Musical pieces by composers including Bach, Strauss, and Stravinsky will be performed in a guest recital by the Chamber Players of the South Sunday at Dalton State College. The free concert will take place at 3 p.m. in the Goodroe Auditorium of Gignilliat Memorial Hall. Seating is first-come, first-served.
Historically, chamber music was written and orchestrated to be played by a small number of musicians; smaller groups of instruments meant that the ensembles could easily fit into a palace chamber. The Chamber Players of the South was founded in 1997 by Sam Baltzer to provide area professional musicians the opportunity to perform significant literature written for these small combinations of instruments.
The Chamber Players of the South’s personnel changes to accommodate each program, and the group has ranged in size from four to 32 players. This concert, entitled “Keep Calm and Listen to Classics,” features nine musicians from various backgrounds and institutions, including the Rome Symphony Orchestra, Berry College, Shorter University, Jacksonville State University, Georgia Highlands College, and Dalton State College.
Conducted by Mr. Baltzer, the Chamber Players ensemble is comprised of Sinisa Ciric on violin, John Reams on Clarinet, Eryn Oft on bassoon, Chris Probst on trumpet, Anthony Avitollo on trombone, Tracy Tyler on percussion, and includes two of Dalton State’s music faculty, Dr. Ellie Jenkins and Eric Hanson on horn and string bass, respectively.
The Chamber Players have played in concert and also in the pit for ballets, operas, and Broadway shows, and have most recently enjoyed playing pieces such as “The Magic Flute,” “The Merry Widow,” “Hansel and Gretel,” and “Rhapsody in Blue.”
This season, the group has undertaken a program of classic works for small chamber ensembles anchored by Stravinsky’s masterpiece, “L’Histoire du Soldat (The Soldier’s Tale).” The ensemble will also be performing “Bourree” by Bach, “Till Eulenspiegel Einmal Anders!” by Strauss, and “Tune for a Found Harmonium” by Simon Jeffes.
“’L’Histoire’ is one of the most challenging works for chamber musicians, but also one of the greatest and most satisfying,” says Dr. Jenkins. “This Stravinsky work is one of my favorite pieces of all time, and I’ve been waiting for years for a chance to perform this piece by Strauss.
“This really is a terrific program, and I’m thrilled that we’re able to bring it to Dalton State. It’s a great challenge for the players, but truly satisfying from an audience perspective.”