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Candlelight Concert Society will celebrate 50 years of chamber music in Howard County during the society’s 2022-2023 concert season. The 50th-anniversary season will open in September with the world premiere of a new, original, specially commissioned work, followed by a chocolate and champagne toast celebrating 50 years.

“We’re proud to have served our community for 50 years, presenting the world’s best musical artists and providing robust arts education opportunities to our students,” said Bryan Young, board president of Candlelight Concert Society. “I invite the whole community to join us in this celebration, and we look forward to the next 50 years of great concerts.”

Founded by three Howard County music teachers in 1972, Candlelight Concert Society has presented more than 500 concerts in the last 50 years with artists including Yo-Yo Ma and the Emerson String Quartet. In addition to chamber music, the society’s programming has grown to include music education for children and adults as well as community outreach, master classes, preconcert lectures and demonstrations.

Candlelight Concert Society’s anniversary season will feature:

  • World premiere of a new, original orchestra piece composed by Viet Cuong commissioned by Candlelight Concert Society in honor of its 50th anniversary
  • Candlelight’s first Free-for-All Concert showcasing Maryland’s young musicians, including competition winners, county school graduates and local music students
  • “Music Under Tyranny” concert featuring classical pieces written under oppressive regimes, exploring the power of music to bring hope during dark periods of human history

“I’m so excited for Maryland’s music lovers to hear the incredible artists that will perform for Candlelight’s 50th anniversary season,” said Irina Kaplan Lande, artistic director of Candlelight Concert Society. “From our grand opening concert in September, featuring Candlelight’s first commissioned composition, to our rollicking season finale in May, 2022-23 is shaping up to be our best, most diverse season ever.”

The Knights chamber orchestra

Sunday, Sept. 11, at 4 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

Opening Candlelight Concert Society’s 50th-anniversary season, The Knights will perform music by Ludwig van Beethoven and Czech composer Leos Janacek as well as a new, original piece by composer Viet Cuong commissioned by the society. A chocolate and champagne toast celebrating 50 years will follow the performance. Learn more and buy tickets.

Brentano String Quartet with Alexander Fiterstein, clarinet

Sunday, Oct. 9, at 4 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

The Brentano String Quartet, which has performed across five continents, and clarinetist Alexander Fiterstein, winner of the Avery Fischer Career Grant Award and director of winds at Maryland’s Peabody Conservatory, will join forces to perform chamber music including Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet. Learn more and buy tickets.

Marc-André Hamelin, piano

Saturday, Oct. 29, at 7:30 p.m. in Linehan Hall at University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Grammy Award-nominated Canadian-American pianist and composer Marc-André Hamelin will perform Beethoven’s “Hammerklavier” Sonata, Op. 106, as well as one of his own compositions for the first time in Maryland. Learn more and buy tickets.

Free-for-All Concert with Maryland’s young musicians

Sunday, Dec. 11, at 4 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

In Candlelight Concert Society’s first Free-for-All Concert, the society will showcase Maryland’s young musicians, including winners of competitions, graduates of county schools and students of local music studios. Learn more and reserve free tickets.

Behzhod Abduraimov, piano

Saturday, Jan. 21, at 7:30 p.m. in Linehan Hall at University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Uzbek pianist Behzhod Abduraimov will perform Sergei Prokofiev’s “Romeo and Juliet” Suite and Maurice Ravel’s “Gaspard de la Nuit” as well as a piece by Uzbek composer Dilorom Saidaminova. Since his Candlelight debut in 2018, Abduraimov has appeared with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw. Learn more and buy tickets.

Hanzhi Wang, accordion, and Steven Banks, saxophone

Saturday, Feb. 25, at 7:30 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

Hanzhi Wang, the first accordionist in history to win first prize in the New York-based Young Concert Artists competition, will join saxophonist and composer Steven Banks, who also won Young Concert Artists’ first prize on his instrument. Wang and Banks join Candlelight Concert Society through a multidecade partnership between the society and Young Concert Artists. Learn more and buy tickets.

Angela Hewitt, piano

Saturday, April 1, at 7:30 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

Known for her interpretations of Johann Sebastian Bach’s music, British-Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt was appointed to the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II and was the first woman in history to receive Leipzig Bach Medal. She will perform Bach’s English Suite as well as works by Domenico Scarlatti and Johannes Brahms. Learn more and buy tickets.

“Music Under Tyranny” by the Jerusalem Quartet

Sunday, April 23, at 4 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

The Jerusalem Quartet will perform pieces written under oppressive regimes by composers Prokofiev, Béla Bartók and Dmitri Shostakovich. The performance will explore the power of music to bring hope during dark periods of human history and experience. WBJC 91.5 FM Program Director Jonathan Palevsky will narrate the show. Learn more and buy tickets.

Empire Wild crossover trio

Saturday, May 20, at 7:30 p.m. at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard Community College

Julliard School classmates Ken Kubota, Brandon Ilaw and Mitch Lyon founded Empire Wild, a high-energy, genre-bending crossover trio combining the sounds of pop, folk and Broadway music. Kubota and Lyon play cello, while Ilaw joins with singing or other instruments, such as cajon, guitar, piano or ankle bells. Learn more and buy tickets.

Tickets cost $45 per show. With the purchase of one adult ticket, an accompanying child up to age 17 will receive a ticket free of charge. Student tickets cost $10. Subscription buyers can save up to 25% over regular ticket prices. To purchase tickets, visit CandlelightConcerts.org or call 410-997-2324.

Candlelight Concert Society has presented world-class chamber music since 1972, featuring guest artists from around the globe. Based in Columbia, Maryland, Candlelight Concert Society has received national recognition for its annual chamber music series. In addition, the society offers programs to spark children’s interest in the performing arts; educational outreach programs to build an audience for the future through performances, lectures, workshops and master classes; and community outreach performances for Howard County residents unable to attend in a formal concert setting. (CandlelightConcerts.org)