LIMA — It’s a combination of the best-loved songs you’ve never known when the Lima Symphony Orchestra celebrates the 200th anniversary of the birth of classical musical giant Richard Wagner with its “Brahms and Bicentennial” concert on Saturday.
“We’re opening the program with Wagner’s most familiar Siegfried Idyll,” said Elizabeth Brown, marketing director for the Symphony. The program will conclude with Johannes Brahms’ joyful Symphony No. 2.
The opening piece was composed by Wagner as a birthday present to his second wife, Cosima, after the birth of their son in 1869. It was first performed on Christmas morning, 1870, by a small ensemble on the stairs of their home in Switzerland.
“This is one of those pieces that you will know from television and movies when you hear it. It’s a familiar, wonderful piece,” Brown said.
The symphony will also perform Alexander Arutunian’s “Concerto for Trumpet in A Flat” with guest soloist, Kyle Kremer. “Kyle was our 2011 Friends of the Symphony Young Artist competition winner, so having him back with us is like being with family. It really gives us a sense of pride that a young person whom we identified as talented at a young age is back and performing with us professionally,” Brown said.
Indeed, Kremer, 22, has graduated since 2011 from Northwestern University, where he earned degrees in both music and physics. He is currently working on a research fellowship at the University of Cambridge in England pursuing a master’s degree in astrophysics.
Rounding out this concert will be Ronssini’s Overture to “Semiramide,” which will feature guest conductor Richard Ashbaugh, who purchased the chance to conduct at the LSO wine tasting in 2011. “He has chosen the work to conduct, and worked closely with Maestro Crafton Beck to perfect his technique.
“He is one of our most studied guest conductors, and I think he will really wow us,” Brown said.