The Baroque period was a time of extraordinary innovation. Polish countertenor Jakub Józef Orliński is adding a whole new dimension to this old music to make it sound so new. The singer showcased his talents on January 31 at Carnegie Hall.
Instead of following the typical classical music handbook, conductor Andrew Gourlay decided to write his own. As Music Director of the Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León (OSCyL) in Spain, Andrew and the OSCyL announced this fall it launched its own recording label. Now, a few months later, the organization released its first recording, Rachmaninov: The Isle of the Dead / Symphony No. 2.
“For the first recording on our new label, we wanted to show what the orchestra can do, and what better way than with major symphonic repertoire?” Andrew said.
The only thing violinist Kristin Lee wants people to remember about her is her honesty in expressing her love for music. Her goal every time she steps on the stage or curates a program is that it comes off genuinely and that she can be as transparent as possible.
Award-winning pianist Seong-Jin Cho knows how to attract a crowd, which is what he has been doing ever since he stepped into the spotlight when he captured first prize at the 2015 International Chopin Piano Competition in Warsaw.
Rachmaninoff’s deeply Romantic symphony envelops the listener while the spirit of Beethoven hovers nearby as pianist Yefim Bronfman performs with the New York Philharmonic, led by Maestro Jaap van Zweden.
During the middle of a bleak January, David Geffen Hall in Lincoln Center was filled with sweeping melodies, lush orchestrations, inspired lyrical passages, and dramatic emotions.
Conductor Shiyeon Sung found her passion for classical music at a young age, through starting piano at 4 years old and her mother’s love for the same music. Though she thrived as a pianist and won many youth competitions, she developed a problem with her arm and had to stop playing for a while.
Pianist Karim Said moved to the UK from his native Jordan at age 11 without his family to study music. It is through this independence and the structure of Purcell School that have influenced his music-making.
German pianist Frank Dupree can be described with one word: versatility. He doesn’t think in stereotypes and has experimented with a variety of musical genres and instruments.
“Why isn’t it possible that one person plays a Beethoven Piano Sonata and improvises over a song by Duke Ellington in the same concert? I say it is! It’s all about making music,” said Frank, winner of the 2018 Opus Klassik Award for Piano Concerto Recording of the Year (20th/21st century).
French-Canadian pianist Andree-Ann Deschenes specializes in familiarly danceable yet traditionally influenced classical music from Latin American countries. So it makes sense that she would be drawn to Jayme Ovalle, a lesser-known Brazilian composer.
Baritone Holger Falk thinks an authentic artistic expression is always connected to real life. “The work and the transformation I do and have in my ‘real life’ always allow and enforce different artistic possibilities,” he said.
For Russian-American violinist Yevgeny Kutik, family and history play a center role in his life. Arriving at age 5 as a refugee from the USSR, the hardship, work, and success that went along with it continually inspires his work.
“Exploring my cultural heritage and background has compelled me to move in unexpected directions as an artist,” he said.
Flemish composer and musician Wim Henderickx trusts his intuition. It is through this intuition he has become successful at his craft, with releasing albums, collaborating with different musical groups, and creating beautiful works of art. He is also a professor at Royal Conservatoire in Antwerp and at the Conservatoire in Amsterdam.
Despite her young age, success follows accordionist Hanzhi Wang. She is the first accordionist to join the roster of Young Concert Artists in its 57-year history, making her debut in New York this past fall. If that wasn’t enough, the record label Naxos releases its first-ever solo accordion album, Hanzhi’s On the Path to H.C. Andersen.
French Canadian pianist Alexandra Stréliski is inspired by emotions, people, and the experiences she lived. “I cannot make a distinction between that and the way I write,” she said. This is why her work touched many emotions to those her listen to her work, recently via Jean-Marc Vallée’s films Dallas Buyers Club (2013) and Demolition (2016), as well as the trailer of the acclaimed HBO series Big Little Lies (2017).
Ukranian pianist Antonii Baryshevski hopes that the one thing his music is remember for is touching souls. His lifelong dream has always been to travel all over the world performing at the highest level, and this pianist is doing just that, with the culmination of his six-year journey with Messaien’s momentous two-hour cycle called Vingt Regards sur l’Enfant Jésus.
The Jupiter Quartet is a family affair. For more than 15 years, violinist Meg Freivogel has played with her sister, violist Liz Freivogel; her husband, cellist Daniel McDonough; and her good friend, violinist Nelson Lee, as this musical foursome.
The award-winning Emerson Quartet tries to make sure that music feels alive, that in the moment of performance, the group engages with each other and with the audience in the communal experience of these seminal works as well as with new music that has arisen from the great tradition.
SANSARA Artistic Director Tom Herring is struck by the similarities of cooking and music-making, especially when it comes to directing or conducting an ensemble. The need for experimentation and occasional disaster is important in both. Tom isn’t that great at following recipes, with the inevitable veering off course that comes with interesting consequences.