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University of Iowa News Release

Sept. 24, 2004

Student Conductors Will Lead UI Philharmonia Orchestra In Oct. 10 Concert

The Philharmonia Orchestra from the University of Iowa School of Music will present a free concert with student conductors Valdir Claudino, Enaldo Oliveira and Jeremy Starr at 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 10, in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.

Part of the orchestral program at the UI School of Music, the Philharmonia Orchestra is designed for undergraduate students. The orchestra is conducted by graduate students in the orchestral conducting program, which is headed by William LaRue Jones, director of orchestral studies in the UI School of Music.

Throughout the current year, the Philharmonia Orchestra will explore music written for theatrical performance, including overtures, interludes and incidental music for theatrical productions, dance music for ballets and operas, and other music written for the stage

For the Oct 10 concert, Starr will conduct the Overture to Franz von Suppe's operetta "The Light Cavalry"; Claudino will conduct incidental music composed by Jean Sibelius for Maurice Maeterlinck' influential symbolist drama "Pelleas and Melisande"; and Oliveira will conduct Aram Khachaturian's "Masquerade" Suite, taken from incidental music written for Mikhail Lermontov's play "The Masked Ball."

"The Light Cavalry" was written for Vienna's Carl Theater as a one-act operetta in 1866. Its overture has gained far more attention than any material within the operetta and includes its main themes. Characteristic Hungarian and German elements from the operetta are heard within a potpourri of musical material.

Sibelius' incidental music for Maeterlinck's "Pelleas and Melisande" was first performed at the Swedish Theatre in Helsinki, conducted by the composer. The concert performance will feature orchestral music taken from seven interludes, two melodramas and a song, each illustrating a different scene in Maeterlinck's episodic drama.

The 20th-century composer Khachaturian is considered one of the central figures in Armenian culture and music. The incidental music to "The Masked Ball" was composed in 1941 and the suite was set by the composer in 1944. The play, which had incidental music written by a large number of Soviet composers, had a very melodramatic plot that provided many opportunities for musical expression.

A native of Brazil, Claudino received a bachelor's degree in double bass from the University of Belo Horizonte and a master's from the UI. In 2003 he returned to Iowa to pursue his doctorate in double bass with Volkan Orhon and master's in conducting with Jones. He has been principal bass player with several orchestras in Brazil. His teaching career began in 1987 at Sesiminas high school, where he served also as an arranger and conductor. Since 2000 he has been invited as a teacher and soloist by the Brazilian Association of Bassists and the Campos dos Goitacazes music festival.

Oliveira has a bachelor's degree in violin performance from Santa Marcelina College in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and a master's degree from Sao Paulo University. He served as string coordinator at Tom Jobim Music University and as pedagogical coordinator of the Guri Project for the Cultural State Secretary of Sao Paulo. He is a doctoral candidate in orchestral conducting at the UI, where he studies with Jones. Since 2003, he has been manager of the University of Iowa Orchestras and co-director of the All-University String Orchestra. He recently became music director of the Saint Ambrose University Community Symphony Orchestra and music director for the Greater Cedar Rapids Youth Symphony Orchestras.

Starr comes to the UI following his second summer conducting an all-community strings orchestra in his native town of Emporia, Kan. He received his bachelor of music degree from Brigham Young University, where he served as concertmaster of the Philharmonic Orchestra. While in Utah, he played in the first violin section of the Orchestra on Temple Square, the performing and recording volunteer orchestra for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. During the summers of 2002 and 2003, he led the Idyllwild Festival Orchestra as concertmaster and has spent the last year playing in the Wichita Symphony. This fall marks his first semester studying with Jones in the master's degree orchestral conducting program.

The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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