Gifted students and world-class musicians featured at DoCha Festival

Gifted students and world-class musicians featured at DoCha Festival

CHAMPAIGN — The fourth annual DoCha Festival featuring world-class musicians as well as gifted students will take place Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Orpheum Children's Science Museum, 346 N. Neil St.

DoCha events are free, and most are open to the public.

"Committed to the idea that chamber music can and should be enjoyed by all people, DoCha's festival events will be fun-spirited, informal, engaging, collaborative and educational," reads a festival news release. "Food and beverages will be sold at each evening event. Tables and chairs will be set around the centrally placed stage, allowing guests to experience the live music performances up close while enjoying refreshments."

The festival will feature some of Champaign-Urbana's internationally acclaimed musicians, scholars and music educators, among them violinist Stefan Milenkovich, who serves as DoCha artistic coordinator, as well as visiting artists and young musicians in collaborations in and outside the chamber-music genre.

The theater doors will open 40 minutes before each performance.

The schedule:

— 10 a.m. Friday, "Young People's Concert: Musical Moods," billed as a comical and educational musical. This is a field-trip program open to schools that registered beforehand. The concert will be followed by a hands-on music activity for children ages 5 to 11. This is not open to the public, but a similar program on Saturday will be.

— 7 p.m. Friday, Chamber Music Performance: Mystere. The program features selections by the UI's Indonesian gamelan orchestra led by I Ketut Gede Asnawa, a native of Indonesia, and Maurice Ravel's Piano Trio.

— 1 p.m. Saturday. Young People's Concert: Musical Moods, a comical and educational musical. Family-friendly and open to the public. The story behind the concert:

"The mediocre genius, Wolfgang Amadeus Schmutzinberry, struggles to write a letter to his grandmother. Unfortunately he is only expressive enough to create text messages. A group of talented musicians reveal how composers use the elements of timbre, dynamics and articulation to create works of art. Wolfgang is inspired! Come watch his text message transform into the most musical letter ever written to a grandmother."

— 7 p.m. Saturday, Chamber Music Performance: Connections. The event features the DoCha String Ensemble composed of students of the University of Illinois School of Music, joined by soloists Milenkovich, Dmitry Kouzov and Denise Djokic in works of Johann Sebastian Bach, George Gershwin, Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Georg Philipp Telemann, Antonio Vivaldi and others.

— 1 p.m. Sunday, Young Artist Master Class. Talented young chamber ensembles from the UI School of Music Academy participate in a chamber music master class led by world-class DoCha artists. Open to people of all ages.

— 5 p.m. Sunday. Chamber Music Performance: City Lights, featuring the Larry Gray Trio, Yvonne Redman, Milenkovich, Kouzov, Jasmine Arakawa and other guests in an evening of works by Gershwin, Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, Paul Schoenfield and others.

The historic Orpheum Theatre will once again serve as DoCha's venue.

"DoCha will transform this former vaudeville theater into a cabaret-style, live-music venue," reads the news release. "Guests will be welcome to enjoy food and drinks at tables set up inside the theater while listening to great live chamber music in an intimate and stylish setting."

DoCha also renewed its food and beverage partnerships with Pekara Bakery and Bistro, which will sell gourmet snack plates, and the Corkscrew Wine Emporium/Buvons Wine Bar, which will sell wine, alcohol and other beverages.

DoCha began as a collective effort — headed by Pacifica Quartet violist Masumi Per Rostad — involving UI faculty, students, community members and friends to experiment with new and adventurous ways to present chamber music for the 21st century. Rostad and other members of the Pacifica are now at Indiana University, after having been the string quartet in-residence at the UI School of Music. During DoCha, Pacifica Quartet members will be on tour in Australia.

Paul Redman serves as DoCha's executive director. For more information, visit

DoCha's 2013 festival sponsors are the Orpheum Children's Science Museum, Sullivan-Parkhill Imports, Indi Go Artist Co-op, Pepsi Champaign-Urbana Bottling Co., BodyWork Associates, the UI Office of Public Engagement, WILL Illinois Public Media, Nivens Design, Dixon Graphics, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, the UI School of Music and the UI College of Fine and Applied Arts.