Rachmaninoff composition highlights symphony concert

DOWNEY - Fact: About 100 years ago, a Russian named Sergei Rachmaninoff composed tons of fabulous music. Fact: Mr. Rachmaninoff had huge hands and played a mean piano.

Fact: One of his compositions, the Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 3, is probably the toughest thing written for concert pianists ever. Toughest...ever.

Fact: This Russian bear of a piece will be wrestled publicly by a very brave man on the stage of our Downey Theatre Saturday evening, Oct. 20.

Fact: Very Brave Man's name is Keenan Reesor.

Fact: You can be there to watch, listen and cheer.

Of course, Keenan Reesor has a good support team lined up. That's the Downey Symphony Orchestra, under Music Director Sharon Lavery. She reports that USC held a piano competition not long ago in which every entrant was required to play the Rachmaninoff 3rd. How many pianists entered the competition? Eighty-one. Who came in first? Our man Keenan Reesor. "He is phenomenal," Lavery says, and the statistics bear (ha ha) that out.

This concert begins at 8 p.m. with the premiere performance of an overture by Joshua Roach (more about him next week) and Bizet's L'Arlesienne Suite. Sharon Lavery gives a preview talk at 7:15, the Symphony Guild offers refreshments in the theater patio at intermission, and Downey's Princesses will escort concert-goers to their seats.

To reserve your tickets, call or visit the theater box office Tuesdays through Fridays between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m., or check out website, downeysymphony.org.

Tickets are $30 and $35, $10 with student ID, the theater is at 8435 Firestone Blvd., and though I cannot answer your burning question, "Are Keenan Reesor's hands huge enough," if you're laying bets on the wrestling match, go with the guy. Shoo-in.

********** Published: October 11, 2012 - Volume 11 - Issue 26