[caption id="attachment_2873" align="alignright" width="220" caption="PICCFEST"][/caption]The 40th Oregon Bach Festival opened Friday night at Eugene's Hult Center to a gala crowd and farewell remarks from departing University of Oregon President Dave Frohnmayer.
After its biggest attendance year ever in 2008, the festival is coming up against economic realities in 2009, and opening night was far from a sell-out. The Hult's Silva Concert Hall looked to be about two-thirds full.
But empty seats failed to dampen the enthusiasm of the musicians or audience members at the Hult on Friday as Artistic Director Helmuth Rilling conducted the Bach festival orchestra, chorus and soloists in Haydn's magnificent "Creation" oratorio.
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