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Gianluca Marciano led the Al Bustan Festival Orchestra in a sprightly rendition of the first verse of Lebanon's national anthem Tuesday evening. The tune invariably opens Al Bustan International Festival of Music and the Performing Arts. Among the several familiar themes this suite contributed to popular culture, "The Wedding March" in C Major remains the tune most Western-acculturated folk hear when you say "wedding music".Like much of this edition of Al Bustan, Tuesday evening's program was made up of work inspired by Shakespeare's plays, the festival's 2016 theme being "Midwinter Night's Dream".Preceding them, returning with Marciano after the Smetana, was the women's section of Antonine University Choir.With the conclusion of this exchange – a sort of counterpoint between Shakespeare's dialogue and Mendelssohn's music – the soloists assume the roles of the quarreling Oberon and Titania.After reading from Shakespeare's script for some minutes, the soloists share a duet, warble a song or two individually and eventually depart, leaving the stage to the BFO and the Antonine women.
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