Henderson Symphony Orchestra: Resilience
The Henderson Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Alexandra Arrieche, presents Resilience. The evening's program includes Sebelius' Finlandia and Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No. 1, featuring soloist DeAnn Letourneau.
About Sibelius' Finlandia
Finlandia is a nationalist piece written by Sibelius as a reaction to the new severe Russian censorship of artists. The piece was performed under different names in order to avoid the censors. The piece evokes the struggles of Finish people at that time, contrasting rough and violent music gestures with traditional melodies.
About Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No. 1
Soloist De Ann Letourneau returns to perform the beautiful solo in this work. Shostakovich started working on the piece around the advent of the Zhdanov doctrine. Soviet artists, writers and intelligentsia, in general, had to conform to the party line in their creative works. Under this policy, artists who failed to comply with the government's wishes risked persecution. Shostakovich's work was banned; he was fired, and his family lost privileges. He restricted his writing to movie music and works that would help his official rehabilitation. He only returned to finish the concerto years later.
About De Ann Letourneau
Letorneau has been the Concertmaster of the Las Vegas Philharmonic for over twenty seasons. She has been described as a powerfully warm and emotionally charged violinist with the unique ability to relate her love of music to all audiences. She is also one of the few female concertmasters in the U.S.
A native of Superior Wisconsin, Letorneau began studying with Diane Balko, the former concertmaster of the Duluth-Superior Symphony, at age 14. She quickly became known as one of the outstanding young artists in the U.S., winning her first professional job at age 16 with the Duluth-Superior Symphony. She has been in love with symphonic performing ever since. Her career, now spanning over 30 years, includes many performances throughout the US and Europe as soloist and chamber musician on violin and viola. Formerly affiliated with the Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestra, she has appeared as guest artist with many orchestras including the Milwaukee Symphony, National Arts Chamber Orchestra (Chicago), Duluth-Superior Symphony, St. Martin Chamber Orchestra, Nevada Chamber Orchestra and the Lake Superior Chamber Symphony in addition to soloing with the Las Vegas Philharmonic. Letorneau has also been a frequent guest artist performing recitals on radio broadcasts including KNPR FM, National Public Radio, WQXR FM in New York City, and Wisconsin Public Radio. She was awarded the Governor’s Excellence in the Arts Award and was a prizewinner at the National Arts Competition in Washington, D.C.. Letorneau also won First Prize at the International Starling Violin Competition in Aspen, Colorado.