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BPO chamber orchestra to perform in area churches


BUFFALO -- For three engagements, a small group of BPO musicians are trading the concert hall for a more intimate setting.

BPO Concertmaster Dennis Kim is once again directing a small group of Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra musicians in performance in Western New York churches.

The Buffalo Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra will visit Orchard Park Presbyterian Church at 4369 South Buffalo Street on Wednesday, Jan. 31; Clarence Presbyterian Church at 9675 Main Street on Thursday, Feb. 1; and St. Stanislaus Church at 123 Townsend Street in Buffalo on Friday, Feb. 2. Each concert begins at 7 p.m., and tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students. Tickets are available by calling (716) 885-5000 or visiting bpo.org.

The program features Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 and Dvorak's Serenade For Strings. The centerpiece of the concert is Bach's Concerto for Two Violins, featuring Kim and young violinist Alice Lee. Lee is the winner of the BPO's inaugural Young Artist Violin Competition, which took place in June 2017. Eighteen-year-old Lee has been playing violin since she was 5, and has already performed with the Victoria Symphony Orchestra and the Sooke Philharmonic. She is currently studying at the International Menuhin Music Academy in Switzerland.

Kim has organized chamber performances in Finland and in Asia while serving as concertmaster with orchestras there. He says that it's a chance for him and his orchestral colleagues to stretch themselves and to connect with audiences in a different way.

"This music was written for intimate settings, which is why it's the perfect program to present in Western New York churches. The Dvorak, and especially the Bach, work much better in a church setting. All of us are in this to connect people with music, especially people who have not come to the concert hall," Dennis Kim said.  "If you talk to most classical musicians, you'll find that they have a passion for chamber music. We work collaboratively to make this music, and there's something so special about that. It's never the same twice. We can't wait to perform this program for Western New Yorkers."