Our Weekly Concert Picks: September 25–october 1

And French melodies, music hall chansons and the blues will yield the stage instrumental music of all kinds. This year, some program numbers pay homage to French composer Francis Poulenc, who died 50 years ago. His music — ranging from art song, solo piano music, chamber music, oratorio, choral music, opera, ballet music, and orchestral music — is quintessentially French: witty, tender, full of life. If the show is French in character, it is decidedly local in its personnel. And loaded with KCH regulars. That includes KCH staff, starting with Relyea, who brings her dark mezzo-soprano voice and comedic and dramatic flair to the proceedings. The houses operations staff Theyre very good musicians, said Relyea also participate. Allison (Halerz) and Priscilla (Johnson) are coming up with something. So look for the two on piano (Halerz) and violin (Johnson). Kevin BylsmaCourtesy photo Halerz is among several pianists to perform: Soiree regular Kevin Bylsma is a backbone of the show; Michele Cooker is another regular. And pianist Maurita Holland is there with her longtime partner, bass-baritone Roger Chard. For years, they did an annual benefit for KCH at the start of the season. The show has a plethora of fine singers of all stripes. Soprano Jane Schoonmaker-Rogers and mezzo Monica Swartout-Bebow, both Soiree stalwarts, are on hand.

Singing celebration — Concert offers tribute to Verdi, Wagner

Photo provided. Juliana Osinchuk, piano.

Weve already detailed our lovefor last years Absolute Bearing ; and since its release, the men of Work Drugs have continued to churn out charmers, including the seductiveTigerbeats (named after the dance party of the same name) and the oh-so-smoothMavericks LP. Live, the band proves equally charismatic mood-masters, and their headlining show at KFN should be a very sexy way to spend a Friday night. Theyre joined by local dream pop duo Lockets and prolific jangle rockers Bridge Underwater , who together should more than satiate your appetite for local talent. 8:30 at the First Unitarian Church, 2125 Chestnut St., $12. Tickets available here . Saturday, September 28: Local Natives On the surface, Local Natives are just another LA band writing bright, summery indie pop and earning the requisite blog buzz from doing so. Yet dig a little deeper and this band is actually so much more: where other groups are concerned only with affect or with sound, Local Natives are fully invested in exploring deep topics like love and loss, and do so with an honesty that feels both sprawling and cathartic. Their 2013 record Hummingbird landed at number 12 on the charts (not bad for an indie release!) while managing to both avoid least-common-denominator cliches and resist the easy appeal of aping 2009s Gorilla Manor. Live, the band are complete and total maniacs (a good thing!), singing, dancing and wailing on their instruments with a fury that comes only from true passion. Live, our music tends to take on its own communal, celebratory energy, explains singer/guitarist Taylor Rice . We cant wait to join in the celebration! 8:30 at the Electric Factory, 421 N. 7th St., $25. Tickets available here .

The Local Natives will perform at the Electric Factory on Saturday, September 28. (Photo by Bryan Sheffield)

Her parents, Amy and Will Markel, had bought tickets for the 7-year-old to see one of her favorite singers, Taylor Swift , perform in Chicago, and she couldn’t wait, according to People magazine. Then tragedy struck. Taylor Swift’s Bucket List: ‘Get a College Degree’ As the girl was getting out of a cab at the concert venue, she was struck by a speeding SUV driven by an uninsured driver with a suspended license. For the next two days, she was hospitalized at Children’s Mercy Hospital and treated for two skull fractures, a slight left orbital fracture, multiple head lacerations, a severe concussion and road rash over her face and body. To celebrate their daughter’s resilience, her parents, who live in Columbia, Mo., bought tickets to Swift’s Nashville concert on Sept. 21, where the singer surprised them and brought them backstage before the show. Taylor Swift Leaves a Huge Tip “Taylor greeted Grace by her name and immediately knelt down and hugged her,” Grace’s mother told the magazine. “She told Grace she had a cold and asked Grace to sing extra loud to help her out.” Afterward, the singer gave Grace a big hug and gave her an autograph that said, “I heart Grace! Taylor.” Twitter Account Casts Taylor Swift a Feminist “Taylor’s mother told Grace she was so sorry about what happened to her, and she gave me a hug saying she sympathized with what we’d been through,” Markel continued. “It was so surreal and amazing.” As for Grace, who was just cleared to return to school and her activities, Swift seemed “nice and tall and pretty,” she said. “[The meeting] was just a warm and genuine exchange that made it feel like time has stopped, and it was just the two of them,” her mother added.

Taylor Swift Meets Child Who Was Hit by an SUV Outside Her Concert

Osinchuk will give program notes live to the audience during the concert, to share more about the pieces. Itll be a really fun program and so people should come and hear something that they will most likely enjoy, and learn something new, she said. Listeners could learn, for instance, about the two different styles of these very different composers, and perhaps learn which they like better. Or not. Osinchuk, for one, doesnt pick favorites. I must say, as composers, I loved Verdi from the very beginning, but Wagner, since I have listened to a lot more of Wagner in recent years, I have become a great fan of his, as well. Theyre very different. To say which one you like better is like saying you prefer oranges or apples. They are both equally wonderful and very different, she said. Happy Birthday Verdi and Wagner is the first concert of the Performing Arts Societys 2013-14 season. Following will be Philadelphia Brass on Jan. 11, Sitka Summer Music Festival Musicians Feb. 17 and Valerie Hartzeli, classical guitarist, on March 7.

Clarksville Community Concert Series kicks off 2013-14 season with Toomai String Quintet on September 27th

Toomai String Quintet

The evening marks the first concert of the 2013-14 Clarksville Community Concert Series, and it also is a component of the Universitys annual Honors Orchestra Festival. Toomai String Quintet The quintet formed in 2007 at The Julliard School, and it is comprised of violinists Emilie-Anne Gendron and Pala Garcia, violist Erin Wright, and double bassist Andrew Roitstein. Eli Lara, APSU assistant professor of music, will join the quintet as guest cellist during the concert. The ensemble has played at Lincoln Center, the 92nd Street Y, the Philadelphia Arts Alliance and the Miami Civic Music Association. Praised for their innovative outreach programs, the Toomai Quintet performs concert music from the classical and contemporary repertoire while exploring and arranging music from around the world. The ensembles varied Clarksville program will feature arrangements of Renaissance madrigals, suites by Luigi Boccherini and Manuel Ponce and a substantial portion of J.S. Bachs famous Goldberg Variations. The Toomai Quintets program is the first in a series of five concerts presented by the Clarksville Community Concert Association for its 2013-14 season. The subscription series continues in mid-November with the renowned Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. Next springs concerts include a recital by baritone Andrew Garland in January, an evening of solo piano music performed by Conrad Tao in early February and an appearance by the Gregoire Maret Jazz Quintet during the 53rd Annual Mid-South Jazz Festival in early April. Tickets for the entire series, which includes complimentary admission to the entire Live at the Alhambra series of performances presented by the Pennyroyal (Kentucky) Arts Council, are available online at www.clarksvillemusic.org or by calling 877.811.0200. APSU students are admitted to all Clarksville Community Concerts free with identification.