Emerson of 'Lost' highlights 'The Story of Babar'


POSTED: Tuesday, September 29, 2009

It is an honor to introduce the Honolulu Symphony's weekend concerts as the symphony's new executive director. While my official start date is Oct. 1, I'm getting an early start due, in part, to the fantastic concert the symphony has planned for this weekend.

Have no doubt about it, all generations are going to remember this fantastic weekend for years. First, “;Lost”; star Michael Emerson (yes, the scary Benjamin Linus) will narrate Francis Poulenc's “;The Story of Babar,”; a beautifully orchestrated work that brings to life the adventures of Babar the Elephant. With Emerson as narrator and the musicians of the orchestra in action, keiki, teens and adults will be swept into the action. And, with an elephant as the main character you can expect a few surprises too. (Hint: Listen for the tuba.)

Unlike “;Barney”; or “;The Wiggles,”; Poulenc's work is sophisticated and witty, and will appeal to symphonic music connoisseurs. Parents, rest assured, you may enjoy this more than the kids. It's storytelling through music at its best.

You can also look forward to Debussy's “;Clair de lune.”; If you love music, “;Clair de lune”; is probably an old and cherished friend. What will surprise some of the teens in our audience is that they know “;Clair de lune”; as well. Maybe even more than the adults. It was featured in the movie “;Twilight.”; Enough said.

What's more, regular concertgoers will be pleasantly surprised that the original concert program has been changed. We're thrilled that Rossini's popular overture to “;La gazza ladra”; and Schubert's Fifth Symphony have been added to the program.

Undeniably, this is a concert for all generations. The Symphony hopes that it will give your ohana a great reason to spend time together.

ECONOMIC TIMES are tough and we know that everyone is careful about what they spend. To support our community, the symphony is offering discount programs. Tickets for children up to age 18 are only $10 when a ticket for a parent or chaperone (uncle, auntie, family friend) is purchased. Student tickets are $10. Seniors receive a 20 percent discount off their ticket purchases. Military members and military families also receive 20 percent off. We hope that these savings programs will help you to make the concerts part of your plans.

If this is your first trip to the Blaisdell Concert Hall this weekend, be sure to print directions. You won't want to get “;lost”; on the way to seeing one of its stars.

Majken Mechling is executive director of the Honolulu Symphony. “;Crescendo”; appears prior to each concert of the season to illuminate works to be performed.






        ”;The Story of Babar - A Concert for All Generations”; Honolulu Symphony performance with narration by Michael Emerson:

        » Where: Blaisdell Concert Hall

        » When: 8 p.m. Saturday and 4 p.m. Sunday

        » Tickets: $19, $26, $40, $52 and $70 including service fees; $10 for students and children up to age 18. Military and seniors receive a 20 percent discount. Available through Ticketmaster (800-745-3000), Macy's and http://www.ticketmaster.com.

        » Call: 792-2000 (weekdays) or 524-0815 ext. 245 (evenings)