February 15, 2019
Writer: Virginia Henry

The Idaho Falls Symphony is holding its annual red dress concert Saturday, Feb 16. They partner with Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center each year for this event as a means of promoting awareness. The concert is to celebrate heart health month and specifically women’s heart health. The Red Dress is the national symbol for women’s heart health.

“We’re always happy to promote that message through this concert,” said Dr. Thomas Heuser, the music director and conductor for the Idaho Falls Symphony.

 This annual performance is unique in many ways. Heuser explained, “This concert tends to be a concert of more popular works or nontraditional programs that are meant to have sort of a boarder public appeal.”

This year the concert is titled Native Legends. Featured in this concert will be R. Carlos Nakai, a legendary Native American flute player. The Medicine Thunder Singers from Fort Hall Idaho, of the Shoshone-Bannock drumming group will be performing as well.

 “It’s going to be interesting. The full symphony will be on stage. The program is kind of in three parts,” Heuser said. “There’s just sort of the symphony by itself playing a lot of music that’s been inspired by the southwest and Native American traditions and cultures. The next part of the concert features flute soloist R. Carlos Nakai. Mr. Nakai is probably the preeminent Native American flute player in the world and we’re really lucky to have him debuting with us at the Idaho Falls symphony.”

There will be very unique music played as Nakai will play traditional and even some original songs on his flute. The orchestra will perform some concertos that were written specifically to highlight the Native American flute.

“The last part of the concert, medicine concert singers out of fort hall Idaho they’ll have a set on the concert as well, maybe a little bit of interaction between the orchestra and the drum group but they’ll basically have their own songs and their own set of traditional music from the Shoshone-bannock community,” Heuser explained.

Tickets can purchased at ifsymphony.org or at the door.