Violin soloist Kaori Washiyama to headline Sage City Symphony all-Beethoven concert

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BENNINGTON — Sage City Symphony will present a free concert at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 10 in Greenwall Auditorium in the VAPA Building at Bennington College. Conducted by music director Michael Finckel, the symphony will perform three pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven: Egmont Overture, Op. 84; Symphony No. 4 in B-flat major, Op. 60; and Romance No. 2 in F major, Op. 50, for violin and orchestra featuring symphony concertmistress Kaori Washiyama.

Washiyama, an instructor in violin, viola, and chamber music at Bennington College since 2005, was trained at the Kyoto City University of Art and Music in her native Japan and pursued further studies at the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome and the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena, Italy. In addition to numerous other honors, she is a first-prize winner of the Rodolfo Lipizer Violin Competition and a recipient of the prestigious Rode Award in Italy. She is the founding director of a well-established concert series bearing her name, the Kaori Washiyama Chamber Music Series, which presents musical events annually throughout Japan; she has been honored for these achievements with the Kyoto Music Award, the Tohdo Music Award, the Kyoto Prefecture Cultural Award, and the Baroque Saar Award. She is a core member of In the Music Room, which performs throughout southern California. Other recent American performances, including concert appearances with her partner, Daniel Shulman, have taken place in Boston, New York, San Francisco, and elsewhere. Recently she has performed numerous solo violin recitals and chamber music concerts throughout Japan and Italy. She has served as concertmistress of the Kyoto Chamber Orchestra, the Mozart Kammer Orchestra-Osaka, and, since 2011, Sage City Symphony.

The Feb. 10 concert is sponsored by members of the Sage City Symphony board of directors. Sage City Symphony (www.sagecitysymphony.org) is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization, registered in the State of Vermont, and relies entirely on generous donations and grants from individuals, local foundations, businesses, and sponsors. Concerts are always free and open to all.

Upcoming events in Sage City Symphony's 2018-19 season include a Youth Concert on March 10; a Jazz Brunch on May 18 with live music by the Leo Yucht Jazz Combo; and a Spring Concert on May 19 with Dvorak's Symphony No. 7 and a world premiere of a work by local-boy-made-good Leo Yucht, an up-and-coming jazz percussionist now based in New York City.

Led by music director Michael Finckel for the past 25 years, Sage City Symphony was founded in 1972 as a community and college orchestra with close ties to Bennington College. In addition to performing traditional classical repertoire as well as contemporary music, the symphony commissions and premieres new pieces each year. The symphony attracts a high caliber of dedicated amateur as well as professional musicians who travel from throughout Vermont, New York, and Massachusetts for weekly rehearsals during the concert season. Auditions are not required, and academic credit is available for Bennington College students who participate. Information about joining the symphony is available at www.sagecitysymphony.org/join.htm.

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