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Last update: 2/27/08

[University of Wisconsin-Green Bay News Release]

For Immediate Release:

February 27, 2008

UW-Green Bay concert, visiting scholar recall 'Prague Spring'

GREEN BAY - Classical music, pop and a 1968 protest composition come together under the theme "Politics Not as Usual" for the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band in their first concert of the spring, Saturday (March 1) at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts.

The concert begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Weidner's Cofrin Family Hall on the campus at 2420 Nicolet Drive. The audience is invited to a public reception afterward in the Weidner Center Lobby to greet visiting Slovakian composer and music scholar Egon Krák.

Krák will assist with readings and context for the evening's principal piece, "Music for Prague 1968." Considered a contemporary classic, the award-winning work was composed by Czech-American composer Karel Husa shortly after Soviet tanks rolled into Czechoslovakia. The Warsaw Pact invasion ended the brief period of democratic liberalization known as the Prague Spring. "Music for Prague" is known for its innovative percussion scoring, compelling structure, and creative infusion of a traditional Czech hymn. On its 40th anniversary, it remains one of the most frequently performed works from the 20th century.

Other concert selections have a political tone as well, including the Wind Symphony's performance of "Fanfares" from the nationalist Czech opera "Libuse" by Bedrich Smetana, arranged by Vaclav Nehlybel. The Symphonic Band will perform music from "Evita," Andrew Lloyd Webber's homage to Argentine first lady Eva Perón, and conclude with an experimental/collaborative arrangement called "poli-SANG 101 (CG re-mix)," which UW-Green Bay Director of Bands Kevin Collins says explores the contentious and often stressful nature of politics in all facets of life. The piece will feature UW-Green Bay Prof. Adam Gaines on trumpet.

Collins, a member of the UW-Green Bay faculty since 1988, conducts both the Wind Symphony and Symphonic Band. The artist-in-residence participation of Krák, who is a dean with the Academy of Music and Drama in Bratislava, is made possible by the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay/St. Norbert College Visiting International Scholar Program.

Tickets for the concert are $7 for adults and $5 for students and seniors. Tickets may be purchased at the box office prior to the performance, or in advance through the University Ticketing and Information Center, located in the University Union, at (920) 465-2217 or 1-(800) 328-TKTS, or

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08-48 | Contact: Christopher Sampson, (920) 465-2527

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