LSM Newswire

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Eddins and Kulesha conduct invigorating repertoire in Masters Series concerts - Feb. 20 and Feb. 21

Classic Landmarks Masters

William Eddins and Gary Kulesha both at the forefront in virtuosic evening of Bach and Beethoven

Friday, February 20th 7:30 pm; Saturday, February 21st 8:00 pm

Edmonton, AB Ķ In a rare gesture, Canadian composer Gary Kulesha takes the baton to lead the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra (ESO) in his own composition, Symphony No. 3. William Eddins will also command the role of conductor, but from the harpsichord, in Bachs Fifth Brandenburg Concerto. Also featured in this treasured Baroque masterpiece are ESO Concertmaster Martin Riseley, and Principal Flute Elizabeth Koch. Pianist Jon Kimura Parker takes the solo role in the evenings concluding work, Beethovens First Piano Concerto, a remarkable work marked with the bold strokes and propulsive energy of an emerging titan.

Ticket prices for this performance range from $20-$69 (agency fees apply). Student and senior $20 rush tickets are on sale, subject to availability, two hours prior to performance time. Afterthoughts, following Fridays performance, will feature conductors William Eddins and Gary Kulesha. Saturday evenings 7:15 pm Symphony Prelude features Allan Gilliland and Gary Kulesha.

Special $10 Friday morning ESO/Eddins concert on February 20th 10:00 am

In addition to the Friday and Saturday night concert events, the ESO invites you to explore The Shapes and Shades of Music on Friday, February 20th at 10:00 am. During this highly interactive concert, host William Eddins, Gary Kulesha and Jon Kimura Parker will delve deep into live excerpts of musical works, enlightening audience members through discussion of tuneful aspects underlying the music. The excerpts from Bach, Beethoven, and Kulesha to be presented at the morning demonstration will be performed in their entirety both Friday and Saturday evenings. Dont miss this unique symphonic opportunity! Tickets for The Shapes and Shades of Music are only $10 (agency fee applies) and are available by calling the Winspear Centre Box Office at (780) 428-1414.

The next performance of The Masters takes place on March 7th and 8th, with conductor William Eddins and cellist Pieter Wispelwey in Music that Changed the World, featuring Beethovens 5th Symphony, arguably the most well-known composition of classical music.

This series is generously supported by Classic Landmarks Master Builder.

Media Sponsor: CKUA Radio Network and the Edmonton Journal


Media contact:

Pamela Pecush, Publicist

Edmonton Symphony Orchestra

Office: (780) 401-2532; Cell: (780) 952-2532

Winspear Centre Box Office:

(780) 428-1414 or 1-800-563-5081

#4 Winston Churchill Square


William Eddins is Music Director of the Edmonton SymphonyBuffalo, N.Y., he currently resides in Minneapolis with his lovely wife Jen, a clarinetist, and their two boys Raef and Riley. Orchestra. A native of

Bill has been playing piano since he was five when his parents bought a Wurlitzer Grand piano at a garage sale. He started conducting during his sophomore year at the Eastman School of Music, and most of the '80s were spent trying to decide whether to pursue a career in conducting or piano. In 1989, Bill decided to study conducting with Dan Lewis at the University of Southern California, from whence he managed to land assistant conductor posts with the Chicago Symphony and the Minnesota Orchestra in 1992.

Bill is committed to bringing classical music to the greater public. He has started a podcast Classical Connections which is dedicated to exploring the history of classical music and highlights live chamber music performances in which Bill has taken part. He has also produced a solo piano CD Bad Boys, Volume I which features Beethoven's "Hammerklavier" Sonata and Albright's Nightmare Fantasy Rag.

Although principally a composer, Gary Kulesha is active as both a pianist and a conductor, and as a teacher. His music has been commissioned, performed, and recorded by musicians and ensembles all over the world. Mr. Kulesha's first opera, Red Emma, was included in Opera America's book of "Operas which should be performed more often", beside works by Copland, Bernstein, and Weill.

In 1988 to 1992, Gary Kulesha was Composer in Residence with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra. He was Composer in Residence with the Canadian Opera Company from 1993 to 1995. In September 1995, he was appointed Composer-Advisor to The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, where his duties include composing, conducting, and advising on repertoire. In February 1998, the TSO premiered his Symphony for two conductors and orchestra, with Jukka Pekka Saraste and Gary Kulesha conducting. Symphony was awarded a prize at the Winnipeg Symphony New Music Festival in 2001 as Best Canadian Orchestra Composition of the 1990s. In March of 2005, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra premiered Second Symphony. In November of 2006, Shauna Rolston premiered Concerto for Cello and Orchestra with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. In May of 2007, the National Arts Centre Orchestra premiered Third Symphony, the work which the ESO will perform at these concerts.

In 1990, Mr. Kulesha was nominated for a Juno award for his Third Chamber Concerto. He was nominated again in 2000 for The Book of Mirrors. In 1986, he was named Composer of the Year by PROCanada, the youngest composer ever so honoured. His conducting activities are extensive, and he has premiered literally hundreds of works. He has guest conducted frequently with several major orchestras throughout Canada, and has recorded for radio and CD. Mr. Kulesha is on the fulltime faculty of the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto. He lives in Toronto with his wife, composer Larysa Kuzmenko.

This is Mr. Kuleshas debut as a conductor of the ESO. Previous compositions by Mr. Kulesha performed by the ESO are Dreams (October 1989) and Essay for Orchestra No. 2 (April 1986).

Internationally acclaimed concert pianist Jon Kimura Parker's extraordinary career has taken him from Carnegie Hall and London's Royal Festival Hall to Baffin Island and Zimbabwe. A true Canadian ambassador of music, Mr. Parker has given two command performances for Queen Elizabeth II, special performances for the United States Supreme Court, and has performed for the Prime Ministers of Canada and Japan. He is an Officer of The Order of Canada. He has performed as guest soloist with the New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland Orchestra, The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Warsaw Philharmonic, the NHK Tokyo Orchestra, and with major orchestra in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Cincinnati, Dallas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Montral, San Diego, Salt Lake City, and Toronto.

Jon Kimura Parker is Professor of Piano at The Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in Houston. Mr. Parker is the E. Stephen Purdom Distinguished Visiting Artist at the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University, as well as Honorary Co-Chair of the Piano Pedagogy Research Laboratory at the University of Ottawa. "Jackie" Parker received all of his early education in Canada, training with his uncle, Edward Parker and his mother, Keiko Parker. He studied with Lee Kum-Sing at the Vancouver Academy of Music and U.B.C., Marek Jablonski at The Banff Centre, and with renowned pedagogue Adele Marcus at The Juilliard School, where he received his doctorate. He won the Gold Medal at the 1984 Leeds International Piano Competition. Mr. Parker has recorded for Telarc with Yoel Levi, Andre Previn and Peter Schickele. He was born, raised, and educated in Vancouver. He lives in Houston with his wife, violinist Aloysia Friedmann and their daughter Sophie.

Mr. Parker last appeared with the ESO in March 2007.

Originally from the Philadelphia area, Elizabeth Koch has been Principal Flute with the ESO since 1987. She studied at the New School of Music in Philadelphia, the Cleveland Institute of Music and the Blossom Festival School (summer home of the Cleveland Orchestra). Her teachers include David Cramer (Assistant Principal Flute, Philadelphia Orchestra), Jeffrey Khaner (Principal Flute, Philadelphia Orchestra) and Adeline Tomasone (Principal Flute, Philadelphia Opera). In the summer of 1987, Elizabeth was the only American flutist to play in the Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival Orkester under Leonard Bernstein.

Since arriving in Edmonton, Elizabeth Koch has been in demand as a soloist with the ESO, the Alberta Baroque Ensemble, ECHO and the Arden Ensemble. Elizabeth was a founding member of the woodwind trio Take 3 which was heard regularly on CBC Radio from 1992-1998. She is on faculty at King's University College and maintains a private studio. She is married to ESO violinist Murray Vaasjo. They have one son - and several cats.

A native of New Zealand, Martin Riseley began violin studies at the age of six, and gave his first solo concert when he was ten. After several years of study with the English violinist Carl Pini, he entered the University of Canterbury School of Music in 1986. In 1988 he won the Television New Zealand Young Musicians Competition and Australian Guarantee Corporation Young Achievers Award. Upon graduating with a Bachelor of Music degree he went to the Juilliard School in 1989 where he studied with Dorothy DeLay and Piotr Milewski, and was coached in chamber music by Samuel Rhodes and Joel Smirnoff of the Juilliard Quartet, and by Felix Galimir. Riseley graduated from Juilliard in 1996 with his Doctorate of Musical Arts degree.

Mr. Riseley assisted Dorothy DeLay as a teaching fellow in the Pre-College Division of Juilliard while in New York, and taught at the 92nd Street 'Y'. He was also soloist and concertmaster with the Chamber Players of the Juilliard School in their Merkin Hall debut, and in Alice Tully Hall as part of the Mozart Bicentennial celebrations at Lincoln Center.

Martin Riseley has been Concertmaster of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra since 1994, and his solo and chamber concerts have appeared on CBC radio. He gave the North American premiere of the violin concerto "The Bulls of Bashan" by Gavin Bryars, and played the Chaconne from The Red Violin by John Corigliano at the ESO's Enbridge Symphony Under the Sky festival. He also premiered a concerto by the ESO's Composer in Residence, Allan Gilliland in 2002.

He served as Interim Associate Concertmaster of the National Arts Center Orchestra for the 2002-2003 season, and was guest concertmaster of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra during 2003.

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