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The Virginia Chamber Orchestra started performing at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens during the pandemic (courtesy Virginia Chamber Orchestra)

The Virginia Chamber Orchestra is tuning up for a fall concert series at Meadowlark Botanical Gardens in Wolf Trap.

The “Music in the Gardens” series will kick off at 3 p.m. this Sunday (Sept. 4) with “Viva Violas!,” a showcase of that oft-overlooked member of the string family.

A quintet of performers from the professional, Northern Virginia-based orchestra will play for an hour at Meadowlark’s Korean Bell Pavilion. The advertised program features pieces by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Anton Dvorak, and more:

  • Viola Duets from the Renaissance
  • Charles De Beriot: Two Duets
  • Telemann: Concerto for Two Violas
  • Dvorak: Allegro from Quartet in F Major, Op. 96, “American”
  • Mozart: Andante and Allegro from Viola Quintet in C Major

The series will continue throughout the month with a guitar quintet on Sept. 11, a viola duo with double bass on Sept. 18, and a clarinet quintet on Sept. 25.

All concerts take place from 3-4 p.m. and are free to attend, though Meadowlark’s $6 admission fees are in effect. The park has a $3 discount for people aged 6-17 and 55 and older, with kids under 5 getting in for free.

The Virginia Chamber Orchestra first teamed up with Meadowlark for the “Music in the Gardens” series in fall 2020, when concert venues remained closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Audiences were so large and enthusiastic that the Virginia Chamber Orchestra is continuing them with both a Spring and a Fall series in 2022, even though traditional concert venues have reopened,” the VCO previously said in a press release.

The series’ spring iteration started May 15 and concluded on June 26.

Long based at Northern Virginia Community College’s Ernest Center in Annandale, the VCO relocated to Capital One Hall in Tysons last year as it celebrated its 50th anniversary season.

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