The mountains are alive |

The mountains are alive

Steamboat Springs Orchestra attracts audience members with pirate music

The Steamboat Springs Orchestra's 15th anniversary concert, "Music from the Majestic Mountains to the Savage Seas!" will take place Saturday and Sunday at the Steamboat Springs Christian Center.
Courtesy Photo

The Steamboat Springs Orchestra will perform Aaron Copeland’s “Appalachian Spring” during its 15th anniversary concert this weekend because its story parallels spring concerns in our valley.

“This enchanting music tells the story of a young pioneering couple starting a life together in rural Pennsylvania in the springtime and feeling very much like we feel,” said Mary Ann Gunn, an orchestra volunteer, board member and head of marketing. “The snow is melting, but the weather is still difficult in many ways.”

Copeland was commissioned to write this work as a ballet for a specific venue that could accommodate only 13 musicians.

“Once he started writing it, he thought it was foolish to use it for something beside an orchestral suite,” Gunn said. “He felt it was so beautiful, he didn’t want it to be in the background of anything. It was one of the best works of the 20th century.”

The Steamboat Springs Orchestra also will play a variety of pirate-inspired selections. There will be music from “The Pirates of Penzance,” “Pirates of the Caribbean” and “Hook.”

“We wanted something lively and a more popular theme to attract newcomers to the orchestra,” Gunn said. “And we also wanted to vie a little bit from traditional orchestra music, yet use dramatic music.”

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