Orchestra to play Vivaldi at McCain


The Venice Baroque Orchestra and violin soloist Robert McDuffie are scheduled to take the stage Sunday at McCain Auditorium.

The concert is part of the 2010-2011 McCain Performance Series.

The world-renowned orchestra was founded in 1997 and is known for its classical performances played on period instruments, which were manufactured at the time the musical pieces were written.

McDuffie is a Grammy-nominated violinist who has played with a handful of well-known orchestras around the world, including the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics and the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra.

This will be McDuffie’s second trip to K-State; he performed at McCain in 2008 with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra.

The event is a two-part concert. The first part of the show will feature Antonio Vivaldi’s composition “The Four Seasons,” which the orchestra will play on period instruments. The second half of the show will feature a Vivaldi-inspired piece, “The American Four Seasons.”

This version will be played on modern instruments. American music composer Philip Glass wrote the piece for McDuffie.

Todd Holmberg, executive director for McCain, said one of the main reasons he asked the orchestra to play for the series was because of the repertoire.

“They’re opening with the Vivaldi Four Seasons, and everybody knows that piece,” he said. “It’s a standard piece and everybody is very comfortable with that work.”

Holmberg said he is interested in the second half of the show, which will modernize the Vivaldi piece.

“It’s taking something that’s familiar and comfortable for everybody and it’s taking that repertoire and looking at it in new and different ways,” he said. “That’s exactly what students and faculty on a college campus do every day of their lives.”

Holmberg said he is excited to see how Glass’ work was reexamined and reinterpreted, and said the concert is one the community, faculty and students will enjoy.

“I think it would be interesting and motivating for students to hear live one of the most famous pieces in the classical repertoire,” he said.

The performance is scheduled to start at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are available at the McCain Auditorium box office, and student tickets are half-price.