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The Blue & Gray Press | August 21, 2019

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Flautist accompanies Philharmonic


Sir James Galway, a world-renowned classical flautist, gave a St. Patrick’s Day performance, featuring both traditional Irish and classical music, alongside the University of Mary Washington’s philharmonic orchestra.

At the concert, held on Saturday, March 26, Sir James Galway performed a flute arrangement with his wife Lady Jeanne Galway.  Galway was a member of The Chieftains, a traditional Irish folk band.

Galway had a question-and-answer session that was open to the public and the concert included a raffle for a trip for two to Ireland.

The concert sold out and Galway and the orchestra received several standing ovations.

“When he went on his runs, it sounded so extremely perfect,” said sophomore music major Kate Hummel.  “He made it sound easy even though it’s not.”

The annual Celebrity Series has brought in a variety of famous musicians, including Judy Collins and Kenny Rodgers.  It was started in 2003 by Kevin Bartram, who also directs the philharmonic orchestra, and this concert marked its tenth anniversary.

“The most fun show was with Judy Collins.  She was an angel,” said Bartram. Next year, the musician is scheduled to be Itzhak Perlman, an Israeli violinist.

One unique aspect of the concert series is that the musicians always perform with students and hold a public presentation.  One of the main intentions of the program is to give students a chance to play alongside world-class musicians and learn from them, according to Bartram.

“If you want to get better, there is no finer way than playing with world class,” said Bartram.

This was Sir Galway’s last tour.  Bartram contacted Galway’s agent at the beginning of the planning period for the tour and booked him for St. Patrick’s Day weekend.