Adam Sweet, music director and founder of Mandolin New England, which will perform at town hall auditorium in the group's first concert on Saturday, Jan. 17
SOUTH HADLEY - The Mandolin Orchestra, formed a year ago performs their first concert Saturday night alongside the veteran mandolin ensemble, L'Esperance, and Northamption-based Mando Paradiso, that features music from the Baroque to the contemporary classical music period.
The free concert begins 7 p.m. at the South Hadley town hall auditorium, 116 Main St.
The South Hadley-based group, conducted by Adam R. Sweet, music director and founder of the chamber group, has been rehearsing each week since August in preparation for their maiden concert.
"I'm excited it's going to be fun," Sweet said.
On the program is Johann Sebastian Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 3.
Though the early 18th century masterpiece is scored for a traditional chamber orchestra of three violins, three violas, three cellos, and basso continuo, Sweet's orchestra, along with L'Esperance and Mando Paradiso, will perform it on mandolin.
"We are doing it all on mandolins. It sounds fantastic. It sounds like a harpsichord from heaven. It's just gorgeous, this rich tapestry of sound," Sweet said, adding: "Our musical connections throughout the region have led to a vision of a larger 'Mandolin New England' venture that links our orchestra with other mandolin ensembles." ~ Josh Bell, L'Esperance
Sweet also said the musical group hopes to contribute to ongoing efforts to revitalize the Falls neighborhood.
"Our South Hadley base makes us eager to play a role in the rise of the Falls," he said. "We're going to be working with the Falls committees to put out some classical concerts in the Falls and work with area composers to compose music with a South Hadley Falls theme."