Punta Gorda Symphony kicks off the new year on Sunday, Jan. 16 featuring guest artist and award-winning violinist Sirena Huang on Dvořák’s Violin Concerto at the Charlotte Performing Arts Center in Punta Gorda. Huang will be accompanied by Punta Gorda Symphony under the direction of music director and conductor Maestro Raffaele Livio Ponti. The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. with a pre-concert talk at 6:30 p.m. included with ticket purchase.
“Sirena is known not only for her technical brilliance but also her ability to connect with her audience,” says Maestro Ponti. “Even if you’ve never heard Dvořák’s Violin Concerto, Sirena’s style makes it approachable and leaves you yearning for more.”
As first-place prize winner in 2017 of the esteemed Elmar Oliviera International Violin Competition held annually in Boca Raton, Huang is a rising star in the violin world and has performed as a soloist with prestigious orchestras around the world, including the New York Philharmonic, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, and Russian Symphony Orchestra. The highly anticipated performance will be a rare opportunity to hear the acclaimed soloist play the Dvořák Violin Concerto.
Praised by The Baltimore Sun for her “impeccable technique…deeply expressive phrasing…and poetic weight,” Huang is profoundly motivated to inspire peace and harmony with her music. At eleven, she gave a TED talk where she dissected the crossover between technology and violin performance that garnered more than 3.3 million views. Huang performed at the 2006 World Peace Conference in Petra for Nobel Prize Laureates, and during a 2008 Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity ceremony before the presentation of the Humanitarian Award given to President Sarkozy of France.
The January 16 program features a wide variety of music beyond the violin concerto, including works by Samuel Barber and Italian theatrical composer Ildebrando Pizzetti. Another highlight of the program is living composer Jennifer Higdon’s celebrated “To The Point,” for which she received The Pulitzer Prize for Music in 2010.
“Punta Gorda Symphony is thrilled to present award-winning violinist Sirena Huang, and a diverse group of composers on the upcoming concert,” says executive director Craig Badinger. “An orchestra truly thrives when it is relevant to the music of today and offers something for everyone to enjoy.”
There will be several opportunities to enrich the January concert experience in the days leading up to the performance. Symphony Friends, Punta Gorda Symphony’s volunteer affiliate group, will host Composers Luncheon on January 6. The event features Principal Violist Rachel Cox, local pianist Judy Kaff, and fun classical-music-themed trivia games for this monthly “lunch, listen, and learn” event.
Concert goers are invited to gain a deeper appreciation of the Jan. 16 program at Maestro Ponti’s monthly Behind the Notes program on Friday, January 14, or attend the interview-style Pre-Concert Talk one hour before showtime on Sunday, January 16. Pre-Concert Talk is free and available to concert ticket holders only.
For more information and ticketing, visit www.PGSymphony.org, or call 941-205-5996.