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Musica Orientale

Soprano Amanda DeBoer returns to Buffalo with the Color Field Ensemble on Saturday.

The Camerata di Sant’Antonio continues its musical explorations

The Camerata di Sant’Antonio chamber ensemble season’s continues this Sunday, March 4, at 7pm, at its home in St. Anthony of Padua R. C. Church, behind Buffalo City Hall, and you have to hand it to Christopher Weber, the group’s founder and music director: He somehow always manages to design adventurous programs for his consistently excellent chamber ensemble, often featuring totally unknown works by sometimes obscure composers, but which are yet both immediately accessible and totally enjoyable.

Of course, Weber would probably be the first to acknowledge that his sometimes completely unknown program choices did not just appear to him in a dream.

While oboist Paul Schlossman moved to Pittsburgh last year, due to a change of employment, he’s still an integral member of the group, no more so than in his uncanny ability to ferret out unjustly forgotten music. It’s unlikely that any classical music lover in Western New York is familiar with the Danish musician and composer Fini Henriques, born in 1867. He was a childhood violin prodigy who studied with the great violin virtuoso Joseph Joachim in Berlin, and later performed as a member of the Royal Danish Orchestra, before embarking on a solo career and founding the chamber music society Musiksamfundet, which he led for 20 years. Receiving its Buffalo premiere is his Suite in F Major for Oboe and String Orchestra, a work typified by an elegance and wit that originate in the composer’s great insight into the character of the oboe.

BPO violinist Sheih-Jian Tsai is the soloist in Alexander Arutiunian’s Concerto for Violin and String Orchestra, a completely tonal contemporary work, driven by gorgeous melodies, which is receiving its American premiere. The program also includes the exotic-tinged Armenian Rhapsody No. 3, by the prolific American-Armenian composer Alan Hovahness, as well as the lushly scored Variations on a Theme of Tchaikovsky, composed by Tchaikovsky’s most accomplished pupil, Anton Arensky.

As many of you may already know, controversy has surfaced about recent events at St. Anthony of Padua’s. Whatever forms the ultimate legal resolution of this controversy may take, the current uncertain situation cries out for a public show of support in acknowledgement of all the generously beneficial programs that the loyal and generous parishioners of St. Anthony’s of Padua’s, the historical church that is at the heart of Buffalo’s Italian-American community, have unstintingly supported through many decades. Among these ongoing parish effort, is its decade-long support of the Camerata di Sant’Antonio concert series, which has found an ideal home in this historical church. The current situation offers an opportunity for everyone who has ever enjoyed the beautiful music-making of the Camerata di Sant’Antonio to step forward, attend this event, and continue to further support the existence of this unique series in every possible way.

Tickets are $17. For more information, call 854-2563 or visit

Color Field Ensemble

This Saturday, March 3 at 8pm, the Bowling Green University’s touring contemporary classical musical group, Color Field Ensemble, will visit Buffalo for the first time, presenting a concert of contemporary music at the Unity Church, 1243 Delaware Avenue, located just south of Gates Circle, on a tour that includes local stops in Rochester and Fredonia.

The eclectic group of musicians consists of soprano Amanda DeBoer, clarinetist Chris Culp, saxophonist James Fusik, percussionist Benjamin Fraley, pianist Karl Larson, and Jeff Weston on string bass. Buffalo area audiences will recall DeBoer’s many singing engagements, both with UB-based groups such as Babel, and with other, cutting-edge contemporary musical organizations, such as Charles Haupt’s A Musical Feast, while still an undergraduate vocal student of UB’s Tony Arnold, who is herself a much sought after soprano in the world of contemporary classical vocal performance.

Their program of works, composed from 2010 to 2012, includes Through a Glass Darkly, by Christopher Chandler; The Body Electric, by Jamie Leigh Sampson; Plain Truths from Timothy Dexter, by John Liberatore; Animans, by Andrew Martin Smith; We Choose to Go to the Moon, by Robert Honstein; Loss/gain, by James Holt; To a Solitary Disciple, by Christopher Dietz, and Three Poems of Ted Kooser, by UB-based composer John Bacon, whose work will also be featured in A Musical Feast’s concert at the Burchfield Penny later in the month.

Admission is free. For more information, visit; or

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