder, Aaron Dworkin, have been addressing the underrepresentation of people of color in classical music and proving the value of diversity in the arts,” Wisconsin Union Theater Director Elizabeth Snodgrass said. “We’re so fortunate to bring their chamber orchestra to Madison for the first time and to have them kick off our Concert Series.”

Sphinx Virtuosi moves audiences and critics alike, earning praise from publications like The New York Times and The Washington Post. On its annual tour, the group has performed to sold-out crowds at respected concert halls like Carnegie Hall in New York City and the New World Center in Miami.

Tickets for this event are available as part of a fall package or full subscription to the Concert Series performances or as single tickets for this performance only. Patrons can also purchase single tickets to attend a livestream of the event. Tickets for Sphinx Virtuosi are available here. Fall package and subscription sales end on Sept. 29.

Single tickets for most season events are also available for purchase, with the exception of single tickets for an April 30, 2022, concert with opera legend Renée Fleming, which are currently only available with a subscription purchase. Single tickets for Fleming’s performance will go on sale in early 2022, pending availability. 

This season will mark the 102nd year of the Wisconsin Union Theater’s Concert Series, the longest running classical music concert series in the Midwest. The 2021-22 Concert Series aims to highlight both new and familiar musicians in a musical lineup that inspires audiences. 

The Wisconsin Union team, which includes the Wisconsin Union Theater, is dedicated to creating a safe environment for all patrons and team members and to upholding the highest cleaning and sanitation standards. The Union team thoroughly and regularly cleans and disinfects its spaces, including performance spaces. 

Patrons and team members are required to follow the current University of Wisconsin–Madison health and safety protocol of wearing a face covering when indoors on campus, unless actively eating or drinking. The Wisconsin Union Theater team will continue to monitor and follow university guidelines. 

Click here for more information about the Sphinx Virtuosi performance.

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