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Zoellner show benefits children’s musical charity

The Lehigh University Very Modern Ensemble (LUVME) and the Lehigh Valley Chamber Orchestra (LVCO) will present a special children’s benefit concert, Dances and Fables for the Family, at 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 3, at Zoellner Arts Center.

The performance at Baker Hall is free for children ages 5-17, and is a benefit for The Gift of Music, a statewide charity that refurbishes donated unused instruments and distributes them to children in need of an instrument in order to start their musical instruction.

The family-friendly repertoire includes five pieces composed or arranged by LUVME director Paul Salerni, professor and chair of Lehigh’s music department and the NEH Distinguished Chair in the Humanities, and conducted by LVCO Music Director Donald Spieth.

Salerni’s original compositions include Shinichi Rag, a violin and piano duet written in memory of Dr. Shinichi Suzuki, founder of the Suzuki Method of music education, and two Italian fables with text written by poet and National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Dana Gioia--The Old Witch and the New Moon, featuring narrator Erica Horn and soprano Debra Field, and The Big Sword and the Little Broom, with guest violinist Diane Monroe, narration by Horn and dancer Vicki Haller of the Touchstone Theatre. The piece will feature illustrations created by Linda Ganus, the university’s music department program coordinator. The entire program lasts about one hour.

Founded in 1982 by Salerni, LUVME is a group of undergraduate, faculty and guest musicians devoted to the performance of contemporary music. The Lehigh Valley Chamber Orchestra has played classical music in the Lehigh Valley for more than 25 years.

Dances and Fables for the Family is part of Zeek!, Zoellner Arts Center’s club for kids where children meet musicians after performances and receive special post-show treats. ArtsPal, a fun guide to Zeek! events, is available online for download.

Additionally, Crayola is providing hands-on activities after the performance for all children in attendance. Each child will be given the opportunity to create a special masterpiece of their interpretation of the family concert with creative multi-color paper, tablets, scissors and colored pens.

Tickets are $10 general admission, $5 for students, and free for children 5-17. Tickets are required for the show. For more information, visit the Zoellner Web site.

Posted on Tuesday, January 30, 2007

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