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FREE CONCERT BY THE DA CAPO CHAMBER PLAYERS AT BARD COLLEGE ON MARCH 5 “The Russians are Coming: New Sounds from Moscow and St. Petersburg” features world premiere works by contemporary Russian composers
Emily M. Darrow
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—Following Da Capo Chamber Players’ performances in 2005 at the Moscow Autumn Festival and in St. Petersburg, Russia, six contemporary Russian composers have written works for Da Capo, five of which will receive their premiere at Bard College on Sunday, March 5, at 3:00 p.m. in Olin Hall. The concert, “The Russians are Coming: New Sounds from Moscow and St. Petersburg,” is presented by The Bard Center and is free and open to the public. (The program will be repeated on Tuesday, March 7, at Merkin Concert Hall in New York City.)
“We are convinced that frequent and stimulating artistic collaborations, like this exchange, can increase understanding and rapport of peoples of diverse cultures,” says Patricia Spencer, flutist with Da Capo. “It is wonderful to have the Russian composers in attendance at the concert.” The world premieres include Elena Antonenko’s “Works,” Boris Filanovski’s “We Can’t Perform It,” Dmitri Ryabtsev’s “Enchanted Lake II,” Alexander Radvilovitch’s “Pierrot’s Dream,” and Kirill Umansky’s “Winter Landscape.” Vladimir Tarnopolski’s “Impression-Expression III” will also be performed. Antonenko, who is also a soprano, will be a guest artist, as will violist Lois Martin.
Da Capo is widely acclaimed for its virtuosity, stimulating programs, and openness to a wide spectrum of styles in new music. Its dedication to working with composers is matched by a commitment to rehearsing each piece as a living, moving, breathing entity, rather than as a fixed blueprint. Winner of the Naumburg Chamber Music Award in 1973, Da Capo has been a leader in building a strong heritage of present-day American chamber music and can point with pride to more than 90 chamber music works written especially for the ensemble by Joan Tower, Philip Glass, Harvey Sollberger, and Philippe Bodin, among many others. In April 2003, Da Capo performed at the Moscow Forum International Festival of Contemporary Music. Da Capo’s CD of work by Judith Shatin has been released on the Innova label; forthcoming recordings include chamber works by Alla Borzova. The Da Capo Chamber Players are flutist Patricia Spencer, clarinetist Meighan Stoops, violinist David Bowlin, cellist André Emelianoff, and pianist Blair McMillen.
Da Capo’s visiting Russian composer program has been made possible by a grant from the Trust for Mutual Understanding. This concert is made possible, in part, through the generosity of the Homeland Foundation and the Leon Levy Endowment at Bard College. For further information about the program, call The Bard Center at 845-758-7425.
ABOUT THE COMPOSERS
The six Russian composers are Elena Antonenko, a composer, conductor, and singer who graduated from the St. Petersburg Conservatory, where she studied under Sergey Slonimsky; Boris Filanovski, graduate of the Rimski-Korsakov State Conservatoire and currently artistic leader of eNsemble, a contemporary music group in St. Petersburg; Alexander Radvilovitch, founder and director of the St. Petersburg Sound Ways Festival and a graduate of the St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he studied piano and composition under; Dmitri Ryabtsev, known for his work in jazz and quasi-folk idioms and for performances in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Novgorod, Novosibirsk, the United States, Finland, Israel, and Estonia; Vladimir Tarnopolski, professor of composition at the Moscow Conservatory and a frequent guest of contemporary music festivals including ISCM World Music Days, Die Berliner Festspiele, Münchener Biennale, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Tage fur Neue Musik (Zurich), and Make Music Together (Boston); and Kirill Umansky, who graduated from the composition class of Nikolai Sidelnikov at the Moscow Conservatory and now frequently performs at music festivals in Russia and in the United States, Holland, Austria, England, and Norway.
ABOUT THE GUEST ARTISTS
Soprano Elena Antonenko is a regular participant in such international musical festivals as Sound Ways, Baroque and Vanguard, Musical Spring, and From Vanguard to Nowadays. As a soloist in Russia, she gives concerts in St. Petersburg and in Orthodox churches as a choir conductor. Antonenka performs variety of musical styles (classical opera arias, European baroque music, spiritual songs with organ accompaniment, folk songs, modern music, classical jazz, and vanguard), and also specializes in the many aspects of Russian music, from ancient times of paganism through the classic forms of Russian music.
Violist Lois Martin is a founding member of the Atlantic String Quartet, which is dedicated to the performance of newly written compositions. She is also principal violist for the Little Orchestra Society, Stamford Symphony, Solisti New York, OK Mozart Festival, Concordia, and String Fever. Martin is a member of the Salon Chamber Players and the American Chamber Ensemble. Her recent tours include performances with Michael Brecker, the New York City Ballet, and New York New Music. She played on the cast album of the Broadway hit Spamalot and John Zorn’s Orphée. Martin was principal violist for the Martha Graham Dance Company and played a weekend at the Jazz Standard with Chris Potter. In addition, she had the honor of playing for Pierre Boulez’s 80th birthday celebration at Carnegie Hall. Her continuing commitment to contemporary music includes performances with the Group for Contemporary Music, ISCM Chamber Players, Ensemble Sospeso, Ensemble 21, New York New Music Ensemble, Speculum Musicae, the Composers’ Guild, Da Capo Chamber Players, Composers Forum, Musicians’ Accord, and Steve Reich and Musicians. Martin is on the faculty of the Composers Conference at Wellesley College and has taught at Princeton University.
ABOUT DA CAPO
Violinist David Bowlin is a 2002 graduate of The Juilliard School, where he studied with Ronald Copes. Winner of first prize in violin at the 2003 Washington International Competition for Strings, this season marks Bowlin’s third as a member of the Da Capo Chamber Players. He is a founding member of the International Contemporary Ensemble, a uniquely structured collective of composers and instrumentalists that performs concerts in Chicago and New York, including an annual weeklong festival in Chicago in June. As a member of the Andros Quartet (a finalist in the 2003 Concert Artists’ Guild competition), he has performed traditional quartet literature in numerous venues around the New York area, including Bargemusic and Alice Tully Hall. Bowlin received a B.M. degree from the Oberlin Conservatory, where he was a student of Roland and Almita Vamos. He currently serves as Copes’s teaching assistant at Juilliard.
André Emelianoff has toured North America, Japan, Russia, Austria, and England, and given recitals throughout central Asia and the Mediterranean as an American Ambassador for the Arts, sponsored by the U.S. Information Agency. Cellist with Da Capo Chamber Players since 1976, he is also a member of the Aeolian Chamber Players and has been involved with the Music Today Ensemble. Winner of a 1985 National Endowment for the Arts Solo Recitalist Award, he has commissioned works by Aaron Kernis, Joan Tower, George Perle, Richard Wernick, Shulamit Ran, Stephen Jaffe, and Gerald Levinson. He has appeared as a guest artist with Da Camera of Houston, the New Jersey Chamber Society, and Lincoln Center Chamber Society; as a participant in the Marlboro, Chamber Music West, and Piccolo Spoleto festivals; and as a soloist with the Albany Symphony. He is on the faculty at The Juilliard School, as well as the Round Top (Texas) Festival and the Perlman Program. Emelianoff has recorded for CRI, Opus One, New World Records, Nonesuch, GM Recordings, RCA, Bridge Records, and Pro Arte.
Pianist Blair McMillen leads a varied life as soloist, chamber musician, and teacher. Hailed by the New York Times as “lustrous,” “riveting,” and “a prodigiously accomplished and exciting artist,” he has appeared at Alice Tully Hall, was soloist on a tour of Japan with the Juilliard Orchestra, and gave a much-heralded New York debut recital in 1998. As a collaborator, he has appeared with tenor Anthony Dean Griffey, Eos Orchestra, New York Woodwind Quintet, Locrian Chamber Players, Avian Orchestra, and New Juilliard Ensemble. Equally at home in both new and traditional repertoire, McMillen is a founding member of the composer/performer collective counter)induction, which holds a residency at Columbia University and was a featured ensemble at the 2004 MATA (Music at the Anthology) Festival. Recent engagements include concerto appearances with the American Ballet Theater and a solo recital juxtaposing the music of Giacinto Scelsi and Luciano Berio for the Piano Revolution series at Coumbia’s Miller Theatre. A past winner of the Sony ES Career Grant, the Juilliard Gina Bachauer Scholarship, and the National Young Artists Competition, McMillen holds degrees from Oberlin College and The Juilliard School. He has recorded for BMG/Catalyst, Koch International, CRI, Albany, and New World. After frequent guest appearances with the Da Capo Chamber Players, he became a member of the group in the fall of 2003.
“Patricia Spencer’s presence was striking and her playing was extraordinary in its control over minutiae of dynamics, pitch, and timbre, particularly in relationship to the complex, fluid electronic environment that surrounded her. The performance was the tour de force of technique, emotion, and spirituality that the piece requires; it will stand as one of the highlights of the musical season,” wrote Richard Dyer in the Boston Globe. Recent high points in Spencer’s career, devoted to new music, include her 2002 recital in Moscow for the Alternativa Festival; her premiere of Shulamit Ran’s flute concerto, Voices, at the 2000 National Flute Association convention; and her premiere of solo flute works by Louis Karchin and Eugene Lee at the Sonic Boom Festival in the fall of 2001. An exciting repertoire of pieces has been written for her, including Thea Musgrave’s Narcissus and Judith Shatin’s Kairos, which was featured on her solo CD (Neuma Records). An earlier CD, with pianist Linda Hall, features Boulez’s Sonatine, plus works by Carter, Perle, Korde, Talma, Martirano, Kreiger, and Jaffe. Both CDs received rave reviews from Fanfare and the American Record Guide. Spencer has received awards for her solo recordings and commissioning projects from the National Endowment for the Arts, Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, and Aaron Copland Fund for Music. As a recitalist and Da Capo member, she has commissioned more than 80 solo, duo, and chamber works for flute. A graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory, where she studied with Robert Willoughby, Spencer also has studied with Marcel Moyse, John Wummer, and Josef Marx. She teaches flute and chamber music at Bard College and Hofstra University.
Clarinetist Meighan Stoops is an active chamber musician, recitalist, and teacher. She has performed at Bargemusic and with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, Key West Symphony Orchestra, and Con Brio Ensemble. With the Da Capo Chamber Players she performed on John Schaefer’s New Sounds on WNYC and at MATA (Music at the Anthology). Stoops holds degrees from Northwestern University and Yale University, where she received the Lucy G. Moses Fellowship and the Dean’s Award. Her teachers have included Russell Dagon, David Shifrin, and Kalmen Opperman.
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This event was last updated on 03-06-2006