Sparks to Make Second Appearance with Orchestra in Oct. 26 Concert

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Oct. 8, 2004 — The Southeast Missouri Symphony will present their second concert of the Commerce Bank Symphony Subscription Series, featuring Mark Sparks on flute Oct. 26 in Old St. Vincent’s Church.

Doors open at 7 p.m. The concert begins at 8 p.m.

Following an extremely successful collaboration with the Southeast Missouri Chamber Orchestra here last year, Sparks will return to Cape Girardeau for a second appearance with the Southeast Missouri Chamber Orchestra.  He will be the featured soloist in the colorful concerto by Vivaldi, “The Goldfinch”, and will be the soloist in Bach’s ever popular “Brandenburg Concerto No. 4.”  Also appearing as soloists in the “Brandenburg Concerto” will be Brandon Christensen, solo violin, and Paul Thompson, flute.

Mark Sparks was appointed principal flutist of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra in September 2000. Often recognized for his colorful tone and spirited phrasing, he has performed as a soloist in major venues in the United States in Carnegie and in Japan. His music festival artist-faculty affiliations include the Aspen Music Festival, where he is currently in his 10th season, the Sarasota, St. Barth’s and Sunflower festivals, and the National Orchestral Institute. Sparks is a former full-time faculty member of the Peabody Institute in Baltimore, where he established an innovative audition training course for flute students.  Class graduates and former students occupy chairs in a number of orchestras.  While in Baltimore, he was a key participant in the effort to initiate the Baltimore Symphony Musicians-in-the-Schools program.  He has presented masterclasses at top schools and training programs on several continents.  He also has recorded a solo album for Summit Records.

Sparks has performed with the New York Philharmonic and the Detroit Symphony, and is the former associate principal flutist of the Baltimore Symphony.  Prior principal appointments include the San Antonio, Memphis, and Canton, Ohio symphony orchestras.  He was recently featured in Windplayer magazine as one of the nation’s top 10 principal flutists.

The public is invited to attend this exciting concert. Tickets are available through the Performing Arts Box Office at (573) 651-2265. Very limited preferred seating is available for $12. Non-preferred seats are available for $7, with senior and student discounts available in advance only. All tickets will be either $12 or $7 at the door.