Entertainment and Music Lifestyle

Asheville Symphony Guild Celebrates Community at Masterworks 6: Golden Glamour

Blake Pouliot. Photo by Lauren Hurt

On Saturday, April 20, the Asheville Symphony will present Masterworks 6: Golden Glamour at the First Baptist Church of Asheville, with matinee and evening performances. Led by conductor Darko Butorac, Golden Glamour will transport audiences through the annals of classical history, from the elegant salons of Vienna to the glittering lights of old Hollywood.

The repertoire for the evening features selections from Mozart, Mahler and Strauss, alongside the sparkling brilliance of Korngold’s Violin Concerto. At the heart of the performance lies the magnetic presence of violinist Blake Pouliot, whose virtuosity and passion have earned him accolades and admiration from audiences and critics alike.

“The Korngold Violin Concerto that I’ll be performing with Darko and the Asheville Symphony is a fantastic violin concerto,” Pouliot says, adding that early on his career was ignited after winning a competition with this piece. “It’s a beautiful concerto with gorgeous, lush melodies and a ton of virtuosity for both the orchestra and the soloist.”

Pouliot’s performance violin is a 1729 Guarneri del Gesù on loan from an anonymous donor. “Having an instrument of such rarity and quality allows me to access all the properties and small intricacies within the notes to achieve the most earnest version of my interpretation,” Pouliot says. “I look forward to playing on it every day; it’s truly like magic.”

Proudly sponsoring Masterworks 6: Golden Glamour is the Asheville Symphony Guild (ASG), a volunteer organization dedicated to supporting the Asheville Symphony and nurturing the next generation of musicians.

Before the start of the performances, the ASG will host its annual “Pass the Hat” fundraiser. Far from a traditional fundraising endeavor, “Pass the Hat” embodies the spirit of communal generosity, as a hat is passed among concertgoers to support the Guild’s flagship initiative, Music in Schools.

“Music in Schools is more than just a program—it’s a testament to the Guild’s unwavering commitment to music education and community enrichment,” says ASG membership co-chair Clair Griffith. The Music in the Schools Program delivers Asheville Symphony string and percussion ensembles to perform live at Asheville City and Buncombe County elementary schools. Second-, third- and fourth-graders are introduced to these musical instruments through demonstration and discussion with orchestra members, who also share insights into the science behind music to align with STEM and Common Core standards.

Before both performances of Golden Glamour, the ASG will hold a special membership Q&A session, offering insights into the Guild’s mission and discussing opportunities for involvement.

Starting 20 minutes before the Pre-Concert Talks, interested concertgoers are invited to join to learn more about the ASG, with the matinee informational session beginning at 12:40 p.m. and the evening informational session beginning at 6:40 p.m.

“The Guild strives to cultivate a sense of belonging and community united by a shared love of music and a desire to make a difference,” says Griffith. “Through initiatives such as Musical Feasts and Music in Schools, the Guild continues to enrich the cultural fabric of Asheville, ensuring that the transformative power of music remains accessible to all.”

Learn more about Masterworks 6: Golden Glamour at AshevilleSymphony.org, or by calling the Asheville Symphony Box Office at 828.254.7046. For more information about the Asheville Symphony Guild, visit AshevilleSymphonyGuild.org.

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