Kerry Dexter

Another way to hear the orchestra (100 Things to Do in Classical Music)

September 25, 2012 06:37

Continuing the conversation on 100 Things to Do in classical music (I was too late to comment on the post) I'd add what may seem an off the wall suggestion: experience a concert in which folk musicians collaborate with a great orchestra. This will enhance your view of both sorts of music, and it's a great thing to share with someone who might not otherwise go to see an orchestra -- or go to see that folk artist -- too.

My favorite experiences along this line:
Irish American songwriter and singer Cathie Ryan with the Rochester Philharmonic (fiddle by Hanneke Cassel), and the Irish band Altan sharing the music of Donegal (fiddle from Mairead Ni Mhaonaigh and Ciaran Tourish) with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

Other folk musicians who do really fine concerts with orchestras include Natalie MacMaster and Donnell Leahy, from the Cape Breton fiddle tradition, Tish Hinojosa's songs of the American west from a Hispanic perspective, and Scot singer Eddi Reader's program on the songs of Robert Burns. These are all ways to hear the work of an orchestra differently yourself and perhaps open doors for someone else to listen, as well.

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