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Effingham Community Orchestra to shine spotlight on folk tunes
Music Director and Conductor Charles Patterson leads the Effingham Community Orchestra during its Aug. 19, 2018, concert at the Effingham County Recreation and Parks Department in Springfield. - photo by Mark Lastinger/staff

The Effingham Community Orchestra will present its next concert May 5 at 3 p.m. at the Effingham County Recreation and Parks Department Gymnasium at 808 Ga. Hwy 119 South, Springfield.

The orchestra generally offers five free concerts annually. Those associated with the group view it “the best-kept secret in Effingham County.” 

A fine mix of talented women and men make up the orchestra, which is conducted by Charles Patterson. The orchestra has a theme for each of its concerts and the one for May 5 is “Percy Grainger and Friends: Music of the Great 20th Century Composers.”

According to Patterson, Grainger developed an obsession for folk tunes. Although born in Australia, Grainger traveled all over Europe, the United States, and  his native land to learn about folk tunes at each place. Grainger studied at the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfort, Germany.

Patterson said, “Grainger was known for his musical experimentation and did not hesitate to exploit the capabilities of the orchestra and the wind (instruments) ensemble.”

Patterson spoke about the pieces he will conduct at the May 5 concert. Orchestra CEO Virginia Pattersion will present four Grainger pieces from one of his most famous  works, “Lincolnshire Posy.” These pieces are based on folk tunes he assembled in Lincolnshire, England, in 1905 and 1906.

Further, Charles Patterson advised that the theme included “Percy Grainger and Friends.” The “Friends” component includes works from Leonard Bernstein and Dimitri Shostakovich, two other great 20th century composers. 

The music director/conductor said that there will be new music from the orchestra’s popular jazz ensemble as well.