by Jarrett Hoffman
A cave on the Scottish island of Staffa, the city of Rome, birdsong from Finnish bogs, and the vast landscapes of Antarctica provided key inspiration for four works — two of them among classical music’s Top 40, the other two rarely performed.
The Akron Symphony and music director Christopher Wilkins will bundle together those nature-themed compositions by Mendelssohn, Respighi, Rautavaara, and Vaughan Williams for “Planet Earth” on Friday, March 23 at 8:00 pm at E.J. Thomas Hall.
Projected visuals will join one of those composers’ sonic paintings. Thanks to Natural History New Zealand, Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Sinfonia antartica will be accompanied by a film created specifically for that symphony, focusing on the icy, mysterious, southernmost continent. The symphony, Vaughan Williams’ seventh, will also feature guest soprano Katherine Swift and the women of the Akron Symphony Chorus, directed by Marie Bucoy-Calavan.