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Singer, violinist to showcase pieces Sunday, May 15, at college

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO BY GARY THOMPSON - The Mt. Hood Pops Orchestra will showcase youthful talent at its next concert set for Sunday, May 15, at Mt. Hood Community College.Eden Strang’s arrival in this world did not go unnoticed.

“According to my mother, I was born screaming, and I continued that screaming well into my first year of life,” the Boring resident says. “My mother took that as a ‘sign’ that I was ‘meant to sing.’ And here I am today!”

That’s right, Strang, 17, will be one of two fine young musicians in our area to perform during the Mt. Hood Pops Orchestra’s “Spring Youth Concert” at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 15, at Mt. Hood Community College, 26000 S.E. Stark St.

Strang will share the stage with Nathan Hartson, 17, a junior at Clackamas High School, who will play violin with the orchestra.

Conducted by Ian Kerr, the Pops will showcase its two Youth Soloist winners, who auditioned in March with the orchestra and will feature performances of “Andante Festivo” by Sibelius, “Pavane” by Fauré, the first movement of “Symphony No. 104 (London)” by Haydn, as well as “American Frontier” arranged by Calvin Custer.

Broadway belle

Strang will perform “Wishing You Somehow Here Again” from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “The Phantom of the Opera,” as well as “I Dreamed a Dream” and “On My Own” from “Les Miserables.” The singer has taken formal lessons for three years and is a fan of Broadway musicals.

“These particular songs give me a chance to be dramatic and expressive,” she says.

Among the challenges she faces is staying disciplined with her vocal technique, Strang says.

“It is the little habits that creep up during practice and go on to affect my singing technique that challenge me the most,” she says. “Some of the things that popped up involved posture. There were times when my chin would jet forward, cutting off sound. Another thing was my pitch and intonation started to get a little flat in certain places. I had to correct those two things before they became habitual. Thankfully, my teacher is quick to correct them at lessons.”

The young performer says music is a part of her future.

“Right now, I’m very involved in both singing and dance — classical ballet — and I’m open to any opportunities God brings across my path,” she says. “We will see what He brings in the future.”

Hartson fire

Hartson studies violin with Daniel Ge Feng of the Oregon Symphony and has taken lessons since his freshman year.

He’s played in school orchestras since the seventh grade and is a member of the elite Symphony Orchestra of the Metropolitan Youth Symphony.

“I am probably going to play violin in college, but I am not sure if I want it to be a career,” he says, adding he’s looking forward to playing with the Mt. Hood Pops. “I really like to perform with orchestras, so I am excited!”

He notes, however, that he will have to be diligent with his practice this week.

“In the Bruch piece, the hardest part is getting all of the double and triple stops, or chords, in tune,” he says.

If you go

WHO: Mt. Hood Pops Orchestra

PLAYS: Spring Youth Concert

WHEN: 3:30 p.m. Sunday, May 15

WHERE: Mt. Hood Community College, 26000 S.E. Stark St.

COST: $15, $10 students and seniors, $45 family


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