The Community Orchestra of Hendersonville believes it’s never too late to dust off the instrument you once loved and start making music again. “This chamber [group] provides practice and performance opportunities for adults of all ages, current musicians and adults who want to get back to playing an instrument they loved many years ago,” says member coordinator Sandy Weeks.
That inclusive outlook extends to the orchestra’s repertoire, which plumbs some 400 years of classical music — from the Renaissance to the modern era. An hourlong May Day concert (Sunday, May 1), directed by Stephen Klein, will include works by Frescobaldi, Boyce, Tchaikovsky and Grieg. Soprano Katie Cilluffo, the guest soloist, will sing Mozart’s “Alleluia” and Puccini’s “O Mio Babbino Caro” from Gianni Schicchi.
Cilluffo tells Bold Life “an interesting but common misunderstanding” about the work. “The character, Lauretta, is singing to her father, pleading with him to let her marry her lover, Rinuccio. The song is very lyrical and beautiful — the only stand-alone song in the entire opera,” she explains. And audiences unfamiliar with Italian understandably “ascribe deep emotional meaning” to the dramatic melody, says Cilluffo.
However, “the actual translation shows the immature love of a very petulant teenager,” she reveals. “[Lauretta] refers to her ‘dear little daddy’ and tells him to either let her buy a wedding ring or else she will throw herself off of a bridge. Lauretta’s pretty much a brat, but most people prefer to be inspired by noble love songs, so our conductor has instructed me to ‘make them weep.’ I’ll do my best!”
The Community Orchestra of Hendersonville and guest soloist, soprano Katie Cilluffo, perform May 1, 3pm at Trinity Presbyterian Church (900 Blythe St.). Free. Donations will be accepted to benefit the nonprofit Hendersonville Community Music Center, where budding musicians of all ages (“toddlers to seniors”) can take lessons. For more info, call 828-692-6114.