LEWISTON – The Maine Chamber Ensemble of the Maine Music Society will present the Brandenburg Concertos, one of Johann Sebastian Bach’s orchestral masterpieces, Saturday, Sept. 27, at the Franco-American Heritage Center.

Under the baton of conductor John Corrie, the program features five charming and beautiful concertos, each of which highlights various instruments of the orchestra.

“The audience will hear several familiar melodies,” Corrie said, including theme music used by Minnesota Public Broadcasting.

Corrie, who is MMS artistic director, will also play harpsichord. The fifth concerto is the one in which harpsichord is prominently featured, particularly in a lengthy solo cadenza to the first movement.

Scholars write that Bach, a great organ and harpsichord virtuoso, was most likely the harpsichord soloist for the premiere of his work, composed in 1721.

In Concerto No. 3, which opens the program, all of the instruments are played by soloists. “This is really quite fascinating,” Corrie said.

Concerto No. 6 is next on the program, featuring viola, cello, harpsichord and bass. Concerto No. 4 highlights the violins and two flutes.

The fifth concerto follows an intermission, and the concert concludes with Concert No. 2 with soloists on violin, flute, trumpet and oboe.

“All of the soloists for this concert are wonderful,” Corrie said.

The conductor noted that the order of the concertos is not significant and, in fact, the order of this program was “rearranged for dramatic impact.”

The first concerto is not included in Saturday’s program, he noted.

Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27, at the heritage center on Cedar Street. Tickets are $18 for adults, $16 for seniors and $9 for students. Children 12 and under are free when accompanied by an adult. For tickets, call L/A Arts at 782-7228.

The Maine Chamber Ensemble is a professional chamber orchestra based in Lewiston-Auburn. It was formed in 1987 in response to the Androscoggin Chorale’s increasingly sophisticated programming and need for orchestral accompaniment.

Members are professional musicians who live and work in Maine, and many are members of the Portland Symphony Orchestra, the Bangor Symphony Orchestra and applied music faculties of Maine colleges and universities. Several belong to other established chamber groups, and some have private studios.


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