SALT LAKE CITY, December 3, 2012 – Grammy-nominated violinist Jenny Oaks Baker will perform three mini concerts tonight at the Washington, D.C. LDS Temple, 9900 Stoneybrook Dr., Kensington Md.
Performances begin at 7:00, 8:00, and 9:00 p.m. and are free and open to the public. They are part of the Temple’s annual Festival of Lights, which includes a nativity scene and nearly half a million Christmas lights on the grounds. The concert is free and open to the public.
Baker is celebrating the holidays as well as the release of her new Christmas album, Noel, Carols of the Christmas Past. Produced and arranged by Emmy award winning composer Kurt Bestort, it’s her 11th album. It also features Alex Sharpe of the popular group Celtic Woman, who will join Baker in tonight’s performances. Sharpe recorded a music video with Ms. Baker for the song Silent Night which you can enjoy at the end of this article.
A long-time Washington-area resident, Baker was a first violinist for the National Symphony Orchestra for seven years. She has performed with dozens of the most acclaimed orchestras in the United States. Her album Wish Upon a Star: A Tribute to the Music of Walt Disney earned a nomination for the 54th GRAMMY Awards for Best Pop Instrumental Album. Her 2010 album, Then Sings my Soul, copped the #1 spot on the Billboard Classical chart for two consecutive weeks.
Baker’s performance career is equally impressive. In April 1999, she made her Carnegie Hall debut as a featured soloist in the Easter Festival Concert. She will perform with the Pittsburgh Symphony this season, having been invited by the late Marvin Hamlisch, under whose direction she soloed numerous times.
She has also performed as a soloist in Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center, Strathmore Hall, Coolidge Auditorium at the Library of Congress, and the Kennedy Center.
According to the biographical sketch available at her web site, Baker began playing the violin at age four, and made her solo debut in 1983 when she was only eight years old. She received her Master of Music degree from the renowned Juilliard School in New York City and her Bachelor’s degree in violin performance from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.
Baker resigned from the NSO in 2007 to devote more time to her family. They currently reside in the DC metro area.
Learn more about the author of this column at Rich-Stowell.com
Rich is a teacher and a soldier. He writes the “Rich Like Me” political column at the Washington Times Communities in addition to “Salt Lake City and the World.” He is the author of Nine Weeks: A Teacher’s Education in Army Basic Training; Tunnel Club; and Not Another Boring Textbook: A High School Students’ Guide to their Inner Conservative, which you can follow on Facebook.
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