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Columbus Makes Art Presents: ProMusica Soirée, Featuring Steep Canyon Rangers

Brittany Lockman Brittany Lockman Columbus Makes Art Presents: ProMusica Soirée, Featuring Steep Canyon RangersBehind the stage at ProMusica. Photo by Rick Buchanan Photography.
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Janet Chen is the Executive Director of ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, and works closely with Music Director David Danzmayr to shape each season with the orchestra. She answers a few questions about ProMusica and their upcoming Soirée.

Janet Chen is the Executive Director of ProMusica Chamber Orchestra. Photo by Rick Buchanan Photography.

Janet Chen is the Executive Director of ProMusica Chamber Orchestra. Photo by Rick Buchanan Photography.

Q: First, briefly describe your role with ProMusica.
JC: As the Executive Director, I oversee most of the administrative activities and programs of the orchestra – which includes fundraising and marketing the organization at a high-level. I partner very closely with our music director David Danzmayr on the artistic vision of the orchestra, as well as with violinist Vadim Gluzman, our Creative Partner & Principal Guest Artist. Basically I help lead us down our strategic path, hopefully making new friends and bringing lovers of classical music along in our journey.

Q: What is the ProMusica Soirée?
JC: The Soirée is one of our most celebrated events each year! It’s basically our biggest fundraiser of the year; we present a one-night only performance that’s coupled with a fun pre-concert party. What makes the performance different from our regular season concerts is that we feature a cross-over artist, allowing the orchestra and our musicians to stretch boundaries, and meld classical and non-classical. It’s so rewarding to often find how different musical genres can work so well with a chamber orchestra. This year we’ll be joined by the bluegrass band Steep Canyon Rangers.

Q: Why does ProMusica choose to collaborate with non-classical artists in this venue?
JC: We want to find opportunities to expand audiences, and show that music in many ways can be diverse and a universal language. That’s also the beauty of the Southern Theatre, our performance home. The venue lends itself well to both classical music and also to an intimate performance by a Chris Thile or a Béla Fleck. Taking the opportunity to combine chamber repertoire with non-classical performance in the Southern can be a very unique experience.

Q: What is it like working with David Danzmayr? What are rehearsals like with him?
JC: The real answer? Aha, just kidding… I am very fortunate to have a positive and trusting working relationship with David. He has a strong artistic vision, and brings a global view of orchestras to inspire ProMusica’s potential. Because the positions of Executive Director and Music Director in orchestras are equal, it is so important to have a partner I can trust. And we have fun! Rehearsals can be exhausting but very rewarding. He doesn’t waste a moment, and has a rare ability to paint a picture of what he wants musically, and inspire that from our musicians.

David Danzmayr, Janet Chen-, and Vadim Gluzman of ProMusica. Photo courtesy ProMusica.

David Danzmayr, Janet Chen-, and Vadim Gluzman of ProMusica. Photo courtesy ProMusica.

Q: What’s on your current personal playlist?
JC: I am obsessed with Adele’s newest album, 25! To me there is something very special about her voice, and she just seems to embody true musicianship. I appreciate an artist every now and then who doesn’t have to rely on pomp and circumstance to make music.

Join ProMusica Chamber Orchestra and the Steep Canyon Rangers on Saturday, Feb. 13 for the ProMusica Soirée at the Southern Theatre. Concert tickets start at $35. Patron Packages are available to attend the pre-concert benefit at The Westin through the ProMusica office at 614.464.0066.

Columbus Makes Art Presents is a bi-weekly column brought to you by the Greater Columbus Arts Council – supporting art and advancing culture in Columbus. The column is a project of the Art Makes Columbus campaign, telling the inspiring stories of the people and organizations who create Columbus art. Each column will be written by a different local arts organization to give you an insiders look at how #artmakescbus.

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