Concert goers have their choice of two unusual concerts coming up this week at the University of Wyoming. One is a biennial concerto competition for students. The other brings together musicians from three continents for the Wyoming premier of a Brazilian piece.
The biennial Jacoby Competition hits the stage Thursday, February 26. Six students will perform as soloists with the UW Symphony Orchestra. The winner receives a cash prize. And symphony director Michael Griffith says it’s almost impossible to predict the outcome. “One concert we had a freshman from Powell, Wyoming beat out three graduate students,” says Griffith. “So you just never know.”
Then on Friday, February 27 UW piano professor Theresa Bogard will be joined by string players from Brazil, Puerto Rico, and Germany for the Wyoming premier of a piano quartet by the Brazilian composer Enrique Oswald. “Brazil has an incredibly strong classical music tradition, and they really honor their Brazilian composers, and they’re played all the time,” she explains.
Bogard says contemporary music is part of the standard repertoire there, which isn’t as much the case in the U.S. The Friday concert at UW foreshadows a performance by the quartet later this year at a music festival in Brazil.