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Shostakovich & Six Strings

“A musical portrait of Stalin,” has described Shostakovich’s primarily oppressive and sinister Tenth Symphony, his first in five years after a Soviet denouncement of his music. Composer Daron Hagen touts the performance of electric guitarist D.J. Sparr on his Electric Guitar Concerto as a “joyous, celebratory romp.” Desert Transport portrays experiencing the sound sensations of a helicopter in flight.

The BPO Coffee Concert Series is presented by Highmark.


Robert Moody, conductor
D. J. Sparr, electric guitar

MASON BATES  Desert Transport
DARON HAGEN  Film Noir: Concerto for Electric Guitar and Orchestra
1. Pacific Coast Highway
2. Torch Song
3. You Should See the Other Guy
4. Maybe Not Today


SHOSTAKOVICH  Symphony No. 10
I. Moderato
II. Allegro
III. Allegretto
IV. Andante – Allegro

Join us after Saturday’s concert for a Musician’s Nightcap!

Meet us on the lower level after Saturday’s performance for light conversations with BPO musicians and complimentary wine and bites, hosted by BPO double bassist Jonathan Borden. This special event is FREE and open to all who attend Saturday’s concert.

About D. J. Sparr

Composer and electric guitarist D. J. Sparr, who Gramophone recently hailed as “exemplary,” is one of America’s preeminent composer-performers. He has caught the attention of critics with his eclectic style, described as “pop-Romantic…iridescent and wondrous” (The Mercury News) and “suits the boundary-erasing spirit of today’s new music world” (The New York Times). Los Angeles Times praises him as “an excellent soloist,” and the Santa Cruz Sentinel says that he “wowed an enthusiastic audience…Sparr’s guitar sang in a near-human voice.”

Sparr was the electric guitar concerto soloist on the 2018 GRAMMY Award-winning album with JoAnn Falletta and the London Symphony Orchestra. In 2011, Sparr was named one of NPR listeners’ favorite 100 composers under the age 40. He has composed for and performed with renowned ensembles such as the Houston Grand Opera, Cabrillo Festival, New World Symphony, Washington National Opera, and Eighth Blackbird. His music has received awards from BMI, New Music USA, and the League of Composers/ISCM. Sparr is a faculty member at the famed Walden School’s Creative Musicians Retreat in Dublin, New Hampshire. His works and guitar performances appear on Naxos, Innova Recordings, and Centaur Records.

D. J. lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana with his wife Kimberly, son Harris, Nannette the hound dog, and Bundini the boxer. D. J. Sparr’s music is published by Bill Holab Music.


Friday, February 2, 2024
10:30 am
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Kleinhans Music Hall
3 Symphony Circle
Buffalo, NY 14201 United States
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(716) 885-5000

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