Menuhin Competition postponed to 2021; Richmond Symphony calls off spring concerts

The Menuhin Competition for young violinists, scheduled for May in Richmond, has been postponed for one year. Organizers have rescheduled the competition to May 13-23, 2021.

“All of us involved in the Menuhin Competition Richmond 2020 regret the need to postpone the event, but recognize the imperative to avoid any large gatherings until the COVID-19 danger has lifted,” David Fisk, executive director of the Richmond Symphony, said in a prepared statement. “The city is ready, our partners are ready, and during the coming year, we’ll work to make next year’s competition even bigger and better than before.”

The 44 violinists who qualified for the competition will be invited to compete next year. The participation of contestants, as well as judges, guest artists and conductors engaged for 2020, is expected to be settled later in the spring.

Tickets already sold for festival events will be honored next year.

For information on donation of tickets, exchanges or refunds, go to http://www.menuhincompetition.org

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The Richmond Symphony also has canceled or postponed its spring performances. Cancellations include April Masterworks, Rush Hour, Metro Collection and Youth Orchestra concerts, as well as Menuhin Competition events in May. The “Richmond’s Finest” concert with the Commonwealth Bluegrass Band has been rescheduled to June 14, the “Star Wars: the Empire Strikes Back” concert has been rescheduled to June 19, and “Violins of Hope” and “Chesterfield Live! Big Tent Festival” have been postponed to dates to be announced.

Details: (804) 788-1212; http://www.richmondsymphony.com

Virtual concertgoing (5)

Symphonic music from all over the map:

Enescu: “Romanian Rhapsody” No. 1
SWR Symphony Orchestra
Tito Muñoz conducting
(recorded 2019, Stuttgart):

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Mozart: Sinfonia concertante in E flat major, K. 364
Sergei Khachatrian, violin
Candida Thompson, viola
Amsterdam Sinfonietta
(recorded 2015, Amsterdam):

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Martinů: Symphony No. 4
Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra
Andrés Orozco-Estrada conducting
(recorded 2016, Frankfurt):

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Rodrigo: “Concierto de Aranjuez”
Pepe Romero, guitar
Danish Radio Symphony Orchestra
Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos conducting
(recorded 2013, Copenhagen):

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Respighi: “Vetrate di Chiesa” (“Church Windows”)
Orchestra dell’Accademia di Santa Cecilia
Vasily Petrenko conducting
(recorded 2011, Rome):

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Dvořák: Cello Concerto in B minor
Yo-Yo Ma, cello
Czech Philharmonic
Jiří Bělohlávek conducting
(recorded 2015, Prague):

Virtual concertgoing (4)

For our fourth installment, six choral masterpieces:

Jan Dismas Zelenka: “Missa Divi Xaverii”
Collegium Vocale 1704
Collegium 1704
Václav Luks conducting
(recorded 2014, Utrecht, Netherlands):

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Stravinsky: “Symphony of Psalms”
Netherlands Radio Choir
Netherlands Radio Philharmonic
Peter Dijkstra conducting
(recorded 2019, Utrecht, Netherlands):

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Brahms: “Ein deutsches Requiem” (“A German Requiem”)
Iwona Sobotka, soprano
Andrè Schuen, baritone
MDR Radio Chorus
MDR Symphony Orchestra
Risto Joost conducting
(recorded 2017, Dresden):

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Pēteris Vasks: “Dona nobis pacem”
Le Choeur l’Art Neuf & orchestra
Pierre Barrette conducting
(recorded 2017, Montreal):

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Haydn: “Missa in tempore belli” (“Mass in Time of War”)
Yeree Suh, soprano
Ulrike Mayer, alto
Uwe Gottswinter, tenor
Christof Hartkopf, bass
Regensburger Domspatzen
L’Orfeo Baroque Orchestra
Roland Büchner conducting
(recorded 2013, Regensburg, Germany):

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J.S. Bach: Magnificat in D major, BWV 243
Julia Doyle & Hana Blažíková, sopranos
Maarten Engeltjes, alto
Thomas Hobbs, tenor
Christian Immler, bass
Netherlands Bach Society
Jos van Veldhoven conducting
(recorded 2014, Naarden, Netherlands):

Virtual concertgoing (3)

For our third installment, musical theater:

Mozart: “Die Zauberflöte” (“The Magic Flute”)
Paul Groves (Tamino)
Genia Kühmeier (Tamina)
Christian Gerhaher (Papageno)
Diana Damrau (Queen of the Night)
René Pape (Sarastro)
Burkhard Ulrich (Monstatos)
Irena Bespalovaite (Papagena)
Inga Kalna, Karine Deshayes & Ekaterina Gubanova (Three Ladies)
Vienna Boys Choir members (Three Boys)
Vienna State Opera Chorus
Vienna Philharmonic
Riccardo Muti conducting
Pierre Audi, stage director
(in German, English subtitles)
(recorded 2006, Salzburg Festival):

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Verdi: “Otello”
Gregory Kunde (Otello)
Ermonela Jaho (Desdemona)
George Petean (Iago)
Gemma Coma-Alabert (Emilia)
Alexey Dolgov (Cassio)
Vicenç Esteve (Roderigo)
Fernando Radó (Ludovico)
Isaac Galán (Montano)
Orchestra & Chorus of Teatro Real, Madrid
Renato Palumbo conducting
David Alden, stage director
(in Italian, English subtitles)
(recorded 2016):

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Rameau: “Les Boréades” (concert presentation)
Deborah Cachet (Alphise)
Caroline Weynants (Sémire/L’Amour/Polimnie)
Juan Sancho (Abaris)
Benedikt Kristjánsson (Calisis)
Benoît Arnould (Adamas)
Nicolas Brooymans (Borée)
Tomás Šelc (Borilée)
Lukáš Zeman (Apollon)
Collegium Vocale 1704
Collegium 1704
Václav Luks conducting
(in French, no subtitles)
(recorded 2018, Utrecht Festival):

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Prokofiev: “Romeo and Juliet”
Robert Bolle (Romeo)
Misty Copeland (Juliet)
Antonino Sutera (Mercutio)
Mick Zeni (Tybalt)
Marco Agostino (Benvolio)
Riccardo Massimi (Paris)
Alessandro Grillo (Lord Capulet)
Emanuela Montanari (Lady Capulet)
Luigi Saruggia (The Duke)
Chiara Borgia (Rosaline)
Monica Vaglietti (The Nurse)
Matthew Endicott (Friar Laurence)
Kenneth MacMillan, choreography
La Scala Ballet & Orchestra
Patrick Fournillier conducting
(recorded 2017, Milan):

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Gilbert & Sullivan: “The Mikado”
Robert Lloyd (The Mikado)
Richard Suart (Ko-Ko)
Anthony Gregory (Nanki-Poo)
Mary Bevan (Yum-Yum)
Graeme Danby (Pooh-Bah)
Yvonne Howard (Katisha)
George Humphreys (Pish-Tush)
Rachael Lloyd (Pitti-Sing)
English National Opera Orchestra & Chorus
Fergus Macleod conducting
Jonathan Miller, stage director
(in English, English subtitles)
(recorded 2015, London):

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Janáček: “Jenůfa”
Pavla Vykopalová (Jenůfa)
Jitka Zerhauová (Grandmother Buryjovka)
Jaroslav Březina (Laca Klemeň)
Tomáš Juhás (Števa Buryja)
Szilvia Rálik (Kostelnička)
Ivan Kusnjer (Stárek)
Ladislav Mlejnek (The Mayor)
Jarmila Balážová (The Mayor’s Wife)
Tereza Kyzlinková (Karolka)
Stanislava Jirků (Pastuchyňa)
Lenka Schallenberger (Barena)
Martina Mádlová (Jana)
Ivona Špičková (Aunt)
National Theatre Brno Janáček Opera Orchestra & Chorus
Marko Ivanović conducting
Martin Glaser, stage director
(in Czech, English subtitles)
(recorded 2019, Brno, Czech Republic):

Shanghai Quartet’s second violinist resigns

The Shanghai Quartet, former quartet-in-residence at the University of Richmond and still a regular visitor to UR’s Modlin Arts Center, has accepted the immediate resignation of its second violinist, Yi-Wen Jiang.

Norman Lebrecht, on his Slipped Disc blog, writes that the violinist was dismissed because of “some offensive remarks he made online.” Jiang has apologized for his comments:

http://slippedisc.com/2020/03/quartet-fires-violinist-over-virus-comments/

Virtual concertgoing (2)

This time, six performances of solo and chamber works:

J.S. Bach: “Overture in the French Style” in B minor, BWV 831
András Schiff, piano
(recorded June 11, 2010 at Bachfest Leipzig):

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Brahms: Piano Quintet in F minor, Op. 34
Nils Anders Mortensen, piano
Arvid Engegård & Liv Hilde Klokk, violins
Ida Bryhn, viola
Jan Clemens Carlsen, cello
(date & venue not listed):

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Bartók: “Contrasts”
Soovin Kim, violin
David Shifrin, clarinet
Gloria Chien, piano
(recorded July 2, 2019 at Chamber Music Northwest Festival, Portland, OR):

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Mendelssohn: Quartet in F minor, Op. 80
Shanghai Quartet
(recorded 2016 at Brevard College in North Carolina):

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Messiaen: “Quartet for the End of Time”
Israeli Chamber Project:
Daniel Baird, violin
Michal Korman, cello
Tibi Cziger, clarinet
Yael Kareth, piano
(recorded March 2017 at Elma Arts Center, Israel):

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Buxtehude: Toccata in D minor, BuxWV 155
Nathan Laube, organ
(recorded July 2, 2015 at Abbey Chapel, Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, MA):

 

Virtual concertgoing (1)

No recording, audio or video, can really substitute for being there at a live performance. As things stand now, though, “socially distant” – and chronologically distant – videos are the best alternative we’ve got to attending live concerts and music-theater performances.

Starting today, I’ll be offering virtual programs, a selection of live performances posted on YouTube and the websites of performing ensembles and presenters.

I’ve enlisted a circle of knowledgeable friends to help mine for music-video gold. You’re welcome to join that circle. If you discover a performance worth sharing, please e-mail your suggestion(s) to cabustard@gmail.com

My/our criteria for selecting performances are primarily artistry, followed closely by the sonic and visual quality of productions, and then by ease of accessibility for streamed videos.

You’ll notice a preponderance of selections from Western European countries and from Japan; that’s because their state broadcasters and arts-video services regularly record and broadcast live classical-music performances. Ensembles and presenters in the US are comparatively late to the game.

How well these videos play depends on the capacity of your home electronica. If your computer or device is connected to quality desktop speakers or a freestanding audio-component system, naturally the sound will be better. If you’re limited to the speakers of a laptop or phone, you’ll probably get better sound by using headphones; most laptops have a headphone jack. Take care with headphone volume to prevent damage to your hearing.

To launch this series, I’ve chosen excellent performances six of the most widely appealing symphonic works. Chamber and choral works, opera and dance selections will follow in later installments.

Today’s selections:

Dvořák: Symphony No. 7 in D minor
Vienna Philharmonic, Herbert Blomstedt conducting
(recorded Sept. 23, 2018 at the Musikvereinsaal, Vienna)

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Vaughan Williams: “Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis”
BBC Symphony Orchestra, Andrew Davis conducting
(recorded in Gloucester Cathedral, site of the work’s premiere in 1910)

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Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K. 491
Lucas Debargue, piano
Moscow Chamber Orchestra, Alexey Utkin conducting
(recorded June 24, 2015 at the Tchaikovsky Competition, Moscow)

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Elgar: Cello Concerto in E minor
Sheku Kanneh-Mason, cello
City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla conducting
(recorded Aug. 22, 2019 at the BBC Proms, Royal Albert Hall, London)

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Stravinsky: “Le sacre du printemps”
London Symphony Orchestra, Simon Rattle conducting
(recorded Sept. 24, 2017 at the Barbican Center, London)

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Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 in D minor (“Choral’)
Lauren Fagan, soprano
Hanna Hipp, mezzo soprano
Tuomas Katajala, tenor
Shenyang, bass-baritone
Oslo Philharmonic Choir
Oslo Philharmonic, Klaus Mäkelä conducting
(recorded Jan. 4, 2019 at the Oslo Concert Hall)