Time for symphonic pops 

Antonin Dvorak wrote prolifically, easily and spontaneously. His "Symphony from the New World" was a success in America when first performed by the New York Philharmonic Orchestra in 1893. Next week, the Redwood Symphony opens its summer pops concert with the piece at Canada College’s Main Theatre in Redwood City.

"The composer wrote this composition based on his impressions of the United States. Its combination of beautiful tunes and drama is unbeatable," says Eric Kujawky, the symphony’s music director.

Also on the program is Violin Concerto No. 3 by Saint-Saens featuring Music at Menlo alumnus Aaron Requiro.

The finale will feature baritone Michael Najar singing "Old American Songs" by Aaron Copland, including the Shaker tune "Simple Gifts." The Pacifica resident is pursuing a master’s degree in music at Notre Dame de Namur University. He teaches music — both practice and theory — at Palo Alto High School. A composer himself, Najar is making his mark with a humorous approach and inventive style. He says, "Copland’s style is so American, it brings a smile to everyone who hears it."

The concert is July 21 at 4200 Farm Hill Road; tickets are $10-$15; call (650) 366-6872.


Bring a picnic basket for an afternoon to enjoy the annual Peninsula Symphony pops concert; it’s at 3 p.m. July 29 in Menlo Park.

The program features violinist Audrey Kwon, winner of the Young Musicians’ Competition Jim McAuliffe Award, playing Samuel Barber's Violin Concerto. The concert also features works by Schubert, Brahms, Arnold and Khachaturian.

The concert’s second half showcases music by Richard Rodgers, including "The King and I" overture, excerpts from "Victory at Sea" and "Slaughter on Tenth Avenue" from "On Your Toes."

The concert will be at the Oak Creek Apartments, 1600 Sand Hill Road. Call (650) 941-5291.


"Broadway Love Songs," starring Menlo Park’s Maryann and Ron Sfarzo, is onstage at 7 p.m. Sunday at the Little Fox in Redwood City. The cabaret show includes songs by Cole Porter, George Gershwin and Richard Rodgers. Maryann, a lyricist as well as vocalist, will be accompanied by her husband Ron on keyboards, Steve Hanson on bass and Carl Arnold on drums.

Native San Franciscans, the Sfarzos have combined their musical talents for more than 20 years. Ron, a retired Menlo Park police officer, is an accomplished arranger and composer.

The Little Fox is at 2209 Broadway; tickets are $23 to $25. Call (650) 388-4119 or visit info@foxdream.com.


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