Southeast Missouri Symphony Commerce Bank Concert Series Bringing Grammy Winner to Cape for Concert

Photo of the Southeast Sypmhony Orchestra in concert

The Southeast Missouri Symphony Orchestra begins its 2006-2007 Commerce Bank Concert Series with a concert featuring the award-winning flutist Rhonda Larson at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 3 in Academic Hall Auditorium.

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Sept. 19, 2006 — Southeast Missouri State University will present Grammy Award winning flutist Rhonda Larson in concert with the Southeast Missouri Symphony Orchestra at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 3 in Academic.

Flutist, composer and bandleader Larson entered the national music scene by winning first prize in the National Flute Association’s Young Artist Competition in 1985, which led to her Carnegie Hall debut.  Shortly thereafter, Larson joined forces with the Paul Winter Consort, initiating her journey of combining diverse musical styles in addition to her classical training.  Larson won a Grammy Award during her last year with the Consort. 

Since departing from the Consort, she has forged her own cross-cultural/multi-genre music path.  She has appeared in concert in South Africa as a musical ambassador for the United States, in Ireland, Italy, and Spain, and appears frequently at national and international flute conventions.  She has a discography of more than 17 commercial recordings from label/distributors such as Windham Hill and American Gramaphone.  She has recently recorded a variety of flute music for the CBS television series, “Survivor” and “The Restaurant” and in May 2004 performed on the Live CBS finale episode of “Survivor” from Madison Square Gardens, seen by more than 40 million viewers.

Larson, along with her band, Ventus (pianist Rich Ridenour and percussionist Carloyn Koebel), will be joined by the Southeast Missouri Symphony Orchestra in an exhilarating program of classical, ethnic, Celtic and jazz-inspired music.  The Symphony Orchestra will open the concert with two beautiful, programmatic Classical symphonic works: Finlandia by Finland’s greatest composer, Jean Sibelius, followed by the ever-popular “Peer Gynt” Suite by Edvard Grieg.

Larson will be the featured soloist on the second half of the program.  She, along with Ventus and the Symphony Orchestra, will perform a number of her evocative compositions, from the Celtic tune, “The Boatman,” to the jazzy “Ekkaleo” to the Middle Eastern/gypsy inspired “Armenian Allure.”  Larson will perform on a range of flutes, including her solid gold classical flute, as well as ethnic and Celtic flutes. 

“I am very much looking forward to this opening concert of the season,” said Dr. Sara Edgerton, artistic director and conductor of the Southeast Missouri Symphony Orchestra.  “It is exciting to be able to collaborate with such an outstanding musician as Rhonda.  I think the audiences will find her music to be very appealing, and the students in the orchestra will benefit so much from performing with a musician with such a stellar career as Rhonda.  This surely is a concert not to be missed.”

This special concert is made possible through the generous sponsorship of the President’s Office at Southeast Missouri State University.

Tickets for the concert are now on sale and can be purchased by calling (573) 651-2265.  Tickets will also be available at the door. For more information, please contact the Performing Arts Box Office at (573) 651-2265.