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2009 NSO American Residency: Arkansas

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Read about all the activities, concerts, and educational outreach through postings by NSO members and administrators.

The American Residencies

Full List

  • Kentucky, 2011
  • West Virginia, 2010
  • Arkansas, 2009
  • South Carolina, 2008
  • Kansas, 2007
  • Nebraska, 2006
  • Nevada, 2005
  • North Carolina, 2005
  • Tennessee, 2004
  • North Dakota, 2003
  • South Dakota, 2002
  • Oklahoma, 2001
  • Vermont, 2000
  • Mississippi, 1999
  • Alabama, 1998
  • Arizona, 1997
  • Montana, 1996
  • Wyoming, 1996
  • Maine, 1995
  • Louisiana, 1994
  • Alaska, 1992

On this page:

Conway, AR, The John F. Kennedy Memorial Center for the Performing Arts has accepted the Arkansas Arts Council’s invitation to make Arkansas the site of the National Symphony Orchestra’s 2009 American Residency. Between March 24 and 31, 2009, the members of the Orchestra will participate in approximately 150 education and performance activities throughout the state.

The announcement took place July 2, 2008 in Conway, home of the University of Central Arkansas.  Participants included Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe, and United States Representative Vic Snyder, UCA President Lu Hardin, Rollin Potter, Dean of the College of Fine Arts and Communication at the university, as well as two representatives from the NSO and the Kennedy Center:  Associate Conductor Emil de Cou and Patricia O’Kelly, Managing Director of NSO Media Relations.

The impetus for the Arkansas Arts Council’s invitation came from University of Central Arkansas Dean of Fine Arts and Communications Rollin Potter. The two organizations will jointly take on the role of coordinating all Residency activities. The Residency is funded by the Kennedy Center through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, as it has been since 1994.  Since 2006, the chamber music and outreach performances have been supported by the Kennedy Center Abe Fortas Memorial Fund for chamber music and by a major gift to the fund from the late Carolyn E. Agger, widow of Abe Fortas.

There will be a total of six orchestral concerts in the state, including an NSO Young People’s Concert in Helena.  Dozens of educational and outreach activities and other events are being planned.          

The repertoire for Arkansas’s full orchestral concerts will include the Overture to Wagner’s opera Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Hungarian composer Leó Weiner’s Serenade, Three Dance Episodes from Bernstein’s On the Town, and Dvořák’s Symphony No. 7.  Principal Conductor Iván Fischer will conduct. 

 “This will be my first American Residency,” stated Iván Fischer.  “When I first heard of this great, unique initiative of the National Symphony Orchestra, I thought it was a brilliant idea. I am very happy to participate.”

The Youth Concert in Helena will be led by Associate Conductor Emil de Cou.  He has selected a program that showcases the many ways composers from different nations in different eras have used the forces of a large orchestra.  The concert will include repertoire by John Williams, Holst, Beethoven, Debussy, and Britten.

On behalf of the National Symphony Orchestra, it gives us great pleasure to accept the Arkansas Arts Council’s invitation to make the state our home for the 2009 American Residency,” said Associate Conductor Emil de Cou.  “The American Residency is one of the signature projects of the National Symphony Orchestra and our musicians are incredibly committed and generous with their time and talents.”

“We are particularly pleased with the way the National Symphony Orchestra will interact with our teachers, students and artists while in Arkansas,” added Dean Potter.  “The Orchestra will invite up to six students to Washington to participate in their Summer Music Institute next June, and will award a Teacher Fellowship to one Arkansas teacher, custom designed to further that teacher’s career goals.  Finally, the NSO will commission a chamber work from an Arkansas composer.  This intensive involvement will only add to Arkansas’s national reputation as a leader in arts education programming.”

Dean Potter continued, “The University of Central Arkansas College of Fine Arts and the Arkansas Arts Council have worked jointly to bring the National Symphony Orchestra to Arkansas.  We look forward to working with our colleagues in Jonesboro, Little Rock, Helena-West Helena, and Fayetteville as we prepare for the March Residency and the many musical activities involved.”

Schedule

Representatives from the National Symphony Orchestra are currently working with the Arkansas Arts Council and the University of Central Arkansas to determine the complete Residency schedule, including outreach and educational events. The following schedule is confirmed.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009 Travel to Jonesboro, AR
Evening Orchestral Concert
Iván Fischer, conductor
Fowler Center, Arkansas State University
Jonesboro
Wagner Overture to the Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
WeinerSerenade
BernsteinThree Dance Episodes from On the Town
Dvořák Symphony No. 7

Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Evening Orchestral Concert
Iván Fischer, conductor
Lily Peter Auditorium, Phillips College
Helena-West Helena
Wagner Overture to the Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
WeinerSerenade
BersteinThree Dance Episodes from On the Town
Dvořák Symphony No. 7

Thursday, March 26, 2009
NSO Young People's Concert
Emil de Cou, conductor
Warfield Concerts at
Lily Peter Auditorium, Phillips College
Helena-West Helena
WilliamsImperial March from Star Wars
Holst"Mars, the Bringer of War" from The Planets
Beethoven Scherzo from Symphony No. 9 (Excerpt)
Debussy "Play of the Waves" and "Dialogue of Wind and Sea' from La Mer
BRITTEN Finale (Fugue) from The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra

Saturday, March 28, 2009
Evening Orchestral Concert
Iván Fischer, conductor
Reynolds Performance Hall
University of Central Arkansas Conway
WagnerOverture to the Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
WeinerSerenade
BernsteinThree Dance Episodes from On the Town
Dvořák Symphony No. 7

Sunday, March 29, 2009
Matinee Orchestral Concert
Iván Fischer, conductor
Robinson Center
Little Rock
Wagner Overture to the Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
WeinerSerenade
BersteinThree Dance Episodes from On the Town
Dvořák Symphony No. 7

Monday, March 30, 2009
Evening Orchestral Concert
Iván Fischer, conductor
Walton Arts Center
Fayetteville
Wagner Overture to the Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
WeinerSerenade
BernsteinThree Dance Episodes from On the Town
Dvořák Symphony No. 7

Tuesday, March 31, 2009 Travel to Washington, DC

Follow-Up Activities

As noted above, the 2009 American Residency does not end when the National Symphony Orchestra leaves Arkansas on March 31.

Summer Music Institute.  Since 1992, the Kennedy Center/NSO National Trustees’ Summer Music Institute -- a training program for young orchestral musicians (ages 14-21) from across the country -- has welcomed students annually for four weeks of study, rehearsal and coaching sessions.  As part of the American Residency, up to six students from Arkansas will be chosen to receive scholarships to the 2009 Summer Music Institute.  Students are selected by taped audition. 

Teacher Fellowship.  An Arkansas music teacher will be selected for an individually designed program to further the teacher’s professional development.  The program will take place in Washington, D.C., under the auspices of the National Symphony Orchestra and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. 

Chamber Music Commission.  An Arkansas composer will be selected to create a chamber music work to be premiered at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

The College of Fine Arts and Communication at the University of Central Arkansas will coordinate all three follow-up projects.

Public Information and tickets

American Residency Photos

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Press Contacts

The Stella Boyle Smith Trust is the Presenting Sponsor of the 2009 NSO American Residency Arkansas Program. American Residencies are sponsored by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

Chamber music concerts and outreach are sponsored in part by generous contributors to the Kennedy Center Abe Fortas Memorial Fund for Chamber Music and by a major gift to the fund from the late Carolyn E. Agger, widow of Abe Fortas.