PORTLAND – The Portland Symphony Orchestra’s Vocal Valentine concerts are designed for fans of pure romance. The PSO will be joined by soprano Lisa Saffer and tenor John McVeigh, both of Portland, for a performance of some of the most famous and beloved romantic music from throughout the ages and around the world.

Vocal Valentine will be performed at 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 16, and at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17, at Merrill Auditorium.

Saffer and McVeigh are internationally acclaimed opera stars who have moved to Portland in recent years. Saffer has received New York City Opera’s Diva Award; is a recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society Award; and was nominated for an Olivier Award, London’s equivalent of New York’s Tony Award. Her concert work has taken her to virtually all of the leading American orchestras, and she also appears throughout Europe.

McVeigh has been acclaimed for his “fresh-toned and touching portrayal” by Opera News and by the New Orleans Times-Picayune for his “rich lyrical tenor, fabulous top notes.” He performed with the Glimmerglass, New York City, Austin Lyric, Houston Grand and Santa Fe operas, as well as in concert and recital halls around the world. He also performed in the PSO’s Leonard Bernstein tribute concerts in January 2007.

Guest conductor Julian Wachner is associate professor of music at the Schulich School of Music at McGill University, principal conductor of Opera McGill and director of music at the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul. He has appeared with many symphonies, including the Calgary Philharmonic, San Diego Symphony, National Arts Centre Orchestra, Handel & Haydn Society, The Metropolis Orchestra (Chicago), The Boston Pops and New England Philharmonic.

Tickets are $20, $30, $40, $50 and $60. They can be ordered online at www.porttix.com, by calling 842-0800, or at the PortTix box office, 20 Myrtle St., from noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Discounts are available for students, seniors and groups of 10 or more.

For more information about the PSO, visit www.portlandsymphony.com.


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