In Monday’s (9/12) Herald-Journal (Spartanburg, South Carolina), Christopher Vaneman writes, “What’s an orchestra for, anyway? In this day and age, when a near-infinite variety of entertainment options is piped into our homes and is available at the click of a button, what purpose does a philharmonic serve? And in the current economic climate, can a community as small as Spartanburg possibly justify having an orchestra of its very own? The Spartanburg Philharmonic Orchestra offered a resounding and powerful answer to those questions in a moving concert Saturday at Converse College’s Twichell Auditorium. Titled ‘Heroes and Legends,’ the program offered tribute both to the fallen heroes of 9/11 and to veterans and first responders in and around Spartanburg. And in the varied nature of the tributes offered, the orchestra and its music director, Sarah Ioannides, offered compelling proof of the value and importance of an orchestra.” The program included Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man, Ravel’s Pavane for a Dead Princess, and the world premiere of Kenneth Fuchs’ Falling Man, an “18-minute work for baritone and orchestra sets the prologue of Don DeLillo’s celebrated novel of the same name about the 9/11 attacks and their aftermath. … As the audience spontaneously burst into warm applause for veterans as they and their families stood for the playing of each service’s anthem, one couldn’t help but think: ‘This is us. This is who we are, as a community, and the orchestra is reminding us what, in the end, is truly important.’ ”

Posted September 14, 2011