Concord, NH – Sept. 18, 2009 – Merrimack County Savings Bank today announced it is presenting The Merrimack Holiday Pops on Sunday, December 20, 2009 at 3:00 p.m. at the Capitol Center for the Arts, 44 South Main Street in Concord. The festive musical program features the New England Wind Symphony with seven world-class artists. The program is a gift from the bank to the community during the 2009 holiday season. Tickets are free to the public.
“We are delighted to have the opportunity to bring this unique Wind Symphony event to the greater Concord community,” commented Ronald Wilbur, Chairman and CEO at Merrimack County Savings Bank. “We hope this special event will become an annual tradition.”
Music director and conductor for the event is Clayton “Skip” Poole, also Vice President, Wealth Management at Merrimack County Savings Bank. Clayton has been bringing quality music to New England audiences for 30 years. He founded the New England Wind Symphony in 1984, and has founded and conducted many other groups including the Northeast Symphony Orchestra, The Clayton Poole Big Band, The Paul Whiteman Tribute Orchestra and others. He conducted the New England Wind Symphony at the Mount Washington Hotel’s 4th of July celebration in Bretton Woods from 1984 to 2006.
The program features Laura Knoy, host of New Hampshire Public Radio’s The Exchange, as narrator, and nationally renowned soloists including John David Adams, bass vocalist; Patty Barkas, vocalist; Gina Lombard, vocalist; and Elliott Markow, violinist. The program also includes two graduates of the Concord Community Music School, Stephanie Kruskol, vocalist; and Benjamin Bloomfield, vocalist.
On the day of the event, donations will be accepted to benefit the Concord Community Music School’s Scholarship Program. Employing 59 artist teachers for 1,400 students, CCMS welcomes adults, teens and children with an emphasis on the importance of ensembles, performance and individual instruction. For more information, visit: http://www.ccmusicschool.org/.
Laura Knoy is known nationwide for her in-depth interviews with presidential hopefuls. Prior to hosting NHPR's The Exchange, Laura worked in public radio in Washington, D.C. as a local reporter and announcer for WAMU and as a newscaster for NPR. Before her radio career, she was a researcher for USA Today's "Money" section and a research assistant at the Institute for International Economics. In 2007, Laura was named New Hampshire Broadcaster of the Year by the New Hampshire Association of Broadcasters.
Elliott Markow is a concertmaster and violin soloist. While at Boston University where he attended on a full four-year merit scholarship, he joined the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra and was a substitute member of both the Pops and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Currently, he is concertmaster in the Orchestras of NH Philharmonic, The Granite State Symphony and the Nashua Symphony. He serves on the faculty of the Manchester Community Music School, the University of Mass at Lowell and St. Paul’s School in Concord.
Patty Barkas has performed for over a decade, recording and touring nationally and internationally with an eclectic range of artists, including Ruth Pointer of “The Pointer Sisters,” Peter Wolf of “The J. Geils Band” and Brad Delp of the band, “Boston.” She is one of Boston’s premiere session singers, recording with major label artists on Sony-Epic, Polygram, Rycodise, Sire and Reprise, as well as film soundtracks, TV features and commercials.
John David Adams is acclaimed as a skilled and versatile performer in opera, concert, recital and challenging dramatic roles showcasing his bass-baritone voice. Stage appearances include Romeo et Juliette with PORTopera; The Desert Song for Maine State Theatre’s 50th Anniversary; and The Crucible – Heartwood Regional Theatre. He has performed roles with Opera Boston, San Francisco Lyric Opera, Granite State Opera, Berkeley Opera, NE Light Opera, Apollo Opera and SOLO Opera.
Gina Lombard is a singer, songwriter, musician and actress appearing throughout the country with notable performers including Mel Tormé, Gene Krupa, Buddy Greco, Geraldo Riviera, Helen O’Connell and others. She has extensive appearances on television, radio and on stage. She is the recipient of several awards including the Bronze Halo Award for outstanding contribution to the entertainment industry and Best Talk Show Host/Producer for outstanding entertainment format for a one-hour weekly television show.
Benjamin Bloomfield is a Master’s candidate at the Julliard School in New York and is a graduate of Manhattan School of Music. He has tremendous flexibility as a performer with a long and diverse casting history. Most recently, he was Supt Budd in Britten’s Albert Herring at Maestro Maazel’s private theater in Castleton, Virginia and performed in a Kennedy Center gala with Maestro Maazel and Marvin Hamlisch.
Stephanie Kruskol graduated with high honors from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. She was also the recipient of the Azalia H. Thomas Prize for excellence in music theory. She is in the graduate program at Peabody where she is pursuing a master’s degree in music.
For tickets, send a stamped, self-addressed envelope with the number of requested tickets (up to four) to: The Merrimack Holiday Pops, Capitol Center for the Arts, 44 South Main Street, Concord, NH 03301.
For more information on the event, visit the Capitol Center for the Arts web site at: http://www.ccanh.com.