Inspired by Richard Strauss’ 1889 tone poem, the University of Kansas School of Music and Reach Out Kansas, Inc. present Death and Transfiguration 7 p.m., Monday, Nov. 6 at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. The free concert, featuring the KU Symphony Orchestra with guest conductor Kyle Wiley Pickett, will include the performance of Strauss’ four-part masterpiece of the same name and thematically related works.
Death and Transfiguration captures in music the final hours of a dying man as he battles between life and death, takes a review of his life and ultimately, reaches the sought-after transfiguration.
Connecting to the theme of Death and Transfiguration, the symphony orchestra also will perform Claude Debussy’s Syrinx, Benjamin Britten’s Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes, Henry Purcell’s Dido’s Lament from Dido Aeneas, Giuseppe Verdi’s All’onda! All’onda from Rigoletto and George Frideric Handel’s Oh sleep, why dost thou leave me.
Pickett, who will guest conduct, is the new music director and conductor for the Topeka Symphony Orchestra and the Springfield Symphony Orchestra. He previously held the same position with the Juneau Symphony in Alaska and the North State Symphony in California.
The KU Symphony Orchestra is the primary orchestral organization at the KU School of Music. It performs standard orchestral repertoire from the Baroque to the 21st Century, as well as occasional premieres of new works.
Along with the KU Symphony Orchestra, the concert will highlight the talents of KU voice performance students Jee-Yeun Kim, soprano; Mackenzie Phillips, mezzo-soprano; Kang Noh Park, tenor; Zachary Cope, countertenor; and Daniel Loganbill, baritone.
Admission is free, but tickets are required and available at kauffmancenter.org or 816-994-7222.