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Article updated: 12/11/2012 2:16 PM

Soloists join Northwest Festival Orchestra for holiday concert


The Northwest Festival Orchestra will hold its 2012 Gala Holiday Concert 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 18, in the auditorium of the Performing Arts Center at Harper College, 1200 Algonquin Road (Algonquin and Roselle roads), Palatine.

The program will feature the more than 55 members of the professional orchestra, under the baton of Verne Schwager, joined by soloists Susan Dennis, soprano; Sarah Ponder, mezzo-soprano; Oscar Menoyo, tenor; and Aaron Wardell, baritone. The concert will have a selection of holiday favorites including excepts from Humperdinck's "Hansel and Gretel," Bizet's "L'Arlesienne Suite No. 1," and Russell Bennett's "Many Moods of Christmas."

Rounding out the program will be selections from "The Nutcracker" and other pieces appropriate to the holiday season, both religious and secular. As always, maestro Schwager and the orchestra will have some surprises for the audience.

Tickets, $25, are available at the door ($20 seniors/$10 students) or in advance at (847) 392-9003, or for credit card orders, the Harper College Box Office, (847) 925-6100. The Northwest Festival Orchestra offers professional level performances with an ensemble composed of younger conservatory and university graduates as well as college-trained musicians beginning their careers. Contributions to sustain the orchestra may be sent to: 2025 S. Arlington Heights Road, Suite 106, Arlington Heights, IL 60005.

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