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Andrew Sords

Near Year's - with the glass half-full

January 6, 2009 at 5:44 PM

I know, I's been forever since I've blogged...since last year, actually!   I needed to wait for many things to settle down and the dust to clear before penning thoughts, events, and stream-of-consciousness prose.  It has been a ridiculous holiday season, but one that's (already) been memorable!
For starters, I must thank the Portsmouth Symphony in New Hampshire for a fabulous time last November.  Our Brahms concerto collaboration was exciting, intimate and enjoyable, and Christopher Hill was a pleasure to work with.  I especially enjoyed giving the masterclasses and hearing some of the talent New England has to offer.  An added perk of that trip was the journey back to Cleveland on a private plane...story for another time...:)
Also, recent collaborations with Robert Franz, Jodi Benson, Robert Burian and Evan Fein have each been special, and once again, I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to have my passion and my dream as my job.
This year, venues are celebrating the bi-centennial of the birth of Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy, and I'm finding myself increasingly booked with his e-minor concerto.  It's been years since I have played it, but as one of the most pristine gems of the literature, I'm not complaining.  I wonder if these "celebrations" will be akin to the Mozart jubilee from three years seems THAT anniversary JUST concluded.  Up next...Samuel Barber's centennial in 2010.
Additionally, I'm dedicating 2009 to many Ohio-related concerts...Tchaikovsky with the Parma Symphony, Beethoven with the Suburban Symphony, Bruch with the Shaker Heights Symphony, Mendelssohn with Mansfield Symphony, various's nice to play in the area where one grew up and knows the environment, scene, and likewise.  I hope to see all of you Midwestern-ites at these performances!  :)  The next one is the Chagrin Valley Chamber Series recital with the lovely Eriko of my oldest (not literally) friends in the business, and a truly engaging pianist.  The program consists of Beethoven, Franck, Ravel and others.
This week, I'm braving the scattered flurries outside, a house recital at the end of the week, and the "Leningrad" symphony by Shostakovich at Severance Hall.  I don't know which to fear the most...though I shouldn't really be complaining about the Cleveland weather as it has been relatively mild.  I do have some resolutions, though, for this upcoming year...working out more consistently, spending more prudently, not procrastinating with some repertoire...wishing everyone luck for whatever resolutions they aim to keep!
Anyways, I should reacquaint myself with my 96-year-old fouringed lover in preparation for an afternoon rehearsal...Happy 2009 everyone, and hope to meet you after the concerts!


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