Guest violinist to open symphony season

Canadian violinist Martin Beaver opens the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra season which will feature folk songs and dances of Finland.

The Okanagan Symphony Orchestra (OSO) kicks off the start of the 2015-2016 season with inspiration from the folk songs and dances of Finland.

The OSO concert season opening takes place Friday, 7:30 p.m. at the Kelowna Community Theatre.

Additional performances this weekend will be in Penticton on Saturday, 7:30 p.m., and Vernon on Sunday, 7 p.m.

Tickets are available locally through the Kelowna Tickets box office at Orchard Park Mall or by calling 250-862-2867.

“We open our season with incredible Canadian violin sensation Martin Beaver, and is one of Canada’s violin ambassadors to the international concert stages,” said Rosemary Thomson, music director Okanagan Symphony Orchestra.

“We are thrilled to welcome such an incredible artist to perform with us on our stages this month.”

Beaver is an active musician for recital, concerto and chamber performances. He has been a concerto artist with orchestras around the world, including the San Francisco Symphony, the National Orchestra of Belgium, Mexico City Orchestra, the Portuguese Radio Orchestra and all major orchestras of Canada.

He has collaborated with many esteemed artists including violinist Pinchas Zukerman and eminent conductors such as Kazuyoshi Akiyama, Raymond Leppard, Leon Fleisher, and Charles Dutoit.

A recipient of many awards,  Beaver was the first to be awarded the use of the 1729 `ex-Heath’ Guarneri del Gesù violin on loan from The Canada Council for the Arts-Musical Instrument Bank.

He has also been the recipient of the Canada Council’s prestigious Virginia Parker Award for being the most promising young Canadian artist.

“The music from this concert will have guests tapping their toes and recognizing the pieces we perform; including Finland’s unofficial national anthem Finlandia,” stated Thomson.

“For guests interested in learning more I invite patrons to join me one hour before each performance for our pre-concert chat where I explain the history and the meaning of each piece.

“I have also produced a short video as a brief pre-concert chat which will outline one of the pieces performed this weekend, to view go to our youtube channel which can be accessed through our website at www.okanagansymphony.com.”