American Symphony Orchestra comes to South Jersey

Music at Bunker Hill, in partnership with American Symphony Orchestra (ASO) in New York City and the Township of Washington, will present live classical music in South Jersey. On Sunday, August 9 (rain date Aug 10) at 7:00pm a string quartet featuring musicians from ASO will perform a free outdoor concert for Music at Bunker Hill at Washington Lake Park Amphitheater in Sewell, NJ. The quartet is composed of the Orchestra’s concertmaster Cyrus Beroukhim, principal violin Richard Rood, principal viola William Frampton, and Alberto Parrini, cello. They will perform Samuel Barber’s String Quartet Opus 11, George Walker’s String Quartet no. 1 “Lyric”, and Nino Rota’s Quartetto for Strings. The concert will be performed without intermission. Current COVID-19 guidelines will be observed for artists, staff, and audience. 

The program was conceived to explore George Walker’s brilliant String Quartet no. 1. The late resident of Montclair, NJ, Walker (1922-2018) was the first African American winner of the Pulitzer Prize in music, graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, and soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra. Until his death in 2018, the middle movement of his Quartet no. 1, later arranged as Lyric for Strings, was the most frequently performed orchestral work by a living American composer. Similarly, the middle movement of Barber’s Quartet opus 11 is “one of the most recognizable pieces of classical music in the world” (NPR), later arranged by the composer for orchestra as Adagio for Strings. Nino Rota is best known for his film score to The Godfather, and his scores to the films of Fellini and Zeffirelli. Walker, Barber, and Rota studied composition with Rosario Scalero at the Curtis Institute, and listeners can hear how these three great composers who shared a mentor found their own voices in their string quartets written between 1935 and 1948.

The concert is at Washington Lake Park Amphitheater, 626 Hurffville-Crosskeys Road, Sewell, NJ. Park entrances are on Hurffville-Crosskeys Road and Greentree Road. Amphitheater parking in Lot E has Handicapped Accessible spots, with additional parking in Lot F. COVID-19 guidelines specify face coverings for all audience members and bring-your-own-chair or blanket seating is restricted to marked 6’ spacing on the lawn. Attendance is limited to 500 people. Driving directions and concert information can be found at www.musicatbunkerhill.org. Phone for information (856) 494-6077. 

Concert-goers are invited to arrive early to view eARTh without ART is just eh, the inaugural exhibit at the outdoor Gallery in the Park at the Amphitheater stage. The exhibit is sponsored by the Sustainable Washington Township Creative Team and features artists from throughout New Jersey.

This program is made possible in part by funding from The Gloucester County Cultural and Heritage Commission at Rowan College of South Jersey, a partner of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional support is provided by American Symphony Orchestra, New York City, NY and the Township of Washington.