The Everett Philharmonic Orchestra wraps up its season Sunday with a performance called a clash of the Romantic titans — “Wagner vs Brahms.”
Then, on Monday, the Cascade Symphony Orchestra hosts flutist Alexander Lipay in the final performance of its concert season. Lipay will perform the “Flute Concerto No. 2 in D Major” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
Sunday’s Philharmonic concert in Everett will begin with a performance by cellist Stephen Leou of Dmitri Shostakovich’s “Cello Concerto No. 1 in E flat Major.” Leou, 17, is a student at Bellevue High School. He made his solo debut at age 11 with the Cascade Symphony.
Leou was a co-winner of the orchestra’s young artists competition in October.
“He’s doing Shostakovich, which is extremely difficult,” said Paul-Elliott Cobbs, music director for the Everett Philharmonic Orchestra.
Shostakovich wrote the piece at a time when he was rebelling against the Soviet system. He composed some parodies of some of the favorite tunes of Joseph Stalin, the brutal Soviet dictator who was responsible for the deaths of millions while he was in power.
“The woodwinds sound like a cat being choked,” Cobbs said. “He’e getting back at Stalin.”
The composition’s last movement, which is being played by Leou, “is fast and doesn’t let up,” he said.
Cobbs characterized the rest of the program, with compositions by Brahms and Wagner, as being “like a 16-round heavyweight fight.”
The music selected for the performance is part of the orchestra’s annual “Listener’s Choice” concert, music requested either by audiences or an orchestra member.
Other pieces they will perform are Brahms’ “Symphony No. 2 in D Major” and two pieces by Wagner, “Overture to Rienzi” and “Tristan and Isolde.” The piece features mezzo-soprano Melissa Plagemann, who teaches at Pacific Lutheran and Western Washington universities.
Her voice “carries over the orchestra so well,” Cobbs said. “She will really impress.”
“Wagner is all about love and deep emotion,” he added. “And Brahms was very conservative. Here you have this very conservative composer pitted against Wagner, who lets all the stops out.”
On Monday, Alexander Lipay will join the Cascade Symphony Orchestra as a Hazel Miller Foundation soloist.
The concert also will include Georgy Sviridov’s “Snow Storm Suite” and Gustav Mahler’s “Symphony No. 1,” also known as “The Titan.”
Lipay is principal flute with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and has performed in international music festivals including Musical Olympus in St. Petersburg, Russia, Moulin d’Ande in France, and the Galway Flute Festival in Weggis, Switzerland.
He won a Grammy Award in 2016 for Best Surround Sound album.
Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you go
Everett Philharmonic Orchestra’s season finale concert “Wagner vs Brahms” is scheduled for 3 p.m. May 5 at the Everett Civic Auditorium, 2415 Colby Ave., Everett. Stage-side chat on the concert begins at 2 p.m. General admission tickets are $25, seniors and active military $20, youth and students with ID are $10. Children 12 and under free with an adult. Tickets are available online at www.everettphil.brownpapertickets.com or by calling 206-270-9729.
Cascade Symphony Orchestra’s “Mozart and Mahler” concert is scheduled at 7:30 p.m. May 6 at the Edmonds Center for the Arts, 410 Fourth Ave. N., Edmonds. Tickets are $27 for adults, $22 for seniors, $15 for students with ID and $10 for children 12 and younger. More at tinyurl.com/CSO0519.