Never miss a surprise or a concert!

The Soldier's Tale

You'd think this devilishly challenging septet was composed for our times.

Part concert, part theatrical performance, The Soldier's Tale is your classic devil-went-down-to-Georgia/Ukraine story. Seven of APO's finest musicians undertake one of Stravinsky's most difficult works. Meanwhile, dramatic readings from our friends at Trike Theatre set the shocking scene. 

Created just in time to be shut down due to the Spanish Flu in 1918, The Soldier's Tale sounds as jagged and feels as unsettling today as it did then.

The Soldier's Tale by Igor Stravinsky (1918)

Conducted by Steven Byess

Thaden School Great Hall, Bentonville, AR 

Joseph - Steven Marzolf 

The Devil - Betsy Jilka 

Narrator - Julie Gabel

Trike Theatre Artistic Director - Kassie Miscowitz 

Violin - Er-Gene Kahng 

Clarinet - Nophachai Cholthitchanta 

Bassoon - Richard Bobo 

Trumpet - Richard Rulli 

Trombone - Cory Mixdorf

Double Bass - Jerry Lane 

Percussion - Fernando Valencia


A Brief Discussion With:

Listen in as APO's own Steven Byess, Music Director joins Trike Theatre's Artistic Director Kassie Misiewicz, to discuss this exciting collaboration. Learn about the performers and what to expect in this return to in person performance.


L'Histoire du soldat (The Soldier's Tale) is a theatrical work "to be read, played, and danced", traditionally by three actors and one or several dancers, accompanied by a septet of instruments. Conceived by Igor Stravinsky and Swiss writer C. F. Ramuz, the piece was based on a Russian folk tale drawn from the collection of Alexander Afanasyev called The Runaway Soldier and the Devil. 

The libretto relates the parable of a soldier who trades his fiddle to the devil in return for unlimited economic gain. The music is scored for a septet of violin, double bass, clarinet, bassoon, cornet (often played on trumpet), trombone, and percussion, and the story is told by three actors: the soldier, the devil, and a narrator, who also takes on the roles of minor characters. The music is rife with changing time signatures. For this reason, it is commonly performed with a conductor.


The APO is excited to partner with Trike Theatre, Northwest Arkansas' professional theatre for youth that provides professional theatre productions, literacy integrated drama residencies and drama academy programs. The mission of Trike Theatre is to Cultivate Creativity, Build Character, and Strengthen Community through its vision of transforming the lives of young people through exceptional theatre experiences.

Learn More at


Join the list of our favorite music lovers who help keep the doors open, lights on, musicians fed and themselves smiling. Friends and Best Friends Forever of the APO enjoy exclusive access to unique APO activities, deepening their appreciation of the music. They also fund the APO's many mashups of music and arts throughout NW Arkansas.


Let's Be Friends


Any gift to the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra (APO) is welcome! As a 501c3 organization, your Arkansas arts donation may be tax deductible but we know you give because you care.


Sign Up for Email Updates

Whatever the APO surprises and delights Northwest Arkansas with next, you won't want to miss it!


You might also like...

A Celebration of Breakthroughs:  We joined the APO for an evening of music to accompany the Fashioning America exhibition at the beautifu...
Read More →
Evening With the Maestro Featuring Anita Graef and Chef Sam Diaz
Set to the Music of Rumbling Tummies The APO was excited to host another magnificent feast with our world-renowned Conductor Steven Byess. On ...
Read More →