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Jennifer Higdon has built a reputation as one of today’s preeminent composers. Saturday night, the West Virginia Symphony finally programmed one of her pieces, “blue cathedral,” a work from 2000 that garnered her international notice, many performances and a string of commissions that has co…

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This weekend, the Charleston Light Opera Guild strayed from their normal fare of glitz and glam to delve into a more complex and gut-wrenching portion of American history with “Ragtime.” Still culturally poignant today, in an America of closed borders and maligned kneeling athletes, “Ragtime…

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Playing popular music with an orchestra has become a standard fare for American orchestras. The West Virginia Symphony has had artists from Kathy Mattea to stars of Broadway to the Irish act Celtic Woman. And it has frequently had cover bands doing music by iconic rock bands like the Moody B…

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John Williams’ career as a composer dates back to the 1950s, when he started as a pianist and arranger/orchestrator. He played piano for Henry Mancini. He arranged for the gospel singer Mahalia Jackson. He scored television shows.