Students from the Preparatory Division in concert.
The Preparatory Division of The Bard College Conservatory of Music offers young people between the ages of 2 and 18 the joy of studying music in the context of a first-class conservatory. The early study of music brings important benefits to young people, touching many areas of their lives: language, motor and social skills, and an appreciation for the value of diligent effort. Most important, music enriches the young person's life and provides a lifetime of enjoyment.
Conservatory students perform works for violinist Elizabeth Pitcairn.
Violin virtuoso Elizabeth Pitcairn has earned a reputation as one of America’s most beloved soloists. Pitcairn made her New York debut at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall in 2000 with the New York String Orchestra and appeared as a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Academy of Music. She made her Walt Disney Concert Hall debut with the California Philharmonic and at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. She returned to China to perform the Bruch Violin Concerto with the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra. This season she gives recitals in New York and Pennsylvania with pianist Barbara Podgurski, in Hungary with Aniko Szokody, in Mexico with Louise Thomas and makes her Fisher Center recital debut in Sosnoff Theater at Bard College with Cynthia Elise Tobey. She performs in Bulgaria with the Classic FM Orchestra, followed by a recording of Bruch and Beethoven Violin Concerti conducted by Maxim Eshkenazy.
The artist performs with one of the world’s most legendary instruments, the “Red Mendelssohn” Stradivarius of 1720, said to have inspired the Academy Award–winning film The Red Violin. The 10th Anniversary Meridian Collection DVD (2008) of The Red Violin features Pitcairn in a special feature called “The Auction Block.”
Born in 1973, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, she comes from a closely-knit musical family (her mother is a Juilliard-trained cellist). Pitcairn began playing the violin at age three and made her debut with orchestra at 14. Her path led her to Los Angeles to study with preeminent violin professor Robert Lipsett at the University of Southern California. Pitcairn is a member of the faculty at the Colburn School in Los Angeles, California, and an alumna of the Marlboro Music Festival and former faculty at University of Southern California. Pitcairn has performed with the Vaasa City Symphony in Finland, and the Helsingborg and Jönkopping Symphonies in Sweden under the baton of Hannu Koivula. She has also appeared in Italy, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Bulgaria, and Brazil. She has performed at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center with pianist André Michel Schub. Pitcairn is the CEO and Artistic Director of the Luzerne Music Center (LMC) Festival in upstate New York. LMC provides training for gifted music students ages nine to 18.
Pitcairn commissioned Sweden’s renowned composer Tommie Haglund’s Hymns to the Night, which she premiered in 2005 and later recorded with the Helsingborg Symphony for Phono Suecia, receiving a Swedish Grammi nomination. She also commissioned a Sonata for violin and piano by Russian composer David Finko. Her latest commission by Sara Carina Graef will be premiered at Bard College's Fisher Center. Her discography includes the Tchaikovsky and Mozart No. 5 Concerti with the Slovenia Radio Television Orchestra, and the Bruch Scottish Fantasy and Sarasate Carmen Fantasy with the Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra of Bulgaria. Pitcairn is represented in Italy, France, and Russia by the Premiere Artists Agency. Pitcairn’s gowns are provided courtesy of LaFemme Fashion. The “Red Mendelssohn”Stradivarius is fitted with Wittner Finetune-Pegs and travels in a titanium case provided by GEWA. She also performs on a replica of the “Red Mendelssohn,” made for her by luthier Christophe Landon. For Pitcairn’s tour schedule, interviews, and history of the “Red Mendelssohn” Stradivarius, please visit www.redviolin.com.
Bard College Conservatory of Music students compete for a chance to perform with the Bard Conservatory Orchestra and the American Symphony Orchestra. Preliminary round takes place on November 15th at 10am in the Conservatory Performance Space at the László Z. Bitó ’60 Conservatory Building. Fisher Center, Sosnoff Theater
Anna Opatka is a fifth year bassoonist from Foxborough, Massachusetts. She has been studying bassoon for eleven years in addition to early music education starting at the age of eight on piano. She has had the honor of studying bassoon with dedicated teachers: in high school, Elah Grandel, and at Bard, Marc Goldberg and Patricia Rogers. Anna has enjoyed performing in a variety of chamber groups, ranging from duos to octets, as well as in the Bard Conservatory Orchestra. She also joined the orchestra on its two tours to China and Eastern Europe.