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Bard College Presents Stravinsky's The Soldier's Tale on May 18

Jennifer Wai-Lan Huang
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—On Friday, May 18 at 7 p.m., the Artist-Fellow Program at Bard College presents The Soldier’s Tale by Igor Stravinsky. Free and open to the public, the program will be held in the Sosnoff Theater of The Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College. Please call 845-758-7900 for more information.

Students and faculty of The Bard College Conservatory of Music and Bard’s Dance and Theater Programs are showcased in a performance of The Soldier’s Tale, set to text by Charles-Ferdinand Ramuz. Stravinsky’s celebrated masterwork fuses jazz, ragtime, and tango to animate this classic Russian folktale about a soldier who trades his fiddle to the devil in exchange for untold riches. The performance will be narrated by assistant professor of music Rufus Müller and features Christian Scheider as the soldier, Marianne Rendon as the devil, and Liza Batkin as the princess. Conducted by David Bloom, music will be performed by Helena Baillie on violin, Noémi Sallai on clarinet, David A. Nagy on bassoon, Balázs Varga on trumpet, Václav Kalivoda on trombone, Bingwen Yany on double bass, and Amy Garapic on percussion.

The English-German tenor Rufus Müller was born in Kent, England, and was a choral scholar at New College, Oxford. He is at present studying in New York with Thomas LoMonaco. In 1985 he won first prize in the English Song Award in Brighton, and in 1999 was a prizewinner in the Oratorio Society of New York Singing Competition. He is assistant professor of music at Bard College, New York.

Müller, was acclaimed by the New York Times following a performance in Carnegie Hall as “easily the best tenor I have heard in a live Messiah.” He is a leading Evangelist in Bach’s Passions and his unique dramatic interpretation of this role has confirmed his status as one of the world’s most sought-after performers. He gave the world premiere of Jonathan Miller’s acclaimed production of the St. Matthew Passion, which he also recorded for United and broadcast on BBC TV; he has repeated his performance in three revivals of the production at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

With her “brilliance and poignance” (The Strad), London-born Helena Baillie is emerging as an artist of exceptional communicative depth and an uncommon ease on both violin and viola. A prizewinner in international competitions including the Munich ARD, Banff, and Tertis festivals, Baillie has performed throughout Europe and the United States, where her performances are regularly broadcast on Performance Today for American Public Radio. From 2010-12, she was honored with an Artist Fellowship at Bard College in Annandale-on Hudson, New York. During her residency, she produced and performed Bach Among Us, a collaborative project with dancers of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. In an unconventional staging that removed the traditional divisions between artist and audience, she invited audience members to share the stage with performers, creating a warm and immersive concert experience.

Baillie graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music, where she studied violin with Arnold Steinhardt and viola with Roberto Diaz. Isaac Stern, Felix Galimir, and Leon Fleisher guided her in chamber music, and she spent a year in Berlin studying with the eminent violist Wilfried Strehle. She is committed to outreach and education, and has traveled across the globe to engage new audiences under the auspices of Midori’s Music Sharing Foundation. She performs regularly at prisons and appears for New York–based Music Kitchen, a program that brings top musicians together to share the inspirational, therapeutic, and uplifting power of music with disenfranchised New Yorkers.

TO DOWNLOAD a high-resolution image, please go to: PHOTO CREDIT: Yves Gateau

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This event was last updated on 05-09-2012