Walkway inspires symphonic work

The Northern Dutchess Symphony Orchestra will highlight its 10th anniversary season with the premiere of “Walkway Over the Hudson.”

The original symphonic work, commissioned by the NDSO and written by Ben Kutner, will be offered at 8 p.m. April 2 in the Marriott Pavilion on The Culinary Institute of America’s Hyde Park campus.

Under the direction of Kathleen Beckmann, the orchestra will perform the complete work by Kutner, a 24 year-old New York-based composer.

The long-abandoned Poughkeepsie-Highland Bridge was turned into the Walkway Over the Hudson State Historic Park in October 2009.

Kutner has described “Walkway Over the Hudson” as a three-movement symphony that corresponds loosely with the chapters in the bridge’s history, first as a vital rail link, then a fire-damaged structure lying in disuse and finally, the grand footbridge that exists today.

The evening will also recognize another milestone — the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service — with a performance of Ferde Grofé’s “Grand Canyon Suite.”

Both works are to be accompanied by images of the bridge and canyon projected on a screen behind the orchestra. Photos of the bridge were selected from thousands taken over the span of 23 years by Poughkeepsie attorney Fred Schaeffer, a driving force behind the transformation of the bridge.

Tickets for the concert are $20; $15 for senior citizens and $5 for students.

For more, visit ndsorchestra.org or call 845-635-0877. – Mary Shustack

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