Fairfield University Orchestra's 2011 Holiday Concert includes rarely-performed "Santa Clause Symphony"



7 p.m., Friday, December 9, 2011
Gonzaga Auditorium, Fairfield University
Free Admission

Image: OrchestraThe Fairfield University Orchestra celebrates the season with a special holiday performance at 7 p.m., Friday, December 9, 2011, at Fairfield University's Gonzaga Auditorium in a program that includes the rarely-performed "Santa Clause Symphony" featuring Fairfield University President Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J., as guest narrator. Admission is free.

"Orchestras almost never have the opportunity to play 'new' music that was written a long time ago," said Dr. Laura Nash, Fairfield University Associate Professor of Music, who oversees the Fairfield Orchestra. "'The Santa Claus Symphony' by William Henry Fry, was composed in 1853, and we will be the first orchestra to perform the work with narration. Fry was to nineteenth-century New York what Virgil Thomson was for the 20th century - a composer, newspaper critic, and author who tirelessly advocated on behalf of American music. Fry's work as a composer is significant in the development of American music as he was to compose symphonies and opera, known as long form works. 'The Santa Claus Symphony' celebrates both the sacred and secular traditions of Christmas."

Other works on the program include "Overture to Miracle on 34th Street," by Bruce Broughton, arr. Johnnie Vinson, "Air from Orchestral Suite #3," by J. S. Bach, and Grieg's "Lyric Suite." Conducting the orchestra is Jamie Ratcliffe, who received her MM in conducting from the University of Oregon where she participated in the prestigious Bach Festival.

Gonzaga Auditorium is located in Gonzaga Hall on the campus of Fairfield University at 1073 North Benson Road in Fairfield, Connecticut. For further information and directions, call (203) 254-4010 or 1-877-278-7396.

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Media Contact: Mike Horyczun, (203) 254-4000 ext. 2647, mhoryczun@fairfield.edu

Posted on December 2, 2011

Vol. 44, No. 139