Review: The Naughton Sisters dazzled at The Gilmore

Written by Samara Napolitan | Monday, 06 November 2017 10:21 |

Many renowned classical piano duos have kept it in the family — consider the Labèque sisters, the Pekinel sisters, or the Kontarsky brothers. The vast benefits of a musical partnership between siblings were obvious during Christina and Michelle Naughton’s concert with The Gilmore’s Rising Stars Series yesterday. The two 28-year-old pianists brought esoteric unity to their art form in a way only identical twins can. But as their spellbinding Sunday afternoon performance showed, the Naughton sisters are no gimmick. The two extraordinary musicians demonstrated uncanny harmoniousness and technical precision, even when expressing individual soulfulness and spontaneity across two separate Steinways.

Controlled chaos. An amorphous, musical blob. A marching band that thinks it’s a rock band.

When an orchestra performs a concerto — a composition featuring a solo instrument with orchestral accompaniment — one can usually expect to hear technical pyrotechnics from a violinist, a mind-boggling performance from a pianist, or even a thrilling showstopper from a woodwind player on clarinet or flute. But while many musicians view mastering a concerto as a rite of passage, some instrumentalists have more opportunities than others.

Eight years ago, Marty Kiefer created the West Michigan Gay Men’s Chorus, the first and only openly gay men’s choir in Grand Rapids.

An entrepreneurial spirit may not be the first thing that comes to mind when talking about orchestra conductors, but David Lockington said that spirit is exactly what helped him launch a successful career.

It has been roughly 180 years since Frederic Chopin composed his piano etudes. In proficient hands, these brief musical exercises sound as fresh and poignant as the time when Chopin first created them. On the fingertips of a fearless and imaginative master, they become individual masterpieces in their own right.

Deaf and Deft: Holland Symphony Orchestra presents an evening of Beethoven

Written by Marla R. Miller | Thursday, 28 September 2017 15:53 |

As Beethoven’s hearing retreated, he retreated from society as well, unable to bear the thought of an incurable condition or asking people to speak louder.

For 50 years, Opera Grand Rapids has assembled the region’s finest vocal talents, animated timeless stories and characters onstage, and sustained a grand artistic tradition in the community.

To connect and integrate more deeply with all generations and cultures, arts organizations across the United States are spending more time and energy building their engagement efforts with today’s youth. While these organizations have a strong interest in increasing participation among younger adults, they often struggle to sustain interest and attendance. To better understand the motivations of young people, arts organizations in the area are providing opportunities for teens to lead through their own artistic expression. We talked with a handful of local organizations about what those opportunities look like and why they matter.

Holland Symphony Youth Advisory Committee

Review: Grand Rapids Symphony kicked off the season with talent and feeling

Written by Samara Napolitan | Saturday, 16 September 2017 13:53 |

A hint of dance, a dash of American soul, a splash of color and prodigious talent ushered in the Grand Rapids Symphony’s 2017-2018 season on Friday night. This season marks the first under GRS Music Director Lehninger’s full leadership, as well as the orchestra’s return to Carnegie Hall this April.

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