The Sound Symphony Orchestra is putting a twist on a classic family-friendly composition. Nearly every year the orchestra holds its family concert, and this year is no exception with its unique rendition of “Peter and the Wolf — Lost in the Museum!” this Sunday at the Comsewogue School District’s John F. Kennedy Middle School, 200 Jayne Blvd., Port Jefferson Station.
“We’ve built an extended narrative around Peter and the Wolf. So while the kids and their families are going to be hearing the story of “Peter and the Wolf” in its entirety, we’ve embedded it in a larger story,” said Dorothy Savitch, music director and conductor of the orchestra.
The original “Peter and the Wolf” symphony was written by Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev in 1936 with the intent to cultivate “musical tastes in children from the first years of school.” The story follows a young boy named Peter, a bird, a cat and a duck on an adventure to catch a devilish wolf.
However, the Sound Symphony Orchestra’s rendition depicts a boy of the same name whose drawing of a wolf comes to life and jumps into a painting during a trip to the art museum. The orchestra helps bring the paintings and the story to life alongside narrator Comsewogue School District Superintendent Joseph Rella, as Peter gets lost during his quest for the wolf.
According to Savitch, the orchestra hopes to excite children and spark their imaginations by incorporating paintings from the Brooklyn Museum.
“I think by letting our imaginations go, by allowing different kinds of art to speak to each other and speak to us, we can better express ourselves,” Savitch said.
“Frozen” will also get its five minutes of fame as the orchestra highlights portions of the film in the concert, which is always a big hit among younger audiences. Savitch added that “kids always start singing along with all the melodies they know so well.”
But viewers of all ages won’t simply be entertained but also treated to passes to the Brooklyn Museum upon request. The Brooklyn Museum donated 125 passes to the orchestra in light of the concert. Those interested in exploring the museum and finding the painting incorporated in “Peter and the Wolf — Lost in the Museum!” can get a pass at the door once the concert ends. Children can also receive handouts with games and puzzles based on the concert.
While children do not perform in the orchestra, the 65-member ensemble has a variety of musicians from 17 to around 80 years old. Savitch said some orchestra musicians have served the ensemble for around 30 years. Now, they have several generations of family members who perform for the ensemble. Savitch started working with the orchestra around 20 years ago.
For Savitch, the concert’s story line hits a sweet spot. “For me and for many people [in the orchestra], the composition was our doorway into loving classical music.”
Residents can see Peter find his wolf and a way home on Sunday, Jan. 31, at the John F. Kennedy Middle School’s auditorium at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for seniors and students and will be sold at the door. Admission is free for children 12 years old and under. For more information, call 631-827-9022.