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Kentucky Symphony’s 23rd season gets offto fast start with Harold Lloyd’s Speedy

Harold Lloyd's Speedy (Photo from Museum of the Moving Picture)

Harold Lloyd’s Speedy (Photo from Museum of the Moving Picture)

The Kentucky Symphony Orchestra opens its 23rd season this week with a nod to downtown Cincinnati’s new, old-style streetcar on Saturday, Oct. 11. The KSO’s Newport Ragtime ensemble presents Speedy, Harold Lloyd’s 1928 silent comedy with a Roaring ’20s-style score by Carl Davis.
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Lloyd’s funny film is about an epic battle between an electric streetcar and a horse-drawn trolley through the streets of New York and features the legendary Yankee – Babe Ruth, himself. The Oct. 11 performance at Florence Baptist Church at Mt. Zion at 8 p.m. also features a silent film short and some musical hits from 1928.
The second season performance is Saturday, Nov. 22, at Florence Baptist and highlights 20th Century Premieres the KSO hasn’t played in its previous 22 seasons. Despite performing nearly 700 works, the KSO still has a few of classical music’s Top 100 to premiere and they check off Ravel, Sibelius and Stravinsky from that list in this 8 p.m. concert.

    Babe Ruth, left, with Harold Lloyd in Speedy (Photo provided)

Babe Ruth, left, with Harold Lloyd in Speedy (Photo provided)

The evening begins with Jean Sibelius’ Finlandia from 1900 and continues with one of the most “unique experiences” in symphonic music, says Music Director James R. Cassidy, in John Cage’s 4’33” from 1952. The experience gives new meaning to the phrase “the sounds of silence,” says Cassidy.
Also on the program are Maurice Ravel’s La Valse from 1920 and Igor Stravinsky’s Petroushka from 1947.
Rearview Mirror is the title of two concerts in March at Notre Dame Academy in Park Hills. The Saturday, March 14, concert at 8 p.m. and the Sunday, March 15, concert at 3 p.m. feature 18-year-old flute phenom Annie Wu in her regional debut as a soloist. She performs Lukas Foss’ Renaissance Concerto and her YouTube channel hit Three Beats for Beat-box Flute by Greg Pattillo.
The performance is entitled Rearview Mirror because classical composers often look to their predecessors for inspiration in form, style or even tune. The concert includes a number of reflective pieces by Sergei Prokofiev, Maurice Ravel, Ottorino Respighi and William Walton.
The KSO reconnects with the Cincinnati Observatory in The Planets Meet the Third Rock on Saturday, April 11, at 8 p.m. at Florence Baptist Church at Mt. Zion. Gustav Holst’s The Planets will accompany NASA photos and telescopes will be manned by observatory staff during intermission and following the concert for audience members to catch a glimpse of Jupiter and Mars.

KSO's April concert features free telescope views hosted by staff from the Cincinnati Observatory. (Photo provided)

KSO’s April concert features free telescope views hosted by staff from the Cincinnati Observatory. (Photo provided)

Also on the program, as a tip of the hat to Earth Day, will be Karel Husa’s Apotheosis of This Earth which Cassidy describes as “powerful and moving.”
The final concerts of the season will be Two Cities, Two Bands about Blood Sweat & Tears and Chicago on Thursday, May 7, through Saturday, May 9, at 8 p.m. at The Carnegie in Covington.
“In 1968, rock and jazz musicians came together to form two legendary horn bands, one in Chicago and the other in New York,” says Cassidy. “Though their instrumentation is similar, their paths, sounds and stories are quite different.”
The KSO Boogie Band, a studio orchestra with vocals, will cover the hits and history of these two groups, both of which are still touring 46 years later. Their hits from 1969-2014 will be performed including Spinning Wheel, 25 or 6 to 4, You’ve Made Me So Very Happy, Just You and Me, And When I Die, You’re the Inspiration and many more.
Single tickets are $19-$35 with children 6-18 half off. For more information, see kyso.org or call 859-431-6216.

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