This Sunday, March 17th at 3:00pm at The Lutheran Church of the Cross the Mennonite Community Orchestra is inviting audiences to discover their inner child and delve into their imagination with a concert they are calling The Power of Imagination.

Featuring music of Prokofiev, Mozart, Holst, Haydn and Vivaldi, this concert is sure to a joy for children of all ages from 1 to 101.

The Programming Committee for the Mennonite Community Orchestra and conductor Andrea Bell had a great time putting together this concert for children and the young at heart. Taking young people to concerts is also something Bell feels very passionate about. “I think it’s fantastic to be able to bring kids to concerts. Certainly when my kids were young I loved taking them to concerts. I think this is a perfect opportunity for families to feel welcome to bring their younger people at home. All the music is very joyful and fun."

The concert consists of down the line hits that all ages of audiences will enjoy:

  • Overture to Magic Flute – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
  • Peter and the Wolf – Sergei Prokofiev
  • “Mars” from The Planets  – Gustav Holst 
  • Symphony No. 104 – 1st and  4th movements – Joseph Haydn
  • Concerto No. 4 for String Orchestra RV151, Op. 51 – Antonio Vivaldi

The piece that is geared specifically for kids and also anchors the concert is Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf. Beloved since its composition in 1936 it has been enjoyed by audiences ever since. “Peter and the Wolf is just such a classic. It is just so much fun to play and conduct. It’s just such a great piece for kids to enjoy,” says Bell. Joining the orchestra on stage will be Associate Professor of English at Canadian Mennonite University Sue Sorenson. She will be providing the narration for Peter and the Wolf.

One of the other highlights of the concert is that the orchestra will be preforming Mars the Bringer of War from Gustav Holst’s The Planets.  Bell says of the piece, “It’s just such a fun piece! The strings have some interesting extended techniques…they start of playing col legno, which is where they are actually hitting the stick on the strings. It makes this cool percussive effect, so we’ve been having some fun with that…. It’s just so huge and fun … full forces, lots of brass. It makes for a really thrilling piece to conduct. That’s a maestro moment for sure conducting Mars!”

The program runs the gamut of styles and textures. It consists of the delicacy and precision required for a Vivaldi Concerto, to the angular, percussive and tuneful writing of Holst and Prokofiev and all styles in between. As Bell says of the concert, ”We’ve got a nice little range of pieces from across the centuries … you really have to switch your brain as to how you attack notes … is that a sforzando in a Mozart piece or in a Prokofiev piece ... it’s pretty fun to explore all those different kinds of sounds, and the orchestra really is sounding amazing!”

The Mennonite Community Orchestra’s Concert The Power of Imagination is a great way to introduce kids to classical music, and is sure to be a hit with audiences no matter what how old you are.

The concert takes place this Sunday, March 17th at 3:00pm at The Lutheran Church of the Cross

For more details visit the Mennonite Community orchestra’s website.