Marlin Wolfe Enigma Gala

Marlin WolfeThe Vancouver Island Symphony closes its 13th season on Saturday, April 19, 2008, with an Enigma Gala Performance conducted by Marlin Wolfe. This will be Wolfe's last concert before stepping down as Artistic Director to be followed by Pierre Simard. Thirteen years ago Marlin Wolfe had a dream. That dream became a reality in the form of the Vancouver Island Symphony which he took from being a local amateur organization and transformed into a fully professional and exceptional regional symphony orchestra, one of the best in the province. Now Wolfe, whose career includes conducting orchestras across North America and Europe, is moving on to pursue other dreams in his life.

Enigma is like a mystery, an illusion. Says Maestro Wolfe, "The enigma is what you don't see with the music. What you do see, the reality, is the musicians on stage. This is a great program, a good crowd pleaser. I chose Khachaturian's Masquerade Suite because it is a piece that everyone will enjoy. Barber's Concerto for Violin will be performed by guest violinist Juliette Kang. It isn't heard that much yet it is beautiful to listen to."

But it is the closing piece, Elgar's amazing Enigma Variations that Maestro Wolfe feels deeply. "It is a great work, a fabulous piece. I love Elgar's music." Enigma Variations is a series of fourteen short pieces written for orchestra, and dedicated, as Elgar stated, to 'my friends pictured within.' Each variation is an affectionate portrait of one of his circle of close acquaintances. As Elgar himself said, "The enigma I will not explain." Many have theorized what this might be, however, it remains a mystery.

This landmark event will be an unforgettable finale to the "Magnificent! musical moments" 2007-2008 season and a tribute to the great legacy Maestro Wolfe has left to Nanaimo. A pre-concert talk by Assistant Conductor Gerald van Wyck begins at 6:30 pm at The Port Theatre, 125 Front Street, Nanaimo, with curtain time at 7:30 pm. Ticket holders are invited to stay in the lobby after the concert for a special gala reception, to meet Maestro Wolfe, Juliette Kang, and the VI Symphony musicians, and to sign a Memory Book for Marlin Wolfe. For tickets, call 250-754-8550.

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