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Borderlands Arts brings chamber music festival to Las Cruces this weekend

The Borderlands Arts Festival also performs on Friday, Aug. 11 at 7 p.m. at the Rio Grande Theatre
The Chamber Music Festival also performs on Friday, Aug. 11 at 7 p.m. at the Rio Grande Theatre

Some of the most beloved music for string orchestra will be performed in two concerts this weekend, as the recently-formed Borderland Arts Foundation presents its Summer Chamber Music Festival in Las Cruces. The Foundation’s goal is to collaborate with various arts groups and artists on both sides of the border, including ballet, theater, visual arts, and, of course, music. For these summer concerts, they pulled together members of the El Paso, Las Cruces, Roswell and New Horizons Symphony Orchestras, as well as musicians from Juarez, into a string orchestra that will be conducted by Jorge Martinez-Rios.

Violinist Erik Maeste, who will serve as concertmaster for the concerts, said in this zoom interview with Intermezzo host Leora Zeitlin, that “there’s such a transfer of ideas that exist between these two countries and these two cities, El Paso and Juarez, and this is such a beautiful way to commemorate that relationship that we have.” The concerts are Friday, Aug. 11 at 7 p.m. at the Rio Grande Theatre, and Sunday, Aug. 13 at 3 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church.

The orchestra will perform the “St. Paul Suite” by Gustav Holst, Samuel Barber’s famous “Adagio for Strings,” Tchaikovsky’s “Serenade for Strings,” and “On the Nature of Daylight,” by contemporary composer Max Richter. Clips of these pieces heard in the interview are performed by:

1) Richter: Angele Dubeau and La Pieta (Analekta 8745);

2) Holst: St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Christopher Hogwood (London 440376)

3) Tchaikovsky: Moscow Soloists, conducted by Yuri Bashmet (RCA 60368)

4) Barber: Guildhall String Ensemble (RCA 61275)