New Philharmonic and Maestro Kirk Muspratt ring in 2019 with three concerts

  • The orchestra will celebrate the upcoming year of 2019 and the glory of music with three holiday concerts called "New Year's Eve Spectacular." They will take place at 2 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Mon., Dec. 31, 2018 at the famous McAninch Arts Center in Glen Ellyn. Courtesy of the McAninch Arts Center

    The orchestra will celebrate the upcoming year of 2019 and the glory of music with three holiday concerts called "New Year's Eve Spectacular." They will take place at 2 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Mon., Dec. 31, 2018 at the famous McAninch Arts Center in Glen Ellyn. Courtesy of the McAninch Arts Center

Natalia Dagenhart

Each New Year is a new start, new beginning, new hope, and a new step forward. It is a declaration of life, joy, freedom and happiness, and it is a new chance to make this world a better place. New Philharmonic, the only professional orchestra based in DuPage County, has been inspiring our community with its beautiful concert programs for more than forty years already. New Year's Eve concerts presented by New Philharmonic are adored by the public and have become a good annual tradition that enlightens our hearts and souls.

The orchestra will celebrate the upcoming year of 2019 and the glory of music with three holiday concerts called "New Year's Eve Spectacular." They will take place at 2 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. on Monday, December 31, 2018 at the famous McAninch Arts Center in Glen Ellyn. Music Director and Conductor Kirk Muspratt will lead New Philharmonic in a celebratory program featuring classical and pop works, exciting surprises and a champagne toast.

After attending one of the New Year's Eve concerts last year, I can't wait to see what Maestro Muspratt, the orchestra and the guest artists have prepared this time. I remember gorgeous music, a festive environment, Maestro Muspratt with his elegant jokes, outstanding guest artists with their beautiful voices, and an overall feeling of happiness, joy and the anticipation of a great year. Well, the year of 2018 is almost over, and I can tell you one thing -- Maestro Muspratt put me on the right track that afternoon and set up a happy mood that I tried to carry on during the whole year. Now, I am looking forward to another sparkle of hope, good spirit and delight that Maestro Muspratt and New Philharmonic will present during its gorgeous concert program that will create good memories and bring joy and harmony.

Acclaimed soprano Alisa Jordheim and baritone Corey Crider impressed the audience with their outstanding performance in the New Year's Eve program last year, and New Philharmonic decided to bring them both back for the New Year's Eve concerts this year, which, for the first time, will feature two guest artists performing individually and in duets.

Being a two-time national semi-finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and a finalist in Houston Grand Opera's Eleanor McCollum Competition for Young Singers, Crider is an accomplished singer with a unique voice and outstanding artistic presentation. Besides his performance in last year's New Year's Eve program, Crider has been seen in the lead role of New Philharmonic's 2011 production of "Gianni Schicci," as Scarpia in the 2014 concert rendition of "Tosca" and as Giorgio Germont in 2018's production of "La Traviata." Crider is an alumnus of the Artist Diplomas program at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music as well as Lyric Opera of Chicago's Ryan Opera Center.

Jordheim, who made a surprise appearance in last year's New Year's program, attracts with her touching voice, extremely impressive artistic presentation and outstanding vocal technique. She was featured in 2017 in the New Philharmonic's "The Best of Broadway: Rodgers & Hammerstein and Andrew Lloyd Webber" program and in the role of Yum-Yum in the New Philharmonic's 2017 production of "The Mikado." Her talent has been praised with a 2016 Sullivan Foundation Award, 2015 Sullivan Foundation Career Development Grant, victory in the 2015 Bel Canto Regional Artists Competition, 2nd place in the 2013 Auditions Plus Classical Singer Vocal Competition - Young Artist Division, and at the Edith Newfield Scholarship in the 2013 Musicians Club of Women Music Scholarship Competition in Chicago.

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New Philharmonic is happy to be directed by a conductor and music director whose hard work, excellence and professionalism have been highly recognized. This year, Maestro Muspratt has been named recipient of 2018 Illinois Council of Orchestras Annual Award for Conductor of the Year (Professional Orchestra Category). The New Philharmonic Orchestra was recipient of the Illinois Council of Orchestras Award for Professional Orchestra of the Year in 2017 and in 2009. Additionally, Maestro Muspratt was recently named a "Chicagoan of the Year" by music critic John von Rhein and the writing staff of the Chicago Tribune.

The New Year's Eve concert program will bring the brilliance of different musical styles and genres that together will create an excellent mood and satisfy the taste of different categories of audience. Its 2018 New Year's Eve program will start with an uplifting and joyful piece by famous German composer Richard Georg Strauss. His "Unter Donner und Blitz" ("Thunder and Lightning" Polka), Op. 324, will sparkle Belushi Performance Hall at The MAC with elegance and energy. This percussion-centric piece uses tympani and cymbals to create its titular sounds.

It will be followed by a light and exhilarating concert piece called "Pique Dame Overture" written by Austrian composer Franz von Suppé. This popular piece is from "Pique Dame," which is an operetta in two acts. The composer, known for writing light operas, operettas and other theatre music, demonstrates in this piece all the spectrum of his talent, and Maestro Muspratt knows exactly how to deliver it to the audience. The next piece, "Da Summa is Umma," is a traditional German song arranged by Lisa Taylor. This touching composition will feature Taylor and Liz Deitmyer (alphorn). It will be followed by Tchaikovsky's gorgeous and festive "Swan Lake Waltz," Op. 20, Act 1:2. This ballet is one of the most recognized compositions of this acclaimed Russian composer and is the most beloved classical ballet in the world.

Baritone Corey Crider will be featured in "Tanzlied des Pierots" (Pierrot's Song) from the opera "Die tote Stadt" written by Austrian-born composer and conductor Erich Wolfgang Korngold on libretto by Paul Schott, a collective pseudonym for the composer and his father, Julius Korngold. Crider will demonstrate the elegance of his voice in this beautiful arrangement for violin and piano. Soprano Alisa Jordheim will be featured in the next piece, "Oh del mio amato ben" by French/Italian composer Stefano Donaudy. She will present all the tenderness and charm of her voice while being accompanied by Pat Lee on the piano.


Among other compositions that will be presented during this holiday concert program will be a piece by American-Hungarian composer Sigmund Romberg called "The Desert Song." This song will feature book and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II, Otto Harbach and Frank Mandel. Jordheim and Crider will have a chance not only to show the beauty of their voices, but also demonstrate their artistic presentation.

"Vaterlandischer March" by Johann and Josef Strauss, "Kiss Me Again" from "Mlle. Modiste" by Victor Herbert, "This Nearly was Mine" from "South Pacific" by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, "America the Beautiful" by Samuel Ward, traditional New Year's Eve song "Auld Lang Syne" with its Scottish origins, and "Adventures on Earth" from "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial" by John Williams -- what can be better just a few hours before the clock strikes midnight and the year of 2019 officially starts? Nothing. Just get your tickets and enjoy one of the best orchestras in Illinois being directed by extravagant and highly respected Maestro Muspratt. Enjoy the voices of acclaimed singers Alisa Jordheim and Corey Crider and a Happy New Year!

For tickets and information, please call 630-942-4000 or visit

Immediately following the performance Maestro Muspratt, as well as members of the orchestra, cordially invite you to participate in Cookies with Kirk in the lobby, sponsored by Brookdale Glen Ellyn.

Natalia Dagenhart

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