JAN 11, 2002
CONTACT: Mike Stepanovich, 661/664-2456, mstepanovich@csub.edu

Saint-Saens' The Carnival of Animals performed at Musica da Camera concert

A fun-filled evening featuring one of California State University, Bakersfield's top music students is planned for the next Musica da Camera concert on Saturday, Jan. 26, at 8 p.m.

Mary Bellah, a junior music major, will join CSUB music faculty member Charles Badami in the Dore Theater on the CSUB campus to perform Camille Saint-Saens popular "The Carnival of the Animals."

The concert is the third of the six-concert Musica da Camera 2001-2002 concert season. In addition to "The Carnival of the Animals," Musica da Camera, CSUB's chamber orchestra, will perform Ludwig van Beethoven's overture to "Creatures of Prometheus" and his Symphony No. 1. CSUB music professor Gordon Mehling is Musica da Camera's music director and conductor.

Mehling is already chuckling with anticipation about "The Carnival of the Animals."

"The piece, of course, is for the young and the young at heart," he said. "It is Saint-Saens' musical representation of certain animals and is full of wonderful humor and musical jokes. We'll have a reading of poems written by Ogden Nash just for this piece that are quite funny. So we're going to have a really good time, a whole bunch of fun."

Thirteen animals are represented in the piece including an elephant, swan, lions, chickens, fossils and even pianists.

One of the purposes of the Musica da Camera concerts is to show off the talents of students, and Mehling believes Bellah is quite a talent. The 20-year-old junior graduated from Frazier Mountain High School in Frazier Park before enrolling at CSUB. In addition to playing the piano, she sings opera, plays percussion and teaches piano.

Eventually, she said, "I want to teach music. I like doing everything. Music is a wonderful thing and I love to share it with others. I like interacting with the kids."

She'll be interacting with Badami's musical prowess at the concert, which features two pianos and orchestra.

Badami, who came to CSUB from Tehachapi, graduated in 1997 with a bachelor of arts in music. He then earned a master of music at the University of Oregon before joining the CSUB faculty in fall 2000.

Advance tickets for the Jan. 26 concert are available at Russo's Books in The Marketplace shopping center, and will be available at the door the evening of the concert beginning at 7:30 p.m. Cost is $10 general admission, $7 for students and seniors, $3 for children under 10.

For more information please call the Performing Arts Department at CSUB, (661) 664-3093.

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