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The Henderson Symphony Orchestra prepares for its free concert series

Returning with a world of music, the Henderson Symphony Orchestra plans to take audiences to Spain, Brazil and Eastern Europe this year by playing compositions from different countries.

"In some ways, we are like a fine art museum," said Taras Krysa, the Henderson Symphony Orchestra's conductor.

Krysa said that like a museum that has different styles of art from different countries, people come to the concert series to experience the world of music.

Concerts are free, but a $10 donation per person is suggested.

While picking out the concert lineup , Krysa takes several things into consideration.

"You can't play what you've played before," Krysa said. "If we've played it in the last two or three years, we have to wait to play it again."

Krysa said he also considers which styles the audience has liked at previous performances.

Last year, the orchestra performed the musical score of Charlie Chaplin's "City Lights" while the black-and-white film played in the background. It was so popular, the orchestra has decided to repeat the concept using Chaplin's "Modern Times." The concert is scheduled for 8 p.m. June 1 at the Henderson Pavilion, 200 S. Green Valley Parkway.

Nicole Johnson, a spokeswoman with the city's cultural arts and tourism department, said about 1,200 people attended last year's event.

"It was decided last year after the 'City Lights' concert that this concept would be an annual program," Johnson said. "People absolutely loved it. They wanted us to bring the show back this year."

Krysa said he didn't expect last year's success and learned that Chaplin had a following that attracted fans from Seattle and Los Angeles.

Instead of doing the same show, Krysa chose another Chaplin film.

"Personally, I love Chaplin movies," Krysa said. "I never knew he wrote his own music, which is really fascinating."

"Modern Times" is a 1936 black-and-white film that Chaplin wrote, produced, directed and starred in. It is about a factory employee struggling during the Great Depression while working in the industrialized and modern world.

The orchestra is expected to play the film's music while showing it on an original projector.

"It is very difficult to put it together," Krysa said. "It takes many hours to learn the score and get it right. But it's a gratifying experience."

The orchestra also is planning its Young Peoples Concert for 2 p.m. March 11 at the Henderson Pavilion. About 40 applicants younger than 18 auditioned Jan. 28 for the 17th annual competition.

"We will have six to eight winners perform with us," Krysa said. "It is an excellent opportunity for them. It is a testament to how much local talent we have."

The winners include violinists, pianists and trumpet players.

"I wish I could have taken all of them," Krysa said.

In May, the orchestra is scheduled to play music from Eastern Europe featuring pieces form musicians such as Anatoly Liadov, Sergei Prokofiev, Solomiya Ivakhiv and Leos Janácek.

The concert is scheduled for 8 p.m. May 4 at the Henderson Pavilion .

"It is more of a heavy concert," Krysa said. "It is kind of like g olouch."

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Contact Henderson/Anthem View reporter Michael Lyle at or 387-5201.