December 31, 2006 at 3:36 PM12/28/06 – Twenty-five-year-old Venezuelan conductor Gustavo Dudamel has seen his career take off with a meteoric rise. Only a few years out from conducting youth orchestras, Dudamel is now appearing as a guest conductor with the world’s leading orchestras and earning comparisons to two other conducting prodigies in the process: Esa-Pekka Salonen and Sir Simon Rattle. The Los Angeles Times ran an interesting profile of Dudamel, as well as the exemplary classical music system that produced him.
CORRECTION: In the 12/22 column, I incorrectly reported that the Grainger String Quartet is working with the Hong Kong Philharmonic. In fact, the group is working with the Hong Kong Sinfonietta.
Skowronski Classical Recordings has released its eighth CD featuring violinist, Vincent P. Skowronski. Titled Skowronski Plays! Avec et Sans-Volume II Live in Concert, the disc features works with and without piano accompaniment by Bloch, Engel, Honegger, Milhaud and Szymanowski. Assisting artists are Katherine Hughes, violin and Saori Chiba, piano. Listen to audio clips online here
Violinist Caroline Goulding has won the 8th Annual Jean L. Petitt Memorial Music Scholarship competition. As a result, the 14-year-old will appear with Cleveland POPS Orchestra in May. According to a press release, in March 2006, Caroline became the recipient of an ex Lobkowicz by A&H Amati, 1617, Cremona violin, through the efforts of The Stradivari Society of Chicago.
1/19/07 - Violinist Vadim Gluzman will perform the Beethoven Violin Concerto with the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.
1/13/07 - Violinist Tai Murray will perform the Barber Violin Concerto with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra.
1/11/07 - Conductor and violinist Jaime Laredo will lead the Seattle Symphony in a program of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerti and Vivaldi Violin Concerti. Soloists include violinists Maria Larionoff and Michael Miropolsky.
1/4/07 – Violinist Jennifer Koh will perform the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto in her New Jersey Symphony Orchestra debut. “The concerto was one of the pieces in her repertoire when she won the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow in 1994.
‘I really enjoy the piece, always interesting coming back to it. It's refreshing. You always discover something new that you hadn't necessarily seen before’, she said. ‘It's an interesting perspective to look back at how you approached it 10 years ago versus five years ago versus today’.
12/31/06 – Violinist Jaime Jorge will perform a concert of Christian music in Reading, Pa. According to the Reading Eagle, “Jorge, who has performed in more than 35 countries on five continents, will play music ranging from favorite hymns to contemporary praise songs. Born and raised in Communist Cuba, Jorge was offered many opportunities, including offers to study in Moscow with some of the greatest musicians of our time, if only he and his family would renounce their belief in God. They refused, but when Jorge was 10 they were given the opportunity to leave the country, and they immigrated to the United States, where he received lessons with eminent violinist Cyrus Forough. In 1998 Jorge left medical school early to pursue his music ministry full-time. Jorge has seven albums to his credit, five of which have won the Angel Award for Instrumental Religious Album of the Year.”
12/29/06 – As reported last week, the finals of the 2007 Bolz Young Artist Competition in Madison, Wisc., will be broadcast on WPR and WPT in a 90-minute program entitled “Wisconsin Young Artists Compete: The Final Forte.” Now, the four finalists have been named and include violinists Krista Stewart and Sakura Takemitsu. The panel of judges includes Wen-lei Gu, Violin Professor at Lawrence University. Two winners will each receive $1,000 cash and perform at a concert with the Madison Symphony on Feb. 1 that will be attended by 2,000 high school students from communities across South-Central Wisconsin.
12/20/06 - Dutch conductor Bernard Haitink was named Musical America's 'Musician of the Year' for 2007 at an awards ceremony in Lincoln Center, reports PlaybillArts.com. “Haitink, 77, was recently appointed principal conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra; he also conducted the London Symphony Orchestra in a complete Beethoven symphony cycle this past fall at Lincoln Center. (The Haitink/London Symphony recordings of the Beethoven Symphonies, released over the past months on the LSO Live label, have drawn wide critical acclaim.)”
12/28/06 – The Kansas City Star reports that the Kansas City Symphony is suing the state of Missouri. Ten years ago the Missouri legislature "enacted a law calling for half of the income taxes paid by out-of-state athletes and entertainers who worked in Missouri to be put in the Missouri Arts Council Trust Fund (also known as the Missouri Cultural Trust).” But that hasn't happened, so the orchestra is suing, charging the state with shortchanging the fund by $83 million in principal and interest since 1987. “The Symphony, whose overall budget is about $10.5 million, got $60,000 from the state last year. That is not even a drop in the bucket compared with orchestras in comparably sized cities, said Frank Byrne, Symphony executive director.”
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