The Gettysburg Chamber Orchestra, a year-round professional orchestra under the auspices of Music, Gettysburg!, presents two FREE concerts annually – 0ne in the spring and the other in the fall – at the Seminary Chapel. The performances try to maintain a local flavor in the permanent members and guest performers.
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An overview of the Fall 2023 performance
The program included two significant works by Czech composer Anton Dvorak: the Cello Concerto and his Symphony for the New World. The soloist for the concerto was Gettysburg native son, Colin Stokes.
In his later years, Dvorak was invited to New York to become the Director of the newly founded National Conservatory of Music and he remained in the United States for many years. Two of his most celebrated works were written while in this country, and both of those works are on today’s program. By this time in his career this composer was a highly regarded musician having received honorary degrees from Cambridge University and the University of Prague. His Symphony No. 9, the New World Symphony, received its premiere performance by the New York Philharmonic in 1893. Since then, it has been one of the most celebrated works in the symphonic repertory.
Cellist Colin Stokes was born and raised in Gettysburg and is one of the most highly regarded musicians of his generation. He made his debut at the age of 15 when he shared the stage with cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. For many years he was a New York and Berlin based cellist, composer, electronic artist, and educator performing and recording extensively in the United States, South America, Europe, and Asia. He was a member of the genre-defying Berlin based Sinfonicas, contemporary classical ensemble Zohn Collective, and Bride Arts Ensemble, a teaching-artist organization. Recent performances have found Colin sharing the stage with Chaka Khan in London and performing for nearly 1 million people at the New Year’s celebration at Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate. He is also a recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and USArtists International.
The Gettysburg Chamber Orchestra was founded in 1996 by Norman and Carolyn Nunamaker with Norman handling the musical responsibilities and Carolyn handling everything else. For the tenure of their leadership, they have donated their time and energy as a gift to the community, but they have decided to retire from this professional organization at the conclusion of the September 10, 2023 performance. However, the Chamber Orchestra will continue to perform under new leadership.
Concerts are free, and all are invited to attend. For more information, please call 717-334-5508.