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Slovak cellist Jozef Luptak

Renowned Slovak cellist Jozef Lupták returns to Billings next week, when he will meet with area students, present a master class at Rocky Mountain College on Wednesday, April 26 and lead a concert at the ABT on Saturday, April 29.

The week of April 22-29 will feature events that focus on a celebration of peace and love in Billings.

The week starts with a performance of "A Mass for Peace" by Karl Jenkins by the Billings Symphony Orchestra and Chorale on Saturday, April 22.

Commissioned by the Royal Armouries Museum as an anti-war sentiment in response to the Kosovo Crisis in 1998-99, this composition features lyrics from Rudyard Kipling, Alfred Lord Tennyson and Sankichi Toge. Tickets are available at the Billings Symphony at 252-3610 or at billingssymphony.org.

During the week, Dr. Pavol Demeš, a well-known Central-European expert on international relations and civil society, will hold two major public lectures.

The first is scheduled for Tuesday, April 25 at 6:30 p.m., in MSUB's Library. The topic is "Challenges to Democracy: the Rise of Authoritarianism in Europe" and will focus on the current challenges faced by both post-socialist Central European states, such as Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic and established democracies in Western Europe.

The second lecture by Demeš will be held in Rocky Mountain College's Losekamp Hall on Thursday, April 27, at 4 p.m. He will discuss "In the Footsteps of Paul of Tarsus: A Journey Toward Civic Responsibility." A reception follows in Morledge Kimball Lounge.

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Both lectures are free of charge and open to the public.

Renowned Slovak cellist Jozef Lupták will also meet with area students throughout the week and hold a master class at Losekamp Hall on Wednesday, April 26 at 4 p.m. The class is free and open to the public.

The week is capped by a celebration of love when Lupták brings four other prominent Central-European musicians with him to the Alberta Bair Theater on Saturday, April 29 at 7:30 p.m. to perform "The Music of Love — From Bach to Tango."

The concert will feature music across several time periods and include both well-known works and original compositions. Tickets are available at the Alberta Bair Theater box office at 256-6052 or online at albertabairtheater.org.

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Entertainment Reporter

Jaci Webb covers entertainment for The Billings Gazette.