Abbotsford Youth Orchestra presents Carnival of the Animals

Concert held this Saturday, Oct. 17 at Bakerview Church

Calvin Dyck

Calvin Dyck

The Abbotsford Youth Orchestra (AYO), directed by Calvin Dyck, presents the Carnival of Animals with 14 pianists from the Fraser Valley on Saturday, Oct. 17.

The concert starts at 7 p.m. at Bakerview Church, 2285 Clearbrook Rd.

Carnival of the Animals is a musical suite of 14 movements by French romantic composer Camille Saint-Saens, who regarded the work as a piece of fun.

He wrote musical jokes into the piece, including a very slow Can-Can for the turtle, and he poked fun at pianists by having them play a series of scale exercises.

The AYO is adding some Canadian content with movements portraying the loon, the skunk and the lawyer.

Perhaps the best known movement from the Carnival is The Swan, written for solo cello and piano.

It is the only movement published during Saint-Saens’ lifetime and has been arranged for more than 20 instruments.

While Saint-Saëns intended the suite to be played by two pianists, this performance will feature a variety of student pianists from Chilliwack, Mission and Abbotsford.

In addition, the concert will feature Brahms’s Hungarian Dance No. 5, the romantic Serenade for Strings by Elgar, and the haunting Sweet Remembrance of You by William Joseph.

Betty Suderman and Carmen Hollett will be featured in a piano duet playing The Queen of Sheba.

The orchestra will be joined by percussionist Jillana Rathjen on xylophone, Bernard Blary on flute, and Christopher Lee, a graduate of the Juilliard School in New York, on clarinet.

Tickets for the concert are available at House of James or King’s Music.  They are $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $10 for students, plus applicable tax and fee.