Alex Golden ’17
The Bucknell University Orchestra took its audience on a journey through history, exploring the cultures of many composers and the rivers that inspired them. On S
ept. 21, the Orchestra kicked off its performance season with a Pops Concert in the Weis Center for the Performing Arts. Conducted by Associate Professor of Music Christopher Para, the Orchestra performed four pieces based on the theme, “Songs of the Great Rivers.” Para provided background information about each of the composers and their societies before each selection. He also expressed that it is impossible not to be drawn into the soaring melodies skillfully played by the musicians in the Orchestra. It was evident that the members of the Orchestra were incredibly skilled, as all of the pieces performed required nimble playing and total concentration.
The Orchestra’s selections took us from the banks of the Danube, with the majestic “Waves of the Danube Waltz,” to the Nile, with “Egyptian March,” to the Vltava, with a piece by the same name, and even included an orchestral arrangement of a medley from the musical “Show Boat.” The most poignant moment of the evening came when the Orchestra deviated from the program to perform a moving tribute to Associate Professor of Music Catherine Payn, founder of the Bucknell Opera Company, who passed away on Sept. 19.
The orchestra next performs at its fall concert, which will take place on Nov. 16.