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WoodFest Sunset Concert, September 24

Sunset Concert in the Flint Hills to Feature Local and World-Renowned Artists

Symphony in the Flint Hills Presents: WoodFest Sunset Concert, September 24

WoodFest 2016, presented by Symphony in the Flint Hills at Camp Wood YMCA, is bringing together Kansas recording artists and world-renowned Grammy Award winners for the annual Sunset Concert under the stars on Saturday, Sept. 24 at 7 p.m.

The concert will feature jazz harmonica and piano virtuoso Howard Levy, WoodFest Concert Director and cellist Eugene Friesen, violinist John Harrison, vocalist Karla Burns, Kenny White on mandolin, and the Prairie Fire String Orchestra.

“The WoodFest Sunset Concert has become a beloved tradition and inspiring close to a day full of explorations in music and nature,” said Eugene Friesen. “The spectacular concert setting overlooks miles of Flint Hills splendor, and the music is chosen to highlight a diversity of world music.”

The program for the Sunset Concert will include Five Tango Sensations by Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla featuring Howard Levy on harmonica. Levy will also be featured on keyboard in styles ranging from Latin to Bluegrass. Levy is a multiple Grammy-Award winner and master of the diatonic harmonica, a superb pianist, innovative composer, recording artist, bandleader, teacher and producer. His fresh lyrical approach to whatever he plays has made him a favorite with audiences worldwide, and a recording artist sought after by the likes of Kenny Loggins, Dolly Parton, Paquito D’Rivera, Styx, Donald Fagen, and Paul Simon. As a sideman, Howard has appeared on hundreds of CDs and played on many movie soundtracks.

Also featured in the Sunset Concert will be violinist John Harrison in a concerto by J.S. Bach. Harrison has performed internationally and was a featured soloist with The Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. Harrison’s leadership positions include Concertmaster of the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, the Vermont Symphony Orchestra and the Wichita Symphony Orchestra. He was Principal Second of Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra of Boston, as well as a substitute member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Boston Pops Orchestra.

Special guest vocalist Karla Burns will offer an inspiring vocal backed up by the entire ensemble. Karla Burns graduated from Wichita State University and has appeared at some of the most distinguished venues in the world, including the Paris Opera and the Teatro Real in Madrid, Spain. She made her Metropolitan Opera debut in Porgy and Bess, performed at the Cairo Opera in Show Boat and at Carnegie Hall in Trio, a jazz opera. She has appeared on Broadway in classical and musical theatre as well as two Broadway productions of Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors at Lincoln Center and Shakespeare in the Park.

For the sixth year in a row, Eugene Friesen will lead the Sunset Concert as the WoodFest Concert Director and play the cello. Friesen is active internationally as a concert cellist, composer, conductor and teacher. Winner of multiple Grammy Awards, he has worked and recorded with such diverse artists as Dave Brubeck, Toots Thielemans, Betty Buckley, Will Ackerman, Joe Lovano and Dream Theater. Friesen’s improvisatory music has been featured in concerts all over the world with the Paul Winter Consort and with Trio Globo (Friesen, Howard Levy and Glen Velez). Friesen is a professor at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, and is an artist-in-residence at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City.

“We have an impressive list of artists lined up for WoodFest’s annual Sunset Concert and have a program designed to entertain audiences of all ages,” said Christy Davis, executive director of Symphony in the Flint Hills. “Where else can you listen to such a talented mix of diverse artists perform under the stars in the middle of the Flint Hills? We encourage everyone to come out and experience this one-of-a-kind event.”

Tickets to the WoodFest Sunset Concert are $40 and include dinner, which starts at 5:15 p.m. The concert will take place at a hilltop amphitheater from 7 to 9 p.m. Residents of Chase and Morris Counties can attend for free –first come, first served –and should call 620-273-8955 to reserve their space.

For more information and to register, visit www.WoodFestKS.org, call 620-273-8955 or email woodfest@symphonyintheflinthills.org.