The Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra announces the Opening Concert of the 2014-15 season under the direction of new Music Director, Reuben Blundell

Press Release
For Immediate Release
Contact: Lauren Stevenson Yacina
610.506.1355 – lauren.stevenson@verizon.net
Reuben Blundell makes his debut as Music Director with the season opening concert, November 2
Reuben Blundell makes his debut as Music Director with the season opening concert, November 2

The Philadelphia region’s oldest community orchestra presents its first concert on November 2 at 3 PM under the direction of the young and dynamic new conductor

October 17, 2014 – Drexel Hill, PA. November 2, 2014 marks a milestone for the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra. It is the date of the orchestra’s Opening Concert of the 2014-15 season as the young, dynamic new Music Director, Reuben Blundell, takes to the podium. He will conduct the orchestra’s 75+ musicians in an exciting and inspiring performance at the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center.

After an extensive search for a new music director, members of the board of the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra announce that Australian-born Blundell, who acquired a doctorate in conducting from Rochester’s prestigious Eastman School of Music, will take the orchestra to a new level of distinction and musical excellence.

The Opening Concert features an impressive program including “The Moldau,” the symphonic poem by Czech composer Bedrich Smetana; “Symphonic Dances” by Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg; and Dmitri Shostakovich’s “Symphony No.9.”

Tickets for the concert on November 2 at 3 pm are $18 for general admission, $15 for senior citizens and $5 for students under 25 with a valid ID. Affordable subscriptions to the 5-concert season are also available. Tickets are available by calling the Upper Darby Performing Arts Center box office at 610.622.1189 or by purchasing them one hour prior to the concert. The Upper Darby Performing Arts Center is located at 601 N. Lansdowne Avenue, Drexel Hill, PA. Parking is free. The LSO Web site, www.lansdowneso.org, provides an overview of the concert season.

“The orchestra is filled with incredibly talented musicians, and has a wonderful tradition of genuine commitment to music making at the highest level,” said the new Music Director Reuben Blundell.  “A program like this, with a perennial favorite like The Moldau, and the beauty of Grieg’s Symphonic Dances, pairs brilliantly with the Shostakovich symphony, a Lansdowne premiere.  With the LSO, there’s a great enthusiasm for trying new things, and this is only the beginning!”

Executive Director of Upper Darby Performing Arts Center, Harry Dietzler, is thrilled to welcome Blundell to the stage. “The Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra is a community treasure,” said Dietzler. “Under the new leadership of Reuben Blundell, the bar is rising for the ensemble that has always played at a very high level. We invite the community to come and experience this exceptional group and enjoy the upcoming concerts at a highly affordable price.”

The announcement of the new music director is exciting news for audience and orchestra members alike. Blundell, who lives in New York City with his wife and young daughter, brings an impressive resume with his new charge of LSO.

Blundell will continue his work as the music director of the Hunter Symphony at Hunter College, a position he has held for six years. In addition, he is principal conductor with the Riverside Orchestra in New York and resident conductor with the Chelsea Symphony. Other recent engagements include the New World Symphony in Miami (FL), and the Philharmonic of Southern New Jersey and the South Orange Symphony (NJ).  He serves as concertmaster of the Merrick Symphony in Long Island and plays regularly as a chamber musician at the Mozart at Monteux Festival in Maine, in August.

In June 2013, Blundell traveled to Iraq’s Kurdistan region, conducting and teaching with American Voices, an organization supported by the US State Department.  The resulting collaboration involved six Iraqi hip-hop dancers performing to Bach and Grieg, alongside the Hunter Symphony.

Prior to receiving his doctorate degree in conducting, Blundell received violin fellowships with the Tanglewood Music Center and New World Symphony.

The Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra was established in 1946 and continues to fulfill its commitment to the community by providing excellent musical experiences for its audiences and its volunteer musicians. The members of the ensemble have established a well-regarded reputation for their intense commitment and desire to consistently present high-caliber performances. The 75+ members are doctors, lawyers, accountants, and business people who meet weekly and share a life-long love of music. The orchestra provides an ensemble with which members collaborate with other highly committed musicians.

LSO Concertmaster, Herold Klein of Drexel Hill, recently retired after forty years as a professional musician with the Philadelphia Orchestra. “The musicians of the orchestra are very much looking forward to a dynamic new season with Reuben, as he builds upon the wonderful legacy left us by Irving Ludwig,” said Klein. “We foresee a blossoming musical relationship with Reuben in the years to come.”

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