WMU News

High school musicians solo with Detroit Symphony

May 2, 2002

KALAMAZOO -- Five high school students have been selected concerto soloists to appear with the Detroit Symphony Civic Orchestra Friday, May 10, during the 40th annual Michigan Youth Arts Festival at Western Michigan University.

The gala concert, with Charles Burke conducting the orchestra, begins at 7 p.m. in Miller Auditorium. The five were selected from among 80 outstanding high school musicians from across Michigan who auditioned.

The Detroit Symphony Civic Orchestra will perform "Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche" by Richard Strauss. Soloists performing with the Youth Symphony will be: Rachel Keathley, a violinist from Okemos; David Cooper, a French horn player from Lansing; Ross Gasworth, a cellist from Farmington Hills; Richard Cheng, a pianist from Ann Arbor; and Brenden Gunnell a tenor from East Lansing.

Rachel Keathley is a senior at Okemos High School, where she studies violin with Marilyn Kesler. She also studies privately with Stephen Shipps. She will perform the first movement of "Concerto for Violin, Op. 28" by Carl Goldmark.

David Cooper is a senior at Grand Ledge High School. His music teacher is Michael Kaufman. He also studies privately with Dr. Dale Bartlett. He will perform the third movement and Rondo of the "Second Horn Concerto," by Richard Strauss.

Ross Gasworth is a senior at North Farmington High School where he studies cello with Carl Gippert and privately with Jerome Jelinek. His selection is the first movement of "Cello Concerto No. 1 in A Minor" by Saint-Saens.

Richard Cheng is a sophomore at Ann Arbor Greenhills School, where he studies piano with Deborah Henderson. His private piano teacher is Mary Siciliano. He will be performing the third movement of "Piano Concerto No. 1, Op. 25 in G Minor" by Felix Mendelssohn.

Brenden Gunnell is a senior and attends Haslett High School where he studies with Erich Wangeman. He also studies privately with Donna Green. He has selected two works, "Coh'b (A Dream)" by Sergei Rachmaninoff and "Del Minacciat del Vento" by George Fredric Handel.

This is the eighteenth year that WMU has served as host to this event which is sponsored in part through funding from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs; Western Michigan University; Bank One; Psi Iota Xi, Eta Omicron Chapter; Siegfried Crandall Vos & Lewis; Jays Foods; D & W Food Centers; and the Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Michigan.

The concert is open to the public. Festival event passes are available at Festival Headquarters in the Dalton Center on the WMU campus for $15. Individual tickets may be purchased at Miller Auditorium the evening of the event for $5. For further information, please contact WMU's College of Fine Arts at (269) 387-4185.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, 269 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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