Astoria Music Society
Performance Of Part I of Handel's Messiah
December 13, 2010 / Astoria / Queens Buzz. The Astoria Music Society, under the baton of guest conductor Bahman Saless, performed Part One of Handel's Messiah at the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts [FSA] in Astoria. The Astoria Symphony, the newly-formed Astoria Symphonic Choir and the FSA Choir collaborated on the performance of this majestic work created by Georg Handel in the 18th century. The leads were sung by soprano Jennifer Behnke, mezzo-soprano Elizabeth Mondragon, tenor Thomas Wazelle and bass Matthew Singer. About 120 musicians in all joined in the performance. Photos were provided by Alex Lauren. Click here to view a report about the Astoria Music Society, including a slide show of the performance of Handel's Messiah.
Astoria Music Society
Performance Of Handel's Messiah Part I In Astoria
Continued / December 11, 2010 / Astoria / Queens Buzz. After the concert I met Alex Lauren, Anna Gaffney and Andrea McArdle all of whom are board members of the Astoria Music Society. They informed me that the Astoria Music Society was founded in 2002 by Silas Nathaniel Huff, who continues to be the society's music director. The report that follows is a mix of what I learned from them as well as by browsing through their press release and website following the concert.
Astoria Symphony - Classical Music In Queens
The society's flagship ensemble is the Astoria Symphony which is comprised of promising professional musicians from the metro area. The symphony is conducted by Silas, as well as resident conductor Grant Gilman and Assistant / Cover conductor Brent Chancellor. The main thrust of the symphony is classical music, including Mendelssohn, Prokofiev, Bach, Mozart, Handel; and new works which it occasionally premieres. The Astoria Symphony considers the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts [FSA] its new home, while still maintaining relations and performing in prior venues such as the Church of the Redeemer and St. Joseph's Church which had hosted Astoria Music Society performances prior to the opening of FSA.
Lost Dog New Music Ensemble
The society hosts a mix of ensembles, providing residents of Astoria, Long Island City, Sunnyside and surrounding neighborhoods to play in. Three years ago the Astoria Music Society created a separate group, called the Lost Dog New Music Ensemble, which is comprised of a quintet of the Astoria Music Society musicians. The focus of this group is entirely new works, with an artistic and imaginative bent. This group has been in existence since about 2007.
Astoria Symphonic Choir
The latest group emerging under the Astoria Music Society's umbrella is the Astoria Symphony choir. I believe this group was formed within the past year and performed in Handel's Messiah under the direction of Maestro Adam Eggleston. They were joined by the FSA Choir which was directed by Heidi Best.
Astoria Music Society - 2010 - 2011 Season
On March 12th, 2011 at 8 pm the Astoria Symphony will host Romantic Masterpieces at FSA. On April 28th at 8 pm the Lost Dog New Music Ensemble will peform Peal at Waltz-Astoria. And on May 8th at 7 pm the Astoria Symphonic Choir will perform Haydn Fest at St. Joseph's Church.
Astoria Symphony - Part I Handel's Messiah
The following is a slide show containing photos of the Handel's Messiah performance by the Astoria Music Society. These photos as well as those included in the report above were taken by Alex Lauren.
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