CRYB & WNY Chamber Orchestra to present Sweet Sorrows on Feb 14

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Maya Swanson and Telly Ortiz
Maya Swanson and Telly Ortiz

On Friday, February 14th the Chautauqua Regional Youth Ballet and the Western New York Chamber
Orchestra will join forces to present Sweet Sorrows an evening of music and dance. The performance will be held at Lucille Ball Little Theatre at 7:30 pm. CRYB Artistic Director Monika Alch hopes many will find this a different and entertaining way to celebrate Valentine’s Day. The program will include Stravinsky’s L’Histoire du Soldat and Star Cross’d – a world premiere by Glen Cortese inspired by the story of Romeo & Juliet.

L’Histoire du Soldat by Stravinsky is a rarely performed work for chamber musicians, dancers and a narrator. It tells the Faustian tale of a soldier returning from war who makes a trade with the devil: his fiddle for a magic book. The soldier eventually comes across a castle with a sleeping princess whom he rouses with his violin but unfortunately crosses paths once again with the devil. The soldier, devil and princess will be portrayed by CRYB pre-professional dancers Telly Ortiz, Cate Walter and Maya Swanson. Choreography is by CRYB alumna Brittany Bush, now a Boston-based dancer.

The other work on the program is a world premiere performance of Glen Cortese’s Star Cross’d – a work for musicians and narrator inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet. Mr. Cortese remarks, “In thinking about how I wanted to celebrate the work, I knew that I wanted to have Shakespeare’s actual texts but not sung…just left to stand on their own so using a narrator was the obvious choice. The choice of the instruments in the ensemble was guided by the instrumentation for L’Histoire du Soldat (with the addition of the piano) to create a pairing for this concert. I decided I would focus on just the two lovers and tell their story from their meeting to their falling in love, the hopelessness of their situation and finally, their demise.”

To celebrate the Valentine spirit, handmade chocolates by Lone Palm Cookie Company and Champagne by the glass will be available for purchase in the lobby before the concert and during intermission.

This performance is made possible by a grant from the from the Karl Peterson Fund through the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation.