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Showing posts from June, 2009

Venezuelan-American Pianist Gabriela Montero’s Summer Season Takes Her Around Globe

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Includes Debuts at San Francisco Symphony, Ravinia Festival, and Salzburg FestivalThe year 2009 has been a stellar and historic one for Gabriela Montero. It started on January 20 in Washington D.C. , when she performed with cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Itzhak Perlman, and clarinetist Anthony McGill to a worldwide audience at President Obama’s inauguration. The excitement continues this summer as Montero makes debut performances at several of the world’s most prestigious festivals and orchestras, with performances in North America, South America, and Europe . Known for her ability to dazzle audiences in both traditional concert repertoire and with her trademark improvisations, Montero is sure to impress in a plethora of varied programs. On Thursday, July 2, Montero makes her debut with the San Francisco Symphony. She will be the featured soloist in George Gershwin’s beloved Rhapsody in Blue under the baton of James Gaffigan, in a concert of music by American composers. True to her…

Castleton Fetival Announces Two Recitals with Principal Players of the New York Philharmonic

Recitals by Principal Flute Robert Langevin, Principal Horn Phil Myers and Principal Oboe Liang Wang added to the inaugural Castleton Festival schedule of four Britten chamber opera and two orchestral concerts Festival Opens Friday July 3 with founder Lorin Maazel conducting a new production of The Turn of the Screw Two recitals featuring principal players of the New York Philharmonic have been added to the schedule of the first Castleton Festival which is being held in Rappahannock County , VA July 3-19. On Thursday, July 9 Principal Horn Phil Myers will be joined by Principal Oboe Liang Wang and Virginia Perry Lamb (piano) for a program featuring works by Telemann, Schuller, Piantoni, Britten, Piazzolla, Ravel and Reinecke. On Wednesday, July 15 Principal Flute Robert Langevin and pianist Nicholas Ong will perform a program of sonatas by Gaubert, Lowell Liebermann and Fauré. (Full program details below.) Unlike other Castleton Festival events that are being held on founder Lo…

Boston Symphony Orchestra Musicians begin First-Ever Relay run from Boston to Tanglewood - June 29

150-Mile Relay Run Across the State Begins at 2pm on June 29 at Main Entrance to Symphony Hall in BostonOn June 29, at 2 p.m., at the entrance to Symphony Hall at 301 Massachusetts Avenue in Boston, BSO bassist Todd Seeber, along with 20 other musicians and staff members, as well as a life trustee, will begin a relay run, introduced by a brass fanfare and starter pistol, to the main gate of Tanglewood, to mark the opening of the 2009 season. The run will continue over 33 legs, each between 3.5 and 7 miles, and will arrive at the Tanglewood Main Gate at approximately 1:15 p.m. on June 30, in anticipation of the first BSO rehearsal at Tanglewood on July 1 and the opening night program on July 3, featuring an all-Tchaikovsky program led by BSO Music Director James Levine. Tanglewood is the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra located in Lenox, MA. A group of 26 runners—fourteen Boston Symphony Orchestra and Boston Pops musicians, several of their family members, six staff memb…

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Performs Music by John Williams

July 25th program at Oregon Ridge features scores from Star Wars, Harry Potter and moreBaltimore, Md. (June 25, 2009)— The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra will end its 2009 summer season at Oregon Ridge Park in Cockeysville, Md. on Saturday, July 25 at 8:00 p.m. with music from Academy Award-winning composer John Williams. Guest conductor Steven Reineke will lead the BSO in a celebration of the great contemporary film composer featuring themes from Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Jaws and more. John Williams’ widely successful career spans six decades. He has been the recipient of five Academy Awards, four Golden Globes and numerous Grammy Awards. Williams is most known for his film scores, in which he uses a leitmotif style to give characters individual theme songs. The two-note theme that indicates the shark in Jaws, for example, is almost universal in signifying danger. By composing the music for numerous blockbusters such as Superman, The Patriot and Harry Potter, Williams created some o…

Donald Runnicles Opens the 2009 Grand Teton Music Festival with Concerts on July 17 & 18

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Runnicles Conducts Four Pairs of Concerts Over Four WeeksDonald Runnicles, who has been Music Director of the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra since 2006, leads the first of four pairs of concerts he will conduct at Wyoming’s 48th Grand Teton Music Festival on July 17 and 18. The Scottish conductor declares: “The virtuosity and power of the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra are as breathtaking as the splendor of the Tetons themselves,” continuing, “The Grand Teton Music Festival deserves to be a compulsory stop on any music lover’s summer itinerary.” Not least because of the region’s stunning beauty, the Festival Orchestra of the Grand Teton Music Festival attracts musicians from top orchestras in the United States, Canada, and abroad. The San Francisco Festival Chorale joins the orchestra and a quartet of soloists – soprano Twyla Robinson, mezzo-soprano Michelle DeYoung, tenor Frank Lopardo, and bass Eric Owens – for Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 under Maestro Runnicles in …

Thomas Hampson’s 2009 “Song of America ” Project Celebrates the 250th Anniversary of the First American Song

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Hampson Gives Twelve “Song of America ” Recitals between July 2009 and February 2010 and Sings Orchestral Concerts with American Songs at Summer Festivals and with the New York Philharmonic On July 9, 2009 Thomas Hampson resumes the enthusiastically acclaimed “Song of America” project he developed with the Library of Congress and introduced in the 2005-06 season. This season’s national celebration additionally commemorates the 250th anniversary of what is recognized to be the first song written by an “American” (“My Days Have Been So Wondrous Free”, composed in 1759 by Philadelphian Francis Hopkinson). Drawing on the unparalleled collection of American songs housed at the Library of Congress, Hampson will present a unique series of recitals, educational activities, exhibitions, recordings, cybercasts and interactive online resources. Some recital venues will have lobby exhibitions of facsimiles from music archives of the Library, and joint efforts with local academic and cultural par…

Violinist/Conductor Nikolaj Znaider’s Summer Is Whirlwind of Festival Dates

Beethoven in Cleveland (July 18), Brahms in Vail with New York Philharmonic (July 24), and Tchaikovsky in Salzburg With Vienna Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel (Aug 27 & 29)In Dresden, Znaider Will Play and Record Elgar’s Violin Concerto – Now in its Centennial Season – Before Taking it on TourNikolaj Znaider – recently selected as the “Top Choice” in the July issue of Classic FM magazine’s “Top Ten Violinists” feature – starts his summer in Dresden playing Sir Edward Elgar’s magnificent violin concerto in both concerts and recording sessions with the Dresden Staatskapelle under Sir Colin Davis. Znaider is devoting a lot of time next season to honoring the centennial of the Elgar work, which was composed for and dedicated to the great Fritz Kreisler. Amazingly, Znaider will perform the concerto on the same instrument Kreisler played for the world premiere – a 1734 Guarneri “del Gesù” on loan from the VELUX Foundations and the Knud Hojgaard Foundation, and one of several instrume…

eighth blackbird bring signature performance of Steve Reich’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Double Sextet

“With these blackbirds singing morning, noon, and in the dead of night, horizons could not but expand.” – Mark Swed, Los Angeles Times blog, “Culture Monster”The fearless, Chicago-based, Grammy-winning sextet eighth blackbird brought its youthful exuberance, new-music pedigree, and singular chops to California’s annual, cutting-edge Ojai Music Festival. It was only the second time an ensemble had curated the famous festival, and, according to Josef Woodard in the Santa Barbara Independent, this year’s Ojai was “beautifully and creatively put together by the festival’s ‘music director,’ cherished new music ensemble eighth blackbird.” Woodard continued: “The four-day extravaganza managed to be a compact history of what’s recent and where it came from. The festival began tranquilly on Thursday night, with the program ‘Music for a Summer Evening,’ featuring George Crumb’s piece of the same name. It all ended in a happy über-tutti heap at the end of Sunday evening’s feast-like five-h…

Previously Unreleased Recordings from Piano Legend Vladimir Horowitz

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Monumental Traversals Of The Liszt Sonata And Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an ExhibitionRecordings Taken From The Horowitz Papers At Yale University Available on June 30, 2009 Sony Masterworks expands the catalogue of its Carnegie Hall Presents series with a set of previously unreleased recordings by legendary pianist Vladimir Horowitz, one of the most important performers of classical music in the twentieth century. The Sony Masterworks release of The Private Collection: Mussorgsky and Liszt makes these dazzling performances, previously held in the archives of Yale University as part of Horowitz’s papers, available to the public for the first time on June 30, 2009. This release features performances of Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, from April 2, 1948, and the Liszt Sonata, from March 21, 1949, both at Carnegie Hall. Two more Private Collection releases are scheduled for the fall and early 2010; they include music by Schumann, Chopin, Liszt, Haydn, and Beethoven. In 1988, a ye…

Minnesota Orchestra appoints Toronto Architects KPMB to design renewal & expansion of Orchestra Hall

Orchestra announces $14 million raised to-date on $40 million project The Minnesota Orchestral Association (MOA) announced today that the award-winning Toronto studio Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects (KPMB) has been appointed to design a renewal and expansion of Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis . Internationally celebrated for its design excellence, KPMB is known for its transformative designs across many cultural projects and renovations, ranging from Chicago’s Goodman Theatre to Canada ’s National Ballet School and the Royal Conservatory of Music. The renovation of Orchestra Hall will be directed by Bruce Kuwabara, design partner, and Marianne McKenna, partner-in-charge. The $40 million project to revitalize Orchestra Hall will focus on a dramatic reinvention of its public lobby spaces, a welcoming exterior that better connects the Hall to the vibrant city outside, a refreshed auditorium and updated backstage facilities. “We aspire to enhance all aspects of our…

"Partners in Time" the paradox of recording performance

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Tasmin Little and John Lenehan join forces in “Partners in Time,” a CD of rarely heard violin and piano pieces. The subtitle is “Bach to Bartok” because they’ve chosen a collection of pieces of varying styles and eras to give a marvelous sample of seldom performed gems. With such a wide variety of styles, there is something to appeal to pretty much everyone’s taste.Tasmin’s previous CD “Naked Violin” received rave reviews for its innovative approach, offering free downloads on the internet in an attempt to get other of these lesser known pieces heard by the general public. What a great idea. And this CD is filled with charming pieces you’re not likely to hear on any other CD. The flow of music through the ages is a wonderful concept, twisting and turning with all the paradoxes of a time machine. The first track, a 20th century piece by Fritz Kreisler Praeludium and Allegro was originally pawned off as a work by Gaetano Pugnani, however (according to the liner notes) Fritz did th…

Günther Herbig Leads Baltimore Symphony in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, July 23-24

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Internationally renowned conductor Günther Herbig will lead the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and the Baltimore Choral Arts Society in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, “Choral,” July 23 at the Music Center at Strathmore at 8:00 p.m. and July 24 at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall at 7:30 p.m. These concerts will feature soprano Heidi Stober, mezzo-soprano Kelley O’Connor, tenor Gordon Gietz and baritone Stephen Powell. This program will conclude the BSO’s 2009 Summer Nights season at the Meyerhoff and Strathmore. Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony is among the most recognizable works in the classical canon. Since the composer was already completely deaf, the theatre’s music director, Michael Umlauf, conducted alongside Beethoven on the podium for its premiere in 1824. Because the musicians followed Umlauf’s count, Beethoven was still fervently conducting when the orchestra finished the piece, leading one of the musicians to turn him around to see the audience’s standing ovation. The Ninth Symp…

Chorus Auditions for OperaColorado 2009-2010 Season

Season includes The Tales of Hoffmann, The Barber of Seville, and ToscaDENVER, CO—Opera Colorado will be holding auditions for chorus members on Sunday, August 30th from 11 am to 4 pm at the Robert and Judi Newman Center for Theatre Education in the Historic Tramway Building. Opera Colorado will be auditioning mezzo-soprano, tenor and bass voice types only. Applicants who are being considered will be contacted and given an audition time."The chorus is a strong part of each of Opera Colorado's productions. So many chorus members find the experience rewarding, especially the opportunity to work with acclaimed directors such as Ron Daniels and David Gately as well as singers such as Sondra Radvanovsky." - General Director Greg Carpenter Interested parties should e-mail their resume by August 14 to George Twombly, Artistic Administrator, at gtwombly@operacolorado.org. More details can be found at OperaColorado.org.CHORUS AUDITIONS

DATE: Sunday, August 30th
TIME: Auditions …

"Intimate Letters" letter perfect

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Precise melodic movement is perhaps the best way to describe the Emerson String Quartet’s latest album “Intimate Letters” – two string quartets by Leoš Janácek and Three Madrigals for Violin and Viola by Bohuslav Martinů. Beyond being some of the most unique melodic music of the early 20th century, the performances by the Eugene Drucker, Philip Setzer, Lawrence Dutton and David Finckel make this new release an absolute joy from start to finish. The intricate, faultless ensemble playing yet again verifies the Emerson String Quartet as the premiere string quartet today. The opening piece is Janácek’s String Quartet no. 1, written in 1923 (in just over two weeks). In the opening movement, there are numerous sections where the motivic motion of the piece is transferred from one instrument to another. While the tenor and placement of the instrument in the recording is different (allowing the clear identification of each of the four instruments), the technique by the performers is so s…

Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Performs The Magical Music of Disney

Big screen images accompany musical selections from Disney classicsThe Baltimore Symphony Orchestra will perform musical selections from Disney favorites on Thursday, July 16 at 8:00 p.m. at the Music Center at Strathmore and Friday, July 17 at 7:30 p.m. at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. Guest conductor Steven Reineke will lead the BSO in music from Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, The Lion King, Mary Poppins and other Disney classics while images from these movies are projected on a screen above the orchestra. Added features to Friday’s Meyerhoff performance include summer concessions and a costume parade. Patrons can also come early to enjoy Artscape, a free arts festival on the streets surrounding the Hall. Patrons are also encouraged to dress up as their favorite Disney characters and participate in the Disney costume parade inside the lobby. Grilled summer favorites will be available for purchase. Tickets for children aged 6-16 are half-price for both venues. Steven…

Anna Netrebko Sings Her First U.S. Performances as Violetta in La Traviata

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She Returns to San Francisco Opera June 13Feature Film Version of La Bohème, starring Anna Netrebko and Rolando Villazón, Comes to Theaters Across America in SeptemberOn June 13, Anna Netrebko returns to San Francisco Opera – where she made her US debut in 1995 in Glinka’s Ruslan and Lyudmila – to sing her first U.S. performances as Violetta Valery in Verdi’s La traviata. Maestro Donald Runnicles, a longtime colleague of Netrebko’s, conducts in his final production as Music Director of the San Francisco Opera. It has been five years since the Russian soprano last performed with the company, where she was once a young artist in the Merola Opera Program. Opera fans will recall her portrayal of the Verdi heroine in the internationally acclaimed 2005 Salzburg Festival production by Willy Decker, which is available on DVD and on CD in both highlights and full-length versions (the latter of which received a Grammy nomination in 2006). San Francisco Opera's Marta Domingo production of…

Enjoy the Summer with London Philharmonic Orchestra

The London Philharmonic Orchestra's 08/09 season is all but over, and while you can catch the players later this summer at Glyndebourne Festival Opera performing such treats as Dvorak's Rusalka and Donizetti's L'elisir d'amore, you can still enjoy music in London during the summer before the 2009/10 season starts on Friday 25 September. Spitalfields Music Summer Festival: 7-19 June 2009
This year's Summer Festival features the Royal Academy of Music, Schubert Ensemble, The Tallis Scholars, Early Opera Company and includes a jazz tinged Sunday afternoon at Wilton's Music Hall, a Family Fun Day at Ideas Store, Whitechapel and free concerts and events in Spitalfields Market. Musicians from the Royal Academy of Music
Thursday 18 June | 7.00-10.00pm
at Christ Church, SpitalfieldsEarly Opera Company
Friday 19 June | 8.00-10.00pm
at Christ Church, Spitalfields

Death of Edinburgh-based composer Edward Harper prompts change in programme

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Following the sad news of the death of Edinburgh-based composer Edward Harper in April, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra can now confirm that it will perform his Second Symphony in place of Symphony No 3, which was unfinished at the time of his death. Symphony No 3 ‘Homage to Robert Burns’ was scheduled to receive its world premiere as part of the Orchestra’s ‘Homecoming’ concert in Glasgow City Halls on 27 November, to be performed again the following evening in Edinburgh’s Queen’s Hall.Harper’s Symphony No 2 was premiered by the Orchestra in October 2006, recorded for Edinburgh’s independent classical music label, Delphian, in the summer of 2007 and released on CD in March 2008. The concerts in November will be the first live performances of the full symphony, as the first movement of Symphony No 2 was incomplete when the Orchestra premiered the work in October 2006. The full work was recorded once the first movement had been completed.Symphony No 2 will be performed in a ‘Homecoming…

Buzz Aldrin joins Boston Pops Tonight for Special Concert Celebrating 40th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing

Aldrin to Narrate Special Version of Gustav Holst's "The Planets," Accompanied by video montage featuring footage from NASA and European Space Agencies.As part of a special celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin joins Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops to narrate a special rendition of Gustav Holst’s The Planets tonight at 8 p.m. in Symphony Hall. The narration will accompany a video suite produced by Dr. José Francisco Salgado, which integrates awe-inspiring NASA and European Space Agency footage with historical illustrations from the Adler Planetarium’s Collection of Works on Paper. This evening is part of MIT’s Giant Leaps Symposium that will bring together many of the leaders of the Apollo mission to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the moon landing. For more information about the symposium visit http://apollo40.mit.edu/symposium/agenda.html.

Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony Premiere 2nd Season of "Keeping Score" PBS Television Series in October

The Keeping Score Project Also Features Expanded Interactive Companion Web Site, National Radio Series, Home Video on DVD and Blu-Ray, and K-12 Education Program The San Francisco Symphony and Michael Tilson Thomas premiere the second season of the Keeping Score television series on PBS in October 2009 (check local listings). Keeping Score is the San Francisco Symphony’s national project to make classical music more accessible and meaningful to people of all ages and musical backgrounds, and a key component of its almost century-long history of music education. More than five million viewers tuned into the first season of Keeping Score on PBS in November 2006 with episodes on Ludwig van Beethoven, Igor Stravinsky, and Aaron Copland. Keeping Score Season 2 features three new programs that explore the music and stories behind Hector Berlioz’s symphonic love letter Symphonie fantastique; Charles Ives’s sonic portrait of New England in his Holidays Symphony; and Dmitri Shostakovich’s Sym…

Grammy Award-Winning Pianist Yefim "Fima" Bronfman has busy Summer Schedule

Opens Tanglewood (JULY 3), Ravinia (JULY 7) and Saratoga (AUG. 5), and is Artist Étoile at Lucerne Festival“A marvel of digital dexterity, warmly romantic sentiment and jaw-dropping bravura” – Chicago TribuneThe Grammy Award-winning pianist Yefim “Fima” Bronfman is set to embark on a juggernaut tour of American and European music festivals this summer. The beloved pianist has been chosen as the opening soloist for the Tanglewood (July 3), Ravinia (July 7) and Saratoga (August 5) festivals, and as Artist Étoile for the Lucerne Festival in Switzerland . Bronfman will also appear at Waldbühne for a televised concert with the Berlin Philharmonic (June 21), and on tour in Europe with conductor/composer Esa-Pekka Salonen for performances of his Piano Concerto, which was written for Bronfman. “This is a summer that I have been planning and looking forward to for a long time,” the pianist comments. “I will be visiting top festivals around the world and collaborating with many of my favorite c…

Walden School Announces 2009 Festival Concert Series

JUNE 30 – AUGUST 7Composers-in-Residence Joan Tower and Stephen Jaffe Lead Composers Forums
Approximately 100 “First Performances” Presented By Young Composers Over Five-Week Summer Festival The Walden School 2009 Festival Concert Series features 16 public events presented free of charge June 30 through August 7. Musical compositions and presentations by Composers-in-Residence Joan Tower and Stephen Jaffe are featured alongside world premiere compositions by Walden students and faculty members. The Festival Concert Series is highlighted by distinguished guest artists including the Brooklyn-based M Shanghai String Band, led by Matt Schickele; contemporary music ensemble and composers collective Wet Ink, who will present 8 world premieres by emerging composers; folk music trio Cross Country; preeminent organist and alumnus John Weaver; The Walden School Players, featuring contemporary music performers Claire Chase, Peter Evans, Nathan Davis, Meighan Stoops, Jane Chung, Greg Hesselink a…

Marin Alsop Renews Contract for Five Years with Baltimore Symphony Orchestra

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The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra today announced Music Director Marin Alsop will continue her commitment to the Orchestra with the signing of a five-year contract that extends from September 2010 to August 2015. Maestra Alsop, who began her acclaimed tenure as the Orchestra’s 12th music director in September 2007, has been recognized nationally and internationally for her innovative programming, multiple new recordings with the BSO and her efforts in community outreach and education, most notably the creation of OrchKids, a new after-school instrumental instruction program in West Baltimore modeled after Venezuela’s El Sistema.Upon signing the contract, Marin Alsop commented, “My work so far with the Baltimore Symphony has been the thrill of a lifetime. Our progress over the past two seasons is the epitome of collaboration. The dedication and talent of the BSO musicians, the business oversight and support from the board, the vision and unbridled energy from our management and staff, …