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Cambridge Concert Association promises to have musical potpourri coming season

Steve DeMarco Special to The Leader Published: August 29, 2011 11:00 AM

Another exciting season is planned for the 64th Cambridge Concert Association series. The selection committee recently met to finalize the artists that will appear on the stage of the Scottish Rite Auditorium in 2011-2012. Steve DeMarco, president, promises a musical potpourri ranging from Broadway and Big Band favorites to Classical vocal and string ensembles.

The concert Association will kick-off the season on Oct. 9 with Northeastern Ohio based Red Campion. Established in 2009, Red Campion is an energetic ensemble of four singers and one pianist. They present performances that showcase the glories of the voice and vocal literature. Performances cause audience members to tap their toes, discretely hum along and smile. Red Campions performances include thrilling renditions of beloved opera and concert melodies alongside delightful introductions to lesser known pieces from the concert hall and theatre stage.

This talented ensemble includes Lara Troyer, a versatile soprano, at home on the opera stage as well as concert and recital stage. She spent four years as an Associate Artist with Cleveland Opera and her recent performances include the Messiah soprano soloist with the Akron Symphony. Also, she has made solo appearances with the Canton Symphony Orchestra, Lansing Symphony Orchestra, Rochester Symphony Orchestra, and Kent/Blossom Chamber Music Summer Series. Troyer has been a finalist in many vocal competitions and she is currently on the voice faculty at Kent State Universitys Hugh A. Glauser School of Music.

Denise Milner Howell, mezzo-soprano, is equally at home on the opera, musical theatre or concert stage. Her solo engagements include performances with Opera Cleveland, Chautauqua Opera, Akron Lyric Opera Theatre, Tanglewood Festival, Akron Symphony Orchestra, Carousel Dinner Theatre, Sounds of Sousa Band, and Buffalo Philharmonic. In addition to performing, Howell is an active voice teacher. While currently teaching at Ashland University, shehas also served on the voice faculty of the University of Akron, the State University of New York College at Fredonia, and the Hochstein School of Music in Rochester, N.Y. Howell earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in music education from Long Island University/CW Post College, and a Master of Music degree in vocal performance from New England Conservatory of Music.

Tenor Timothy Culver has become a staple in the Great Lakes music scene. He has been described as having a rich but penetrating tenor and that he faces florid tenor writing with a fearless vivacity. Equally at home in both operatic and musical theatre works, Culver has performed with the Cleveland Opera, Lyric Opera Cleveland, Opera Western Reserve, Lansing Lyric Opera, Porthouse Theatre, Huron Playhouse and the Cleveland Orchestra. Mr. Culver is an Associate Professor of Voice at the Hugh A. Glauser School of Music at Kent State University, where he earned both his Bachelors and Masters degrees.

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Brian Keith Johnson, baritone, has performed many roles in opera from Figaro in The Barber of Seville to Ford in Falstaff. As a member of Actors Equity Association, he has also performed a variety of musical theatre roles ranging from Jim in Big River and Joe in Show Boat to Pilate in Jesus Christ Superstar and Father/God in Children of Eden. Johnsons concert performances include the Cleveland Orchestra, San Jose and Pittsburgh Ballet, The Akron Symphony Orchestra, The Youngstown Symphony Orchestra and The New Opera Festival di Roma Orchestra in Rome, Italy.

Judith Ryder, pianist, was the Founding Director of Cleveland Operas well-known education and outreach program, Cleveland Opera on Tour. Ryder is the recipient of numerous awards including the prestigious Ohio Governors Award for Arts in Education. The diverse education and outreach programs Ms. Ryder developed in her thirty-one years with Cleveland Opera reached an average of 80,000 people throughout the Midwest and beyond. A graduate of Eastman School of Music, Ryder was a founding member of the Thalia Piano Trio, served on the Cleveland Institute of Music and Music Settlement faculties, and was coach and keyboardist for the Robert Page Singers. Ms. Ryder was the recipient of the first Vocal Arts Resource Networks Ovation Award in 2000 for her dedicated work with singers.

In addition to their Sunday performance on the concert series, Red Campion will also be performing on Monday for the student outreach concert for grades K-5 of the Cambridge City Schools and St. Benedict.

The CCA is very excited to welcome award-winning actress, singer, and recording artist Liz Callaway on Nov. 6. Calloway will be performing Broadway favorites including the ever popular Memoryfrom Cats. She made her debut on the Great White Way in Stephen Sondheims Merrily We Roll Along. She received a Tony Award nomination for her performance in Baby, and for five years, appeared as Grizabella in Cats. She has also starred in the original casts of Miss Saigon, The Three Musketeers, and The Look of Love. Off-Broadway, she received a Drama Desk nomination for her performance in The Spitfire Grill, and also appeared in No Way to Treat a Lady, Marry Me a Little, and Brownstone. Other New York appearances include Hair in Concert, the legendary Follies in Concert at Lincoln Center, A Stephen Sondheim Evening, and Fiorello! at Encores! She recently performed to rave reviews in the Pittsburgh Civic Light Operas production of Love Changes Everything: The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Liz and her sister Ann Hampton Callaway premiered their new show, Boom! to a sold-out audience at New Yorks famed Town Hall. Their award-winning Sibling Revelry was presented at the Donmar Warehouse in London. She had the pleasure of co-starring with Jimmy Webb & Paul Williams in their critically acclaimed engagement at Feinsteins in New York. Her concert and symphony work includes appearances at Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, The Hollywood Bowl, and on tour with the Boston Pops. Worldwide, she has performed in China, Iceland, Estonia, France, Slovenia, Seoul, South Korea, Thtre du Chtelet in Paris, and Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona. She recently returned from Tasmania, Sydney, and Adelaide, Australia where she appeared in concert with Stephen Schwartz as well as in solo concerts at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival.

Liz sang the Academy Award-nominated song Journey to the Past in the animated feature Anastasia. She is also the singing voice of Princess Jasmine in Disneys Aladdin and the King of Thieves and The Return of Jafar. Other film work includes the singing voice of the title character in The Swan Princess, Lion King 2: Simbas Pride, Beauty and the Beast, and The Brave Little Toaster Goes to Mars. She received an Emmy Award for hosting Ready to Go, a daily, live childrens program on CBS in Boston. Other TV credits include In Performance at the White House, Inside the Actors Studio: Stephen Sondheim, The David Letterman Show, and Senior Trip (CBS Movie of the Week).

Liz has four solo recordings: Passage of Time, The Beat Goes On, The Story Goes On: Liz Callaway On and Off- Broadway, and Anywhere I Wander: Liz Callaway Sings Frank Loesser. On July 12, Boom! Live at Birdland (with Ann Hampton Callaway) was released on PS Classics.

Keeping with the tradition of including an act with a local connection, the new year brings a return to the concert series of the Dick Simcox Big Band. The concert is scheduled for Jan. 22, 2012. The band is a group of 17 musicians and vocalists from the Cambridge and Zanesville areas who perform the best of Big Band music from the classics of the 30s and 40s to show tunes and contemporary compositions. Dance music is the bands specialty, but a library of over 400 songs allows them to play concerts as well as other special occasions.

The band was a hobby of Cambridge native J Richard Dick Simcox throughout his public school teaching career. This edition of the band was created when he was band director at Tri-Valley High School in 1971. Since his passing in 1979, the band has been directed by his son, Rich. In addition to playing for dances in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, they performed several times at Culver Military Academy in Indiana, at JazzFest at Muskingum College and several times at the Salt Fork Arts & Crafts Festival.

The members of the band are drawn from all walks of life and have graduated to music schools, military bands, cruise ships and teaching careers. At the present time, there are several current and retired science, english and music teachers, a piano technician, industrial technician, a communications specialist, a retired school administrator, managers, salespeople and an attorney among the members. They rehearse weekly and share a joyful enthusiasm for this unique version of Americas original art form jazz.

The Concert Series closes its season on March 11, 2012, with the Galileo Trio. The Galileo piano trio gathers together three of North Americas most accomplished and charismatic collaborative artists violinist Kerry DuWors, cellist Mark Rudoff and pianist Laura Loewen. They are artists who bring widely diverse backgrounds and a passion for musical collaboration to exploring the rich piano trio repertoire. In the spirit of Galileo, DuWors, Rudoff and Loewen seek to engage the music, challenge orthodoxies, and shine fresh light and reveal new truths in the chamber repertoire, whether it be celebrated classics or the most current new music.

Violinist Kerry DuWors has earned accolades for her poise and maturity and spellbinding expression. Currently on faculty at Brandon University as Professor of Violin and Chamber Music, Ms. DuWors maintains a demanding concert career as soloist and chamber musician. As a winner in the 2009 Canada Council for the Arts Instrument Bank Competition, Ms. DuWors currently plays on the 1820 Franciscus Pressenda violin. Currently working towards DMA at The Eastman School of Music, Kerry studied at the University of Victoria (B.Mus.) with the Lafayette String Quartet, and the University of Toronto (M.Mus.) as a student of Lorand Fenyves, receiving the prestigious Eaton Graduate Scholarship, the Yo-Yo Ma Fellowship for Strings, a Canada Council for the Arts Grant for Emerging Professional Musicians, and the inaugural Felix Galimir Award for Chamber Music Excellence.

Applauded as an exceptionally gifted cellist, and praised for his virile and assertive performance, Mark Rudoff has appeared in solo recitals and with orchestras in Canada and the United States, and his solo and chamber performances have been recorded for broadcast on CBC. Rudoff has also served as principal cello of the Calgary Philharmonic and Saskatoon Symphony Orchestras. Rudoff is professor of cello at Ohio State University, and was previously cello professor and orchestra director at Brandon University. He also coaches chamber music and serves as Dean of the Quartet Program at SUNY Fredonia, and from 2002-05 was conductor of the Winnipeg Youth Symphony. Rudoff earned Bachelors and Masters of Music degrees from the Juilliard School, graduating with the Edward Steuermann Prize. He studied there with Harvey Shapiro, Lynn Harrell and Joel Krosnick, and was appointed teaching assistant to the Juilliard Quartet. He also holds a Bachelor of Laws degree from the University of Saskatchewan, graduating with distinction in 1990.

Hailed as exceptional (Winnipeg Free Press), fiercely committed (Vancouver Sun), virtuosic, with fingers that have no idea of what is possible on a keyboard, so they just go ahead and play what isnt (Halifax Chronicle Herald), Winnipeg collaborative pianist Laura Loewen has appeared in concerts throughout Canada and the United States. Dedicated to sharing her passion for ensemble playing and coaching, she is a professor of Collaborative Piano and the Vocal Coach at the University of Manitoba. She is also on the faculties of the NUOVO opera training program.

Critics at The Galileo Trios debut commented on an ensemble that felt mature and seasoned,delivering an electrifying conversation and a sound I could feel through the floor. Canadian and American audiences who have heard this exciting new voice in chamber music echo this praise.

Season subscriptions are on sale now and not only include the four programs presented by the Cambridge Concert Association but offers reciprocity with the Alliance, Lancaster and Zanesville Concert Associations.

For information, contact Steve DeMarco at 439-3754, cambridgeconcertassociation@gmail.com or visit cambridgeconcertassociation.org.

Steve DeMarco, president of the Cambridge Concert Association

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