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The Greensboro Symphony Orchestra's 32nd season will have an international flair with guest artists from Russia and Canada and an emphasis on vocal music.

The season, which extends through May 1991, opens Sept. 8 with an all-Russian program. The Feb. 16 performance will feature an all-Italian, operatic evening.The emphasis on vocal music will continue next spring with a performance of Ludwig van Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, the ``Choral Symphony.' Two choral groups from the University of the North Carolina at Greensboro and guest soloists will perform with the orchestra.

``I think the season is very imaginatively put together,' said the symphony's new manager, Jim Hopkins. ``It's a good kind of mix between music you have certainly heard before and are familiar with, and also a well-rounded musical diet.'

Hopkins, who comes from the North Carolina Symphony in Raleigh, succeeds Edward ``Ted' Shure, who left last fall to manage the Shreveport, La., Symphony.

Among next season's guest artists will be Russian-born pianist Yefim Bronfman, an internationally known soloist with European and American orchestras; violinist Elmar Oliveira, a Grammy Award nominee for a performance with the St. Louis Symphony; and mezzo-soprano Tichina Vaughn. An N.C. School of the Arts graduate, Vaughn is now training in the Metropolitan Opera Young Artist program in New York City.

Other guest artists will be pianist Janina Fialkowska, violinist Pamela Frank and pianist Christopher O'Riley. Born in Canada, Fialkowska recently completed a tour with the Royal Philharmonic in Britain and next month will premiere a recently discovered Franz Liszt concerto with the Chicago Symphony.

Both Frank and O'Riley are winners of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant, awarded to rising young performers.

The season will also offer premieres of two instrumental works by North Carolina composers Sherwood Shaffer of Winston-Salem and Wally Kleucker of Charlotte.

Music director Paul Anthony McRae, who will be starting his fourth season here, will conduct all seven classical concerts. Audience response to this season's shift of the concerts from Tuesday to Saturday night has persuaded the symphony to continue performing on Tuesdays.

Season subscription prices for the choicest seats have been raised from a $99 top price to $110. Unchanged are a $35 season ticket for the Section D in War Memorial Auditorium's upper balcony and the cheapest of two senior citizens' tickets, which is still $30. Other ticket prices increased by $3 or $4 each, depending on seat location.

Season tickets are available now through the symphony office at 712 Summit Ave., P.O. Box 20303, Greensboro, N.C. 27420 or by calling 274-9981.

The Shaffer premiere will be performed March 2 and the Kleucker piece played May 11, 1991. ``Catherine Wheel,' by Shaffer, an original faculty member at the N.C. School of the Arts, was inspired by a spinning fireworks wheel. ``On Wings of Pegasus,' by Kleucker, is based on a poem by his wife, Malinda, principal horn player in the Greensboro Symphony. The work celebrates the recent dawn of freedom in Eastern Europe.

Bronfman will be the soloist in Sergi Prokofief's Third Piano Concerto in the opening program. This Russian program will include works by Michael Glinka and P.I. Tchaikovsky. The symphony season will continue Oct. 20 with Oliveira playing Henri Vieuxtemps' ``Violin Concerto No. 5.'

On Jan. 19, Fialkowska will play Robert Schumann's ``Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54.'

Vaughan will be the soloist Feb. 16 in the Italian program, which will include arias by Gioacchino Rossini, Giuseppe Verdi, Pietro Mascagni and Ottorino Respighi.

Frank, who played here in 1988 in a special concert conducted by Conductor Laureate Peter Paul Fuchs, will be heard March 2. She will be the soloist in Max Bruch's ``Violin Concerto No. 1 in G-minor.'

UNCG's Chorale and Symphonic Chorus, prepared by Richard Cox and William Carroll, respectively, will join the symphony April 13. The program will also include W.A. Mozart's ``Regina Coeli,' K. 108, for soprano and chorus.

Jan Helms Dickerson will be soprano guest soloist, with Frances Hutcherson Bailey as mezzo-soprano soloist, John Cary, tenor, and John Williams, bass-baritone.

The concluding concert May 11, 1991, will feature O'Riley in Dmitri Shostakovich's ``Piano Concerto No. 1.' Anita Cirba of Winston-Salem will be the solo trumpeter.


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