‘Fingers crossed’ on New York’s renovated hall

Michael Kimmelman, The New York Times’ architecture critic, reviews the troubled physical and acoustical history of the New York Philharmonic’s home venue in Lincoln Center, opened in 1962 as Philharmonic Hall, renamed Avery Fisher Hall following a 1976 renovation, now David Geffen Hall, reopening on Oct. 12 after a $550 million reconfiguration of the building and its concert hall. (Geffen, a Hollywood film and music mogul, contributed $100 million for the project.)

The orchestra “is hoping that it has finally seen the last of its star-crossed auditorium’s notoriously troublesome acoustics and that it has devised a world-class hall enticing to new generations of concertgoers,” Kimmelman writes. “The question is whether new architecture – more welcoming, transparent, and, fingers crossed, acoustically improved – can alter [the hall’s] karma.”

An encouraging sign, he finds, is that the project’s acousticians “got to set the specifications for the hall, recommended the layout and signed off on everything,” in contrast to the original design and 1976 renovation, when acousticians were “just expected to sign off on an architect’s plans,” as Paul Scarbrough, one of Geffen Hall’s lead acoustical consultants, put it:

‘Resurrection’ in Cleveland

The Cleveland Orchestra now owns the manuscript score of Gustav Mahler’s Second Symphony (“Resurrection”), donated by the Austrian media magnate Herbert G. Kloiber, who serves on the orchestra’s European board.

The score, with the composer’s handwritten edits, was purchased by Kloiber from the estate of Gilbert Kaplan, the New York financier whose fixation on the Mahler Second turned into a second career of widely conducting and leading several recordings of the symphony.

The Cleveland Orchestra opens its current season on Sept. 29 and 30 with performances of the work, led by Franz Welser-Möst, its music director. (The Richmond Symphony’s music director, Valentina Peleggi, will conduct the orchestra, Richmond Symphony Chorus and soloists in the “Resurrection” on April 1 and 2.)

The Mahler manuscript will be housed and displayed at the Cleveland Museum of Art, The New York Times’ David Allen reports:

Review: Belvedere Series

Natalie Kress, violin
Danielle Wiebe Burke, viola
Jonathan Ruck, cello
Ingrid Keller, piano
Sept. 25, Marburg House

The Belvedere Series of chamber-music concerts launched its first full season in a program that overlapped the baroque and romantic, with J.S. Bach’s Suite in D major, BWV 1012, for solo cello, Johan Halvorsen’s set of variations on a sarabande by George Frideric Handel, and Robert Schumann’s Piano Quartet in E flat major, Op. 47.

The music was made in the parlor of the Marburg House, the oldest residence (vintage 1889) in Richmond’s Carillon neighborhood. The room is much the same size as the spaces in which chamber music usually was played in the 19th century. These performances sounded bigger, though, thanks to the louder, richer tone of modern fiddles and piano. The sound of the Schumann was about as much as could be heard comfortably in this space.

Cellist Jonathan Ruck, a professor at the University of Oklahoma, emphasized melody and tonal warmth in the Bach suite, pacing its dance movements moderately and rarely letting elaborate figurations and expressive asides interrupt the lyrical flow of the suite’s allemande and sarabande. By today’s historically informed standards, it was an old-fashioned reading, but interpretively satisfying and cognizant of baroque style.

Halvorsen’s 1897 set of variations on the sarabande from Handel’s Harpsichord Suite in D minor, is one of the staples of the repertory for violin-and-viola duos. Its primary source is even older: the Portuguese-Spanish tune “La Folía,” borrowed by hundreds of composers, from Corelli to Rachmaninoff.

The piece received robust, rhythmically acute treatment from the Washington-based violinist Natalie Kress and Danielle Wiebe Burke, principal violist of the Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra, both audibly attuned to Halvorsen’s romantic style and the music’s antique source.

Pianist Ingrid Keller, the artistic director of the Belvedere Series, a member of the music faculty at the College of William and Mary and rehearsal pianist of the Richmond Symphony Chorus, joined the three string musicians in a well-balanced and echt-Romantisch account of the Schumann, who was near the high tide of his early 1840s flood of chamber music in this piece, written within weeks of his better-known Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44.

The four musicians took care to make their instrumental voices both complementary and differentiated, helped substantially by the space in which they played.

Review: Richmond Symphony

Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting
with Alexis Seminario, soprano
Dashon Burton, baritone
Richmond Symphony Chorus
Anthony Blake Clark directing
Sept. 18, Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center

Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky was 19th-century Europe’s greatest composer of ballet music, and one of its major composers of symphonies. His Symphony No. 4 in F minor, completed in 1878, two years after “Swan Lake,” is built of tunes and dance rhythms that might have pirouetted out of a ballet score.

That’s the work’s allure, and its greatest challenge to interpreters. A ballet is composed of episodes, its music presented in the context of narrative, physical movement and the visual trappings of theater. A symphony is “abstract” – sound on its own, usually without any guide to its meaning – and its themes complement and contrast with one another in larger, longer, more complex musical constructs. When a symphony dances or tells a story, it does so in the listener’s imagination.

In the opening program of the Richmond Symphony’s 2022-23 mainstage season, Chia-Hsuan Lin, the orchestra’s associate conductor, substituting for its music director, Valentina Peleggi, who fell ill before the weekend concerts, crafted a Tchaikovsky Fourth that dancers could have danced to. Lin set steady, measured tempos and saw to it that discrete themes and instrumental voices, dramatic pronouncements and colorful asides, sounded clearly.

Her meticulous yet unfussy treatment of the score made for a rewarding listening experience, but not, to my ears, a completely compelling Tchaikovsky experience. Exposition of fine details, tone-painting of moody atmospherics, rhythmic fluidity and abundant lyricism came through almost flawlessly; but the music’s buildup of passion and sonic intensity was too gradual, too moderated, to provoke the emotional rush that Tchaikovsky uniquely provides.

The Tchaikovsky concluded a program otherwise devoted to American works of different vintages and stylistic strains: William Grant Still’s “Festive” Overture, Antonín Dvořák’s Te Deum and Zachary Wadsworth’s “Beyond the Years,” the latter two featuring the Richmond Symphony Chorus.

“Beyond the Years,” the Richmond-born Wadsworth’s setting of Paul Laurence Dunbar’s poem, receiving its premiere in this symphony program, casts its elegiac words (“Beyond the years the soul shall find / That endless peace for which it pined”) in vaguely old-English liturgical harmonies, filtered through a pastoral-cum-impressionistic orchestration recalling the scores of Frederick Delius or Frank Bridge – an evocation of solace and peace on several dimensions.

The Symphony Chorus, directed by Anthony Blake Clark, gave Wadsworth’s brief work a warm, affectionate reading, nicely contrasting with the more declamatory choral voicing of the Dvořák Te Deum.

The Dvořák, written in 1892 to launch the Czech composer’s three-year teaching and composing residence in the US, is an extroverted setting of the Latin hymn “Te Deum laudamus” (“God, We Praise You”), mixing celebratory, borderline-martial choral-orchestral sections with more devotionally expressive solos, sung here by soprano Alexis Seminario and baritone Dashon Burton.

Like the Giuseppe Verdi’s Requiem, Dvořák’s Te Deum is more operatic than liturgical in tone, and was projected in that quasi-theatrical mode in this performance. Slavic-folk echoes – ever-present in most of Dvořák’s music – are less explicit in this piece, mostly sensed in its exclamatory choral writing.

The Symphony Chorus sang with rustic gusto, but with recessed presence when Dvořák’s orchestration was at its brassiest.

Still’s curtain-raiser, winner of a “best overture” competition staged in 1944 by conductor Eugene Goosens and the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra (a year earlier, a similar Cincinnati project introduced Aaron Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man”), is a miniature showpiece of orchestration, vividly colorful, tuneful and rhythmically propulsive. Lin and the orchestra gave it the brash yet suave tone of a golden-age Hollywood musical.

Review: Paley Music Festival

Alexander Paley, piano
Amiram Ganz, violin
Sept. 17, St. Luke Lutheran Church

Franz Schubert wrote a number of works for violin and piano, but few of them are heard as often as, say, the violin sonatas of Beethoven or Brahms. In the first two programs of this fall’s Alexander Paley Music Festival, pianist Paley and violinist Amiram Ganz, a longtime performance partner of Paley’s, surveyed this neglected aspect of Schubert’s music.

On the second night, they concluded with the Fantasy in C major, D. 934, perhaps the least frequently performed of Schubert’s late masterpieces. Why so? Partly because Schubert is not commonly rated as a major violin composer, but more likely because the piece is very challenging technically for both instrumentalists, with the extra challenge of maintaining balance between the instruments – especially when this work is played on a modern piano.

The balance issue arose a few times in this performance, mainly in the inner movements – the decorous figurations of the allegretto and the andantino’s theme and variations; but Ganz and Paley were consistently complementary voices in the soulful, echt-Schubertian theme of the opening andante and its reprise in the finale.

The duo also made finely balanced and highly lyrical work of Schubert’s Violin Sonata in A major, D. 574, known as the “Grand Duo,” arguably the most familiar of the composer’s violin-and-piano works and rather similar in structure and treatment of thematic material to the best-known of Schubert’s string sonatas, the “Arpeggione.”

Paley followed the sonata and fantasy with the piano sonatas in A minor, D. 537, and A major, D. 664, both products of Schubert’s early maturity (dating, respectively, from 1817 and 1819), the former one of his more emotionally turbulent big keyboard works, the latter boasting an early example of Schubert at his most expansive.

The theme of the A minor’s central allegretto is a “Name That Tune” exercise for listeners: It turns up again, more familiarly, in the finale of Schubert’s penultimate piano sonata, the A major, D. 959.

In this contrasting pair of sonatas, Paley nicely balanced the works’ substantial, rather Beethovenian themes with Schubert’s decorative asides, and put extra and constructive effort into thoughtful phrasing and carefully graded dynamics.

The Paley Music Festival concludes with Paley and his spouse and four-hands piano partner, Peiwen Chen, playing Otto Singer’s arrangement of Richard Strauss’ “Symphonia Domestica” and Paley playing Ernő Dohnányi’s suite of themes from Johann Strauss II’s “Die Fledermaus,” at 3 p.m. Sept. 18 at St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway. Tickets: $20. Details: (804) 665-9516; http://paleymusicfestival.org

2022-23 season overview

Time once again for Letter V’s thumbnail overview of the coming classical season in Central Virginia.

Preparing this list, I’m reminded that reports of classical music’s demise are premature, at least in these parts. The Richmond Metropolitan Statistical Area, population 1.3 million, 45th largest in the US, has more classical performances on offer than many more populous places. That’s due mainly to a continuing proliferation of chamber-music and chamber-orchestra concerts in smaller venues, where music-making has more intimacy, immediacy and impact. (Also, lower ticket prices.)

The following listings include most performances for which tickets must be purchased or online reservations must be made. A number of likely events, such as concerts in churches, choral series and programs in or around holy days, are yet to be announced. Summer series aren’t set until spring at the earliest. As with the monthly events calendar, student recitals and private or invitational performances are not listed.

Time permitting, I’ll update the listings as other fall-to-spring series or events are announced.

The season has the usual clusters of events on weekends, but not as many conflicts or hasty trips from matinees to evening performances as we’ve had in the past.

Addresses and contact information for presenting organizations and venues follow the monthly listings. Their websites list concert programs, if and when available, as will Letter V’s monthly calendars as the season progresses.

Here goes . . .

* Indicates free concerts. (Registration may be required; donations may be requested.)

SEPTEMBER
*10 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin
(Heritage Amphitheater, Pocahontas State Park)
11 – Rennolds Chamber Concerts: George Li, piano (Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University)
16 – Paley Music Festival: Amiram Ganz, violin; Alexander Paley, piano (St. Luke Lutheran Church)
17-18 – Richmond Symphony, Symphony Chorus & soloists/Valentina Peleggi (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
17 – Paley Music Festival: Amiram Ganz, violin; Alexander Paley, piano (St. Luke Lutheran Church)
18 – Paley Music Festival: Alexander Paley & Peiwen Chen, piano four-hands (St. Luke Lutheran Church)
*18 – Joanne Kong, harpsichord (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
22 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
*23 – Bruce Stevens, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
24 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Steve Hackman (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
*24 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
24-25 – Belvedere Series ensemble (Marburg House)
25 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (St. Mary’s Episcopal Church)
*30 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Virginia Museum of Fine Arts)

OCTOBER
4 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi
; Yo-Yo Ma, cello (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
14/16 – Virginia Opera/Adam Turner: “The Valkyrie” (“Die Walküre”) (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
*14 – Nathaniel Gumbs, organ (River Road Church, Baptist)
22-23 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi; Jennifer Koh, violin (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
23 – Rennolds Chamber Concerts: Emerson String Quartet (Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University)
*25 – Vox Luminis (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
27 – Susanna Phillips, soprano; Craig Terry, piano (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*28 – Richmond chapter, American Guild of Organists’ Repertoire Recital Series: Johann Vexo, organ (River Road Church, Baptist)
29-30 – Belvedere Series ensembles (Marburg House)
29 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Altria Theater)
*29 – Lisa Ruth, piano (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
30 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
30 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia: Carsten Schmidt, harpsichord (Second Presbyterian Church)
*30 – University of Richmond Schola Cantorum & Women’s Chorale/Jeffrey Riehl & David Pedersen (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)

NOVEMBER
*3 –
Sigma Alpha Iota artists (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
*4 – Crystal Jonkman, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
*4-5 – Third Practice Electroacoustic Music Festival (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*11 – Richmond chapter, American Guild of Organists’ Repertoire Recital Series: Nicole Keller, organ (All Saints Episcopal Church)
12-13 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi; Inbal Segev, cello (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
13 – Richmond Philharmonic/Peter Wilson; Kevin Newton, French horn (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
17 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
18/20 – Virginia Opera/Adam Turner: “The Pirates of Penzance” (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
*19 – RVA Baroque (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
*20 – Vox Humana (River Road Church, Baptist)
*21 – University of Richmond Wind Ensemble/Steven Barton (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
26-27 – Richmond Symphony Pops & Symphony Chorus/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
28 – “Holiday Festival of Music” with Richmond Symphony, others (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
*28 – University of Richmond Chamber Ensembles (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*30 – University of Richmond Symphony Orchestra/Alexander Kordzaia (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)

DECEMBER
2 – Richmond Symphony & Symphony Chorus/Anthony Blake Clark
: “Messiah” (River Road Church, Baptist)
3 – Richmond Symphony Brass Ensemble/Chia Hsuan Lin (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
4 – Richmond Choral Society/Markus Compton (Trinity Lutheran Church)
4 – Richmond Symphony Brass Ensemble/Chia Hsuan Lin (Blackwell Auditorium, Randolph-Macon College)
*4 – University of Richmond Schola Cantorum & Women’s Chorale/Jeffrey Riehl: Festival of Lessons & Carols (Cannon Memorial Chapel, University of Richmond)
*5 – Three Notch’d Road (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
*10-11 – Scott Detra, organ (St. James’s Episcopal Church)
*11 – River Road Church Chancel Choir/Robert Gallagher (River Road Church, Baptist)
*16 – Cathedral Choir: Advent Lessons and Carols (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
19 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble(Church of the Holy Comforter, Episcopal)

JANUARY
*7 –
Richmond Music Teachers Association artists (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
14 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Chia-Hsuan Lin; Butcher Brown (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
15 – Richmond Symphony/Daniel Myssyk (Perkinson Arts Center)
20 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi; Schuyler Slack, cello (Perkinson Arts Center)
21 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi; Schuyler Slack, cello (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
21 – Kronos Quartet; vocal ensemble; Nicky Finney, narrator; Valérie Sainte-Agathe, conductor (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
22 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi; Schuyler Slack, cello (Blackwell Auditorium, Randolph-Macon College)
*28 – Quatuor Cent Cordes (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)

FEBRUARY
*1 – Richard Becker
, piano (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
2 – Richmond Symphony Chorus/Valentina Peleggi (First Baptist Church)
3 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (Church of the Holy Comforter, Episcopal)
*4 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
4 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
5 – Anthony McGill, clarinet; Gloria Chen, piano (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
9-10 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
10/12 – Virginia Opera/Adam Turner: “Fellow Travelers” (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
11 – Rennolds Chamber Concerts: Xavier Foley, double-bass (Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University)
11-12 – Belvedere Series ensemble (Marburg House)
19 – Third Coast Percussion & Flutronix (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
22 – Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*25 – Greater Richmond Children’s Choir/Crystal Jonkman (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
25-26 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi; Maria Deuñas, violin (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
*26 – Washington & Lee University Singers (River Road Church, Baptist)

MARCH
9 – Richmond Symphony, Daisuke Yamamoto
, violin & leader (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
*11 – Capitol Opera Richmond (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
12 – Richmond Philharmonic/Peter Wilson (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
*17 – Isabelle Demers, organ (River Road Church, Baptist)
17/19 – Virginia Opera/Adam Turner: “La Traviata” (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
19 – Richmond Choral Society/Markus Compton; VCU Health Orchestra/Will Pattie (Grace Baptist Church)
*19 – Doris Wylee-Becker, piano (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*25 – Magdalena Adamek, piano (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
25 – Rennolds Chamber Concerts: Neave Trio (Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University)
25 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin; Adrian Pintea & Ellen Cockerham Riccio, violins (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
26 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin; Adrian Pintea & Ellen Cockerham Riccio, violins (Blackwell Auditorium, Randolph-Macon College)
26 – Belvedere Series: Jonathan Stinson, baritone & composer; Ingrid Keller, piano (Marburg House)
*27 – Bruce Stevens, organ (Cannon Memorial Chapel, University of Richmond)

APRIL
1-2 – Richmond Symphony
& Symphony Chorus/Valentina Peleggi (Carpenter Theatre, (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
*10 – University of Richmond Wind Ensemble/Steven Barton (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*14 – Richmond chapter, American Guild of Organists’ Repertoire Recital Series: Caroline Robinson, organ (St. Mary’s Episcopal Church)
*15 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
15 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Chia-Hsuan Lin; Hector Del Curto Quintet (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
16 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (First Unitarian Universalist Church)
*16 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Virginia Museum of Fine Arts)
*16 – University of Richmond Schola Cantorum & Women’s Chorale/Jeffrey Riehl & David Pedersen (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
*17 – University of Richmond Chamber Ensembles (Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond)
22-23 – Richmond Symphony/Tito Muñoz; Michelle Cann, piano (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
28 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi (Perkinson Arts Center)
*28 – Robert Brooks Carlson, piano (River Road Church, Baptist)
*29 – Megan Slay, piano (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
29 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
30 – Richmond Symphony/Valentina Peleggi (Blackwell Auditorium, Randolph-Macon College)

MAY
*5 – Music & Medicine Orchestra
(Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
6 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Altria Theater)
*12 – Joel Kumro, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
13 – Belvedere Series: Jessica Xylina Osborne, piano (Marburg House)
*13 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia ensemble (Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library)
13 – Richmond Symphony Pops/Chia-Hsuan Lin; N’Kenge (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
14 – Richmond Philharmonic/Peter Wilson; Karen Johnson, violin; Jennifer Kloetzel, cello (Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School)
14 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Perkinson Arts Center)
*19 – Jaylin Brown, mezzo-soprano (River Road Church, Baptist)
20-21 – Richmond Symphony/Lidiya Yankovskaya (Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center)
*26 – Cathedral Schola Cantorum & Forgotten Clefs (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
*28 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin (Virginia Museum of Fine Arts)

JUNE
*10 – Richmond Symphony/Chia-Hsuan Lin
(Heritage Amphitheater, Pocahontas State Park)
*11 – River Road Church Chancel Choir & orchestra/Robert Gallagher; Daniel Stipe, piano (River Road Church, Baptist)
*16 – Daniel Sañez, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)

PRESENTERS
Richmond Symphony:
(804) 788-1212; http://richmondsymphony.com
Virginia Opera: (804) 644-8168; http://vaopera.org
Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia: (804) 304-6312; http://cmscva.org
Belvedere Series: http://belvedereseries.org
Alexander Paley Music Festival: (804) 665-9516; http://paleymusicfestival.org
Richmond chapter, American Guild of Organists’ Repertoire Recital Series: http://richmondago.org

VENUES (all in Richmond unless listed otherwise)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center, Sixth and Grace streets:
(804) 592-3330; http://www.dominionenenergycenter.com
Altria Theater, Main and Laurel streets:
(804) 592-3384; http://www.altriatheater.com
Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond, 453 Westhampton Way:
(804) 289-8980; http://modlin.richmond.edu
Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University, Park Avenue at Harrison Street:
(804) 828-1166; http://arts.vcu.edu/events
Blackwell Auditorium, Randolph-Macon College, 205 Henry St., Ashland:
(804) 752-7200; http://rmc.edu
Perkinson Arts Center, 11810 Centre St., Chester:
(804) 748-5555; http://www.perkinsoncenter.org
Ryan Recital Hall, St. Christopher’s School, 711 St. Christopher’s Road:
(804) 282-3185; http://www.stchristophers.com
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Arthur Ashe Boulevard at Grove Avenue:
(804) 340-1400; http://vmfa.museum
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, Overbrook Road at Ownby Lane:
(804) 420-2420; http://hardywood.com
Marburg House, 3102 Bute Lane:
(804) 604-0689
Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library, First and Franklin streets:
(804) 646-7223; http://rvalibrary.org
Pocahontas State Park, 10301 State Park Road, Chesterfield County:
(804) 796-4255; http://www.dcr.virginia.gov/state-parks/pocahontas
Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Laurel Street at Floyd Avenue:
(804) 359-5651; http://richmondcathedral.org
River Road Church, Baptist, River and Ridge roads:
(804) 288-1131; http://rrcb.org
Trinity Lutheran Church, 2315 N. Parham Road:
(804) 270-4626; http://tlcrva.org
Grace Baptist Church, 4200 Dover Road:
(804) 353-0134; http://rvagrace.org
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway:
(804) 272-0486; http://stlukerichmond.org
St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 12291 River Road, Goochland County:
(804) 784-5678; http://stmarysgoochland.org
Church of the Holy Comforter, Episcopal, Monument Avenue at Staples Mill Road:
(804) 355-3251; http://www.hoco.org
First Unitarian Universalist Church, 1000 Blanton Ave. at the Carillon:
(804) 355-0777; http://richmonduu.org
Second Presbyterian Church, 5 N. Fifth St.:
(804) 649-9148; http://www.2presrichmond.org
First Baptist Church, Monument Avenue at Arthur Ashe Boulevard:
(804) 355-8637; http://www.fbcrichmond.org

Choral Society sets rehearsal for new members

The Richmond Choral Society, directed by Markus Compton, will hold an “open rehearsal,” welcoming prospective new members, at 7 p.m. Sept. 12 at Trinity Lutheran Church, 2315 N. Parham Road.

Doors open at 6 p.m. Scores will be provided. A reception with refreshments will follow the rehearsal.

Those who did not sing with the chorus last season are asked to bring proof of Covid-19 vaccination.

For more information, call (804) 353-9582 or visit http://richmondchoralsociety.org

September calendar

Classical performances in and around Richmond, with selected events elsewhere in Virginia and the Washington area. Program information, provided by presenters, is updated as details become available. Adult ticket prices are listed; senior, student/youth, military, group and other discounts may be offered.

Each event listing includes primary Covid-19 safety protocols. When they are not specified by presenters or venues, my default guidance is “masks recommended” for indoor events, masks optional for outdoor events.

Sept. 1 (7:30 p.m.)
Lake Matoaka, College of William & Mary, Williamsburg
Sept. 3 (7:30 p.m.)
Riverwalk Landing, 331 Water St., Yorktown
Sept. 4 (7:30 p.m.)
Chesapeake City Park, 900 City Park Drive
Sept. 8 (7:30 p.m.)
Neptune’s Park, Atlantic Avenue at 31st Street, Virginia Beach
Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Adam Turner conducting

John Stafford Smith & Francis Scott Key: “The Star-Spangled Banner”
John Williams: “Star Wars” – main title theme
Harold Arlen: “The Wizard of Oz”
(excerpts) (Charles Sayre arrangement)
Ravel: “Mother Goose” Suite – “The Enchanted Garden”
Howard Shore: “Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring”
(John Whitney arrangement)
Wagner: “Die Walküre” – “Ride of the Valkyries”
John Powell: “ How To Train Your Dragon”
(Sean O’Loughlin arrangement)
Grieg: “Peer Gynt” – “In the Hall of the Mountain King”
Williams: “Hook” – “The Flight to Neverland”
Stravinsky: “The Firebird” – berceuse & finale
Williams: “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” – “Harry’s Wondrous World”

free
masks optional
(757) 892-6366
http://virginiasymphony.org

Sept. 3 (5 p.m.)
Herter Hall, Garth Newel Music Center, 403 Garth Newel Lane, Hot Springs
Garth Newel Piano Quartet
Aaron Berofsky, violin

Haydn: Quartet in G major, Op. 33, No. 5
Amy Beach: Piano Quintet in F sharp minor, Op. 67

$25 (concert); $92 (concert & dinner)
masks recommended
(540) 839-5018
http://garthnewel.org

Sept. 4 (2 p.m.)
Herter Hall, Garth Newel Music Center, 403 Garth Newel Lane, Hot Springs
Garth Newel Piano Quartet
Aaron Berofsky, violin

Florence Beatrice Price: Piano Quintet in A minor (Lisa Jensen-Abbott arrangement)
Dvořák: Piano Quintet in A major, Op. 81
$25 (concert); $53 (concert & picnic)
masks recommended
(540) 839-5018
http://garthnewel.org

Sept. 4 (8 p.m.)
West Lawn, US Capitol, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra
Steven Reineke conducting
Jimmie Herrod, guest star

Labor Day Weekend concert
John Stafford Smith & Francis Scott Key: “The Star-Spangled Banner”
Copland: “Fanfare for the Common Man”
Morton Gould: “American Salute”
Carlos Simon: “Tales: A Folklore Symphony” – “John Henry”
“The Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me”
“The Man That Got Away”
“Come Rain or Come Shine”
John Williams: “Liberty Fanfare”
Sousa: “Liberty Bell March”
trad.: “Turkey in the Straw”
(Carmen Dragon arrangement)
“Each Time”
“A Case of You”
“Tomorrow”
“Armed Forces Medley”
(Jim Kessler arrangement)
Samuel A. Ward & Katherine Lee Bates: “America the Beautiful” (Carmen Dragon arrangement)
free
masks optional
(800) 444-1324
http://kennedy-center.org

Sept. 8 (8 p.m.)
Filene Center, Wolf Trap, 1551 Trap Road, Vienna
National Symphony Orchestra
José Luis Gomez conducting

Paquito d’Rivera: “The Elephant and the Clown”
Paquito d’Rivera, clarinet
d’Rivera: “The Journey” (premiere)
Paquito d’Rivera, clarinet
Yo-Yo Ma, cello

Gershwin: “Cuban Overture”
Arturo Máquez: Danzon No. 2
Bernstein: “West Side Story” Symphonic Dances

$37 (lawn seating)
proof of Covid-19 vaccination or negative test result; masks optional
(703) 255-1868
http://wolftrap.org

Sept. 10 (7 p.m.)
Pocahontas State Park, 10301 State Park Road, Chesterfield County
Richmond Symphony
Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting

light-classical & pops program TBA
free; $10 parking fee
masks optional
(804) 788-1212
http://richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 11 (3 p.m.)
Vlahcevic Concert Hall, Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University, Park Avenue at Harrison Street, Richmond
Rennolds Chamber Concerts:
George Li, piano
Beethoven: 32 Variations in C minor, WoO 80
Beethoven: Variations and Fugue in E flat major, Op. 35 (“Eroica”)
Chopin: 24 Preludes, Op. 28

$35
masks required
(804) 828-1166
http://arts.vcu.edu/academics/departments/music/concerts-and-events/rennolds-series/

Sept. 15 (7 p.m.)
Sept. 17 (8 p.m.)
Sept. 18 (3 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra
James Gaffigan conducting

Bernstein: MASS
Will Liverman, celebrant
Heritage Signature Chorale
Stanley J. Thurston directing
Children’s Chorus of Washington
Margaret Nomura Clark directing
Hope Boykin, choreographer
Alison Moritz, stage director

$29-$209
masks required
(800) 444-1324
http://kennedy-center.org

Sept. 16 (7:30 p.m.)
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Alexander Paley Music Festival:
Amiram Ganz, violin
Alexander Paley, piano

Schubert: Violin Sonata in D major, D. 384
Schubert: Violin Sonata in A minor, D. 385
Schubert: Violin Sonata in G minor, D. 408
Schubert: Rondo in B minor, D. 895 (“Rondo brillant”)
Schubert: 4 impromptus, D. 899
Schubert: suite of waltzes

$20
masks recommended
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 17 (7:30 p.m.)
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Alexander Paley Music Festival:
Amiram Ganz, violin
Alexander Paley, piano

Schubert: Violin Sonata in A major, D. 574 (“Duo”)
Schubert: Piano Sonata in A minor, D. 537
Schubert: Piano Sonata in A major, D. 664
Schubert: Fantasy in C major, D. 934,
for violin & piano
$20
masks recommended
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 17 (8 p.m.)
Sept. 18 (3 p.m.)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center, Sixth and Grace streets, Richmond
Richmond Symphony
Valentina Peleggi conducting

William Grant Still: “Festive Overture”
Dvořák: Te Deum

Alexis Seminario, soprano
Dashon Burton, baritone
Richmond Symphony Chorus
Anthony Blake Clark directing

Zachary Wadsworth: “Beyond the Years” (premiere)
Richmond Symphony Chorus
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4 in F minor
$15-$85
masks required
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 18 (3 p.m.)
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Alexander Paley Music Festival:
Alexander Paley & Peiwen Chen, piano & piano 4-hands
Richard Strauss: “Symphonia Domestica” for piano 4-hands (Otto Singer arrangement)
Johann Strauss II: “Die Fledermaus” (selections) for piano (Ernő Dohnányi arrangement)
$20
masks recommended
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 18 (3 p.m.)
Camp Concert Hall, Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond
Joanne Kong, harpsichord
J.S. Bach: “The Well-Tempered Clavier,” Book 1 (selections)
free
masks recommended
(804) 289-8980
http://modlin.richmond.edu

Sept. 18 (3 p.m.)
Sandler Arts Center, 201 S. Market St., Virginia Beach
Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Helen Martell conducting

“Doctor Seuss at the Symphony”
$12-$22
masks recommended
(757) 892-6366
http://virginiasymphony.org

Sept. 18 (7 p.m.)
Center for the Arts, George Mason University, Fairfax
Jeffrey Siegel, piano & speaker
“Keyboard Conversations: American Pianistic Treasures”
works TBA by Gershwin, Barber, Bernstein, Gottschalk, Joplin

$29-$50
(703) 993-2787
http://cfa.gmu.edu

Sept. 19 (7:30 p.m.)
Chrysler Museum of Art, 1 Memorial Place, Norfolk
Feldman Chamber Music Society:
Los Angeles Piano Trio
program TBA
masks recommended
$30
(757) 551-1630
http://feldmanchambermusic.org

Sept. 20 (7:30 p.m.)
Williamsburg Library Theatre, 515 Scotland St.
Chamber Music Society of Williamsburg:
Los Angeles Piano Trio
program TBA
masks recommended
$30
(757) 741-3300 (Williamsburg Regional Library)
http://chambermusicwilliamsburg.org

Sept. 22 (6:30 p.m.)
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, Overbrook Road at Ownby Lane, Richmond
Richmond Symphony
Valentina Peleggi conducting

Copland: “Appalachian Spring”
Brahms: Serenade No. 1 in D major

$30
masks recommended
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 22 (7:30 p.m.)
Terrace Theater, Kennedy Center, Washington
Pan American Symphony Orchestra
Sergio Alessandro Buslje conducting
Elisa Cordova, soprano
Anna Tonna, mezzo-soprano
Israel Lozano, tenor
Gustavo Ahualli, baritone
Luciano Miotto, bass-baritone
Edwin Aparicio, flamenco dancer

“Antología de la Zarzuela”
Spanish zarzuela songs & dances TBA

$55-$85
masks required
(800) 444-1324
http://kennedy-center.org

Sept. 23 (7:30 p.m.)
Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Laurel Street at Floyd Avenue, Richmond
Bruce Stevens, organ
Niels W. Gade: “Tre Tone Stukker,” Op. 22, No. 1 – Moderato
Johann Gottfried Walther: Partita on “Jesu, meine Freunde” – Chorale with 9 variations
Reger: Benedictus, Op. 59, No. 9
J.S. Bach: Fugue in G minor, BWV 578 (“Little”)
J.S. Bach: Chorale Prelude on “Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme,” BWV 645
Saint-Saëns: “Sept Improvisations,” Op. 150, No. 4 – Allegretto
Jean Langlais: “Suite brève” – “Dialogue sur le mixtures”
Widor: “Symphonie gothique,” Op. 70 – Andante sostenuto
Eugène Gigout: “Dix pieces pour orgue” – Scherzo
Josef Rheinberger: Organ Sonata No. 3 in G major, Op. 88

free; registration via http://www.eventbrite.com/e/organ-recital-bruce-stevens-tickets-367710270317
masks recommended
(804) 359-5651
http://richmondcathedral.org

Sept. 23 (7:30 p.m.)
Ferguson Arts Center, Christopher Newport University, Newport News
Sept. 25 (2:30 p.m.)
Sandler Arts Center, 201 S. Market St., Virginia Beach
Virginia Symphony Orchestra
Eric Jacobsen conducting

Louis Moreau Gottschalk: Symphony No. 1 (“A Night in the Tropics”) – “Festa Criolla”
Rhythm Project All Stars
Bruch: “Scottish Fantasy”
Simone Porter, violin
Respighi: “The Pines of Rome”
$25-$79
masks recommended
(757) 892-6366
http://virginiasymphony.org

Sept. 24 (2 p.m.)
Gellman Room, Richmond Public Library, First and Franklin streets
Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia:
Mari Lee & Grant Houston, violins
Jordan Bak & Fitz Gary, viola
James Wilson, cello

“Just Kidding”
works TBA by Biber, Haydn, P.D.Q. Bach

free
masks required
(804) 646-7223
http://cmscva.org


Sept. 24 (8 p.m.)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center, Sixth and Grace streets, Richmond
Richmond Symphony Pops
Steve Hackmann conducting

“Brahms X Radiohead”
mashup of Brahms’ First Symphony & Radioheads’s “Ok Computer”

$15-$85
masks required
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 24 (8 p.m.)
Old Cabell Hall, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
Sept. 25 (3:30 p.m.)
Martin Luther King Jr. Arts Center, Charlottesville High School, 1400 Melbourne Road
Charlottesville Symphony at the University of Virginia
Benjamin Rous conducting

Schubert: “Rosamunde” (“Die Zauberharfe”) Overture
Hummel: Bassoon Concerto in F major

Elizabeth Roberts, bassoon
Missy Mazzoli: Sinfonia (“For Orbiting Spheres”)
Brahms: Hungarian dances Nos. 6, 14, 5
Saint-Saëns: “Samson et Delila” – Bacchanale

$10-$45
masks recommended
(434) 924-3376
http://charlottesvillesymphony.org

Sept. 24 (7 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra
Gianandrea Noseda conducting

Season Opening Gala Concert
Smetana: “Vltava” (“The Moldau”)
Carlos Simon: “This Land”
Rachmaninoff: “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini”

Daniil Trifonov, piano
Richard Strauss: “Der Rosenkavalier” Suite
$65-$145
masks required
(800) 444-1324
http://kennedy-center.org

Sept. 24 (8 p.m.)
Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, MD
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
Thomas Søndergård conducting

Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: Ballade for orchestra
Mahler: “Songs of a Wayfarer”

Thomas Hampson, baritone
Richard Strauss: “An Alpine Symphony”
$35-$90
masks required
(877) 276-1444
http://strathmore.org

Sept. 25 (3:30 p.m.)
Marburg House, 3102 Bute Lane, Richmond
Belvedere Series:
Natalie Rose Kress, violin
Danielle Wiebe Burke, viola
Jonathan Ruck, cello
Ingrid Keller, piano

“Transformation and Inspiration”
J.S. Bach: Suite No. 6 in D major, BWV 1012,
for solo cello
Handel-Halvorsen: “Sarabande con variazioni”
Robert Schumann: Piano Quartet in E flat major, Op. 47

$30
masks recommended
(804) 604-0689
http://www.belvedereseries.org

Sept. 25 (4 p.m.)
St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 12291 River Road, Goochland County
Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia:
Mari Lee & Grant Houston, violins
Jordan Bak & Fitz Gary, viola
James Wilson, cello

Mozart: String Quintet in C major, K. 515
Mozart: String Quintet in G minor, K. 516

$30
masks required
(804) 304-6312
http://cmscva.org

Sept. 29 (7:30 p.m.)
Williamsburg Community Chapel, 3899 John Tyler Highway
Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra
Michael Butterman conducting

Brahms: “Variations on a Theme by Haydn”
Rachmaninoff: “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini”

Natasha Paremski, piano
Erich Wolfgang Korngold: Theme and Variations
Hindemith: “Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber”

$60 (live attendance), $25 (online live stream)
masks recommended
(757) 229-9857
http://williamsburgsymphony.org

Sept. 29 (7 p.m.)
Olin Hall, Roanoke College, Salem
Jeffrey Springer, tenor
Jeff Midkiff, mandolin
David Stewart Wiley, piano

“Viva Italiana!”
Anton Coppola: songs TBA
Italian opera arias TBA
Neapolitan songs TBA

$34-$52
masks recommended
(540) 343-9127
http://rso.com

Sept. 29 (7 p.m.)
Sept. 30 (8 p.m.)
Oct. 1 (8 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra
John Storgårds conducting

Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1 in D major (“Classical”)
John Adams: Violin Concerto

Leila Josefowicz, violin
Rachmaninoff: Symphony No. 3 in A minor
$15-$109
masks required
(800) 444-1324
http://kennedy-center.org

Sept. 30 (7 p.m.)
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Arthur Ashe Boulevard at Grove Avenue, Richmond
Richmond Symphony
Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting

“Music in the Galleries 1”
program TBA

free
masks recommended
(804) 340-1400
http://richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 30 (8 p.m.)
Oct. 1 (7:30 p.m.)
Oct. 2 (2:30 p.m.)
Harrison Opera House, 160 E. Virginia Beach Boulevard, Norfolk
Virginia Opera
Adam Turner conducting

Wagner: “The Valkyrie” (“Die Walküre”) (adaptation by Jonathan Dove & Graham Vick)
Kyle Albertson (Wotan)
Alexandra Loutsion (Brünnhilde)
Richard Trey Smagur (Siegmund)
Meghan Kasanders (Sieglinde)
Claudia Chapa (Fricka/Waltraute)
Ricardo L. Lugo (Hunding)
Lesley Anne Friend (Helmwige)
Adriane S. Kerr (Rossweisse)
Courtney Johnson (Grimgerde)
Joachim Schamberger, stage director

in German, English captions
masks recommended
$20-$110
(866) 673-7282
http://vaopera.org

Oct. 1 (7 p.m.)
Grace & Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, 8 N. Laurel St., Richmond
Capitol Opera Richmond:
artists TBA
“Spooktacular”
art-songs & poems TBA

$15
(804) 840-7878
http://capitoloperarichmond.com

Oct. 1 (8 p.m.)
Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, MD
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
Peter Oundjian conducting

Carlos Simon: “Fate Now Conquers”
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K. 491

Tom Borrow, piano
Dvořák: Symphony No. 9 in E minor (“From the New World”)
$35-$90
masks required
(877) 276-1444
http://strathmore.org

Oct. 4 (7:30 p.m.)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Energy Center, Sixth and Grace streets, Richmond
Richmond Symphony
Valentina Peleggi conducting

Gabriela Ortiz: “Kauyumari”
De Falla: “The Three-Cornered Hat” Suite No. 2
Johann Strauss II: “On the Beautiful Blue Danube”
Ravel: “La valse”
Elgar: Cello Concerto in E minor

Yo-Yo Ma, cello
$65-$200
masks required
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://richmondsymphony.com

Oct. 5 (8 p.m.)
Oct. 6 (8 p.m.)
Oct. 8 (8 p.m.)
Oct. 9 (7 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra Pops
Steven Reineke conducting
Bobby Wier & Wolf Bros featuring The Wolfpack, guest stars

Grateful Dead songs TBA
$69-$139 (Oct. 8 sold out)
masks required
(800) 444-1324
http://kennedy-center.org

Oct. 7 (8 p.m.)
Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Lane, North Bethesda, MD
Baltimore Symphony Orchestra
James Conlon conducting

Bernstein: Symphony No. 3 (“Kaddish”), with spoken text by Samual Pisar
Judith and Leah Pisar, speakers
Erica Petrocelli, soprano
University of Maryland Concert Choir
Jason Ferdinand directing
Maryland State Boychoir
Stephen Holmes directing

$35-$90
masks required
(877) 276-1444
http://strathmore.org