Wear your green and join the traditional Irish and Celtic celebration at the Maui Pops Orchestra's spring concert, St. Paddy's Pops. The concert is at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 17, in the Maui Arts & Cultural Center's Castle Theater. Led by Music Director Jim Durham, the orchestra will perform Irish-themed pieces, and even the audience will get in on the act with a grand finale audience sing-along to two favorite Irish tunes.
The St. Paddy's Day concert focuses on one of the missions of the Maui Pops Orchestra: to highlight local talent. In addition to more than 30 Hawai'i musicians in the orchestra, this concert will feature dancers from the Maui Academy of Performing Arts (MAPA), guest dancers Ellen Peterson and Lorne Direnfeld and cellist Silvina Samuel.
Young dancers from MAPA will bring a spirited version of "Lord of the Dance" in the style of Riverdance, a theatrical group that performs traditional Irish stepdancing, known for its rapid leg movements while body and arms are kept largely stationary. The dancers ages 10-12 are in a group under the direction of MAPA dance instructor Kathleen Shultz. MAPA, which offers after-school and Saturday morning dance and drama classes, has joined Maui Pops for previous concerts, providing lively costumed dancers to perform with the orchestra.
Cellist Silvina Samuel will provide the solo musical performance for the concert.
Adult dancers also will join in the Celtic celebration. Tap-dancing duet Lorne Direnfeld and Ellen Peterson will dance to the old-time favorite, "I'm Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover." The pair have been pleasing audiences with their charming tap-dance duets since 2003. Described as Maui's "Fred and Ginger," they enjoy dancing to jazz classics and the music of the great American Song Book, including Broadway and Hollywood musicals from the 1920s to the 1960s.
Cellist Silvina Samuel will provide the solo musical performance for this concert, playing "Adagio on Celtic Melodies" by Max Bruch. Principle cellist of the Maui Pops Orchestra as well as a member of the classical duo Cellano with pianist Lotus Dancer, Samuel also is a member with colleagues from the Maui Pops in the Maui Cello Quartet.
Samuel was born and raised on Vancouver Island, Canada. Her father was a singer and teacher at Lester B. Pearson College of the Pacific, and she grew up influenced by classical, folk, opera and international choral music. She was introduced to the cello at age 12 and fell in love with it after the first lesson. Samuel holds a bachelor's degree in cello performance from the University of Victoria and diplomas in performance and pedagogy from the Victoria Conservatory of Music.
In August 2008, Samuel moved to Maui and became an active member of the music scene, playing at weddings, in acoustic rock, and teaching private and group lessons
Tickets for St. Paddy's Pops are $10-$45 plus the MACC's fees. Call the MACC box office at 242-7469 or purchase tickets online at www.mauiarts.org.