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Classical music, classic theater and good old rock 'n' roll top the list of things to do this weekend in Hendersonville.
The Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra will present "Spring Romance," its final concert of the season, at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, April 6, in the HSO Concert Hall on the campus of Blue Ridge Community College. Ayano Annis, the symphony's Young Artist Competition winner, will be the featured artist.
Under the direction of Music Director and Conductor Thomas Joiner, the orchestra will perform some of the most recognized, romantic music ever written, including Tchaikovsky's "Romeo & Juliet Fantasy" Overture, Gustav Mahler's haunting Adagietto from Symphony No. 5, and American composer Howard Hanson's lush and powerful Symphony No. 2, "Romantic." Annis will be the featured guest artist in the first movement of Rachmaninoff's second piano concerto.
Each year, the Hendersonville Symphony works with a local business to sponsor the Young Artist Competition. This year, Laborde Eye Group was the sponsor for the Young Artist Competition held in February, attracting 11 applicants from Buncombe, Henderson, and Madison counties. The winner, pianist Ayano Annis, 16, of Marshall, attends the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. She is the daughter of Arthur and Yumiko Annis and has studied with Susan Fehr in Weaverville for eight years. Annis has won many honors in Asheville Piano Competitions, NC Royalty Piano Competitions, NFMC Scholarship Piano Competitions, and was the third place winner of the Hendersonville Symphony's Young Artist Competition and the second place winner of the Asheville Symphony Young Artist Competition in 2012. She is a finalist in the 2013 Community Foundation of Western North Carolina's Asheville Young Woman Leadership Scholarship Award, and has also been selected in NASA's Women in STEM High School Aerospace Scholars (WISH) Program.
Tickets to "Spring Romance" are $30 adults, $5 students, and may be purchased online at www.hendersonvillesymphony.org, by calling 828-697-5884, in person weekdays from 1 to 4 p.m. at the symphony office at 228 Sixth Ave. E., Suite A, or at the following ticket outlets: Tempo Music Center, the Hendersonville Visitor Center, Laurel Park Wine Market or the Wrinkled Egg in Flat Rock.
HLT presents Simon's 'Brighton Beach Memoirs'
Hendersonville Little Theatre will present the Neil Simon classic "Brighton Bech Memoirs" April 5 - 21 at the theater at 229 S. Washington St., Hendersonville. It tells the story of Eugene, a bright, imaginative teenager living with his family (mother, father, brother, aunt, and two cousins) in a lower-middle-class Brooklyn home in 1937. His dreams of being a professional baseball player and of learning something about the opposite sex conflict with the real problems facing his struggling Jewish household.
Playing Eugene will be Dion Mills, new to HLT, but audiences will have seen him at Flat Rock Playhouse. Lyn French O'Hare, a veteran performer for both HLT and Brevard Little Theatre, will play Eugene's mother Kate. Daniel Fritog, fresh from the cast of "Romeo and Juliet," is Eugene's brother Stanley. Phillip Packer, known both at HLT and Asheville Community Theatre, plays Jack, the boys' father. Carole Avery, last seen in "The Trip to Bountiful," is Blanche, Kate's sister. Blanche's daughters are Jessica Donahue, who appeared in "The Trip to Bountiful," and Skylan Rayne. Rayne has quite a resume for a 12-year-old, not only in theater but also in dance and modeling.
An equally experienced team is leading the cast. Jonathan Forrester is director. He directed last season's "The Glass Menagerie" and appeared as Benvolio in "Romeo and Juliet." Beth Norris and Jim Walker share duties as producers. Sandy Newman is stage manager, and Bobby Foster is set designer.
"Brighton Beach Memoirs" will open April 5 with a champagne gala. There will also be a drawing for a dinner for two at The Inn on Church. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with matinees at 2 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for students 18–25, and $10 for students under 18. Tickets may be purchased online at Hendersonvillelittletheatre.org or by calling 828-692-1082.
Treadway returns to Playhouse in 'Odd Couple'
Scott Treadway returns to the Flat Rock Playhouse in "The Odd Couple" as the theater opened its 2013 mainstage season on April 3.
Treadway, as Felix Unger, and Charles Flynn-McIver, as Oscar Madison, star as the hilariously incompatible roommates in the award-winning play. The co-stars have shared the stage since 2004, when they teamed up for "The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, and later in "The 39 Steps" and "Boeing Boeing."
The cast also includes Laura Woyasz ("Noises Off") as Gwendolyn Pigeon, Ellie Mooney ("The Drowsy Chaperone") as Cecily Pigeon, Michael MacCauley ("12 Angry Men," "Noises Off," "Guys and Dolls," "Witness for the Prosecution") as Murray, Ralph Redpath ("Proof," "12 Angry Men," "Witness for the Prosecution," "Noises Off") as Roy, Peter Thomasson ("The Drowsy Chaperone," "Prisoner of Second Avenue," "A Christmas Carol") as Vinny, and Gary Littman making his Flat Rock Playhouse debut as Speed. The play is directed by Kate Galvin (Walnut Street Theatre).
Neil Simon's popular comedy is onstage through April 21.
Evening performances are Wednesday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and matinee performances are Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m. Tickets to The Odd Couple are $35 with discounts available for seniors, AAA members, military personnel, students and groups.
Each Wednesday throughout the run of the show patrons are eligible to receive a Wednesday Rush Discount (adult rush ticket $20; student rush ticket $10). Tickets can be purchased by calling the Playhouse box office at 828- 693-0731, toll-free at 866-732-8008 or online at www.flatrockplayhouse.org. Flat Rock Playhouse is located at 2661 Greenville Highway in Flat Rock.