SANTA FE — The Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival—which runs Sunday, July 14, through Monday, Aug. 19—brings its 2019 season to a close with Weeks 5 & 6, beginning Sunday, Aug. 11, and ending with the season-finale concert Monday, Aug. 19.
Highlights of the Festival’s final weeks include several artist debuts and the return of Festival-audience favorites; beloved classics by Mozart, Brahms, and Schubert; charming, lesser-known works by Britten and Janáček; and the Festival’s first-ever presentation of the complete cycle of Beethoven’s groundbreaking Sonatas for Violin & Piano.
All of the Week 5 & Week 6 concerts are held in either St. Francis Auditorium at the New Mexico Museum of Art or The Lensic Performing Arts Center, both of which are the Festival’s longtime Santa Fe venues.
THE BEETHOVEN SONATAS
For the first time in its history, the Festival presents a complete performance of Beethoven’s Sonatas for Violin & Piano. Over the course of three evenings (Aug. 13-15), at 6 p.m. in The Lensic, violinist Ida Kavafian and pianist Anne-Marie McDermott perform all 10 of the genre-defining works, beginning with the first three sonatas in the cycle.
“Beethoven’s 10 violin-and-piano sonatas offer an opportunity to experience the compositional development of the master—from his Classical period through to the expansive innovation of his late style—in a concise, three-concert format,” Festival Artistic Director Marc Neikrug said. “Gems along the way are the ‘Spring,’ ‘Kreutzer,’ and last G-Major Sonata, Op. 96.”
Ida Kavafian recently marked her 34th year as artistic director of the Music from Angel Fire chamber music festival in New Mexico. A frequent artist of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center for more than 40 years and a former violinist of the Beaux Arts Trio, Kavafian currently performs as a soloist; in recital with her sister, violinist Ani Kavafian; as a guest with distinguished ensembles; and as a faculty member at the Curtis Institute of Music, Juilliard School, and Bard College Conservatory of Music. She’s premiered many new works, and she’s the co-founder of the ensembles TASHI, OPUS ONE, and Trio Valtorna. She holds the Nina von Maltzahn Chair in Violin Studies at Curtis, where she was awarded the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching.
Anne-Marie McDermott has played concertos, recitals, and chamber music in hundreds of cities around the world. She serves as artistic director of the Bravo! Vail Music Festival and the Ocean Reef Chamber Music Festival and as curator for San Diego’s Mainly Mozart Festival. Her extensive discography includes the complete Prokofiev piano sonatas, Bach’s English Suites and partitas, Gershwin’s complete piano and orchestral works, Haydn piano sonatas and concertos, and upcoming releases of several Mozart concertos. McDermott is a longtime member of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, with whom she tours every season, and she’s a member of the piano quartet OPUS ONE, which has commissioned more than a dozen works. McDermott is awinner of the Young Concert Artists Auditions and an Avery Fisher Career Grant.
FESTIVAL DEBUT OF PIANIST ZOLTÁN FEJÉRVÁRI
Hungarian pianist Zoltán Fejérvári makes his Festival debut by appearing on four programs, beginning with a solo recital on August 13 at noon in the New Mexico Museum of Art that includes spirited works from the 19th, 20th, and 21st centuries: the Humoreske in B-flat Major by Schumann, Three Burlesques by Bartók, and Elf Humoresken (Eleven Humoresques) by contemporary German composer Jörg Widmann. He also appears on three chamber music concerts, playing Bach’s Concerto in D Minor for Keyboard Solo after Marcello, BWV 974, Aug. 17; Ravel’s elegant Piano Trio in A Minor with violinist Benny Kim and cellist Eric Kim Aug. 18; and Schubert’s “Trout” Quintet with members of the Dover Quartet and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra’s associate principal bass, Leigh Mesh, during the season-finale concert Aug. 19. All three chamber music concerts are 6 p.m. in The Lensic.
Zoltán Fejérvári has performed as a soloist with the Budapest and Verbier Festival Orchestras, Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra, and Concerto Budapest Symphonic Orchestra, among other ensembles. In August 2018, at the request of Sir András Schiff, he performed in Mr. Schiff ’s stead at the Lucerne Festival. In September, he performed at Classical Spree, the festival of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Additional 2018–19 engagements included concerts in Budapest and Turin and appearances in Kalamazoo, Michigan, as part of the Gilmore Keyboard Festival’s Rising Stars Series; at Union College in Schenectady, New York; and at The Coast Recital Society and the Vancouver Recital Society in British Columbia. He also performed at the Borletti-Buitoni Trust’s 15th-anniversary concert and toured twice with Musicians from Marlboro. Mr. Fejérvári won first prize at the 2017 Concours musical international de Montréal and is a recipient of a 2016 Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship.
THE RETURN OF FESTIVAL FAVORITES
Several artists return to the Festival during Weeks 5 & 6.
Conductor David Zinman, who last appeared at the Festival in 2010, leads 13 musicians in one of Mozart’s most magnificent works—the Serenade for Winds & Bass, known as the “Gran Partita”—during the August 11 concert, held at 6 p.m. in The Lensic.
Also during the August 11 concert, pianist Shai Wosner joins Berlin Philharmonic Principal Horn Stefan Dohr for two works: Brahms’s somber and stunningly beautiful Horn Trio, which includes violinist Benny Kim, and Schubert’s deeply moving homage to his idol, Beethoven—Auf dem Strom (On the River)—which spotlights tenor Paul Appleby. Mr. Wosner also performs Mendelssohn’s Konzertstück in F Minor with clarinetist David Shifrin and bassoonist Christopher Millard on August 12 at 6 p.m. in The Lensic, and on August 14, at noon in the New Mexico Museum of Art, he plays Janáček’s evocative Concertino and Thuille’s lushly Romantic Sextet.
Clarinetist David Shifrin plays the Mozart, Mendelssohn, Janáček, and Thuille works mentioned above, as well as Falla’s Harpsichord Concerto—a seemingly anachronistic yet fully modern work—with New York Philharmonic harpsichordist Paolo Bordignon on August 12. He also performs Brahms’s Clarinet Quintet—one of the composer’s final works and one that’s often cited as his greatest piece of chamber music—with the Dover Quartet Aug. 18. Both concerts are at 6 p.m. in The Lensic.
The Dover Quartet appears on three programs this season. In addition to the Aug. 18 concert (see above), on August 15, at noon in the New Mexico Museum of Art, they play Beethoven’s “Serioso” Quartet, which was given its nickname by Beethoven himself; Britten’s String Quartet No. 1, written toward the end of the composer’s years-long stay in America; and Webern’s heartfelt Langsamer Satz (Slow Movement), inspired by a romantic hike Webern took in Lower Austria with his future wife. Aug. 19, during the season- finale concert held at 6 p.m. in The Lensic, members of the quartet perform Halvorsen’s Passacaglia in G Minor for Violin & Viola (based on themes by Handel), Kodály’s folk-tune-infused Duo for Violin & Cello, and Schubert’s popular “Trout” Quintet, which features variations on an 1817 song Schubert wrote called “The Trout.”
ADDITIONAL FESTIVAL DEBUTS
In addition to Zoltán Fejérvári, artists making their Festival debuts include the New York City Ballet Orchestra’s principal oboe, Randall Wolfgang, who appears on five programs and plays, among other works, Marcello’s Oboe Concerto in C Minor (at 6 p.m. Aug. 17 in The Lensic) and Britten’s charming Two Insect Pieces with pianist Paolo Bordignon (at 6 p.m., Aug. 18 in The Lensic). Debuts also include Eric Wyrick and Carla Ecker, violin; Julia DeRosa, oboe; Miles Jaques, basset horn; and Karen Suarez and James Wilson, horn. Violist Theresa Rudolph, tenor Paul Appleby, and hornists Gregory Flint and Stefan Dohr, who also appear on programs this week, made their Festival debuts earlier in the season.
FREE ANNUAL INDIAN MARKET CONCERT
At 6 p.m., Aug. 16, in the New Mexico Museum of Art, the Festival presents its free annual Indian Market Concert. This year’s program is a solo recital by guitarist Roberto Capocchi, who plays Andrés Segovia’s transcription of the Chaconne from Bach’s Partita No. 2 in D Minor, BWV 1004; Five Preludes by Villa-Lobos; Élégie by Johann Kaspar Mertz; Rêverie by Giulio Regondi; and El Abejorro by Emilio Pujol.
Capocchi received a graduate scholarship to the University of Arizona after winning numerous guitar competitions in his native Brazil, and since then he’s performed in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Belgium and recorded three CDs. Recent engagements include the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra, New Mexico Performing Arts Society, New Mexico Classical Guitar Festival, Santa Fe Desert Chorale, Santa Fe Community Orchestra, and Southern Arizona Symphony Orchestra. Capocchi teaches at the Santa Fe Guitar Academy, plays and offers workshops at festivals in North and South America, and leads the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival’s Guitars in Our Schools program at Kha’p’o Community School at Santa Clara Pueblo.
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