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Three days of classical music

The musicians of the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon will perform three concerts in the Rogue Valley.

The performances will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 20 at the Craterian Ginger Rogers Theater, 23 S. Central Ave., Medford; 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 21, at the Grants Pass High School Performing Arts Center, 830 N.E. Ninth St., Grants Pass; and at 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22, at Southern Oregon University's Music Recital Hall, 1250 Siskiyou Blvd., Ashland.

Youth Symphony co-concertmaster Taylor Anderson, one of the winners of the YSSO's 2008 Concerto Competition, will be featured in a performance of movements from Aram Khachaturian's Concerto for Violin and Orchestra.

Anderson, a resident of Eagle Point, is a home-schooled senior and has been involved with the YSSO since 2003. In addition, she participated in the Britt Festivals String Quartet Institutes in 2007 and 2008, the 2003 Suzuki Camp and is a member of Siskiyou Violins.

The Youth Symphony also will perform "Mars, Bringer of War" and "Jupiter, Bringer of Jollity" from "The Planets" by Gustav Holst. Youth Orchestra will play Reinhold Gliére's "Russian Sailor's Dance," "Orpheus in the Underworld," by Jacques Offenbach and the "Bacchanal" from "Samson and Delilah" by Camille Saint-Saëns. Youth Strings will perform works by Antonio Vivaldi, John Caponegro and Béla Bartók.

Cynthia Hutton, YSSO music director and conductor of the Youth Symphony and Youth Orchestra, marks her 14th season with the YSSO this year. Hutton is associate professor of music and director of bands at Southern Oregon University. She is a member of the Rogue Valley Symphony and the SOU Faculty Brass Quintet.

Faina Podolnaya, YSSO associate conductor and conductor of Youth Strings, joined the YSSO in 2000-2001. Upon completion of her studies in violin performance and teaching at the Soviet Conservatory of Music, she accepted a teaching position at Kazakhstan's most prestigious music academy. She has received numerous awards, including the Soviet Union's Teacher of the Year.

The YSSO is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing young people with opportunities to expand their knowledge of classical music by learning and performing challenging repertoire.

The mission of the YSSO is to provide exceptional performance experiences for young musicians under the leadership of professional conductors and music coaches and to foster a lifelong appreciation of classical music and the arts.

Tickets are $10 general admission and $5 for students and seniors. Tickets are available at Paddington Station in Ashland and Larry's Music in Medford. Tickets for the Feb. 20 performance in Medford also are available through the Craterian Theater box office, 779-3000.

For information about the concerts or how to support the mission of the YSSO, please contact the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon, see ysso.org or call 858-8859.

Taylor Anderson, one of the winners of the Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon’s 2008 Concerto Competition, will be featured during YSSO's concert series this weekend. - Photo by Bryon DeVore