CLAYTON – Thousand Islands Performing Arts Fund at the Clayton Opera House has added a new twist to its annual Sidney T. Cox Memorial Concert by creating a series of events honoring the memory of the retired journalist and executive who appreciated classical music.
In 2007, the Northern New York Community Foundation received a bequest from the estate of long-time Watertown resident, composer and music enthusiast Sidney T. Cox. To honor Cox's memory, the foundation set aside funds to sponsor an annual Sidney T. Cox Memorial Concert during TIPAF's summer season of performances at the Clayton Opera House.
This year, TIPAF will present live music events and prerecorded Specticast theater events featuring the Philadelphia Orchestra. A portion of the proceeds from the Cheng2 Duo performance will support the Thousand Islands Chopin Piano Competition, sponsored annually by the Cape Vincent Arts Council.
TIPAF will present the Cheng2 Duo at 4 p.m. Sunday, and Christopher O'Riley, from National Public Radio's music program "From the Top," will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 14. The Specticast programs will take place over four consecutive Sundays in July, all at 4 p.m.
Performing as the Cheng2 Duo, Canada's most exciting and sought-after sibling duo musicians, Silvie and Bryan Cheng will captivate the audience with their mature musicianship and undeniable chemistry. Silvie Cheng won second place in the Senior Division of the Thousand Islands Chopin Piano Competition in September.
After graduating from the Manhattan School of Music in NYC in May, she returns to the area with her remarkable teenage cellist brother. Bryan, 15, made his orchestral debut at age 10 with I Musici de Montreal Chamber Orchestra.
Their most recent concert at Carnegie Hall (Weill Recital Hall) on April 21 was filled with a program of their favorite classical pieces, including works by Mozart, Chopin and Brahms, and two world-premiere compositions written for the duo by Canadian compatriot Alexina Louie.
Classical pianist Christopher O'Riley is known for his eloquent musings on music and popular culture. His NPR program "From the Top" gives young musicians an opportunity to be interviewed and heard. Joining O'Riley for the program will be Yi-Yang Chen, one of the 2012 winners of Cape Vincent's Thousand Islands International Chopin Piano Competition.
Specticast is a film subscription service TIPAF uses to bring prerecorded live events to the opera house. TIPAF has chosen four classical performances from Specticast's offerings as part of the Sid Cox series: July 7, Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia; July 14, Philadelphia Orchestra, "Rites of Spring"; July 21, Philadelphia Orchestra, Beethoven's "Pastoral"; and July 28, Philadelphia Orchestra, Mahler and Strauss.
The films are an opportunity for TIPAF to use its high-definition projector and high-resolution movie screen. These special filmed events are as close to a live performance experience as possible.
Reserved seating tickets for the Cheng2 Duo are $20 and $10 for seniors, students, and military members; and for Christopher O'Riley, seats are $50, $40 and $35. General admission tickets to the Philadelphia Orchestra Specticast showings are $15 adult, $8 student and senior.
For information and tickets, call the Clayton Opera House box office at 686-2200 or visit claytonoperahouse.com.
(Clayton Opera House)