This longtime organization has been entertaining Lebanon County for more than eight decades, and it's riding high into another season of entertaining its community, poised with another solid lineup.
The 83rd season of Lebanon County Community Concerts begins Sunday Sept. 18, running through Sunday, April 9, 2017, presented by the Lebanon County Community Concerts Association. All concerts, unless noted, begin at 3 p.m., and are held at the William Starr Auditorium at Lebanon High School.
LCCCA President George Hollich says all the praise exactly goes to the community as a result of this annual tradition.
“It means we are most thankful to the people of the Lebanon community who support us. We are always happy to do it because they’ve been so gracious to us,” Hollich said.
And, as it with all it seasons, the main goal of LCCCA is to make sure people of all ages are entertained.
“Criteria is providing entertainment to a wide range of subscribers. I think that certainly the variety of artists being presented will appeal to everyone of all ages,” Hollich said. “We do have a good chunk of our audience of the older generation. But they have an attraction to the younger generations as well. That’s the biggest hurdle. It’s not unique to Lebanon. This is from across the country from all my research I’ve done.”
The first show of the 2016-17 season on Sept. 18 features two of LCCCA’s favorite artists of recent years, as The Dallas Brass teams up with Daniel Rodriquez, known as “America’s Beloved Tenor.” The show also includes a multi-imaged projection of America in an innovative and provocative manner. It will also have a patriotic feel, as those who lost their lives as a result of the 9/11 attacks will be remembered, while a special group of people will be in attendance.
“The Dallas Brass and Daniel Rodriquez, who was with New York City Police Department, became known as the ‘Singing Policeman,’ and has been very much in the spotlight for trying to bring the nation back together after that happened,” Hollich said. “They’re the most requested artists to bring back. Since Daniel pointed out it’s the 15th anniversary of Sept. 11, we have reached out to the Lebanon police to be with us for that day.”
The next concert on Sunday, Oct. 16, features professional pianist and chamber musician Alina Kiryayeva. Kiryayeva is globally renowned for her command of the instrument, along with her unique interpretations and innovative programming. And she’s been performing quite a while, having given her first recital when she was only 8 years old, with her solo debut with orchestra at age 11.
“Alina is one of few people who has completed both bachelor and master's degrees at The Julliard School of Music on a full scholarship. She’s amazing pianist,” Hollich said. “I met her in Nashville, and she’s just a neat young lady. The joy she brings to the stage is bringing classics to people.”
The next three concerts include The Duprees Sunday, Nov. 13, I Write the Songs with Jim Witter featuring the songs of Barry Manilow Sunday, March 19, 2017, and Tenore Sunday, April 30, 2017. Hollich says these three concerts are a perfect demonstration about the philosophy of LCCCA.
“One of the things we’ve prided ourselves in is we vary the concerts. So we try to place concerts that have an appeal to everyone and very specific to certain groups,” he said.
“The Duprees bring back memories of doo-wop through the early 60s. Then we have Jim Witter with Barry Manilow, which brings back memories to the 70s and 80s. And Tenore …who can resist a good tenor group? They're crossover tenors and an award-winning group, including 'Song of the Year' from Gospel Music Association of America," he said. "They’re an outstanding group, and the spirit of other groups we’ve had in the past. They’re just phenomenal.”
Then to close out the season on Sunday, April 9, 2017, there will be a special patron/benefit concert, featuring two sophisticated Southern Gentlemen, Davis and Johnson, and the high-energy show, The Fabulous Equinox Little Big Band. And there’s a special deal associated with this show, as a patron of $25 or more gives you two tickets to the show.
In an effort to continue reaching out to its younger audience, LCCCA is putting together an outreach concert, in which students can meet some of the acts coming into the area. That opportunity will come with the first show featuring Rodriquez and The Dallas Brass.
“They will be coming into rehearse at Lebanon High School and present a concert for students. It’s expected to be Sept. 16, but it’s not confirmed,” Hollich said. “That’s been a part of the success of organization is student outreach.”
LCCCA is also looking to continue to give young artists some stage time.
“We also try to recognize local student artists who get to perform before the show and are given a small scholarship to encourage them to continue music in their future,” Hollich said. “Our audiences really enjoy that.”
Subscriptions for the whole season not including the patron concert is $60, while one ticket at door is $30. All students who have parents that purchase a subscription are admitted free. For more information, visit www.lccca.net or call 717-838-2812.