A Latin Valentine
Concert Feb. 8th, 4:00pm
This year our annual Valentine’s concert features (you guessed it) a Spanish/Latin theme! Vocalists Ben Sears and Cynthia Mork and pianist Brad Conner join forces again in a cabaret set of Spanish/Latin themed popular tunes, including Barcelona, La Paloma, The Shady Dame from Seville, Dulcinea from Man of La Manchaand many other favorites. Cynthia will then present a set of Spanish art songs by de Falla and Obradors, accompanied by award winning classical guitarist Berit Strong and internationally acclaimed pianist (and FP favorite) Igor Lovchinsky. Flamenco dancer Laura Sánchez will add an authentic touch with her dance accompaniment to selected songs expect castanets and fabulous costumes!) Finally, Igor will take center stage to perform Busoni’s spectacular Sonatina #6:Chamber Fantasy on Bizet’s Carmen, plus works by Granados and Piazolla. If past concerts are any indicator, he is sure to wow us again! A reception following the concert promises a wealth of chocolate and other delectables to top off this perfect Valentine affair!
Suggested donation at the door: $20, seniors/students $15
Proceeds to benefit First Parish.
A special collection will be taken for Malayaka House.
From their website:
Malayaka House rescues orphaned and abandoned children in Uganda. We provide a secure home where our children can thrive in an environment of love, equality and respect. We support them with nutrition, education, and an extended family of local women caretakers, community members, and international volunteers, all working together to create a bright and hopeful future for children that society had discarded...the children of Malayaka House.
Visit www.malayakahouse.com to learn more.
About our guest performers…
Igor Lovchinsky (piano)is a multi-faceted, innovative pianist and an avid exponent of new music. Born in Kazan, Russia in 1984, Lovchinsky began playing the piano at the age of two, and entered the Kazan Special Music School for Gifted Children in 1989. After coming to the United States in 1994, he garnered first prize at the Eastman International Piano Competition and the National Chopin Piano Competition. Lovchinsky earned a Bachelor's degree from the Juilliard School and a Master's degree from the New England Conservatory in Boston. His teachers have included Nina Polonsky, Steven Glaser, Jerome Lowenthal, Patricia Zander, and Wha-Kyung Byun. Lovchinsky has performed at the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Auditorium, as well as at the National Philharmonic Hall in Warsaw, the American Embassy in Beijing, and the Rosza Centre in Calgary. His debut album was selected as one of the top five recordings of 2008 by Time Out International. In addition to his celebrated career in music, Lovchinsky is a student of Physics at Harvard University.
Berit Strong (classical guitar) is an award-winning performer of classical guitar repertoire ranging from renaissance through contemporary music, and has performed with the Rome Festival Orchestra, the Belgrade Cultural Center and in several Hvar Music Festivals. Locally, Strong has performed as a special guest artist for National Flute Association conventions and as a soloist with the Indian Hill Symphony and the Wellesley Symphony Orchestra, and her performances have been featured on National Public Radio, WGBH Boston and many other media outlets. Her critically acclaimed solo CD Norwegian Landscape features her playing some of the world’s classic pieces for acoustic guitar, from JS Bach to contemporary composers Larry Cooperman and David Cullen.
Reviewers consistently praise her ability to communicate with audiences by playing with emotional intensity, musical artistry and virtuoso technique. She also performs on the Viola da Gamba, including at Brandeis University, in numerous Messiahsings, and many other performances. Strong is a graduate of the Hartt School of Music and the New England Conservatory, where she received a Distinction in Performance award. She is currently on the music faculty at the New England Conservatory and the Indian Hill Music Center in Littleton, MA, as well as teaching privately in her home studio in Acton, MA and at Art Space in Maynard. www.beritstrong.com
Laura Sánchez (flamenco dancer) was born in Cádiz, Spain, where her passion for flamenco began as a child attending the Concha Baras dance school. She started her professional Spanish Dance and Flamenco career at the Lola San Juan Dance Center where she studied with some of the best dancers in Spain, including Sara Martín, Christian Lozano and Isaac Tovar. She continued her studies at the Professional Conservatory of Dance in Madrid, attending dance workshops with world-renowned artists Antonio Najarro and Aida Gómez, and performing professionally at the famed RESAD Theater. She has also studied with Gala Vivancos, Juanjo Linares, Antonio Canales and Mercedes Ruiz, among others.
In Spain, Laura performed professionally and taught Flamenco for several years. She recently relocated to the US where she has been dancing with various professional companies and teaching Flamenco in Cambridge and Boston. Laura is passionate about Spanish Dance and Flamenco, and about sharing it with the world. www.lsflamenco.com