Filed under: News
Special guest Seicento Baroque Ensemble
The Boulder Chamber Orchestra (BCO) will present “A Gift of Music,” a special holiday concert with guest Seicento Baroque Ensemble on Friday, December 19, 2014 at the First United Methodist Church of Boulder at 7:30 PM and on Saturday, December 20, 2014 at the Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church of Denver at 7:30 PM.
The concert includes:
• Vivaldi, Gloria
• Richard Toensing, When Beings of Fire Sang Praises with Beings of Clay
• Special Holiday Selections
Event: “A Gift of Music” – Boulder Chamber Orchestra
December 19, 2014 7:30 pm at the First United Methodist Church of Boulder, 1421 Spruce St., Boulder, CO 80302
December 20, 2014 7:30 pm at the Montview Boulevard Presbyterian Church of Denver, 1980 Dahlia St., Denver, CO 80220
Admission: $25 General Admission, $18 Seniors, $12 Students, $5 Children 12 & Under
Box Office: Call (303) 583-1278 or visit http://www.boulderchamberorchestra.org for tickets.
About the Boulder Chamber Orchestra
The Boulder Chamber Orchestra (BCO) is a non-profit organization committed to providing exceptional chamber music programming, education, and outreach, as well as an outlet for talented local artists in the Front Range Community.
For More Information Contact:
Jennifer Slater, Managing Director, Boulder Chamber Orchestra
(303) 583-1278 email@example.com
Filed under: Reviews | Tags: Andrew Litton, Antonin Dvořák, Colorado Symphony, Jason Shafer, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Silver Ainomäe, William Hill
Saturday evening, November 22, the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Andrew Litton, performed two enormous works: Antonín Dvořák’s Cello Concerto in B minor, Opus 104 with Principal Cellist, Silver Ainomäe, and Sergei Rachmaninoff’s Symphony Nr. 2 in E minor, Opus 27. It pleases me greatly to let you readers know that Boettcher Hall was almost full. It is my sincere hope that the audience attended in anticipation of Silver Ainomäe’s performance of the Dvořák because he is a true artist and an amazing cellist. In addition, he must be one of the youngest Principal Cellists in the United States.
I will quote from the biographical statement on his website:
“From his 2000 solo debut with the Estonian National Orchestra, Silver Ainomäe has performed in over 30 countries, including concertos with the Finnish Radio Orchestra, Zürich Chamber Orchestra, Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, Polish Radio Orchestra, and the Colorado Symphony. He has won prizes in international cello competitions in Warsaw, Helsinki, and Tongyeong (South Korea) and awards in London and Rome.
“Born in Estonia, Silver moved with his family to Finland in 1990. He was accepted into the celebrated Sibelius Academy to study with Hannu Kiiski and Arto Noras, ultimately receiving his Masters degree. He went on to London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama and later to the Razumovsky Academy, where he studied with Oleg Kogan.
“Currently Principal Cellist of the Colorado Symphony, Silver has served as guest Principal with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Baltimore Symphony, the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Helsinki Philharmonic, and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. He is a founding member of the Hwang-Ainomäe-Hsu Trio (with CSO Concertmaster Yumi Hwang-Williams and Steinway Artist Hsing-ay Hsu), which the Denver Post described as ‘a powerhouse ensemble.’”
The Dvořák concerto begins with a lengthy introduction in which two themes are stated, but when the solo cello begins, it plays the first theme. I was absolutely struck by Ainomäe’s opening attacks: the germinal notes of the theme are marked to be quite emphatic, but they reminded me very much of Janos Starker’s opening, which was always very firm with strong strokes of the bow. However, many cellists don’t play it with quite the right emphasis, and it was wonderful to hear Ainomäe be so assertive. It left little doubt that he knows exactly what he wants to do with this work. On the other hand, why wouldn’t it be that way? He is a wonderful cellist who understands what the composer asked for. His double stops were sensational and his playing in the A theme of this concerto was quite vigorous. The B theme of the first movement is lyrical and lush, and Ainomäe gave it unparalleled warmth. I wish I knew what kind of a cello Silver Ainomäe owns. It has a remarkably lush sound, rich and full, and it seemed quite easy for Ainomäe to produce such a sonorous melodic line. This richness carried over into the second movement in a wonderful theme from “Leave me alone” from Dvořák’s Four Songs, Op. 82. Dvořák had inserted this theme as a dedication to his sister-in-law, Josefina Kaunitzová, who was seriously ill. When he returned home from America, her health deteriorated, and she died in 1895. At one time, he had been in love with her, but she had rejected him. Through several turns of life’s vicissitudes, he eventually married her sister, and in order that this concerto would be a memorial to her, he completely revised the coda, using this song for the second time. The third movement of this concerto begins with hints from the first movement themes and contains a marvelous duet between the solo cello and the concertmaster.
Throughout this concerto, every section in the orchestra seems to receive special attention from Dvořák. The woodwind and brass sections were outstanding, and it was truly apparent that the orchestra enjoyed supporting one of their own as soloist. Since Maestro Andrew Litton became the Music Director of the Colorado Symphony, there has been a marked change in their approach to performing. It reflects a new enthusiasm that I have mentioned before, and a new determination from each musician in the orchestra to demonstrate their excitement at having Maestro Litton as their conductor.
Silver Ainomäe received a very long standing ovation, and he graciously performed a cello quartet with the first three seats in the cello section. I wish he had announced what piece they were playing, but I must say it did sound like it could have been Elgar.
Following the intermission, Maestro Litton and the Colorado Symphony performed Rachmaninoff’s Symphony Nr. 2 in E minor. In early 1906, Rachmaninoff moved to Dresden from Moscow because of the rumblings of political unrest, and the fact that he was so busy in Russia as a conductor and composer, he had no time for performing on the piano. After his arrival in Dresden, the move proved to be so conducive to his musical life that he wrote his first piano sonata, and the second symphony. This symphony received rave reviews from everyone who heard it.
This is an absolutely enormous work, and I must say I was quite pleased that Maestro Litton knows this piece so incredibly well that he chose to conduct from memory. He conducted every nuance of every phrase magnificently, and missed none of the rhythmic jabs that are so characteristic of Rachmaninoff. The detail with which he conducted from memory was truly astounding: nothing was omitted and nothing was left to chance. The first movement begins with a very long introduction which contains the origins for everything that follows. The entire symphony uses the full resources of every member of the orchestra, and every time I have heard this performed live, I have been struck by how difficult it must be for everyone. William Hill on timpani was sensational throughout. Jason Shafer, Principal Clarinet, has one of the most beautiful melodic lines in symphonic history in the third movement. Its mellowness is due not only to his outstanding ability, but Rachmaninoff scored the work for A clarinet, rather than B-flat clarinet. Yumi Hwang-Williams took over this theme, and continued its incredible nuance with great gentleness. It is impossible to name everyone in the orchestra, but you readers must understand the high level of ability of every member of the Colorado Symphony. In such a difficult work as this, it was spellbinding to hear such complete musicality and musicianship coming from everyone on stage in such an earnest and compelling manner. The Colorado Symphony Orchestra as a whole simply proved that it is comprised of some of the finest musicians in the country. The audience responded to this performance with a standing ovation, and I must say that the audience seems to have grown more sophisticated since Maestro Litton has taken over the conductorship. When I make a statement like that, it means that Maestro Litton and the orchestra have re-educated the audience, and given them a new standard by which to judge the Colorado Symphony. This was a performance that demonstrated the mutuality of respect of everyone on stage.
Filed under: News
Combining music, film, science and stimulating discussion, Project Youth and Chamber Music’s (PYCh) second annual OFF the HOOK Winter Music Festival offers Valentine’s week-end festivities for all lovers of the arts and science.
The event will be led by Bruce Adolphe, the education director of the Chamber Music Society at Lincoln Center in New York City, and a composer who teaches at The Julliard School. He also stars as the Piano Puzzler for Public Radio’s Performance Today and is co-artistic director of OFF the HOOK (OtH). Held on February 13 – 16, this winter extension of PYCh’s summer chamber music festival includes workshops, and a performance event based on a soon a new film, Einstein’s Light. In addition, Adolphe joins a visit to the Fort Collins Symphony Guild’s Musical Zoo as narrator for cretaceous fun in Tyrannosaurus with a performance by the Fort Collins Symphony Orchestra.
“This year, we’re venturing outside Fort Collins’ borders so Boulder and Denver will experience the magic of Bruce’s music and his great on-stage personality,” says Executive Artistic Director and Founder, Jephta Bernstein.
Clips from the upcoming film, Einstein’s Light: Relativity for Lovers, with Adolphe’s original film score will be shown at the Fiske Planetarium in Boulder with hands-on science exploration in the lobby prior to the concert. It will also be featured at Metro State University’s Piano Celebration in Denver.
Einstein’s Light, a documentary by Nickolas Barris, examines Albert Einstein’s love of music as a violinist, how it inspired his thinking, and how his ideas continue to permeate science, even today. It will premiere at the United Nation’s kick-off celebration of the 100th Anniversary of Einstein’s theory of relativity to be held in Paris in January 2015. For PYCh’s winter festival, Adolphe will lead audiences through short selections from the film, and talk about his compositional process. He will perform his original film score on piano with violinists Clara Lyon (Denver and Boulder) and Emily Ondracek-Peterson (Fort Collins). CU Astrophysicist Dr. Michael Shull will join the discussion and tie Einstein’s scientific theories to the science of today. (The full version Einstein’s Light will be shown during the opening week of OFF the HOOK Summer Chamber Festival in June, 2015.)
The festival demonstrates PYCh’s mission to create life-long creative thinkers, cultural advocates and appreciators of the arts through study, exposure and performance of chamber music, for youth and their communities regardless of their financial access.
“By showing the relationship between science, music and thinking, and delivering it through film and live music performance, people from all walks of life get a fresh view of these three areas,” Bernstein says.
Founded in 2012, PYCh (pronounced “pitch”) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit music education organization that works with students at no cost during their In-School program and brings high-level professional performances by local, Colorado chamber musicians to their schools.
Children exposed to live performance are much more likely to build their musical interests and skills. Neuroscientist and music educator, Anita Collins, claims “specific cognitive benefits (are like a) shower of fireworks going off in your brain” when playing an instrument. Her research has shown that playing an instrument is inherently different in mental benefits compared to sports or the study of other arts.
For more information on PYCh, specific dates and times of festival events, refer to PYCh’s website at projectchambermusic.org.
Filed under: News
About Ron Miles:
Denver trumpeter Ron Miles’ resume includes time with Bill Frisell, Madeleine Peyroux, Don Byron, the Ellington Orchestra, and Fred Hess’ Boulder Creative Music Ensemble. Besides being solicited all over the world for his unique sound, Ron is a staple of the Denver jazz scene and his recent releases as band leader show off his skills as a composer and arranger as well as a “phenomenally gifted trumpeter” (Bill Milkowski).
A resident of Denver since he was 11, he began playing the trumpet seriously in junior high school and studied music at the University of Denver (1981-1985) and the Manhattan School of Music (1986). Miles says that living in Denver has given him an appreciation for a broad array of musical styles that he might not have acquired elsewhere. “Country and Western music, Latin, jazz, and rock are all popular here, so you find yourself trying out a lot of ideas with other musicians and gaining a healthy respect for the music,” he explains.
Ron Miles was widely recognized as a musical director and arranger with the release of Ginger Baker’s Coward of the County (Atlantic 1999). His compositions anchor that record and highlight the varied influences from which Ron draws inspiration. Hailed as an inventive composer and gifted trumpeter on his solo releases, Ron cruised through the 1990s with a series of well-received releases on Gramavision (My Cruel Heart, Woman’s Day) and Capri (Witness, Ron Miles Trio).
Saturday December 20, 7:00 PM and 9:00 PM
Read a Review: http://jazzdagama.com/reviews/cds/ron-miles-circuit-rider/
For Bookings or more info contact:
930 Lincoln St.
Denver, CO 80203
Filed under: News
Four concerts with nationally renowned soloists
The critically acclaimed Colorado Bach Ensemble will again be presenting performances of Handel’s Messiah in four Front Range locations on December 18th through the 21st. The ensemble, made up of professional singers and players, has thrilled thousands in recent years with its Messiah performances in Denver, Boulder and Fort Collins.
As with previous years, the ensemble has engaged singers of national and international renown for the solo roles. They include soprano Mireille Asselin, mezzo-soprano Abigail Nims, tenor Derek Chester, and baritone Andrew Garland. Colorado Bach Ensemble Artistic Director James Kim will conduct.
As with previous years, the ensemble will be using the celebrated Watkins Shaw edition of Messiah, which brings listeners much closer to how Handel wrote and performed the work. The performers of the Colorado Bach Ensemble number close to the forces Handel used in the performances he led during his lifetime.
Concerts will take place on Thursday, December 18 at Montview Presbyterian Church in Denver, Friday, December 19 at Bethany Lutheran Church in Cherry Hills Village, Saturday, December 20 at First United Methodist Church in Boulder, and Sunday, December 21 at the University Center for the Arts in Fort Collins.
All performances begin at 7:00 pm except the Fort Collins performance which will begin at 4:00 pm.
Ticket prices are $25 for adults and $5 for students (general admission) and can be purchased in advance online at http://www.coloradobachensemble.com or (as available) at the door at each performance.
Handel’s Messiah, a Holiday Tradition
Performed by the chorus and orchestra of the Colorado Bach Ensemble
James Kim, Artistic Director, conducting.
Mireille Asselin, Soprano
Abigail Nims, Mezzo Soprano
Derek Chester, Tenor
Andrew Garland, Baritone
Performance Dates and Locations
Thursday, December 18, 7:00 pm
Montview Presbyterian Church, 1980 Dahlia Street, Denver
Friday, December 19, 7:00 pm
Bethany Lutheran Church, 4500 E Hampden Avenue, Cherry Hills Village
Saturday, December 20, 7:00 pm
First United Methodist Church, 1421 Spruce Street, Boulder
Sunday, December 21, 4:00 pm
Edna Rizley Griffin Concert Hall, 1400 Remington Street, Fort Collins
Tickets for all performances: $25 adults, $5 students available online at http://www.coloradobachensemble.org, or as available at the door at each performance.
Soloist & James Kim Web pages
For more information contact:
Filed under: News
The Ars Nova Singers, Boulder’s nationally recognized ensemble of 38 choral musicians, will present their annual holiday concerts, December Reflections, in four performances in December. The program includes special guest artists Christina Jennings, flute and Matthew Dane, viola.
The performances will be held:
Saturday, December 6, 7:30 p.m. – St. John’s Episcopal Church, 1419 Pine Street, Boulder
Sunday, December 7, 4:00 p.m. – St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 1600 Grant Street, Denver
Friday, December 12, 7:30 p.m. – St. John’s Episcopal Church, 1419 Pine Street, Boulder
Saturday, December 13, 2:00 p.m. – Bethany Lutheran Church, 4500 E. Hampden Blvd, Englewood
Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors, $5 for college students, and youth. Tickets are on sale at our website: http://www.arsnovasingers.com or by phone: (303) 499-3165. Advance purchase is recommended; the Boulder performances are expected to sell out.
Artistic Director Thomas Edward Morgan: “Our annual holiday program has become a valued community tradition, recognized for providing unusual, little-heard music for the season. As Artistic Director, this is one of most challenging concerts of the season to assemble, constructing a program that balances novelty and tradition, mystery and jubilation, familiar melodies with innovative new sounds.”
The program begins in the medieval era with a sequence hymn in Gregorian chant and music from 15th- and 16th-century England, with works by John Plummer and Robert Parsons.
The ensemble will present several works featuring our guest artists, including the rarely performed Magnificat by the internationally acclaimed Colorado composer Jean Berger (1909-2002), scored for solo soprano, flute, percussion, and choir. This work will feature Christina Jennings, Associate Professor of Flute at the University of Colorado in Boulder. Music for viola and choir by Ola Gjeilo and John Ferguson will feature our other guest artist, violist Matthew Dane.
Ars Nova is recognized as a leading interpreter of modern music, and the program will include contemporary works by Trond Kverno, Peter-Anthony Togni, Andrzej Koszewski, and Terre Roches (of the famous trio of Irish-American sisters known as The Roches). Traditional carols in fresh arrangements by Stephen Paulus (who recently passed away) and Ars Nova Artistic Director Thomas Edward Morgan will also be performed.
For further information on the program or the ensemble, please visit our website, or contact Artistic Director Tom Morgan: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ars Nova’s 29th season is made possible in part by grants from the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (Boulder County); the Boulder Arts Commission; the Boulder County Arts Alliance; Colorado Creative Industries; the Schramm Foundation; the Avenir Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. The performances in the season are accessible to persons with disabilities. For complete accessibility information, please contact the Ars Nova Singers office at (303) 499-3165.
Christina Jennings, flute and Matthew Dane, viola
Flutist Christina Jennings is praised for virtuoso technique, rich tone, and command of a wide range of literature featuring works from Bach to Zwilich. The Houston Press declared: “Jennings has got what it takes: a distinctive voice, charisma, and a pyrotechnic style that works magic on the ears.” Ms. Jennings enjoys a musical career made up of diverse performing and recording, collaborations with living composers, and work guiding young musicians. Ms. Jennings is the winner of numerous competitions including Concert Artists Guild, Houston Symphony’s Ima Hogg, and The National Flute Association Young Artists.
Active as a concerto soloist, Ms. Jennings has appeared with over fifty orchestras including the Utah and Houston Symphonies. In 2009 she premiered concertos written for her by Carter Pann and Laura Elise Schwendinger. The Washington Post described her performance of the Jonathan Leshnoff Concerto with the Fairfax Symphony as a “spirited, quicksilver performance.”
In great demand as a teacher, Ms. Jennings is Associate Professor of Flute at the University of Colorado Boulder, and on the summer faculties of Greenwood Music Camp and ARIA. She has also taught at Texas and Sarasota Music Festivals. In 2008 she founded The Panoramic Flutist Seminar with Leone Buyse in Boulder. Trained in the Dalcroze Eurhythmics method, Christina’s teaching incorporates embodied movement. In recent seasons she has presented master classes at The Juilliard School, Rice University, the Peabody Institute, and the Longy School of Music. She received her Bachelor and Master’s degrees at The Juilliard School, and her principal teachers include Carol Wincenc, Leone Buyse, George Pope, and Jeanne Baxtresser. http://www.christinajennings.com
Matthew Dane serves as Principal Violist of the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra in Houston, Assistant Principal of Arizona Musicfest, and is a member of the Baroque Chamber Orchestra of Colorado. Chamber music festival appearances include OK Mozart, Portland (Maine), Chamber Music Quad Cities (Iowa), Ruby Mountains (Nevada), Land’s End (Calgary), Snake River (CO), and Tanglewood. With the Boulder Piano Quartet and Jon Manasse he recorded quintets of Lowell Liebermann for Koch Records. Dane has appeared as soloist with the Oklahoma City Philharmonic, BCOC, ROCO, and the St. Martin’s Chamber Choir among others; his chamber performances have been broadcast on NPR’s Performance Today and BBC’s Channel 3.
Dane co-founded the Brightmusic Ensemble in Oklahoma City. Summers Dane teaches at Greenwood Music Camp for highschoolers in Cummington, Massachusetts and also teaches a well-received Boulder Violist Session. Past faculty appointments include the University of Colorado, Metro State University, and the University of Oklahoma, where he earned tenure. He actively maintains a private teaching studio in Boulder. His Doctoral Document, which examines the teaching influence of pedagogue Karen Tuttle, circulates widely among amateur and professional violists nationwide. He is the proud owner of a newly-commissioned viola d’amore made by Martin Biller. Dane served the viola community as Editor of the Journal of the American Viola Society 2004-2008 as a Viola Society Board member at both the local and national levels. http://www.daneviola.com