“Hope smiles from the threshold of the new year to come, whispering, ‘it will be happier’,” said English poet Alfred Lord Tennyson. That’s exactly what all of us need — a happier and healthier new year. New Philharmonic prepared three celebratory New Year’s Eve concerts that will create just the right mood for that.
The concerts will take place on Saturday, Dec. 31, at 1:30, 5 and 8:30 p.m. at the McAninch Arts Center, 425 Fawell Blvd. in Glen Ellyn.
Each year brings new hopes, discoveries, and challenges.
For New Philharmonic, a professional orchestra based in DuPage County, 2022 has been a great year. The orchestra presented a diverse selection of programming from custom musical scores to timeless classics. Now, New Philharmonic is looking forward to another great year and is ready to continue its outstanding 2022-23 concert season. However, you have to say “goodbye” to the outgoing year, and New Philharmonic has its own unique and festive way to do that.
Under the baton of Maestro Kirk Muspratt, the orchestra will perform a variety of popular music, waltzes, arias, and light classical favorites. New Philharmonic will also be happy to feature guest artists Mischa Bouvier (baritone) and members of the pop/rock violin group The CoverGirls, known for their purple electric violins.
The concert program will start with Johann Strauss II’s “Thunder and Lightning Polka,” Op. 324 that will swirl the audience on the waves of its festive and happy melodies and rhythm. You can even clap to this brilliant piece! After that, the gentle chords and elegant motives of the composer’s “The Blue Danube,” Op. 314 will bring joy and happiness into everyone’s heart.
The concert program will continue with Joseph Hellmesberger’s “Kleiner Anzeiger Galop,” Op. 4. The fast tempo of this piece and its incredible energy will make the audience stamp and smile. Josef Strauss’ “Phoenix March,” Op. 105 will make everyone think that the composer was in a great mood while writing it, and it’s probably true!
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The tip-toeing sounds of the Pizzicato Polka by Johann Strauss II will encourage the audience to pay full attention to the stage and wonder how such a large group of musicians can play pizzicato in such a quiet, careful, and beautiful way. “Hoe-down” from Aaron Copland’s ballet “Rodeo” will impress the audience as this ballet is “a celebration of the American West and reflects an important image we have of ourselves.” Selections from movie scores, including Jerry Goldsmith’s nostalgic and thoughtful “Chinatown” and Ennio Morricone’s magical “Cinema Paradiso,” will add charm and deep emotion to this concert program.
Guest baritone Mischa Bouvier will join the orchestra and perform the colorful song “Te Busco” made popular by salsa singer Celia Cruz and romantic “This Nearly Was Mine” from Richard Rodgers’ “South Pacific.” Bouvier is an American classical singer praised for his outstanding talent as a soloist, recitalist, and vocalist.
Bouvier has appeared at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Symphony Hall in Boston and Ángela Peralta Theater in Mazatlán, Mexico, to name a few. His work includes Bach’s “St. Matthew Passion” (Jesus) at the Festival Casals de Puerto Rico; Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Carousel” (Jigger Craigin); Gordon Getty’s “Plump Jack”; Handel’s “Messiah” with the Alabama Symphony Orchestra; and Ko-Ko in Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado.” Bouvier is also part of Mirror Visions Ensemble, a vocal chamber group from New York City, which is popular all over the world.
The CoverGirls will join New Philharmonic and Bouvier for “Auld Lang Syne,” a song that is traditionally sung to bid farewell to the old year at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve. Together with Bouvier and the orchestra, The CoverGirls will also perform a high-octane rendition of “Proud Mary” written by Creedence Clearwater Revival’s John Fogerty but known by many for Tina Turner’s legendary cover.
Known for their high-energy performances and skillful improvisations, The CoverGirls have performed pop/rock covers across the U.S. since 2009. The group has entertained three U.S. Presidents and has shared the stage with Chicago, Rod Stewart, Kristen Chenoweth, Aretha Franklin, CeeLo Green, Deepak Chopra and The Moody Blues, among others.
Tickets are $67-$77. Each performance will include party favors and a champagne toast in the lobby after the concert.
For more information, visit www.atthemac.org or call the MAC box office at (630) 942-4000, from noon to 6 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday.