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Poetry, song premiere at Town Hall

The last concert of the 2014-2015 Menotomy Concert Series will feature baritone Nathan Rodriguez in the Boston premiere of Pasquale Tassone’s "Oremus" (Let us Pray), a song-cycle with texts drawn from A Prayer for Everyone, a book of poems by Cambridge poet Tomas O’Leary. Rodriguez will be accompanied by pianist Yelena Beriyeva.

The concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 8, in Arlington Town Hall. Admission is free and the public is cordially invited.

Tassone has written music for a variety of choral and instrumental ensembles and has finished his first opera, Seven Rabbits on a Pole.

O’Leary describes himself as poet, translator, music maker, singer, artist and expressive therapist. He has published three books of poetry: Fool at the Funeral, The Devil Take a Crooked House and A Prayer for Everyone. His volume of new and selected poems, In the Wellspring of the Ear, will be published by Lynx House Press this year. His poems have appeared in numerous literary journals, and his journey as a teacher has spanned the levels of college, high school and young children.

Rodriguez has performed many roles, both classic and contemporary, including Stephano in the world premiere of The Tempest, Morales in Carmen, Constantine in The Seagull, Frank in Die Fledermaus, Pietro in The Little Blue One (premiere), Nilakantha and Frederique in Lakmé, Voltaire in Candide, Guglielmo in Cosi fan tutte, Dr. Bhaer in Little Women, Palace Guard in The Wooden Sword (premiere) and Captain Corcoran in H.M.S. Pinafore.

He has also performed internationally with conservatories in France and Ireland. He currently studies with Victor Jannett at Boston Conservatory.

Hailed as "the paragon of the concert pianist" (Los Angeles A Examiner), "a standout performer" (The Boston Musical Intelligencer) with “extraordinary talent” (Christopher A. Smith, general director of Boston Metropolitan Opera), Georgian-born American pianist Beriyeva is considered one of Boston’s finest artists. Beriyeva has been featured as a guest artist at the Great Romantics Festival of Canada in collaboration with Celebrity Concert Series at the McMaster University and on "Sundays with Liz Walker" at WBZ-TV Channel 4.

Also on the program will be three short arias from Tassone’s opera Seven Rabbits as well as Blue Mountain Ballads by Paul Bowles.

The Menotomy Concert Series had its first season during 2006-2007 when it coincided with the festivities celebrating the bicentennial of the Town of Arlington. As Arlington officially changed its name from Menotomy in 1807, a concert series with a nostalgic nod to the town’s former name seemed an appropriate gesture.

Those involved thank Adam Chapdelaine, the town manager, and Patsy Kraemer for their support in nurturing this series.

They invite the citizens of Arlington to help recognize and celebrate the endeavors of Arlington’s artist-citizens.

For more information, call 781-646-7741.

This announcement was published Monday, April 27, 2015.

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