Baroque Bash comes to town, and an animated opportunity

by Mark Burger

The third season ofthe Magnolia Baroque Festival gets underway this month, beginning witha concert in Durham and then continuing with a series of musicallymagnificent events in Winston-Salem. The festival kicks off June17 with The Moravians’ Passion for Music at Duke Gardens (426 AndersonSt., Durham), for which tickets are available Thenext night – the festival brings that same program to Winston-Salem.Yes, it’s The Moravians’ Passion for Music one mo’ time, a concertcollection of works by such early classical baroque composers as JFPeter, W. Pieci, Graun and others, which will be performed by sevenMagnolia Baroque Festival musicians including violinist Gesa Kordes andkeyboard player Andrew Willis. This concert will be held at CalvaryMoravian Church (600 Holly Ave., W-S) at 7:30 p.m. OnThursday, June 19, there’s The Excitement of Improvisation in the GrayAuditorium in the Old Salem Visitors Center (900 Old Salem Road, W-S),in which guest ensemble The Harmonious Blacksmith presents a concerthighlighting the spontaneity and improvisation found in early baroquemusic. The line-up of musical talent includes Ingrid Matthews onviolin, Joe Gascho on harpsichord, John Lenti on lute and theorbo, NikaZlatzric on cello, Justin Godoy on recorder and soprano Ah Hong. Thefollowing night – Friday, June 20 – the baroque bash continues with aconcert titled Love of Bach, which surely says it all. It’s all JohannSebastian, all the time in this presentation, which features the Bachconcerti including E Major and E Minor violin concertos, the D minordouble-violin concerto, and the "Brandenburg Concerto IV." ViolinistIngrid Matthews will be featured in this performance, which will beheld in Watson Hall, located on the NCSA campus (1533 S. Main St., W-S). Saturday,June 21, sees The Triumph of Love being performed at the Stevens Center(405 W. 4th St., W-S). In a selection of memorable scenes fromPurcell’s King Arthur, as well as The Fairy Queen, this baroque blowoutfeatures the acclaimed baroque dance duo of Paige Whitley-Bauguess andThomas Baird. Whitley-Bauguess is also the director of the Baroque ArtsProject and Atlantic Dance Theatre in New Bern, and she holds a BFA inballet from NCSA, where she also attended the high school program – sothis is something of a homecoming for her. They’ll be joined by dancersfrom the New Bern Dancing Assembly, the Magnolia Baroque FestivalOrchestra, Chorus and Vocal soloists. If you buy three tickets, you getone free. Not only is it baroque, but it’s a bargain! Ticketsfor each of these shows are $25, $20 for senior citizens and $10 forstudents (have those IDs ready), and are available from the StevensCenter Box Office: 336.721.1945. The festival finishes up with"Promenade," presented in the afternoon by Old Salem Museum andGardens. Just take a leisurely stroll down South Main Street in OldSalem (if you’ve never been, you really ought to) and enjoy MagnoliaBaroque Festival apprentices performing period music in various venuesincluding the Salem Tavern, Single Brothers’ House, St.Philip’s Churchand Vogler House. Tickets for this event are available through the OldSalem Visitor’s Center: 336.721.7350. For more information about the festival, see I’vebeen called many things by many people, but I don’t ever recall beingcalled an "Igor" by anyone. A "Scrooge," yes. (More than once.) A"genius," absolutely. (Not as many times.) But never have I been calledan "Igor." Well, those marketing madmen at the Weinstein Company(led by brothers Harvey and Bob Weinstein) have cooked up an onlinecontest in preparation for the upcoming animated feature, Igor, whichopens this September and features the voices of John Cusack (as Igor),Steve Buscemi, Eddie Izzard, John Cleese, Christian Slater, MollyShannon, Jennifer Coolidge and Jay Leno, who will appear in absolutelyanything, it seems. The "Be an Igor" contest allows fans tocompete for the chance to have their voice featured in the film,joining the likes of the star-studded cast above. Taking its cuefrom the classic horror films of yesteryear – like, back in the ’30s -the story puts a farcical spin on the prototypical character of Igor, ahunchbacked assistant to a mad scientist who’s tired of being thesidekick and wants to become a scientist himself. His dream (a twistedone, of course) is to win first prize at the Evil Science Fair, heldevery year in the kingdom of Malaria (which I seem to recall as beingsomewhere in the vicinity of New Jersey). All of you potentialIgors out there, here’s what you need to do: Go to forcomplete details. Film yourself doing your best "Yes, Master!"impression and/or the old hunchback routine, or show yourself creatingsomething in a laboratory. Zaniness is encouraged, but let’s keepthings clean, shall we? This is for a kids’ movie, after all. Next,upload your video and tell your friends to vote for your entry. You canwatch and rate other entries, and winners will be selected based on thehighest ratings and the largest number of views an entry receives. It’sso simple, even a child could do it… which, I suppose, is probablythe point. The grand-prize winner will have their voice recordedand featured in the final cut of the film, and will be featured on theDVD release of Igor. Four first-prize winners will have their videoentries featured on the DVD release and will also receive an official"Be An Igor" prize package including autographed posters and comicbooks, video games and collectible figurines. Everyone else enjoys the privilege of just playing the game. Entries will be accepted through Friday, June 13 – and, for someone, it’s going to be a lucky Friday the 13th! Come to think of it, no one’s ever said "Yes, Master!" to me. I’ll have to work on that….