Carmel Symphony Orchestra teams with IBC for ‘The Firebird’


Carmel Symphony Orchestra Music Director David Commanday figures this CSO concert will be a thrilling blend of music and dance.

The concert, titled “Bohemian Delight and The Firebird,” is set for 7:30 p.m. March 16 at the Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel.

“The whole idea is to give the audience a great experience and I expect this music and this orchestra will do that for them,” Commanday said.

Indiana Ballet Conservatory dancers will be featured in the suite from “The Firebird.”

The program begins with Antonio Dvorak’s “Symphony No. 8.”

“It offers everything a romantic symphony can do from singing strings to brilliant winds to thrilling bass,” Commanday said. “It’s one of the anchors of this program and I’m happy to be playing (it).”

Commanday described Bedrich Smetana’s “The Bartered Bride” as a festive overture.

“It’s a thrilling piece and it brings the concert hall alive with electricity,” Commanday said. “It’s a showcase for the whole orchestra, especially the strings. Both those pieces are on the Czech or Bohemian side of things.”

Commanday added Dvorak’s “Prague Waltzes’ to the program.

Igor Stravinsky’s ‘Firebird Suite” is inspired by Russian folklore.

“I think this is the very best concert version of a Stravinsky ballet,” Commanday said. “It has all the best goodies in it, and it flows.”

Chris Lingner and Westfield High School freshman Clara Crane from the Indiana Ballet Conservatory will perform in front of the orchestra on the piece.

“The ‘Suite’ has a wonderful dark, mysterious opening overture, super quiet way down low,” Commanday said. “It sets up the way the ballet begins because you are out in the forest, and you don’t know where you are. The hero hunter sees the mystical creature called the Firebird. In the ballet, he captures her, and she pleads for him to release her, and she promises assistance if he will let him go.

“The music when he first encounters the Firebird is flighty and exciting.”

Commanday said the piece closes the concert.

“It tells the story, and you get the feel for this powerful and romantic and magical fairy tale in those 20 minutes,” Commanday said.

String groups from Carmel High School will perform in the lobby before the show.

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