SHERIDAN — Hearing that Sheridan College would host an orchestra concert was music to Dr. Mark Elliot Bergman’s ears.
When the Sheridan College music director and the director of strings arrived at Sheridan College this past fall, strings, horns and other ensembles had performed on a regular basis. But rarely did they perform together.
That that will change this weekend. This will be the first time that the school’s symphony orchestra will be able to host a concert and Bergman said he sees this as a huge step forward for the arts community and college alike.
“It’s the first time we will be doing a full program all by ourselves. I’m just thrilled with the progress the orchestra has made, it’s really been a combination effort community members and college students,” Bergman said.
The orchestra will perform at 8 p.m. Saturday at the First Baptist Church in Sheridan. The concert is free and open to the public.
The symphony orchestra concert titled “Love, Tragedy and Transcendence,” will have a little bit of everything, according to Bergman.
The concert will include four different pieces beginning with the works of Ludwig van Beethoven and his famous “Egmont Overture.” Then the symphony will transition to the works of Georges Bizet, Aaron Copland and Benjamin Britten throughout the program.
These works range from the 14th century Europe to 20th century American classics. Bergman said this was on purpose, to give the audience a wide variety of musical styling.
“You have a guy like Beethoven who was an 18th century, 19th century composer then we will have Aaron Copland’s works, who died in 1990. So there is quite a span there as far as the repertoire,” Bergman said.
Likewise, each one of these pieces has a rich history behind them, Bergman said. Perhaps one of the more interesting of the stories is Beethoven’s “Egmont Overature,” which was written as a protest of Napoleon Bonaparte’s decision to crown himself emperor of France in 1804. Bergman said he believes that the history behind it, not just the music itself, will be captivating for audiences.
“I think what is important to understand is that this isn’t any music that we will be playing, but some of the most enduring and impactful music in the past 300 years that we will be playing in this program,” Bergman said.
The college’s Viol Consort will also make an appearance.
Bergman said this program is a huge step forward for a Sheridan community invested in its arts. This year, Sheridan College is expected to complete the Whitney Center for the Arts, a 48,000-square-foot building that will include a slew of fine arts facilities such as a state-of-the-art concert hall which will only further the development of the orchestra in years to come.
“It’s wonderful to be a part of a growing, vibrant art and music community that has no where to go but up,” Bergman said.