The Polaris Centre for the Performing Arts in Balzac will host the Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra’s holiday performances, Holiday Dreams and Dances, on Dec. 10 and 11.
The two-hour shows will feature a full symphony orchestra, with approximately 48 musicians playing holiday-themed classical music ranging from a trumpet concerto to Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite.
According to Rocky Mountain Symphony Orchestra music director and Polaris Centre general manager Carlos Foggin, the show will include music to suit all tastes and is not the typical orchestral performance one might expect.
For example, he said, there’s a trumpet concerto featured in the soundtrack to the popular Netflix series Squid Game.
“We’ve got everything, including a harp for this concert, so it’s kind of a fun show,” he said. “There’s not a big carol sing-along – it’s a formal concert – but there’s really something for everyone.
Foggin, a professional musician, has been director of the organization since its inception in 2016. He said the rural-based orchestra has performed more than 50 concerts in the last six years to audiences ranging from farmers, to oil workers, and truck drivers.
He said the symphony aims to dispel the myth that classical music is suited only to members of high society.
“There’s an idea that classical music is for the educated – it's an elite thing,” he said. “We don't think that, we don’t believe that.”
Foggin said classical music has mostly become associated with movie soundtracks beloved by people from all ranges of society.
He added the music is accessible to a wide age range of audience members, including children, who are not likely to get squirmy during the performance.
“Nothing is too long or involved, so it’s really easy to listen to, even for young children,” he said. “I think the longest piece on the entire program is the trumpet concerto, and that’s only 14 minutes.”
The music is also easily recognizable, according to Foggin, and is sure to spark the spirit of the Christmas season for audience members.
“We all love the Nutcracker ballet, so that’s all in there,” he said. “The bar is going to be open and you can take your drink right into the concert. What’s better than that?”
The performance venue has implemented the Restriction Exemption Program (REP), which requires all guests to present a QR code as proof of vaccination, or a negative COVID-19 rapid test upon entry.
Face masks are also required inside the venue, with an exception being made when guests are enjoying a beverage from the bar.
Foggin said a live-streamed option of the performance is also available for those who aren’t comfortable attending a live show, or who would prefer to experience it from the comfort of their own home. He added viewing the livestream is a way to still support the orchestra without attending in-person.
Patrons who are interested in purchasing tickets for the livestream or in-person performances are encouraged to visit the Rocky Mountain Sympony Orchestra’s website at rockymountainsymphony.ca/holiday-dreams
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