POTSDAM, NY - The works of one of the greatest composers of all time come to life when professional actors and the North Country's only professional, year-round orchestra join forces to present a multi-media sensation next week.
Beethoven Lives Upstairs, a world-famous production of Classical Kids Music Education of Chicago, will be presented at 7:30 p.m., Friday, March 18 at the Clayton Opera House, and at 7:00 p.m. Saturday, March 19 in Hosmer Hall, SUNY Potsdam.
Equity actors Andrew Redlawsk, New York, portrays Christoph, the young lad whose life is turned upside down by the presence of a new boarder - Beethoven - as he learns to understand the composer's moods and frustrations with going deaf; and Thad Avery, Chicago, who plays Christoph's uncle and helps him deal with the new turmoil in his life.
The show features a lively exchange of letters between the young boy and his uncle. Their subject is the "madman" who has moved into the upstairs apartment in Christoph's Vienna home. As the correspondence unfolds, Christoph recounts the horrors of the composer standing naked at the window, water dripping into their apartment, and Beethoven playing late into the night.
Finally, after attending the famous first performance of the Ninth Symphony, Christoph comes to understand the genius of Beethoven, the torment of his deafness, and the beauty of his music.
The Orchestra will perform more than twenty excerpts from Beethoven's greatest works, including Moonlight Sonata, Symphonies 5 - 9, Fur Elise, and more.
Soloists are concertmaster John Lindsey, violin, and John Wyse and Francois Germain, pianos, both of whom are renowned performers and faculty members at the Crane School of Music.
Music Director/Conductor Kenneth Andrews opens the concert with Beethoven's Turkish March from The Ruins of Athens, Op. 113 (1812).
Also performing will be Kathryn Kovarik, violin, winner of the 10th annual James and Katherine Young Artist Competition, held last month in Potsdam. She will play - from memory - Mendelssohn's Concerto in E Minor for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 64 (1844).
Kovarik, 17, is a senior at Manlius Pebble Hill School near Syracuse. A student of Linda Case, she won the Onondaga Civic Symphony Orchestra Youth Concerto Competition in 2014 and 2015. She has been both assistant concertmaster and concertmaster for the Syracuse Symphony Youth Orchestra and, in 2015, won the concerto competition for that orchestra. She is the daughter of David and Heidi Kovarik, Syracuse.
Tickets for the Potsdam performance can be purchased by calling 315-267-2277 or visiting www.onny.org. For the Clayton Opera House performance, call 686-2200.
The Orchestra of Northern New York is supported by the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency, with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the NYS Legislature.