Paderewski Festival kicks off with Halloween concert, ‘Dracula Rising: Ghosts of Hollywood Past’
–This year’s Paderewski Festival in Paso Robles begins with a Halloween celebration at Cass Winery on Thursday, Oct. 31. A concert of spooky film music, “Dracula Rising: Ghosts of Hollywood Past,” will be presented by the San Francisco- based Ensemble 4 These Times, featuring vocalist Nanette McGuiness, cellist Anne Lerner-Wright, and guest pianist Karen Rosenak. Paderewski Festival Board member and local piano teacher, Debbie Lagomarsino, will join the Ensemble 4 These Times as guest artist in the final selection on the program.
Selections from Erich Korngold’s opera, Die tote Stadt [The Dead City] will provide an atmospheric opening to the October 31 program. Polish composer Alexandre Tansman (who spent World War II years composing in Hollywood) will be represented by some of his songs and miniatures for cello and piano.
Another Polish film composer, Henry Vars (known in the US for his prizewinning 1963 score to Flipper), will be represented by three songs written in Hollywood in the late 1940s and the 1950s. The film theme will continue with two solo piano compositions by Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco: the first paying homage to Charlie Chaplin, the second commemorating Ignacy Jan Paderewski.
Bronisław Kaper (winner of the 1954 Academy Award for his score to Lili) will be represented by a solo piano theme from the 1952 feature, Invitation and his iconic Hi-Lili, Hi-Lo. The evening will conclude on film scores by Wojciech Kilar composed for Roman Polański’s The Ninth Gate (1999) and Francis Ford Coppola’s Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992).
Program selections will be accompanied by projections of stills from the above-mentioned films. For the first time in the Festival’s history, this concert will be held at the brand new Cass Winery Barrel Room, a stunningly beautiful space surrounded by vineyards and shaded by majestic Paso oak trees. The audience is encouraged to come in Halloween costumes to this event. A buffet dinner and wine reception begin at 5:30 p.m. and the concert starts at 7 p.m.