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A Classic Valentine

Special photo
Dmitry Sitkovetsky, music director of the Greensboro symphony and an internationally known conductor, will direct the Albany Symphony Orchestra on Saturday as it salutes Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital — and romance — with "A Classic Valentine."

Special photo Dmitry Sitkovetsky, music director of the Greensboro symphony and an internationally known conductor, will direct the Albany Symphony Orchestra on Saturday as it salutes Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital — and romance — with "A Classic Valentine."

— The Albany Symphony Orchestra is offering an entertaining evening on the town with its third subscription concert of the season on Saturday.

“We are trying to add other aspects to the concert to make it an evening, an entire entertainment evening,” symphony Executive Director Karen Allen said last week. “I expect that next year we’ll have something like this for every concert.”

Those who attend the performance, which spotlights Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital’s centennial anniversary, will have an option of dining downtown before the 7:30 p.m. concert and end the night with a post-concert dessert.

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“We’ve been trying to spotlight other organizations that contribute to the Good Life, but that also exposes their membership or their employees to the symphony who have not been exposed as well because we offer discounts to the spotlight organizations for their membership or their employees,” Allen said. “So it’s also a way for us to broaden our audience.

“I expect that next year we’ll continue to the same type of thing, but it will be broadened to have dinners, desserts or other entertainment.”

The idea, she said, is to add “something to broaden the experience to a concert-plus, to make it a whole evening experience.”

The orchestra on Saturday will be led by conductor Dmitry Sitkovetsky of London. “He’s the music director out of Greensboro, S.C.,” Allen said. “He’s pretty well known all over the world.” A native of Baku, Azerbaijan, he grew up in Moscow studying at the Moscow Conservatory and, after his emigration in 1977, at the Juilliard School in New York.

Sitkovetsky’s engagement highlights including concerto performances with the Concertgebouw Orchestra, conducting the Zurich Chamber Orchestra and working with the Festival Strings Lucerne, Aarhus Symphony, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Tonkünstler Orchestra, Orchestra of the Opera North, Portland Symphony, Napa Valley Symphony, Orchestra di Padova e Veneto and the Vaasa City Orchestra as part of the Korsholm Music Festival 30th anniversary. He is coordinating some exciting chamber music projects with King’s Place and the Lincoln Center over the next few seasons.

A NIGHT ON THE TOWN

Dinner is at 5 p.m. or 6:15 p.m. at Cafe 230, 230 W.Broad Ave.

Concert is at 7:30 p.m. at the Albany Municipal Auditorium, 200 N. Jackson St.

Dessert is the Conductor’s Circle after the concert at the Carnegie Library, 215 N. Jackson St.

TICKETS

CURRENT TICKETHOLDERS

Add dinner: $25

Add dessert (Conductor’s Circle): $15

Add dinner and dessert: $35

NOTE: Ticketholders who already are Conductor’s Circle members only need to add dinner for $25 to attend all three events.

TICKET BUYERS

Concert only: $8-$38

Concert and dinner: $50

Concert, dinner and dessert: $60

Add dessert only: Concert admission plus $15

Recent engagement highlights include conducting the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, China Philharmonic, Guangzhou Symphony, London Philharmonic Orchestra and San Francisco Symphony’s New Year’s Eve concert; concerto engagements included the Seattle Symphony (Inkinen/Britten) and the Royal Danish Opera Orchestra. Play/directing engagements include the Netherlands Radio Chamber Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, Geidai Philharmonic, Württemberg Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra of New Russia and the San Antonio Symphony.

Sitkovetsky will lead the symphony as it performs classical musical selections about famous couple, including Romeo and Juliet and Samson and Delilah. Guest performers are two up-and-coming young artists — Melissa White, violin, and Juan Miguel Hernandez, viola.

Before the concert, concert-goers can add, for $25 each, an Italian dinner with red wine at Cafe 230, located at 230 W. Broad Ave., a block from the concert hall at the Albany Municipal Auditorium at 200 N. Jackson St. There will be a roaming violinist — Gareth Johnson — and two seatings — 5 p.m. for those who want to attend the 6:30 pre-concert conversation and a later seating at 6:15 p.m.

The post-concert dessert (Conductor’s Circle) at the Carnegie Library adjacent to the auditorium is $15.

For those who have purchased season or individual concert tickets, both the dinner and movie can be added for $35 per person; $25 for those who are already members of the Conductor’s Circle. Non-Conductor Circle ticketholders can add the dessert only for $15.

Those buying tickets for the Saturday concert can attend dinner and concert for $50 per person, or dinner, concert and dessert for $60. Individual tickets for the concert only range from $8 for students to $38 for adults.

Allen said that “with the timing of the concert, having something downtown makes it much easier to coordinate. I hoping that as more and more things open downtown, we’ll be able to partner with other groups. I expect to see more partnerships evolve over the next year between the symphony, other non-profits and businesses.

“Our attendance has actually been up a little bit. It was up in November and so I’m hoping to have a good turnout for this.”

For tickets or information, contact the symphony at (229) 430-8933 or visit www.albanysymphony.org.