11-05 Music @ Menlo

We visit the innovative Silicon Valley region of California.  It’s not all bits and bytes and motherboards there, although we do include an audio tour of SLAC, the famous linear accelerator.  Dedicated musicians nestle in for several weeks each summer for Music-At-Menlo, a dynamic chamber music festival curated by cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han.

This program features a trio of English composers: Edward Elgar, William Walton, and Benjamin Britten, all in rarely-heard chamber works. Dvorak’s effervescent “American” quintet wraps up the program.

For more information visit http://www.musicatmenlo.org/


Vivaldi: Summer from the Four Seasons (Ani Kavafian)
Britten: A Charm of Lullabies, op. 41 (Sasha Cooke, mezzo-soprano, Inon Barnatan, piano): The Highland Bales, A Charm
Walton: Piano Quartet in D minor
Prokofiev: Piano Quintet in g minor op. 39
Elgar: Piano Quintet in A minor, op. 84: III
Dvorak: String Quintet op. 97 American

Audio Feature: a tour of SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory:

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You can listen to the entire program here:

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David Finckel, Co-Artistic Director, Cello – Cellist David Finckel’s multifaceted career as concert performer, recording artist, educator, arts administrator, and cultural entrepreneur places him in the ranks of today’s most influential classical musicians. His concert appearances as orchestral soloist, duo recitalist with pianist Wu Han, and cellist of the Grammy Award-winning Emerson String Quartet, take him to the world’s most prestigious concert series and festivals. David Finckel’s wide-ranging musical activities also include the launch of ArtistLed, classical music’s first musician-directed, Internet-based recording company. David Finckel and Wu Han serve as Artistic Directors of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.  More

Wu Han, Co-Artistic Director, Piano – Pianist Wu Han ranks among the most esteemed and influential classical musicians in the world today. She appears regularly in many prestigious venues across the United States, Europe, and the Far East as both soloist and chamber musician, and has toured extensively as duo pianist with cellist David Finckel. Wu Han’s wide-ranging musical activities include the founding of ArtistLed, classical music’s first musician-directed and Internet-based recording company. Wu Han and David Finckel serve as Artistic Directors of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.  Prior to launching [email protected], Wu Han and David Finckel served for three seasons as Artistic Directors of SummerFest La Jolla. More

Inon Barnatan, Piano – The flourishing career of pianist Inon Barnatan takes him to some of the most important music centers and festivals worldwide. Still in his twenties, Inon is gaining widespread recognition for his poetic and passionate music making, communicative performances and thoughtful and engaging programming. Inon recently performed his recital debut at the Metropolitan Museum of Arts in New York, his American concerto debut with the Houston Symphony Orchestra, as well as performances at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Concertgebouw, [email protected], Delft and Salzburg Festivals. More Photo by Marco Borggreve

Sasha Cooke, Mezzo-soprano – Radiant American mezzo-soprano Sasha Cooke caused a sensation as Kitty Oppenheimer in the Metropolitan Opera premiere of John Adams’s Doctor Atomic. She was praised in The New Yorker for her “fresh, vital portrayal, bringing a luminous tone, a generously supported musical line, a keen sense of verbal nuance, and a flair for seduction.” More Photo by Rikki Cooke

Liz Freivogel, Viola – Liz Freivogel is a member of the Jupiter String Quartet, which was formed in 2001.  It is a particularly intimate group, consisting of violinists Nelson Lee and Megan Freivogel, violist Liz Freivogel (older sister of Meg), and cellist Daniel McDonough (husband of Meg, brother-in-law of Liz). Meg and Liz grew up playing string quartets with their two brothers, Ben and J. Rehearsals were often quite raucous, but they grew to love chamber music during weekly coachings with Oliver Edel, a wonderful cellist and teacher who taught generations of students in the Washington, D.C., area. More

Jonathan Fischer, Oboe – Mr.Fischer currently serves as Associate Principal Oboe of the San Francisco Symphony. Prior to joining the San Francisco Symphony, he held the position of Assistant Principal Oboe with the Cleveland Orchestra. Jonathan Fischer has also served as Principal Oboe with the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Grant Park Symphony, and the Canadian Opera Company and as Guest Principal with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Boston Symphony, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Atlanta Symphony, the St. Louis Symphony, and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. More

Lily Francis, Viola – Lily Francis is quickly establishing herself as one of the leading violinist/violists today.  Recently a top prizewinner at the 2009 ARD Music Competition in Munich, she has performed with several of the leading orchestras in Germany, including the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Munich Chamber Orchestra and the Munich Radio Orchestra.  She made her Carnegie Weill Recital Hall debut in 2008, and plays throughout the USA and Europe. More

Ani Kavafian, Violin – Violinist Ani Kavafian is enjoying a prolific career as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician. She has performed with virtually all of America’s leading orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Pittsburgh Symphony, the Minnesota Orchestra, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of St. Louis, Delaware, Detroit, San Francisco, Atlanta, Seattle, Minneapolis, Utah, and Rochester. Her numerous solo recital engagements include performances at New York’s Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully, as well as in venues across the country. More

Beth Guterman, Viola – Violist Beth Guterman is a native of Belmont, Massachusetts, and is one of the most sought after young violists of her generation. As a chamber musician she has collaborated with Gil Shaham, Itzhak Perlman, Menahem Pressler, and members of the Guarneri, Emerson, and Orion Quartets. A member of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society Two program during the 2006-09 seasons, she recorded and will continue to record chamber works for the Deutsche Grammophon label. More

Erin Keefe, Violin – Winner of the 2006 Avery Fisher Career Grant, American violinist Erin Keefe is praised as a compelling artist who combines exhilarating temperament and fierce integrity. A top prize winner of several International Competitions, she recently took the Grand Prizes in the Valsesia Music International Violin Competition, Italy; the Torun International Violin Competition, Poland; the Schadt Competition and the Corpus Christi International String Competition, and she was the Silver Medalist in the Carl Nielsen, Sendai, Japan, and Gyeongnam, Korea, International Violin Competitions. More

Laurence Lesser, Cello – Cellist Laurence Lesser has enjoyed a multifaceted career as concert artist, teacher, and arts administrator. He was a top-prize winner in the 1966 Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow and a participant in the historic Heifetz-Piatigorsky concerts and recordings. Laurence Lesser has been soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the London Philharmonic, the New Japan Philharmonic, and other orchestras worldwide. As a chamber musician, he has participated at the Casals, Marlboro, Spoleto, and Santa Fe festivals. He was President of New England Conservatory (NEC) from 1983 to 1996. More

Miro Quartet – The Miró Quartet is an internationally performing professional classical string quartet based in Austin, Texas. The group is the Quartet-in-Residence at the University of Texas and its members are on the faculty of the Butler School of Music. Its members are Daniel Ching, violin, Sandy Yamamoto, violin, John Largess, viola and Joshua Gindele, cello.  The Quartet was founded in 1995 by four students at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. In 1997, two members left the group and were replaced by two new members who have remained in the group until this day. More

Todd Palmer, Clarinet – Todd Palmer is distinguished by a virtuosity and ebullient stage presence that have brought him a most successful concert career. He made his New York debut at Carnegie Recital Hall as a winner of the 1987 Artists International Competition, and in 1988, he won the Grand Prize in the Ima Hogg Young Artist Competition in Houston (the first wind player to win this prestigious competition!) A winner of the 1990 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, Mr. Palmer was enthusiastically received in recitals in the 1991 Young Concert Artists Series in New York and at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. More

Scott Pinge, Bass – Scott Pingel began playing the double bass at age 17 because of a strong interest in jazz, Latin and classical music. In 2004, at age 29, he became the principal bass of the San Francisco Symphony. Previously he served as principal bass of the Charleston Symphony Orchestra, performed with the Metropolitan Opera, the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood, the Metamorphosen Chamber Orchestra and served as guest principal with the National Arts Center Orchestra in Canada. As a chamber musician he has collaborated with such luminaries as Yo-Yo Ma, Wu Han, Joseph Silverstein, Yefim Bronfman and members of the Emerson, St. Lawrence, Miro and Pacifica Quartets. More

Arnaud Sussmann, Violin – Twenty-four year old violinist Arnaud Sussmann is quickly establishing a reputation as a multi-faceted and compelling artist, earning the highest praise from both critics and audiences alike. He has performed as a soloist throughout the United States, Central America, Europe, and Asia at many renowned venues such as Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Smithsonian Museum and the Louvre Museum. Mr. Sussmann has recently appeared with the New York Philharmonic, the American Symphony Orchestra, the Monaco Chamber Orchestra, the Nice Orchestra, the Orchestre des Pays de la Loire, the El Salvador National Symphony Orchestra and the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra. More