Grosse Pointe WoodsAugust 1, 2012
Double, triple violin concertos on bill for free symphony concert at St. John Hospital
By K. Michelle Moran
C & G Staff Writer
GROSSE POINTE WOODS — A hospital cafeteria might seem to be an unlikely concert venue, but considering music’s power to transport and possibly even heal listeners, it might just be the perfect spot.
With that in mind, the Grosse Pointe Symphony Orchestra will be staging its fourth annual free summer concert at 3 p.m. Aug. 5 at St. John Hospital and Medical Center, inside the hospital’s café. The orchestra will be conducted by GPSO music director Joe Striplin, who is also one of three featured violinists on the bill; he’ll be joined by fellow Detroit Symphony Orchestra violinists Marguerite Deslippe and Greg Staples for a triple concerto by Bach. Two of them will also perform a double concerto by Bach, GPSO Board President William Hulsker said.
The program includes “The St. Paul Suite” by Gustav Holst and Tomaso Albinoni’s famous Adagio in G minor.
“I always find the baroque music very uplifting,” Hulsker said. “We just want to play something that makes for a nice, light Sunday afternoon. It’s a chance for people to get out of the heat and really enjoy themselves.”
The acoustics in that space are surprisingly good, he said.
Sara Brown, a marketing consultant with St. John Providence Health System, said attendance averages more than 150 for these concerts. Local residents are invited to stop by, as the performance is open to the public.
“It’s difficult for many of our patients to attend this concert because of their health and need to be monitored closely,” Brown said in an email interview. “However, we always have several physicians and hospital associates who attend this event, and it’s a great way for them to recharge and renew themselves in the middle of a hectic and stressful workday. Members from the symphony have come to perform mini-concerts in the hospital in the past, and we can broadcast those concerts from our chapel to all patient rooms through the television system. The chapel does not have a large enough stage to hold the full symphony.”
Hulsker said this is “a nice collaboration” between the hospital and the GPSO, and Brown agreed.
“This event is a relaxing, informal way to enjoy a wonderful concert by very talented local physicians,” Brown wrote. “Because it is a free event, those with limited incomes can come and enjoy. The musical selections are always good, and they are performed extremely well.”
The café is on the lower level of the hospital.
“Visitors can come to the Van Elslander Pavilion on the back side of the hospital, entering from Moross or Mack,” Brown explained. “They can park in the North Lot, which is ground-level parking right outside the Van Elslander Pavilion. Upon entering, they walk straight ahead to the elevator bank and go down one floor to the Moross Market Café, where the concert will be held.”
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