Summit County resident and preeminent Colorado nature photographer John Fielder will combine his photography with Mark O’Connor’s The Americana Symphony performed July 1 by the NRO. Fielder’s iconic landscape and wildlife images will be projected with the Riverwalk’s state of the art equipment on a massive screen above the stage, choreographed to O’Connor’s original composition.
Fielder will attend the performance, and will feature photographs made over 40 years in Summit and Eagle counties of the Tenmile, Gore, Williams Fork, and Sawatch Ranges focusing on the sublime Eagles Nest and Ptarmigan Peak Wildernesses. In addition he will include images of the places included in Congressman Jared Polis’ recently announced Continental Divide Wilderness and Recreation Act. Among other places, the act seeks to protect more Summit and Eagle County wilderness and encompassing parts of the Tenmile Range above Breckenridge, including McCullough Gulch and Spruce Creek drainages. O’Connor wrote the Americana Symphony because of his fascination with the evolution of American music as the country expanded westward to the Rockies.
“The Americana Symphony Project” Information – Tickets go on sale Saturday, May 23rd.
Mark O’Connor’s Biography
A product of America’s rich aural folk tradition as well as classical music, Mark O’Connor’s creative journey began at the feet of a pair of musical giants. The folk fiddler Benny Thomasson and French jazz violinist Stephane Grappelli. Now he has melded and shaped these influences into a new American Classical music, and a vision of an entirely American school of string playing. As The Los Angeles Times recently noted, he has “crossed over so many boundaries, that his style is purely personal.” O’Connor’s first recording for the Sony Classical record label, ‘Appalachia Waltz’, was a collaboration with Yo-Yo Ma and Edgar Meyer. The tremendously successful follow-up release, ‘Appalachian Journey’, received a Grammy Award in February 2001.
The O’Connor Violin Method has been widely praised since its debut in fall 2009 as “an American grown rival to the Suzuki method” (The New Yorker). It takes an American Classical approach to modern violin playing, offering a technical foundation using songs from the diverse range of traditional American string playing. The groundbreaking method is the first violin method to feature all American music and has been hailed by teachers from across the country as filling a significant gap in classical music education. It was inspired by his belief that the modern classical violin student who develops a working knowledge of folk fiddling, jazz music and world music styles can enjoy a lifetime of music-making, and be more successful in the new music environment.
John Fielder’s Biography
John Fielder is a nationally renowned nature photographer, publisher, teacher, and environmentalist. He is the photographer of more than 40 coffee table, guide, and children’s books, all about Colorado. He might be best known for creating Colorado’s best-selling book ever, Colorado: 1870 – 2000, which juxtaposes historic photographer William Henry Jackson’s images of the 19th-century landscape with those of today.
Fielder has worked tirelessly to promote the protection of Colorado’s open space and wildlands. His photography has influenced people and legislation earning him recognition including the Sierra Club’s Ansel Adams Award, the University of Denver’s Daniel L. Ritchie Award, and the Distinguished Service Award from the University of Colorado. He was an original governor-appointed member of the lottery-related Board of Great Outdoors Colorado, and speaks to thousands of people each year to rally support for timely land-use and environmental issues.
He lives in Summit County, Colorado, and operates a fine art gallery, John Fielder’s Colorado, in Denver’s Art District on Santa Fe. He teaches photography workshops to adults and children.