Cascade Symphony Orchestra opens new year with ‘Brahms Violin Concerto’ Jan. 8

Ilana Zaks

The Cascade Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of maestro Michael Miropolsky, will open the new year performing its Brahms Violin Concerto at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 8, at the Edmonds Center for the Arts, 410 4th Ave. N., in Edmonds.

A pre-concert lecture at 6:30 p.m. by KING-FM radio personality Dave Beck will preview the musical highlights for the evening.

Ilana Zaks, a violinist with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra, will be the evening’s featured soloist, performing German composer Johannes Brahms’ Violin Concerto, one of the most beloved concertos in the violin repertoire.

“Ilana’s many honors include top prizes at national and international competitions,” Miropolsky said. “Critics praise her playing as ‘fearless, refreshing and commanding,’ and her style as ‘captivating and delightful.’ We are very much looking forward to her debut with us with Brahms’ magnificent Violin Concerto.”

At age 11, Zaks had her symphonic debut with the Boston Civic Symphony, under the conductorship of Max Hobart. Originally from Boston, she began playing the violin at the age of 3, and earned her bachelor’s degree in violin performance, while minoring in liberal arts, at the New England Conservatory. She earned her master’s degree in music from Yale University. The young violinist is also an alumna of the Perlman Music Program, where she studied for seven years with the world-renowned violinist Itzhak Perlman.

The concert will open with French composer Daniel-Francois Auber’s Overture to the opera, La Muette de Portici.

“Not widely known today, Auber had a long life (he lived 89 years) and wrote 39 operas,” Miropolsky said. “His major opera, The Mute of Portici, played an unusually important role in history; its premiere performance sparked riots leading to the 1830 Belgian Revolution. What a fascinating example of how classical music can have unexpected and significant influence on society.”

The program also will include Austrian composer Franz Schubert’s Symphony No.4, Tragic.

“Schubert completed (this composition) when he was just 19 years old, but sadly never had the chance to hear it performed,” Miropolsky noted. “This symphony premiered a full two decades after the composer’s premature death at the age of 31. In his short but intense life, Schubert composed over 1,000 works, making him one of the fastest composers of all-time.”

Concert ticket prices are $30 for adults; $26 for seniors (60-plus); and $10 for youth (12 and younger).

Tickets can be purchased online through the Edmonds Center for Arts (ECA) website and by telephone (425-275-9595). The ECA Box Office may be reached by email at The ECA Box Office is currently open noon-5 p.m. Monday through Friday, and extended hours during performances.

Additional information about the Cascade Symphony Orchestra, its upcoming concerts, and any updates are available online at


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