“Love is…”

A year ago this month, Chan Poling’s song “Love Is The Law” became the de facto anthem of the Marriage Equality movement, which reached its apotheosis with Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton uttering that song’s refrain upon his signing of the historic amendment. Tonight the Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra debuts Mr. Poling’s Symphonic Celebration: “Love Is…” based on his band’s beloved song – with orchestrations by Mr. Poling and the supremely talented Robert Elhai.

Chan Poling

Chan Poling is a Minnesota based pop songwriter and composer of theatrical and film scores. His alternative rock band, The Suburbs, got their first recording contract in 1977 and became a touchstone of the “Minneapolis Sound”. Many of his songs have made the international pop music charts and have been used in films, television shows and advertising.

He also has written the musical scores for a variety of independent feature films, theater productions, and documentaries (most recently the documentary “Fritz” celebrating his father-in-law, former Vice President Walter Mondale). In 2005 he formed the cabaret trio The New Standards, which regularly performs around the world and whose annual Holiday Show is a perennial favorite. Among many honors for his work, including an Emmy and a Cine Golden Eagle for his scores, the Minnesota Music Awards recognized Chan with their lifetime “POP” (Perpetually Outstanding Performer) Award.

Robert Elhai

ROBERT ELHAI (arr/orchestration) is a Tony and Drama Desk nominee for his orchestrations and arrangements for the Broadway production of The Lion King, he orchestrated the recent Los Angeles Opera and New York’s Lincoln Center Festival production of Elliot Goldenthal and Julie Taymor’s opera Grendel. Among the some 120 feature films he has contributed orchestrations to are the upcoming Iron Man 3, the third and fourth Batman movies, Across The Universe, The Sixth Sense, the first Pirates of the Caribbean, and the Oscar-winning score for Frida,. His arrangements for Metallica’s Grammy Award-winning “S&M” made good use of his doctorate in composition from Yale University.(He also holds degrees from Carleton College and the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati.) He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and two sons.

Guest Artists,Press Releases by Joseph Dolson on April 29, 2014

Philharmonic’s Spring 2009 Concert in Lavender

Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO), the first GLBT orchestra in America, will be spoiling us with a blissful spring concert, Hit Parade, on May 30, 7:30 PM, at Hamline University’s Sundin Hall.
For the May performance, MPO will welcome violinist Andrew Sords, who will perform Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D Major. Also included in the concert are Franz Schubert’s Overture in C Major (D. 591) and Ludwig von Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 in A Major.

During Sords’s first visit to the state, he will reprise his performance with MPO at the Queer Music Consortium’s annual free concert on June 1, 7 PM, at Como Park Pavilion. In addition, he will give demonstrations for elementary students in select St. Paul and Minneapolis schools.

Carisa Sibbet, Lavender Magazine

Read the full article! Sords To Perform with Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra

Guest Artists,In the news by Joseph Dolson on May 22, 2009

Violinist Andrew Sords to perform with MPO in “Hit Parade”

The Minnesota Philharmonic Orchestra (MPO), Minnesota’s GLBT symphony orchestra and the first GLBT orchestra in America, will welcome violinist Andrew Sords to Minnesota in a concert on Saturday, May 30, 2009, 7:30 p.m., at Sundin Hall, Hamline University. Sords will be the soloist in Tchaikovsky’s beloved Violin Concerto in D Major. The concert will also include Franz Schubert’s Overture in C Major, D. 591, and Symphony No. 7 in A Major by Ludwig van Beethoven.

During his visit, Sords will reprise the final movement of the Tchaikovsky concerto with the MPO as part of the Queer Music Consortium’s annual free concert at the Como Park Pavilion on Monday, June 1, 2009, 7:00 p.m. He will also be giving a demonstration for students in St. Paul and Minneapolis elementary schools.

At the age of 23, violinist Andrew Sords is already a veteran of the concert stage. He is the winner of the 2005 National Shirley Valentin Violin Award, the 2004 and 2005 National Federation of Music Clubs Competition, the Fortnightly Music Club of Cleveland and the Festival de la Orquesta Sinfonica de las Americas Competition of the Casals Festival among others. Sords has recently toured with the Brahms, Beethoven, Mozart, and Tchaikovsky violin concerti to critical acclaim, and has quickly emerged as one of the foremost violinists of his generation.

The Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, which Sords will perform, was written during a very turbulent time for the composer–his marriage had just dissolved, and he fell into a deep depression. However, he escaped to a retreat on the shores of Lake Geneva and threw himself into the work, completing the concerto in about a month. Tchaikovsky dedicated the violin concerto to a prominent violinist at the time, Leopold Auer. But Auer was highly critical of the work and refused to perform its premiere. (Some scholars state that Auer declared the concerto “unplayable”–a charge Auer later refuted.) Crushed by this rejection, Tchaikovsky had to search for a different violinist, Adolph Brodsky, to prepare and perform the concerto, which was finally premiered on December 14, 1881 in Vienna. Today, the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto is a staple of the violin repertoire, delighting audiences of all generations.

Andrew Sords completed his undergraduate education at the Cleveland Institute of Music with violin pedagogues Linda Cerone and David Russell, and performed for the legendary Midori in master classes in New York and at the University of Southern California. He continues to meet the demands of a burgeoning solo career which has taken him from American concert halls to venues in Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean and Asia. Most recently, Sords studied under internationally acclaimed violinist Chee-Yun at the Southern Methodist University of Dallas, Texas.

The MPO was founded in 1993 by Kevin Ford, a gay man who had a vision of a gay and lesbian orchestra that would build community and fellowship through the performance of classical music. Although Kevin succumbed to complications from HIV-AIDS in 1995, the organization he created continues to grow and diversify sixteen years later. Today, the MPO includes players from a wide variety of backgrounds and orientations who share a commitment to inclusiveness, nondiscrimination, and to the performance of works by underrepresented composers. MPO seeks to provide diverse arts entertainment of the highest quality, resulting in increased visibility for the musical talents of the GLBT community.

For further information about this concert or this performer, please visit the MPO’s website at www.mnphil.org, call 612-656-5676, or email info@mnphil.org.

Guest Artists,Press Releases by Joseph Dolson on April 20, 2009