Weekly MusicWatch

Marin Alsop returns to Oregon and other musical highlights

Music from Africa, China, Cymaspace, Brazil, Europe, Broadway and beyond resounds on Oregon stages this weekend, but the big news is the mostly American program led by one of Oregon’s favorite classical musicians, Marin Alsop, with the Eugene Symphony. You can find more classical music events on the All Classical radio calendar, and please let our readers know about other favorites in the comments section below.

Marin Alsop leads the Eugene Symphony again Thursday. Photo: Grant Leighton.

Marin Alsop leads the Eugene Symphony again Thursday. Photo: Grant Leighton.

Vusi Mahlasela and Habib Koite
March 31
Aladdin Theater, Portland
Read my Willamette Week preview of this double bill featuring a pair of Africa’s greatest singers.

Misled Bayonets
April 1
Art Haus Coffee, 8155 NE Oregon St, Portland
Portland-based Deaf composer/guitarist/sound designer Myles de Bastion presents a live, immersive multi­sensory performing art experience.

Byrdsong Renaissance Consort
April 1
Eugene Library
In this free concert, the quintet of Oregon early music masters sings and plays music from England, Scotland, Ireland, France, Italy and Germany from the 16th through 18th centuries on historical recorders, viols, violin, flutes, and harpsichord.

Northwest Percussion Festival 
April 1-2
Various venues, University of Oregon campus, Eugene
Read my Eugene Weekly preview of the mini-fest that includes performances by Oregon Percussion Ensemble and vibraphonist Victor Mendoza.

Eugene Symphony
April 2
Hult Center for the Performing Arts, Eugene
Read my Eugene Weekly preview of the return of ESO laureate conductor Marin Alsop to the orchestra she brought to new heights, and vice versa.

Oregon Symphony
April 2
Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, Portland
Pops Conductor Jeff Tyzik leads the band and award-winning guest singer/saxophonist Curtis Stigers (who’s performed with stars ranging from Elton John to Bonnie Raitt and Wynton Marsalis to Diana Krall) in a centennial tribute to Frank Sinatra.

“Sounds of Brazil PDX”
April 2
The Old Church, 1422 S.W. 11th Avenue, Portland
The eighth annual celebration of Brazilian choro music — a jazzy early 20th century blend of European, African and Native American sounds also includes bossa novas, sambas, and more, performed by Oregon’s own Rio con Brio and Choro da Alegria along with Brazil’s own Ted Falcon music and Eduardo Souza.

“Zheng and Erhu:  A Dialog Between the Strings”
April 2
PSU Academic & Student Recreation Center Auditorium, Room 001, 1800 SW 6th Ave, Portland
This free morning lecture-demonstration features virtuosos Emily Deng on the guzheng lute and Dr Jerry Lin on bowed fiddle erhu, performing solos and duets from popular classical Chinese music from various regions of China.

Frederica von Stade
April 2, Loacker Studio, Room 355, Lincoln Hall and April 3, Lincoln Recital Hall, Room 75, Portland State University
On Saturday night, the legendary opera mezzo-soprano talks about her career and sings. On Sunday afternoon, she gives a master class to PSU students that’s open to the public with ticket purchase.

“Iolanta”
Portland Concert Opera, April 1, Lewis & Clark College, Agnes Flanagan Chapel, and April 3, The Old Church, 1422 S.W. 11th Avenue, Portland
A cast of 10 singers, string quartet, pianist, and conductor performs Tchaikovsky’s opera in Russian.

Jupiter Quartet performs at Portland State University Monday and Tuesday.

Jupiter Quartet performs at Portland State University Monday and Tuesday.

Jupiter Quartet
April 4 & 5
Lincoln Performance Hall, Portland State University, 1620 SW Park Ave, Portland
Read my Willamette Week preview of these Friends of Chamber Music concerts.

Songhoy Blues
April 4
Doug Fir Lounge, 830 E Burnside St. Portland
Read my Willamette Week preview of the next-gem Malian band’s Oregon debut.

“A Sondheim Celebration”
April 5
Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta St, Portland
Portland Opera’s staging Sweeney Todd this summer, and to prime the pump, or sharpen the blade, or heat the oven, its resident artists (Katrina Galka, Felicia Moore, Abigail Dock, Aaron Short, and Ryan Thorn) join Matthew Hayward and Susannah Mars, who stars as  Mrs. Lovett, accompanied by chorus master Nick Fox on piano in a recital of songs written by the greatest living composer of stage musicals, Stephen Sondheim. Yes, there will be pie.

“Babar the Elephant”
April 5, The Old Church, 1422 S.W. 11th Avenue, Portland
In this free, kid friendly concert, omnipresent pianist Cary Lewis and youth librarian Susan Smallsreed perform Poulenc’s ever popular version of the charming kids tale by Jean de Runoff.

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Want to learn more about contemporary Oregon classical music? Check out Oregon ComposersWatch.

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