FARMINGTON — Waltzes, jazz, rags and other toe-tapping delights fill the bill when the University of Maine at Farmington Community Orchestra performs at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 9, in Nordica Auditorium in UMF’s Merrill Hall. The orchestra’s special guests are the gypsy jazz group Mes Amis, featuring Steve Lynnworth and Harry Richter on guitars, and Farmington’s own Steve Muise on violin.

The concert juxtaposes classical and popular styles of music in unexpected ways, with an orchestra folk-dance followed immediately by a music hall ballad, or a Viennese waltz transformed into a jazz improvisation.

For this program, the director of the orchestra, Philip Carlsen, UMF professor of music, has crafted new arrangements of Brahms’s piano waltzes, Op. 39, with solos for various musicians, as well as places for the orchestra and Mes Amis to perform together.

The final waltz of the set, with its tender, late-night, bittersweet mood, will be merged with Lynnworth’s own composition “Au revoir,” in a kind of nostalgic Viennese-Roma “mash-up.”

The concert has a definite Eastern-European flavor, featuring one of the folk-derived “Lachian” dances by the Czech composer Leos Janacek; the “Minuetto Serio” by the Hungarian Zoltan Kodaly; and the magnificent “Serenade” for winds, cellos, and basses by the Bohemian Antonin Dvorak.

In addition to these works and the Brahms waltzes, the orchestra will play Scott Joplin’s “Entertainer” and “Maple Leaf Rag.” At several points along the way, Mes Amis will perform several original pieces from their regular repertoire, including Lynnworth’s “Toby’s Torment” and “Valse du Café.”

Admission is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors and free for children and UMF students. For more information, email [email protected]


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