Bastille Day MinnPost feature

Musical Offering’s 45th season: ‘La Vie Parisienne’

by Pamela Espeland, Minnpost | 07/15/15

The Musical Offering performing Wind Quintet No. 1 by Endre Szervánszky. Photo: Karen Rothermel

The Musical Offering performing Wind Quintet No. 1 by Endre Szervánszky. Photo: Karen Rothermel

For its 45th season, “La Vie Parisienne,” announced on Bastille Day, The Musical Offering will present the music – and food – of France. Four concerts will feature works by Debussy, Fauré, Poulenc and Ravel and lesser-known names like Francaix, Damase, Lalliet, Tailleferre, Ibert and Blanc.

The season begins Sept. 27 with Mozart’s Sonata in E minor for Piano and Violin, written when he was just 22 and touring from Vienna to Paris. It ends with a May 8 Mother’s Day concert with music by two French women composers. The Nov. 22 program features works inspired by bel canto opera and Schubert’s Octet. On Feb. 21, the ensemble continues its tradition of combining music with cuisine, camaraderie and conversation. Debussy’s Sonata for Flute, Viola and Harp, Ravel’s Piano Trio, a wind quintet by Damase and Poulenc’s Élégie will share the bill with French food and wine.

Founded in 1971, named for a work by J.S. Bach, The Musical Offering is an unusual blend of strings, winds and pianos. Led by co-artistic directors Norbert Nielubowski, the Minnesota Orchestra’s second bassoonist/contrabassoonist, and Susan Billmeyer, a frequent guest pianist with the orchestra and the SPCO, it’s the area’s oldest continuously performing ensemble. All concerts take place on Sunday afternoons at Hamline’s Sundin Music Hall; all include personal remarks from the stage, intermission interviews, and post-concert receptions that connect the audience to the music and the musicians.Subscriptions and individual tickets are on sale now

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