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CLASSICAL  November 2006

CLASSICAL November 2006

Subject:

Upcoming Cornell Chamber Orchestra concert

From:

Chris Younghoon Kim <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Moderated Classical Music List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 6 Nov 2006 15:50:18 -0500

Content-Type:

text/plain

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Dear All, If you are near the Finger Lakes region of New York, I would
like to the following concert this week.  Concert is free and open to
the public.

Cornell Chamber Orchestra
Stefania Neonato, fortepiano
Tatiana Vessilieva, fortepiano
Chris Younghoon Kim, conductor

8 PM, Saturday, November 11, 2006
Barnes Hall, Cornell University

Program
W.A. Mozart =09=09Piano Concerto No. 9 in Eb major, K. 271
I. Allegro
II. Andantino
III. Rondeau (Presto - Menuetto - Tempo Primo)
With Tatiana Vessilieva, fortepiano

Intermission

W.A. Mozart =09=09Piano Concerto No. 18 in Bb major, K. 456
I. Allegro Vivace
II. Andante un poco sostenuto
III. Allegro Vivace
With Stefania Neonato, fortepiano

In February of this year three current students of Malcolm Bilson,
Frederic Lacroix, Stefania Neonato and myself, played the Triple Concerto
in F Major, K.  242 with Chris Kim and the Cornell Chamber Orchestra in
the Annual Mozart's Birthday Concert.  This event inspired us to devote
the entire Fall semester to Mozart piano concertos.  Today's concert is
the second in this series.  Our aim is to experience these works in a
somewhat different way than is usually done with a modern piano and large
orchestra.  The biggest difference is of course the five-octave Viennese
piano but it is not the only difference.  For example, we play continuo
during the orchestral ritornelli as was the custom at the time; this
gives a quite different picture of the 'action' of these works.  We have
also worked together with Profs.  Chris=

Kim and Malcolm Bilson on articulation, bowing and other performance
practice matters.  It is our wish to share the knowledge we accumulate
during our doctoral studies here with the students in the chamber
orchestra, and learn together from mutual experience.  - Sezi Seskir

Tatiana Vassilieva, a native of St.  Petersburg, Russia, is a dual
Master's degree candidate at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester,
NY, studying piano performance with Nelita True and collaborative piano
with Jean Barr.  She has recently completed her Bachelor's degree in
piano performance at Eastman with Nelita True and Fernando Laires.  As
a soloist, Ms.  Vassilieva has appeared with the Rochester Philharmonic,
Eastern Festival, and the Greece Symphony orchestras.  Other performance
highlights include a 'Rising Stars Recital' at the Eastman Young Artist
International Piano Competition and the Eastern Music Festival concert
at the Kennedy Center.  In addition to being an active solo pianist, Ms.
Vassilieva is also a skilled accompanist and collaborates frequently
with numerous instrumentalists and vocalists at Eastman.  In the summer
of 2006, Ms.  Vassilieva attended the Collaborative Piano Program at the
Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, CA, where she studied with
Anne Epperson and Jonathan Feldman.

Born in Trento, Italy, Stefania Neonato graduated at her home town
Conservatory and earned a Master in Fortepiano Performance Practice
at the International Piano Academy (Imola, Bologna).  After a BA degree
in Foreign Languages and Literatures at the University of Trento, she's
currently a doctoral candidate at Cornell University in the Historical
Performance Practice program under Malcolm Bilson.  Winner of many
National Piano Competitions, she collected gratifying awards at International
Contests; she played in the most important Italian cities (Milan, Rome,
Florence, Bologna, Brescia, Venice, Padua, Bolzano, Cremona) and in
several foreign centres (Paris, Salzburg, Miami, Miskolc, Dortmund),
both as a soloist and with orchestras.  She attended many master-classes
around the world (among them at the Mozarteum in Salzburg) and was
recipient of scholarships from the Interlochen Arts Camp (Michigan) and
from the School of Music of Miami University.  She studied with Riccardo
Zadra, Leonid Margarius and Aldo Ciccolini but her interest in historical
instruments has been arisen by the meeting with the pianist Alexander
Lonquich whom she followed in many seminars on the collections of the
Accademia Bartolomeo Cristofori in Florence, Fondazione Giulini in
Briosco-Milan, Accademia in Imola-Bologna).  In 2004 she was invited to
give a seminar on historical performance practice at Trento Conservatory
and in 2005 her first recording was released: it features Mozart, Beethoven
and Dussek on a 1780 Viennese fortepiano.  =09=09=09=09=09=09|:|

'Bravo Mozart!' - called out the emperor at the end of Mozart's performance
of this Concerto on the 13th of February 1785 at the Burgtheater.  Leopold
Mozart, who went to visit his son in Vienna for six weeks, and was
attending the academy that night, depicted this music as 'a masterful
concerto' in which he 'had the great pleasure of hearing all the interplay
of the instruments so clearly that for sheer delight tears came to his
eyes'.  He must have been very pleased and proud of the success and the
'great deal of clapping' that the audience reserved to his son in that
occasion and in many other concerts and private performances.  Mozart
was at the height of his career and was accepted and invited by the
Viennese high society and by the Masonic 'Beneficence' Lodge.  In 1784
he wrote eight Concertos (K.  449, 450, 451, 453, 456, 459, 466, 467),
some of them meant to be played by himself, and some others dedicated
to the piano virtuosos of the time (often the piano virtuoso was one of
his students, mostly women).  Mozart conceived them to present himself
in public not only as a performer but, especially as a composer.  Through
these pieces, Mozart shows a dramatic development of his taste in
orchestration; the treatment of the wind section is particularly striking
in its variety and tone colour.  The Concerto K.456 starts with Mozart's
favourite martial rhythm, the one he exploits also in K.451, 453, 459.
The extrovert gesture of the theme's beginning is smothered by the
gracious character of its conclusion, from which the second theme draws
inspiration.  Playful and witty phrases and dialogues are all softened
by intimate and lyrical episodes.  The Andante un poco sostenuto in G
minor is written in variation form; theme and five variations are followed
by a coda which functions as a sixth. On a relatively simple harmonic
sequence, which brings the melody to its major relative and back, Mozart
displays a richness in counterpoint and ornamentation, treating the
orchestra as a chamber music ensemble.  The chromatic implication of
such an harmonic frame is outlined in the bassoon part at the second
variation and sharpened dramatically in the coda.  The last measures of
the theme are painfully split in sighs between the piano and the winds,
and nothing makes us imagine the following cheerful sonata-rondo Allegro
vivace after all this desolation.  This athletic and energetic explosion
of joy is briefly darkened by a central minor episode, probably the most
interesting peculiarity of this Concerto; here the winds play in 2/4
against the 6/8 of the rest of the orchestra.  The piano can't decide
between the two groups and join first the strings and then the winds in
two contrasting sections.  Cadenzas are almost original with some
insertions by the performer.
- Notes by Stefania Neonato

Mozart composed the Concerto in E flat Major, K.  271, in January of
1777, when he turned 21.  It is considered his first mature keyboard
concerto, and combines within itself incredible emotional depth and
dazzling virtuosity.  Mozart wrote the concerto for a young French pianist
Mlle Jeunehomme, who visited Salzburg in the winter of 1776-1777.  Although
little is known about her abilities as a performer, the concerto that
she inspired suggests that they were considerable.

Even though the concerto features the traditional three-movement form
(Allegro, Andantino, Rondeau: Presto), the work has many unconventional
qualities, which become apparent in the opening bars of the piece.  First
movement begins with a declamatory orchestral fanfare, which the piano
immediately interrupts, asserting its superiority over the orchestra
with confidence and flair.  After two such interruptions, the opening
tutti continues to unfold in its usual way.  The piano enters again with
a trill at the conclusion for the tutti and dominates throughout the
rest of the movement to the final notes of the closing ritornello.  The
second is movement is a dramatic lament in the relative minor key.  It
has a character of an operatic recitative and aria.  Through numerous
expressive leaps and appoggiaturas, poignant Neopolitan harmonies, and
striking juxtapositions of major and minor modes, the piano sings its
soul out to a tragic conclusion.  The return of the E flat Major key in
the brilliant and energetic finale dissolves the somber atmosphere of
the second movement.  The piano sets the pace with a virtuosic rondeau
theme and in a quasi-perpetual motion carries the movement to its exciting
conclusion, pausing only for occasional brief cadenzas and a delicate
French minuet. The trill from the beginning of the first movement returns
at the end of the rondeau, unifying the entire work.
- Notes by Tatiana Vassilieva

Chris Younghoon Kim
Director of Orchestras at Cornell University
www.arts.cornell.edu/orchestra

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