WMU News

Concerto winners featured in orchestra concert

March 10, 2004

KALAMAZOO--Western Michigan University's Shool of Music presents its 45th annual Concerto Concert at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 14, in the Dalton Center Recital Hall.

The free Sunday afternoon performance features the University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Bruce Uchimura, and two outstanding student soloists from the School of Music. This year's Concerto Competition winners are tuba player Adam Snider, a graduate student from Camp Hill, Pa., and violinist Mialtin Zhezha, a freshman from Vlore, Albania.

In addition to solo performances by each of Concerto winners, the program includes three pieces featuring different instrumental groups within the orchestra. Aaron Copland's "Fanfare for the Common Man" will showcase the brass and percussion instrumentalists; the woodwind section will be featured on Richard Strauss' "Serenade for Woodwinds," Op. 7; and the string section will perform Peter Ilylich Tchaikovsky's "Serenade for Strings."

"Tchaikovsky's 'Serenade' is easily one of the favorite works for strings, loved by performer and audience alike, says Uchimura. "It is music filled with Russian folk tunes and the spirit characteristic of the Romantic Era."

Adam Snider will perform Anthony Plog's "Three Miniatures for Tuba." Born and raised in Pennsylvania, Adam graduated from Camp Hill High School and went on to receive his bachelor's degree, with a double major in performance and music education, from the Boston Conservatory of Music, where he was a student of Charles Villarubia. Snider is in his first year at WMU, where he is a candidate for the Master of Music degree majoring in performance. He studies with Professor Andrew Miller and holds a graduate assistantship. His performing activities include membership in the University Symphony Orchestra, University Symphonic Band, Graduate Brass Quintet, and a student tuba quartet. At the 2003 Northeastern Regional Tuba-Euphonium Conference, Snider was awarded first prize in the Mock Orchestral Audition Competition and second prize in the College Solo Competition. He is the son of Dennis and Joyce Snider of Onalaska, Wis.

Mialtin Zhezha has selected Antonin Dvorak's "Violin Concerto in A Minor," Op. 53, for the March 14 concert. After receiving his high school diploma in Vlore, Albania, Mialtin attended the Academy of Arts in Albania's capital, Tirana, for two years before coming to WMU this past fall. He studies with Professor Renata Artman Knific and has taken master classes with violinists Ivan Chan, Vesselin Paraschevov, and Ami Flamer. Additionally, he attended the Young Artist Orchestra Workshop in Albania, a two-week program for college students. Mialtin has won first prize in the Islam Petrela Violin Competition in Albania; the Young Artists Competition in Fort Wayne, Ind.; and the Vincenzo Fanizza Competition in Italy. He was also awarded second prize at Kenget e tokes in Albania. He is the son of Koco and Eli Zhezha of Vlore, Albania.

Media contact: Kevin West, 269 387-4678, kevin.west@wmich.edu

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