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The Bard Conservatory Orchestra Performs with Guest Conductor Guillermo Figueroa in Sosnoff Theater on Sunday, December 7

Eleanor Davis
The Bard Conservatory Orchestra Performs with Guest Conductor Guillermo Figueroa in Sosnoff Theater on Sunday, December 7  Image Credit: Photo: Kim Jew

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—On Sunday, December 7, the Bard College Conservatory of Music presents the Bard Conservatory Orchestra, conducted by Guillermo Figueroa. The program will include Brahms’ Concerto for Violin, Cello and Orchestra in A Minor (“Double”), Op. 102, with violinist Laurie Smukler and cellist Joel Krosnick, guest artists. Free and open to the public, the program begins at 3:00 p.m. in the Sosnoff Theater of the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts.

About the Artists: 

Guillermo Figueroa is the music director of both the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra and the Music in the Mountains Festival in Durango, Colorado as well as principal guest conductor of the Puerto Rico Symphony. His elegant techniquehas earned him international recognition. As a guest conductor he has appeared with the symphony orchestras of New Jersey, Memphis, Phoenix, Puerto Rico, Iceland, Colorado, Berkeley, Xalapa (Mexico), Tucson, Santa Fe, Toledo, Fairfax, and San Jose, as well as the Juilliard Orchestra, the Baltic Philharmonic in Poland, the New York City Ballet at Lincoln Center and the New England Conservatory orchestra. Upcoming debuts include the Orquesta de Cordoba in Spain, and the Orquesta del Teatro Argentino in La Plata (Buenos Aires). Figueroa has conducted the premiers of works by many important composers, including Roberto Sierra, Mario Davidovsky, Ernesto Cordero, Miguel del Aguila and Harold Farberman. Also a renowned violinist, Figueroa is a founding member of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. With this group he has been concertmaster and soloist in performances throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia, and made more than 50 recordings for Deutsche Grammophon. In 2007 he played the premiere of the Double Concerto written for him by Harold Farberman, with the American Symphony at Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center, and in January 2008 he gave the world premiere of “Violin Concerto / The Journey of a Lifetime.” For 10 years he was concertmaster and guest conductor of the New York City Ballet.

He has appeared at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Music in the Vineyards in California, Music from Angel Fire, and the El Paso Pro Musica Chamber Festival. He and his violinist wife Valerie Turner are the founders and artistic directors of the acclaimed Festival de Musica Rondena chamber series in Albuquerque. As part of Puerto Rico’s most distinguished musical family, he has appeared with the Figueroa Chamber Ensemble at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and the Kennedy Center.

Laurie Smukler earned a B.Music degree at the Juilliard School, where she studied with Ivan Galamian. She is an active soloist and recitalist and has established a reputation as one of the finest chamber musicians in the country. In New York, she appears regularly at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, with the Festival Chamber Music Society and the Bard Music Festival, and in the “Collection in Concert” series, which she codirects, at the Pierpont Morgan Library. Dedicated to teaching as well as performing, she is professor of violin and head of the string area at the Conservatory of Music at SUNY Purchase, where she is also artistic director of the “Faculty and Friends” concert series. Smukler’s wide musical interests include contemporary music, and she has premiered works by many composers, including Ned Rorem, Morton Subotnik, Steven Paulus, Shulamit Ran, and Bruce Adolphe. She was a founding member of the Mendelssohn String Quartet, with which she recorded works by DvoÅ™ák, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Schoenberg, Weber, and Ran. She has also recorded DvoÅ™ák 's Terzetto and the Kodaly Serenade with Ira Weller and Krista Bennion-Feeney. She teaches and performs at Kneisel Hall Festival in Blue Hill, Maine, and has been an invited guest at many summer festivals, including the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, Bard Music Festival, Mostly Mozart, Skaneateles Festival, and Acadia Festival.

For more than 35 years, cellist Joel Krosnick has performed as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician all over the world. As a member of the Juilliard String Quartet since 1974, he has performed the great quartet literature throughout North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. He has recorded the complete quartets of Beethoven, Bartók, Schoenberg, Janáček, Hindemith, and Brahms, as well as the last 10 Quartets of Mozart, four quartets of Elliott Carter, and works of Haydn, Debussy, Ravel, Dutilleux, Berg, Smetana, Franck, Mendelssohn, Shostakovich, Verdi, Sibelius, Bach, Roger Sessions, Donald Martino, and Stefan Wolpe. In 2008, Krosnick was awarded the Richard J. Bogomolny National Service Award by Chamber Music America. With his sonata partner of over 30 years, pianist Gilbert Kalish, Krosnick has performed recitals throughout the United States and Europe. He has held professorships at the Universities of Iowa and Massachusetts, and was artist-in-residence at the California Institute of the Arts. Since 1974, he has been on the faculty of the Juilliard School, where, since 1994, he has served as chairman of the cello department. As a member of the Juilliard String Quartet, he has received numerous Grammy nominations, twice winning the Grammy Award (for the complete Schoenberg Quartets and the late Quartets of Beethoven). His discs, In the Shadow of World War I and In the Shadow of World War I , with Kalish, won Indie Awards. The duo’s recording of the Brahms Sonatas won the Classical Recording Foundation Award.

The Bard College Conservatory of Music is an innovative, five-year, double-degree program guided by the principle that musicians should be broadly educated in the liberal arts and sciences to achieve their greatest potential. While training and studying for the bachelor of music degree with world-class musicians and teachers and performing in state-of-the-art facilities, such as the Frank Gehry–designed Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts, Bard Conservatory students also pursue a bachelor of arts degree at Bard, one of the nation’s leading liberal arts colleges. The Conservatory’s instrumental and composition faculty includes renowned musicians and composers. The Colorado Quartet and Da Capo Chamber Players are in residence. Members and principals of the American Symphony Orchestra are also available for instruction, coaching, and leading of sectional rehearsals in the Conservatory Orchestra. In 2006 the Conservatory introduced three new programs: the Vocal Arts Graduate Program, directed by Dawn Upshaw; The Conductors Institute and its graduate program in conducting, directed by Harold Farberman; and the Composition Program, directed by Joan Tower and George Tsontakis.

For more information about the Bard College Conservatory of Music, call 845-758-7196, e-mail, or log on to the program’s website,

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This event was last updated on 01-22-2009