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MPBN's Suzanne Nance to perform in Lewiston

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LEWISTON Most people probably think of Suzanne Nance as the voice of 'Morning Classical Music,' a program that airs each weekday morning from 9:05 a.m. until noon on MPBN Radio.

But Nance is also a very talented soprano who has performed on stages all over the world, and on May 3 she will be performing a concert at the Franco-American Heritage Center in Lewiston composed of selections mostly in French with a few in English, featuring some of Maine's most talented women backing her on piano, cello and violin.

'Putting this program together specifically for the Franco Center has been so exciting and inspiring. The show will begin with a song titled Early in the Morning' by Ned Rorem, which will transport us immediately to a Parisian cafe. We will also perform some of the most beautiful French songs from the repertoire including Reynaldo Hahn's A Chloris.' The simplicity and beauty of these songs can break one's heart in an instant and then heal it with intense passion," said Nance.

'We also plan to have fun with Satie's La Diva de l'Empire' and Bizet's Habanera' from Carmen,' and we will perform our own arrangement of The Windmills of Your Mind' and I Dreamed a Dream' from the musical Les Miserables.' This is the only venue where we'll be performing this particular program, and I do hope it's a special experience for all!"

Nance and Franco Center executive director Louis Morin were colleagues at MPBN for several years when Morin served as MPBN's marketing and public relations director. Morin says that when he took over at the Franco Center last fall, there was never any doubt who would get his first call.

'The first time I heard Suzanne sing, it gave me chills,' says Morin, who recalled asking Nance to sing on MPBN's stage at the Old Port Festival in Portland a few years ago, not long after she arrived in Maine.

'She brought [Bates College artist-in-residence] Frank Glazer to accompany her on piano, and they opened their set with Habanera.' People walking by just stopped in their tracks. Once I came to the Franco Center, it was no-brainer as to who would get my first offer to play.'

Nance's voice won't be the only talent on display. Joining her will be pianist Kathleen Scott, who also directs productions for PORTopera; cellist Elizabeth Anderson, a co-founder of the Meliora Quartet who has performed at New York's Lincoln Center; and violinist Jennifer Elowitch, who each summer produces the Portland Chamber Music Festival.

Tickets are $28 for adults, $25 for seniors if purchased in advanced, two dollars more on the night of the show. They may be purchased online at, by phone at 689-2000, or in person at the box office Monday through Friday between noon and 4 p.m.


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