This series of live classical chamber music concerts features renowned musicians from West Michigan
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — June 5, 2023 — Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park is proud to present Sunday Strings, a series of live classical chamber music concerts featuring renowned musicians from West Michigan that are free for members and included in general admission for other guests. This year’s series takes place 2–3 pm in the Huizenga Grand Room, unless otherwise noted, on select Sundays in July and August.
Sunday Strings was conceived and created by Haijin Choi, Grand Rapids Symphony section violinist, to provide an opportunity in summer months for chamber music fans to experience unique and compelling musical selections—from classical to contemporary—performed by musicians from around West Michigan. Each concert features a different group of musicians, performing a variety of classical repertoire, from the Baroque era to contemporary compositions.
Throughout fall, winter and spring, the Grand Rapids community supports live classical chamber music by attending recitals in several premier venues. There was no such programming for the summer months in Grand Rapids until Meijer Gardens presented the first season of Sunday Strings in 2020. This performance series was specifically designed to fill the summer gap and work with an already established fanbase. The attendance and enthusiasm from the audience, even during the initial outdoor small performances during the pandemic, proved there was a desire for chamber music during the typical off-season.
Sunday Strings is part of Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park’s commitment to providing a diverse range of cultural experiences for the community. The series is made possible through the generous support of Jim and Marie Preston, Dick and Samantha Gauthier, Ping and Tim Liang, Todd Oleson and Sarah Ash.
“Marie and I are just delighted to sponsor this series,” said Jim Preston. “We are long-time supporters of the arts in Grand Rapids and this series really speaks to us.”
2023 Sunday Strings Lineup
July 9: Featuring “Song of the Lark” by Charles Young, which is written from the perspective of the bird. Performers: Beth Colpean (harp), Chris Kantner (flute), Haijin Choi (violin).
July 16: “Intimacy from Baroque and Now” offers selections of Baroque-era chamber music and Gabriel Kahane’s “Come On All You Ghosts,” sharing a similar intimacy to Baroque music. Performers: Gregory Crowell (harpsichord), Audrey Pride (violin), Arturo Ziraldo (viola), Andrew Plaisier (cello), Haijin Choi (violin), Kohl Weisman (baritone).
July 23: “English Landscape with Oboe,” with oboe quintet music by Bliss and Finzi, paints a luscious English landscape. Performers: Gabe Renteria (oboe), Letitia Jap (violin), Paul Swantek (viola), Jinn Shin (cello), Haijin Choi (violin).
July 30: “So Human” is inspired by fascinating human nature. Jealousy, fallout from friendship, affair, nostalgia. String Quartet: Kreutzer by Janacek, Punctum by Caroline Shaw, Prussian string quartet by Mozart. Performers: Letitia Jap (violin), Barb Corbato (viola), Jinn Shin (cello), Haijin Choi (violin).
August 6: “Children’s Concert” provides a selection of family-friendly songs with sing-a-longs and Ferdinand the Bull, narrated by vocalist Alyssa Bauer. Performers: Alyssa Bauer (voice), Haijin Choi (violin), Gwen Varineau (piano).
August 13: “Home Is Where Your Heart Is”
Dvorak’s Dumky, which he wrote from homesickness while staying in the United States, and Esmail’s Saans, which she wrote for her best friend’s wedding, lead us to where our heart is. Performers: Emily Grabinski (piano), Andrew Plaisier (piano), Haijin Choi (violin).
For more information about the Sunday Strings series, including the full schedule of performances and program information, visit: MeijerGardens.org/calendar/