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Amadeus Concert Features Greats from 1920s

What happens when you put Buster Keaton, Enrico Caruso, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Lily Pons and several cases of fine French wine in a room, add a 1906 Stieff concert grand and stir?

Amadeus Concerts founder and director Tim Rowe said he isn’t quite sure, but he expects it to be unpredictable and fun.

The public (and Rowe) get to find out at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 12, at St. Francis Episcopal Church in Great Falls, when the Amadeus Concerts presents “New Year’s, 1923.”

Rowe said he decided last year to dedicate the normally quiet winter doldrums to unusual or slightly offbeat concerts, such as last season’s jazz orchestra history program.

This winter, he invited a group of the talented friends of Amadeus Concerts to recreate a mythical New Year’s party in 1923, with contributions by each notable.

Filling in as the legendary party guests are Metropolitan Opera star Patricia Miller in a rare area appearance; 2002 National Symphony Orchestra Young Artists’ Competition winner, singer Joshua Saxon; a violinist Amy Beth Horman, who is noted for her renditions of Maude Powell’s delightful morceaux; Washington pianist Frank Conlon, and Rowe himself, who will compose and perform the entire score to Buster Keaton’s zany 1922 “Electric House” as it is being screened.

The Stieff concert grand piano was the first instrument used when Rowe started the concert series 22 years ago. He recently purchased the piano, which will be renovated “from the keyboard up,” Rowe said. Horman will play an 18th-Century Guadagnini violin.

A French wine reception with desserts including authentic Parisian madeleines will follow the concert’s musical smorgasbord, Rowe said.

The unusual concert is recommended for music lovers who are “over the age of eight,” Rowe said.

Tickets, to be sold at the door, are $15 for adults and $10 for students.

The church is located at 9220 Georgetown Pike in Great Falls, five miles west of the Beltway.

Season-remainder tickets will also be sold at the concert. Call 703-759-5334.