Letter V Classical Radio Sept. 20

A feast of piano music: In the second hour, we’ll hear performances by Alexander Paley as the pianist joins me in the studio to discuss his Richmond music festival, marking its 20th anniversary with four concerts from Sept. 22 to 24 at St. Luke Lutheran Church. And we’ll hear new and recent recordings by Krystian Zimerman, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Evgeny Kissin, Fazil Say, Arcadi Volodos, and the duo of Martha Argerich & Stephen Kovacevich.

noon-3 p.m. EDT
1600-1900 UTC/GMT
WDCE, University of Richmond
90.1 FM
http://wdce.org

J.S. Bach: “French Suite” No. 4 in E flat major, BWV 815
Vladimir Ashkenazy, piano
(Decca)

Brahms:
Capriccio in F sharp minor, Op. 76, No. 1
Capriccio in B minor, Op. 76, No. 2
Arcadi Volodos, piano
(Sony Classical)

Chopin:
Nocturne in C sharp minor, Op. posth.
Nocturne in C minor, Op. posth.
Fazil Say, piano
(Warner Classics)

Beethoven: Sonata in F minor, Op. 57 (“Appassionata”)
Evgeny Kissin, piano
(Deutsche Grammophon)

Balakirev: “Islamey”
Alexander Paley, piano
(Brilliant Classics)

Dvořák: “From the Bohemian Forest” – “In the Spinning Room”
Alexander Paley & Peiwen Chen, piano four-hands
(Paley Festival)

Mozart: Fantasie in D minor, K. 397
Alexander Paley, piano
(Blüthner/Hänssler)

Debussy: “Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun”
(arrangement by Claude Debussy)
Martha Argerich & Stephen Kovacevich, pianos
(Warner Classics)

Schubert: Sonata in B flat major, D. 960
Krystian Zimerman, piano
(Deutsche Grammophon)

Brahms: Intermezzo in A major, Op. 118, No. 2
Arcardi Volodos, piano
(Sony Classical)

Reviews: The season begins

The opening concerts of Richmond’s 2017-18 classical season set some high standards, and suggested some artistic parameters for what we’ll be hearing in concerts to come.

The headline kickoff event, of course, was Joshua Bell’s appearance in the Richmond Symphony’s opening-night concert on Sept. 14 at Dominion Arts Center’s Carpenter Theatre.

The star violinist played to his strengths in Édouard Lalo’s “Symphonie espagnole,” a hybrid symphony-concerto in which the violin puts a brilliant gloss on five tuneful and rhythmically infectious movements. Bell, unsurprisingly, more than met the piece’s virtuosic demands, and looked to be as physically immersed as he was musically. As gratifying as his playing was in the splashy outer movements, I was at least as taken with his sensuous treatment of the central beguine.

Bell was joined by Yesong Sophie Lee, a teenage violinist from Seattle who won high honors in last year’s Menuhin Competition, in J.S. Bach’s Double Concerto in D minor, BWV 1043. Lee dug into the lower-riding, more technically intricate part, with Bell answering in semi-sweet high lines.

The orchestra seconded Bell colorfully in the Lalo, and a chamber-scale ensemble of strings and harpsichord gave warm backing to the violin duo in the Bach.

The orchestral showcase of the concert was Richard Strauss’ “Ein Heldenleben” (“A Hero’s Life”), a grand-scale tone poem and musical roman à clef casting the composer himself as the heroic protagonist.

Running the better part of an hour and scored for an enormous orchestra – nine French horns, five trumpets, extra stands of woodwinds, full percussion battery, two harps – the work is a major challenge to the conductor as air traffic controller, maintaining sectional balances in massive tutti passages and allowing frequent solos and duos to be voiced with suitable prominence and character.

Steven Smith, the symphony’s music director, kept his forces in their assigned lanes, projected this music’s wide contours of volume and expression – intimate exchanges and violent outbursts, lushly romantic tunes and quirky asides – and sustained the piece’s narrative flow. Smith gave plenty of space to the solo voices, notably violinist Daisuke Yamamoto, and generally kept orchestra sections in balance.

Orchestral sound was remarkably consistent and refined, considering the number of substitute musicians an orchestra Richmond’s size must bring in for a work on the scale of “Heldenleben.”

Smith and the symphony opened the program with an assertively jaunty reading of Ulysses Kay’s “Theater Set (Overture) for Orchestra.”

* * *

The chamber-music season was launched with performances at the University of Richmond by the Escher Quartet with guitarist Jason Vieaux and the Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia.

Opening the classical series of UR’s Modlin Arts Center on Sept. 10, the Escher – violinists Adam Barnett-Hart and Danbi Um, violist Pierre Lapointe and cellist Brook Speltz – delivered an account of Mozart’s “Hunt” Quartet in B flat major, K. 458, that landed solidly in the modern-instruments mainstream, and a vividly detailed and expressive treatment of “Arcadiana,” a 1994 work by Thomas Adès, a British composer whose modernist style is punctuated with evocations of earlier music (here, Mozart, Schubert and Elgar) as well as literary and visual-art references.

Vieaux, playing Richmond for the second time this year (he performed with the symphony last February), joined the Escher in an elegant-turned-rollicking reading of Luigi Boccherini’s Quintet in D major, known as the “Fandango” for its high-stepping dance finale, in which cellist Speltz traded his bow for castanets. The five players turned the corner nicely as the piece swerves from high-classicism to exuberantly gritty folksiness.

Vieaux preceded the Boccherini with a solo mini-recital of excerpts of J.S. Bach’s Lute Suite No. 1 in E minor, BWV 996, and arrangements of Duke Ellington’s “In a Sentimental Mode” and “A Felicidade” from Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Black Orpheus” film score. The guitarist’s technique was finely polished in the Bach; just as impressive was his range of mood-sculpting in his arrangement of the Ellington and Roland Dyens’ arrangement of the Jobim.

The cast recruited by cellist James Wilson, artistic director of the Chamber Music Society, for its season-opener, Sept. 17 at UR’s Perkinson Recital Hall, offered its audience a rare opportunity to hear mid-19th century romantic works by Mendelssohn and Schumann played on gut-string fiddles and a reproduction of an 1830 Graf piano.

The sonic and textural differences were striking in Mendelssohn’s Quartet in F minor, Op. 80, and Schumann’s Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44.

The quartet, arguably Mendelssohn’s most emotionally fraught composition (written in the aftermath of the death of his sister, Fanny), was played with high energy, vivid moodiness, strong accenting and a notable absence of standard-issue Mendelssohnian sweetness by violinists Aisslin Nosky and Guillaume Pirard, violist Max Mandel and cellist Wilson.

The string players, with Carsten Schmidt at the keyboard, gave an unusual perspective, almost inside-out, to the Schumann. The early piano, which has a more woodsy, less brilliant tone than a modern instrument, did not stand out in the ensemble. So, instead of piano with strings, we heard piano among strings.

Baritone Jonathan Woody joined Schmidt in a compelling traversal of “Dichterliebe” (“Poet’s Love”), Schumann’s cycle of 15 songs to texts of Heinrich Heine. These sometimes interconnected songs, some with extensive piano postludes, run the gamut of romantic mood and expression, emotional depth and surface bravado, and Woody realized their varied voices idiomatically and with spot-on diction.

Chamber Music Society library date canceled

“Minds on Fire,” the Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia’s Sept. 16 performance in the Richmond Public Library’s Gellman Room, has been canceled. Due to potential unrest as a pro-Confederate group rallies at the Robert E. Lee statue on Monument Avenue, possibly drawing counter-protesters, the city’s police and emergency management officials asked the library close its downtown main branch.

Letter V Classical Radio Sept. 13

A shortened program this week, due to other commitments . . .

noon-2 p.m. EDT
1600-1800 UTC/GMT
WDCE, University of Richmond
90.1 FM
http://wdce.org

Mozart: “Don Giovanni” Overture
La Cetra Baroque Orchestra, Basel/Andrea Marcon
(Deutsche Grammophon)

Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 2 in F minor
Krystian Zimerman, piano & director
Polish Festival Orchestra
(Deutsche Grammophon)

Tchaikovsky: “Sérénade mélancolique”
Joshua Bell, violin
Berlin Philharmonic/Michael Tilson Thomas
(Sony Classical)

Past Masters:
Beethoven: Quartet in E flat major, Op. 127
Hungarian Quartet
(recorded 1953)
(United Archives)

Schumann: Cello Concerto in A minor
Christophe Coin, cello
Orchestre des Champs Elysées/Philippe Herreweghe
(Harmonia Mundi)

 

Letter V Classical Radio Sept. 6

noon-3 p.m. EDT
1600-1900 UTC/GMT
WDCE, University of Richmond
90.1 FM
http://wdce.org

Mason Bates: “Mothership”
Jason Moran, FM Rhodes
Su Chang, guzheng
Boston Modern Orchestra Project/Gil Rose
(BMOP/sound)

Past Masters:
Haydn: Trumpet Concerto in E flat major
Maurice André, trumpet
London Philharmonic/Jesús López-Cobos
(recorded 1977)
(EMI Classics)

Janáček: Sinfonietta
Czech Philharmonic/Charles Mackerras
(Supraphon)

Mendelssohn: Prelude and Fugue in F minor, Op. 35, No. 5
Benjamin Grosvenor, piano
(Decca)

Schubert: Quartet in G major, D. 887
Miró Quartet
(Miró Quartet Media)

Brahms: Sonata in F minor, Op. 120, No. 1
(orchestration by Luciano Berio)
Fausto Ghiazza, clarinet
Giuseppe Verdi Symphony Orchestra, Milan/Riccardo Chailly
(Decca)

Past Masters:
Dvořák: Symphony No. 7 in D minor
Cleveland Orchestra/George Szell
(recorded 1960)
(Sony Classical)

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 single-ticket prices are listed; senior, student/youth, group and other discounts may be offered.

* In and around Richmond: The Escher Quartet, joined by guitarist Jason Vieaux, opens the classical season at the University of Richmond’s Modlin Arts Center on Sept. 10 with a program of Mozart, Boccherini and Thomas Adès. . . . The Richmond Symphony opens its 60th anniversary season with stellar violinist Joshua Bell and prize-winning young violinist Yesong Sophie Lee playing works by Lalo and Bach, Sept. 14 at the Carpenter Theatre of Dominion Arts Center, and with Steven Smith, the orchestra’s music director, discussing and conducting Richard Strauss’ “Ein Heldenleben” in a Casual Fridays program, Sept. 15 at the Carpenter Theatre. . . . The Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia launches its season with “Kings of Leipzig,” a program of works by Mendelssohn and Schumann, Sept. 17 in Perkinson Recital Hall, North Court, at the University of Richmond. . . . Alexander Paley’s Music Festival celebrates its 20th anniversary with Paley and Peiwen Chen playing two-piano works by Rachmaninoff on Sept. 22, Paley and violinist Daisuke Yamamoto playing Beethoven’s 10 violin sonatas in two concerts on Sept. 23, and Paley and four wind musicians playing works by Mozart and Beethoven on Sept. 24, all at St. Luke Lutheran Church.

* Noteworthy elsewhere: The Brooklyn Rider string quartet and soprano Ariadne Greif join regulars of the Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival, presenting seven concerts from Sept. 8 to 21 at the Paramount Theater, Jefferson Theater and the University of Virginia’s Old Cabell Hall. . . . Washington National Opera launches its new season with Verdi’s “Aida,” staging nine performances from Sept. 9 to 23 at the Kennedy Center. . . . The Miró Quartet plays Haydn, Dvořák and Brahms, Sept. 11 at the Chrysler Museum in Norfolk and Sept. 12 at the Williamsburg Library Theatre. . . . JoAnn Falletta conducts the Virginia Symphony, joined by electric bassist-composer Victor L. Wooten, in a season-opening program of contemporary works by Wooten and Randall Svane plus Holst’s “The Planets,” Sept. 22 at the Ferguson Arts Center of Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Sept. 23 at Chrysler Hall in Norfolk and Sept. 24 at the Sandler Arts Center in Virginia Beach. . . . The Charlottesville Symphony opens a new season with a new music director, Benjamin Rous, playing music of Beethoven, Mozart and John Adams, Sept. 23 at UVa’s Old Cabell Hall and Sept. 24 at the Martin Luther King Jr. Performing Arts Center of Charlottesville High School. . . . Violinist Jennifer Koh joins Janna Hymes and the Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra in Sibelius’ Violin Concerto, on a program also featuring Dvořák’s “New World” Symphony (No. 9), Sept. 25-26 at the Kimball Theatre. . . . Organist Cameron Carpenter is featured in Copland’s Symphony for organ and orchestra, part of an all-American program opening the National Symphony Orchestra’s subscription season, Sept. 28 and 30 at Washington’s Kennedy Center.

Sept. 2 (7:30 p.m.)
Yorktown River Landing
Sept. 3 (7:30 p.m.)
Chesapeake City Park
Sept. 7 (7:30 p.m.)
31st Street Stage, 31st Street at Atlantic Avenue, Virginia Beach
Virginia Symphony
conductor TBA
John Stafford Smith: “The Star-Spangled Banner”
John Philip Sousa: “The Glory Of The Yankee Navy”
Arthur Bliss: “Fanfare for the Lord Mayor of London”
George M. Cohan/Gordon: “Star Spangled Spectacular”
E.E. Bagley: “National Emblem March”
Ravel: “Le Tombeau de Couperin”
James Hosay: “Patriotic Sing-Along” – “Eternal Father Strong to Save”
Richard Rodgers/Bennett: “Victory at Sea”
Ann Argodale: “Anchors Aweigh”
Duke Ellington/Custer: “Duke Ellington! A Medley for Orchestra”
John Williams: “1941” – March
Richard Rodgers/Bennett: “ ‘South Pacific’ Symphonic Scenario”
John Williams: “Midway” – March

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

Sept. 3 (8 p.m.)
West Lawn, U.S. Capitol, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra
John Morris Russell conducting

Aoife O’Donovan, vocalist-guitarist
Labor Day Capitol Concert 2017
program TBA

free
(800) 444-1324
http://www.kennedy-center.org

Sept. 8 (8 p.m.)
Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
Brooklyn Rider
Timothy Summers, violin
Raphael Bell, cello
Andrew Armstrong, piano

Fauré: Piano Trio in D minor, Op. 120
Colin Jacobsen: “BTT” for string quartet
Philip Glass: String Quartet No. 7
Ravel: Piano Trio in A minor

$18-$25
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 9 (8:30 p.m.)
Jefferson Theater, 110 E. Main St., Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
Brooklyn Rider
“Music Fresh Squeezed”
works TBA by J.S. Bach, Giovanni Sollima, Colin Jacobsen, Evan Ziporyn, Kyle Sanna, Tyondai Braxton, others

$25
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 9 (7 p.m.)
Sept. 10 (2 p.m.)
Sept. 13 (7:30 p.m.)
Sept. 15 (7:30 p.m.)
Sept. 16 (7 p.m.)
Sept. 17 (2 p.m.)
Sept. 18 (7 p.m.)
Sept. 21 (7:30 p.m.)
Sept. 23 (7 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Opera House, Washington
Washington National Opera
Evan Rogister conducting

Verdi: “Aida”
Tamara Wilson/Leah Crocetto (Aida)
Ekaterina Semenchuk/Marina Prudenskaya (Amneris)
Yonghoon Lee/Carl Tanner (Radamès)
Gordon Hawkins (Amonasro)
Morris Robinson (Ramfis)
Soloman Howard (The King)
Francesca Zambello, stage director

in Italian, English captions
$45-$300
(800) 444-1324
http://www.kennedy-center.org

Sept. 10 (7:30 p.m.)
Camp Concert Hall, Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond
Escher Quartet
Mozart: Quartet in B flat major, K. 458 (“Hunt”)
Thomas Adès: “Acardiana”
Boccherini: Quintet in D major, G. 448 (“Fandango”)

Jason Vieaux, guitar
$36
(804) 289-8980
http://modlin.richmond.edu

Sept. 10 (3 p.m.)
Old Cabell Hall, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
Brooklyn Rider
Timothy Summers, violin
Raphael Bell, cello

Boccherini: String Quintet in F minor
Evan Ziporyn: “Qi”
Luciano Berio: Violin Duos
Mozart: Sinfonia concertante in E flat major, K. 354 (string sextet arr., c. 1808)

$18-$25
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 11 (7:30 p.m.)
Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk
Feldman Chamber Music Series:
Miró Quartet
Haydn: Quartet in E flat major, Op. 71, No. 3
Dvořák: “Cypresses”
Brahms: Quartet in C minor, Op. 51, No. 1

$30
(757) 552-1630
http://feldmanchambermusic.org

Sept. 12 (8 p.m.)
Williamsburg Library Theatre, 515 Scotland St.
Chamber Music Society of Williamsburg:
Miró Quartet
Haydn: Quartet in E flat major, Op. 71, No. 3
Dvořák: “Cypresses”
Brahms: Quartet in C minor, Op. 51, No. 1

$15 (waiting list)
(757) 258-8555
http://chambermusicwilliamsburg.org

Sept. 14 (8 p.m.)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Arts Center, Sixth and Grace streets, Richmond
Richmond Symphony
Steven Smith conducting

Ulysses Kay: “Theater Set for Orchestra” (Overture)
Richard Strauss: “Ein Heldenleben”
Lalo: “Symphonie espagnole”

Joshua Bell, violin
J.S. Bach: Concerto in D minor, BWV 1043
Joshua Bell & Yesong Sophie Lee, violins
$30-$100
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://www.richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 14 (8 p.m.)
Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
Sharon Roffman & Timothy Summers, violins
Kyle Armbrust & Matthew Lipman, violas
Raphael Bell & Clancy Newman, cellos
Conor Hanick & Jeremy Thompson, piano
Ariadne Greif, soprano

Nikolaj Kapustin: Piano Quintet, Op. 89
Shostakovich: “Seven Romances on Poems by Aleksandr Blok,” Op. 127
Prokofiev-Borisovsky: “Pieces from ‘Romeo and Juliet’ Suite” (viola and piano arr.)
Tchaikovsky: String Sextet in D minor, Op. 70 (“Souvenir de Florence”)

$18-$25
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 15 (6:30 p.m.)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Arts Center, Sixth and Grace streets, Richmond
Richmond Symphony Casual Fridays
Steven Smith conducting & speaking

Richard Strauss: “Ein Heldenleben”
$10-$50
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://www.richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 15 (7:30 p.m.)
Camp Concert Hall, Modlin Arts Center, University of Richmond
faculty musicians & student ensembles
Family Weekend Concert
program TBA

free
(804) 289-8980
http://modlin.richmond.edu

Sept. 15 (12:30 p.m.)
Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
performers TBA
Community Concert
program TBA

free
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 15 (7 p.m.)
Trinity Episcopal Church, 214 W. Beverly St., Staunton
Staunton Music Festival:
Jonathan Woody, baritone
Aisslin Nosky & Guillaume Pirard, violins
Max Mandel, viola
James Wilson, cello
Carsten Schmidt, fortepiano

Schumann: “Kinderszenen”
Schumann: “Dichterliebe”
Schumann: Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44

$22
(800) 838-3006
http://stauntonmusicfestival.org

Sept. 15 (8 p.m.)
Sept. 16 (8 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra Pops
Steven Reineke conducting
Frankie Moreno, vocalist
Laci & Benji Schwimmer, dancers

“Blue Suede Tunes”
$24-$89
(800) 444-1324
http://www.kennedy-center.org

Sept. 16 (8 p.m.)
Center for the Arts, George Mason University, Fairfax
Fairfax Symphony Orchestra
Christopher Zimmerman conducting

Mark Camphouse: “Resolutions” (premiere)
Elgar: Cello Concerto in E minor

Amit Peled, cello
Tchaikovsky: Symphony No. 4 in F minor
$39-$65
(888) 945-2468 (Tickets.com)
http://fairfaxsymphony.org

Sept. 17 (4 p.m.)
Perkinson Recital Hall, North Court, University of Richmond
Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia:
Aislinn Noslin & Guillaume Pirard, violins
Max Mandel, viola
James Wilson, cello
Carsten Schmidt, piano
Jonathan Woody, bass-baritone

“Kings of Leipzig”
Mendelssohn: Quartet in F minor, Op. 80
Schumann: “Dichterliebe,” Op. 48
Schumann: Piano Quintet in E flat major, Op. 44

$28
(804) 304-6312
http://cmscva.org

Sept. 17 (3 p.m.)
Old Cabell Hall, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
Sharon Roffman & Timothy Summers, violins
Kyle Armbrust & Matthew Lipman, violas
Raphael Bell & Clancy Newman, cellos
Joseph Conyers, double-bass
Conor Hanick & Jeremy Thompson, piano
Ariadne Greif, soprano
Thomas Meglioranza, narrator

Mahler: Piano Quartet in A minor
Berg: “Nachtigall”
Berg: “Schliesse mir die Augen beide”
Schoenberg: cabaret songs
Schoenberg: “Ode to Napoleon”
Richard Strauss: “Traum durch die Dämmerung”
Richard Strauss: “Zueignung”
Richard Strauss: “Morgen”
Richard Strauss: “Metamorphosen” (sextet version)

$18-$25
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 17 (7 p.m.)
Center for the Arts, George Mason University, Fairfax
Jeffrey Siegel, piano & speaker
“Keyboard Conversations: a Bernstein Birthday Bash”
$25-$42
(888) 945-2468 (Tickets.com)
http://cfa.gmu.edu

Sept. 18 (7:30 p.m.)
Perkinson Recital Hall, North Court, University of Richmond
Anna Nizhegorodtseva, piano
Beethoven: Sonata in E flat major, Op. 7
Brahms: 6 intermezzos, Op. 118
Ernesto Lecuona: “Suite Andalucia”

free
free master class, 4 p.m. Sept. 19, Camp Concert Hall, Modlin Arts Center
(804) 289-8980
http://modlin.richmond.edu

Sept. 21 (8 p.m.)
Paramount Theater, 215 E. Main St., Charlottesville
Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival:
Alexi Kenney & Timothy Summers, violins
Raphael Bell, cello
Mimi Solomon, piano

Korngold: Suite, Op. 23
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 4 in A minor, Op. 23
Dvořák: Piano Trio in E minor, Op. 90 (“Dumky”)

$18-$25
(434) 295-5395
http://cvillechambermusic.org

Sept. 22
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Paley Music Festival:
Alexander Paley & Peiwen Chen, pianos
Rachmaninoff: Suite No. 1, Op. 5 (“Fantasie-tableaux”)
Rachmaninoff: Suite No. 2, Op. 17
Rachmaninoff: Symphonic Dances, Op. 45 (two-piano arr.)

donation requested
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 22 (8 p.m.)
Ferguson Arts Center, Christopher Newport University, Newport News
Sept. 23 (8 p.m.)
Chrysler Hall, 215 St. Paul’s Boulevard, Norfolk
Sept. 24 (2:30 p.m.)
Sandler Arts Center, 201 S. Market St., Virginia Beach
Virginia Symphony
JoAnn Falletta conducting

Randall Svane: “Quantum Flight”
Victor L. Wooten & Conni Ellisor: “The Bass Whisperer”

Victor L. Wooten, electric bass
Holst: “The Planets”
women of Virginia Symphony Chorus
$25-$110
(757) 892-6366
http://www.virginiasymphony.org

Sept. 23 (3 p.m.)
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Paley Music Festival:
Daisuke Yamamoto, violin
Alexander Paley, piano

Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 1 in D major, Op. 12, No. 1
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 2 in A major, Op. 12, No. 2
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 3 in E flat minor, Op. 12, No. 3
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 4 in A minor, Op. 23
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 5 in F major, Op. 24 (“Spring”)

donation requested
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 23 (7:30 p.m.)
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Paley Music Festival:
Daisuke Yamamoto, violin
Alexander Paley, piano

Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 6 in A major, Op. 30, No. 1
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 7 in C minor, Op. 30, No. 2
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 8 in G major, Op. 30, No. 3
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 9 in A major, Op. 47 (“Kreutzer”)
Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 10 in G major, Op. 96

donation requested
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 23 (8 p.m.)
Carpenter Theatre, Dominion Arts Center, Sixth and Grace streets, Richmond
Richmond Symphony Pops
Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting
Matthew E. White, Natalie Press, Tim Barry, Bio Ritmo & Clair Morgan, guest stars

“The Broadberry Presents: RVA Live!”
$10-$80
(800) 514-3849 (ETIX)
http://www.richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 23 (8 p.m.)
Vlahcevic Concert Hall, Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University, Park Avenue at Harrison Street, Richmond
VCU Symphony
Daniel Myssyk conducting
“Hollywood Magic”
works TBA by John Williams, Bernstein, Berlioz, Weber
$10
(804) 828-6776
http://arts.vcu.edu/music/events

Sept. 23 (8 p.m.)
Old Cabell Hall, University of Virginia, Charlottesville
Sept. 24 (3:30 p.m.)
Martin Luther King Jr. Performing Arts Center, Charlottesville High School, 1400 Melbourne Road
Charlottesville Symphony
Benjamin Rous conducting

John Adams: “Short Ride in a Fast Machine”
Mozart: Clarinet Concerto in A major, K. 622

Shawn Earle, clarinet
Beethoven: Symphony No. 7 in A major
$10-$45
(434) 924-3376
http://cvillesymphony.org

Sept. 24 (2 p.m.)
Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Laurel Street at Floyd Avenue, Richmond
Daniel Sañez, organ
Louis Marchand: “Livre d’Orgue,” Book 3 – “Grande Dialogue”
Buxtehude: “Nun bitten wir den Heilgen Geist,” BuxWV 280
Jean-François Dandrieu: “Offertoire pour le Jour de Pâques”
Jean-François Dandrieu: , Suite I. “Pièces en D. la Ré” Suite No. 1 – “O filii et filiæ,”
J.S. Bach: Passacaglia and Fugue in C Minor, BWV 582
Franck: Chorale No. 1 in E Major
Philip Glass: “Satyagraha,” Act III – conclusion
free
(804) 359-5651
http://richmondcathedral.org/music

Sept. 24 (3 p.m.)
St. Luke Lutheran Church, 7757 Chippenham Parkway, Richmond
Paley Music Festival:
Alexandra von der Embse, oboe
Charles West, clarinet
Thomas Schneider, bassoon
James Ferree, French horn
Alexander Paley, piano

Mozart: Quintet in E flat major, K. 452
Beethoven: Horn Sonata in F major, Op. 17
Beethoven: Quintet in E flat major, Op. 16

donation requested
(804) 665-9516
http://paleymusicfestival.org

Sept. 25 (8 p.m.)
Sept. 26 (8 p.m.)
Kimball Theatre, Merchants Square, Williamsburg
Williamsburg Symphony Orchestra
Janna Hymes conducting

Adam Schoenberg: “Bounce” (2013)
Sibelius: Violin Concerto in D major

Jennifer Koh, violin
Dvořák: Symphony No. 9 in E minor (“From the New World”)
$48-$58
(757) 229-9857
http://williamsburgsymphony.org

Sept. 26 (7 p.m.)
Vlahcevic Concert Hall, Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University, Park Avenue at Harrison Street, Richmond
Anima Vox Duo:
Tadeu Coehlo, flute
Carole Ott, soprano
program TBA
free
(804) 828-6776
http://arts.vcu.edu/music/events

Sept. 27 (7 p.m.)
Vlahcevic Concert Hall, Singleton Arts Center, Virginia Commonwealth University, Park Avenue at Harrison Street, Richmond
Emily Ondracek-Peterson, violin
Richard Masters, piano
program TBA
free
(804) 828-6776
http://arts.vcu.edu/music/events

Sept. 28 (6:30 p.m.)
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, Overbrook Road at Ownby Lane, Richmond
Richmond Symphony
Steven Smith conducting
Molly Sharp, viola
Rush Hour
works (some excerpted) by Beethoven, Haydn, Rebecca Clarke, Peter Maxwell Davies
$15 (limited seating)
(804) 788-1212
http://www.richmondsymphony.com

Sept. 28 (8 p.m.)
Ferguson Arts Center, Christopher Newport University, Newport News
Sept. 30 (8 p.m.)
Chrysler Hall, 215 St. Paul’s Boulevard, Norfolk
Virginia Symphony Pops
conductor TBA
Denzal Sinclair, vocalist
“Unforgettable: the Music of Nat ‘King’ Cole”
$25-$100
(757) 892-6366
http://www.virginiasymphony.org

Sept. 28 (7 p.m.)
Sept. 30 (8 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra
Christian Macelaru conducting

John Adams: “Short Ride in a Fast Machine”
Copland: Symphony for organ and orchestra

Cameron Carpenter, organ
Copland: “Appalachian Spring” Suite
Bernstein: Divertimento

$15-$89
(800) 444-1324
http://www.kennedy-center.org

Sept. 29 (8 p.m.)
Harrison Opera House, 160 E. Virginia Beach Boulevard, Norfolk
Virginia Opera
Adam Turner conducting
Saint-Saëns: “Samson and Delilah”
Derek Taylor (Samson)
Katharine Goeldner (Delilah)
Michael Chioldi (High Priest of Dagon)
Stefan Szkafarowsky (Old Hebrew)
Rubin Casas (Abimélech)
Bille Bruley (First Philistine)
Brandon Morales (Second Philistine)
Stephen Carroll (Philistine Messenger)
Paul Curran, stage director
in French, English captions
$31.82-$109.09
(866) 673-7282
http://vaopera.org

Sept. 29 (8 p.m.)
Salem Civic Center, 1001 Roanoke Boulevard
Roanoke Symphony Pops
David Stewart Wiley conducting
Ellis Hall, vocalist

“Ray, Motown and Beyond”
$32-$53
(540) 343-9127
http://rso.com

Sept. 29 (8 p.m.)
Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Washington
National Symphony Orchestra Pops
Jacomo Bairos conducting
Seu Jorge, actor-musician

“The Life Aquatic: a Tribute to David Bowie”
$25-$89
(800) 444-1324
http://www.kennedy-center.org

2017-18 overview

Here’s our annual overview of classical performances in the Richmond area. All the major ticketed subscription series are included; some college, church, choral and other dates are yet to be announced.

Pending those additions, the coming season does not look to be as plagued with conflicting concert dates as 2016-17 was. I see only two significant ones:

– Dec. 10, when the Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia stages an English baroque program at the Branch Museum of Architecture and Design, and the University of Richmond presents its Festival of Lessons and Carols at Cannon Memorial Chapel. (With a high-speed commute and no dinner, you conceivably could catch the Lessons and Carols in the afternoon and the Chamber Music Society in the evening.)

– Feb. 25, when a Richmond Symphony Metro Collection concert at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland and a Chamber Music Society program at UR’s Perkinson Recital Hall start within an hour of each other. (Excerpts of the symphony program will be presented on Feb. 22 at Hardywood Park Craft Brewery.)

On Nov. 12 and March 21, Richmond Symphony concerts conflict with chamber music events, but patrons can switch to Nov. 11 and March 22 symphony dates.

Presenters continue to concentrate most events on weekends, so expect many clusters of performances.

For program details, follow the links to presenters’ websites and season announcements on Letter V’s former home, http://letterv.blogspot.com

Richmond Symphony: http://www.richmondsymphony.com
letterv.blogspot.com/2017/02/richmond-symphony-2017-18.html

Virginia Opera:  http://vaopera.org
letterv.blogspot.com/2017/05/virginia-opera-2017-18.html

Virginia Commonwealth University Rennolds Chamber Concerts: http://arts.vcu.edu/music/events
letterv.blogspot.com/2017/05/vcu-rennolds-concerts-2017-18.html

University of Richmond Modlin Arts Center: http://modlin.richmond.edu
letterv.blogspot.com/2017/07/ur-modlin-center-2017-18.html

Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia:  http://cmscva.org
letterv.blogspot.com/2017/06/chamber-music-society-2017-18.html

* Admission free or by donation

** Free admission, ticket required

SEPTEMBER
10 – Escher String Quartet with Jason Vieaux, guitar (UR Modlin Center)
14 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Joshua Bell & Yesong Sophie Lee, violins (Dominion Arts Center)
15 – Richmond Symphony Casual Fridays, Steven Smith conducting & speaking (Dominion Arts Center)
*16 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (Richmond Public Library)
17 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (UR Perkinson Hall)
*18 – Anna Nizhegorodtseva, piano (UR Perkinson Hall)
*22-24 – Alexander Paley Music Festival (St. Luke Lutheran Church)
23 – Richmond Symphony Pops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting, with Matthew E. White, Natalie Press, Tim Barry, Clair Morgan & Bio Ritmo (Dominion Arts Center)
*24 – Daniel Sañez, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
28 – Richmond Symphony Rush Hour, Steven Smith conducting, with Molly Sharp, viola (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)

OCTOBER
1 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Molly Sharp, viola (Randolph-Macon College)
*1 – American Brass Quintet (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
*10 – Eunmi Ko, piano (UR Perkinson Hall)
13/15 – Virginia Opera “Samson and Delilah” (Dominion Arts Center)
14 – Emerson String Quartet (VCU Singleton Arts Center)
*20 – Nathaniel Dett Chorale (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
20 – Richard Goode, piano (UR Modlin Center)
21 – Richmond Symphony LolliPops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting (Dominion Arts Center)
27 – Richmond Symphony Casual Fridays: Time for Three (Dominion Arts Center)
28 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Time for Three (Dominion Arts Center)
**30 – Thomas Meglioranza, baritone & Reiko Uchida, piano (UR Perkinson Hall)

NOVEMBER
*3 – American Guild of Organists: Todd Wilson, organ (All Saints Episcopal Church)
*3-4 – Third Practice Electroacoustic Music Festival (UR Modlin Center)
5 – Richmond Philharmonic, Peter Wilson conducting (Collegiate School)
9 – Shanghai Quartet with Shmuel Ashkenazi, violin & Peter Wiley, cello (UR Modlin Center)
*10 – Peter Latona, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
11-12 – Richmond Symphony & Symphony Chorus, Steven Smith conducting (Dominion Arts Center)
12 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia: Johnny Gandelsman, violin (UR Perkinson Hall)
*13 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (Richmond Public Library)
17/19 – Virginia Opera “The Girl of the Golden West” (Dominion Arts Center)
*19 – UR Wind Ensemble with Ben Anderson, trombone (UR Modlin Center)
25 – Richmond Symphony LolliPops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting (Dominion Arts Center)
27 – Commonwealth Catholic Charities concert (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
*29 – UR Symphony Orchestra with Catherine Edwards, piano & Duncan Trawick, baritone (UR Modlin Center)

DECEMBER
1 – Richmond Symphony, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting, with Symphony Chorus & soloists TBA (“Messiah”) (Dominion Arts Center)
2-3 – Richmond Symphony Pops, Erin Freeman conducting, with Symphony Chorus & Susan Greenbaum, vocalists, in “Let It Snow!” (Dominion Arts Center)
*4 – Richmond Philharmonic, Peter Wilson conducting (James Center Atrium)
10 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (Branch Museum of Architecture and Design)
*10 – UR Schola Cantorum & Women’s Chorale in Festival of Lessons & Carols (UR Cannon Memorial Chapel)
12 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (Holy Comforter Episcopal Church)
*16 – Festival of Lessons and Carols (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)

JANUARY
13-14 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Symphony Chorus & Virginia Opera Emerging Artists (Dominion Arts Center)
18 – Richmond Symphony Rush Hour, Steven Smith conducting & speaking, with Zachary Guiles, trombone (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
20 – Richmond Symphony LolliPops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting, with School of Richmond Ballet (Dominion Arts Center)
21 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Zachary Guiles, trombone (Randolph-Macon College)
27 – Richmond Symphny Pops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting, with Michael Cavanaugh, vocalist (Dominion Arts Center)
28 – Leon Fleisher & Katherine Jacobson, pianos (VCU Singleton Arts Center)
*31 – Richard Becker, piano (UR Modlin Center)

FEBRUARY
3-4 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Symphony Chorus, choristers from Virginia colleges and universities & pianist TBA (Dominion Arts Center)
*9 – Daniel Stipe, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
14 – China National Symphony Orchestra, Tan Dun conducting (UR Modlin Center)
17 – Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet (VCU Singleton Arts Center)
18 – Gil Shaham, violin & Akira Eguchi, piano (UR Modlin Center)
22 – Richmond Symphony Rush Hour, Steven Smith conducting & speaking (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
23/25 – Virginia Opera “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (Dominion Arts Center)
*24 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (Richmond Public Library)
25 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting (Randolph-Macon College)
25 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (UR Perkinson Hall)

MARCH
4 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia: Carsten Schmidt, harpsichord (Second Presbyterian Church)
*7 – Ensemble Arte (UR Modlin Center)
9 – Richmond Symphony Casual Fridays, Danail Rachev conducting & speaking (Dominion Arts Center)
*9 – American Guild of Organists: Katelyn Emerson, organ (River Road Church, Baptist)
10 – Richmond Symphony, Danail Rachev conducting, with Ian Parker, piano (Dominion Arts Center)
17 – Richmond Symphony LolliPops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting, with Really Inventive Stuff’s Michael Boudewyns (Dominion Arts Center)
17 – Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio (VCU Singleton Arts Center)
18 – Richmond Philharmonic, Peter Wilson conducting, with pianist Charles Staples (Collegiate School)
21-22 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Daisuke Yamamoto, violin, and Neal Cary, cello (Dominion Arts Center)
21 – Jerusalem Quartet (UR Modlin Center)
23 – eighth blackbird with Dan Trueman, composer-fiddler, & Iarla Ó Lionáird, singer (UR Modlin Center)
24 – Richmond Symphony Pops, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting, with Motortown All-Stars (Dominion Arts Center)
*25 – Richard Becker & Doris Wylee-Becker, piano duo (UR Modlin Center)
*26 – Bruce Stevens, organ (UR Cannon Memorial Chapel)

APRIL
*4 – UR Symphony Orchestra with Joanne Kong, piano (UR Modlin Center)
6 – Stile Antico (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
7 – So Percussion with Dawn Upshaw, soprano, & Gilbert Kalish, piano (UR Modlin Center)
13/15 – Virginia Opera “Lucia di Lammermoor” (Dominion Arts Center)
*15 – UR Schola Cantorum & Women’s Chorale with Washington & Lee Choir and eighth blackbird (UR Modlin Center)
*20 – American Guild of Organists: David Briggs, organ (St. James’s Episcopal Church)
*21 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (Richmond Public Library)
22 – Chamber Music Society of Central Virginia (First Unitarian Universalist Church)

MAY
3 – Richmond Symphony Rush Hour, Steven Smith conducting & speaking (Hardywood Park Craft Brewery)
6 – Richmond Symphony, Chia-Hsuan Lin conducting (Randolph-Macon College)
11 – Richmond Symphony Casual Fridays, Steven Smith conducting & speaking, with Mason Bates, composer & electronica (Dominion Arts Center)
*11 – Jennifer McPherson, organ (Cathedral of the Sacred Heart)
12 – Richmond Symphony, Steven Smith conducting, with Symphony Chorus & Mason Bates, composer-electronica (Dominion Arts Center)
13 – Richmond Philharmonic, Peter Wilson conducting, with tuba player Rob Teehan (Collegiate School)

JUNE
*17 – Richmond Philharmonic, Peter Wilson conducting (Sunday Park, Brandermill)