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Celebrating Diversity Through Music

The Fairfax Symphony Orchestra (FSO) will be presenting bilingual master classes and outreach presentations at various Fairfax County venues.

FSO in concert.

FSO in concert. Fairfax Symphony Orchestra

Where and When

Ricardo Morales and the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra outreach and performances Sept. 17-21. For detailed information for events contact FSO at: www.fairfaxsymphony.org.

  • Tuesday, Sept. 17: Bilingual performance/presentations for students at Rose Hill Elementary.

  • Wednesday, Sept. 18: Performance/presentation at Greenspring Retirement Complex.

  • Friday, Sept. 20 at 2:20 p.m.: Presentation/performance at Woodburn Elementary.

  • Saturday, Sept. 21 from 3–5 p.m.: Clarinet master class with up to 5 selected students at George Mason University, 4373 Mason Pond Drive, Fairfax.

  • Fairfax Symphony Orchestra with soloist Ricardo Morales, Concert Hall, Center for the Arts, George Mason University, 4400 University Drive, Fairfax. Performance: Saturday, Sept. 21, 8 p.m. Tickets: $25-$60. Student tickets (ages 6-18) are $5 at the door. Call 1-888-945-2468 or visit www.fairfaxsymphony.org. Note: There will be a pre-concert discussion with audience members starting at 7 p.m.

With grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Arts Council of Fairfax County, the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra (FSO) will be presenting bi-lingual master classes and outreach presentations at various Fairfax County venues in the coming weeks.

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Christopher Zimmerman, maestro, Fairfax Symphony Orchestra.

What is unique about the FSO English and Spanish language presentations is that they will be presented by Philadelphia Orchestra principal clarinet, Ricardo Morales. According to the US Census, the Fairfax County population includes about 16 percent who identified as Hispanic.

Morales will give workshops and presentations at the Spanish Immersion Rose Hill (Alexandria) Elementary School, Woodburn (Falls Church) Elementary School and the Greenspring Retirement Community. He will also conduct a master class for the clarinet community in which the FSO is partnering with George Mason University and the Northern Virginia Music Teachers Association.

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Ricardo Morales

His goal is "to help inspire someone to open their minds and hearts to the wonderful world of music," said Morales. To have people "more comfortable with the idea of music, helping people realize that ‘music is music' and that while we highly regard many of the composers of the past, the reality is that they were just as human, with just the same kinds of needs and hopes that we have."

When asked about other forms of music he enjoys beyond classical, Morales indicated that he enjoyed "all kinds of music, but when I am not involved with the classical music I love to listen to salsa. It is rhythmic, many lyrics are about love and I usually like the play on words."

"We do not often have the opportunity to have one of our guest artists make presentations in two languages, so in an area as multi-cultural and diverse as Fairfax County, we want to take advantage of it," said Christopher Zimmerman, FSO maestro.

In describing the FSO's season opening performance, Zimmerman indicated that beyond "one of the most popular and beloved of all Beethoven's symphonies, no. 7 ... we are also playing two pieces by the iconic American composer Aaron Copland, his clarinet concert and ‘Music for the Theater.’” The concerto was originally written for Benny Goodman.

“The Copland Clarinet Concerto is a piece of haunting, expressive beauty, coupled with huge rhythmic energy and drive. There is also lots of pyrotechnic virtuosity for Ricardo Morales and a ton of jazz,” added Zimmerman. "This is a rare opportunity to hear one of the greatest living clarinetists."