LSM Newswire

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Ondine Signs Violist David Aaron Carpenter and Announces North American April Releases

[Note: Fact sheets attached as PDFs

Ondine North American News and Releases for April 2009

Signs violist David Aaron Carpenter

Releases world premiere recording of long-lost Hindemith work, the Klaviermusik mit Orchester, Op. 29

Releases Bizarre Bazaar featuring clarinetist Kari Kriikku

Releases world premiere recording of Hallgrmsson's Cello Concerto performed by Truls Mrk


Debut recording Viola Concertos by Elgar and Schnittke will be released internationally in September 2009 and features the Philharmonia Orchestra under Christoph Eschenbach. A pre-release sample is available at

Ondine is pleased to announce the signing of a recording agreement with 22-year-old violist David Aaron Carpenter, who has recently emerged as one of the world's most promising young talents. The initial agreement calls for four CD releases. Mr. Carpenter, who was the Winner of the 2006 Walter W. Naumburg Viola Competition, will be performing in recital at Carnegie Hall in Zankel Hall on Monday, April 13, 2009 at 7:30 pm (

His debut recording to be released in September 2009 couples two concertos: a viola arrangement of Sir Edward Elgar's famous Cello Concerto and the Viola Concerto (1985) by Alfred Schnittke. Christoph Eschenbach leads the Philharmonia Orchestra. David Aaron Carpenter adapted much of the Elgar Concerto himself, using the well-known and Elgar-sanctioned arrangement by Lionel Tertis as a basis.

Since making his orchestral debut in 2005 with The Philadelphia Orchestra under Christoph Eschenbach, David Aaron Carpenter has been performing with leading musicians and orchestras in the United States and Europe. In 2007, he became the first American and youngest protg for The Rolex Mentor and Protg Arts Initiative and the protg of world-renowned violinist and violist Pinchas Zukerman. He was chosen among an international selection that included every violinist and violist of his generation.

David Aaron Carpenter has been acclaimed as producing, "a seductively rich sound and demonstrating both a forceful interpretive personality and remarkable control of his instrument," (The New York Times) and, "whose beautiful modulated tone makes a striking impression." (The Strad)

Industry veteran Kevin Kleinmann, who brought David Aaron Carpenter to Ondine's attention and serves as Executive Producer for this and future recordings with the artist on Ondine, said, "In my more than thirty years working with classical musicians, I have rarely encountered a more striking talent than David Aaron Carpenter. He combines an incandescent and imaginative musical personality with effortless technique an maturity far beyond his years. His intense musicality and talent brings to my mind such past greats as Michael Rabin and Jacqueline du Pr. Working on the Elgar recording project made me realize how, I David's hands, this Concerto works so well on the viola."

Reijo Kiilunen, Managing Director of Ondine, added, "It is my pleasure to welcome this outstandingly gifted young musician to Ondine and to release his debut recording. I believe that David Aaron Carpenter combines superstar potential with an artistic depth uncommon for his age. The juxtaposition of the concertos by Elgar and Schnittke underlines our label's artistic vision, and we look forward to many further exciting recordings with David in the future."

On signing with Ondine, David Aaron Carpenter said, "I want to express my gratitude to the Rolex Mentor and Protg Arts Initiative for making this recording possible. I look forward to my collaboration with Ondine, a company that remains true to its core musical principals. I am fortunate that Ondine aligns its vision with my own to establish the viola as a solo instrument. Making my first recording with Maestro Eschenbach and the Philharmonia Orchestra has been a truly remarkable journey. Performing the Elgar Cello Concerto on viola has definitely been the highlight of my musical career thus far, and I hope that listeners will appreciate this masterpiece interpreted in a new light." Subsequent to the release of his debut album, David Aaron Carpenter will be performing the Schnittke Concerto in Dresden with the Dresden Staatskapelle conducted by Christoph Eschenbach on November 29th and 30th, 2009.

Artist profile at

Artist profile on The Rolex Mentor & Protg Arts Initiative website:

Video portrait of the artist:

Video showing the artist working with his mentor Pinchas Zukerman:

Interview with the artist:

Official website of the artist:

********************************** HINDEMITH


Op. 29 (for Piano Left Hand)



SYMPHONY No. 9 in E minor

Op. 95 "From the New World"

Leon Fleisher, piano

The Curtis SymphonyOrchestra

Christoph Eschenbach, conductor

ODE 1141-2

Release date: April 28, 2009

Ondine is proud to announce the April 28, 2009 release of the first-ever commercial recording of a long-lost major work by Paul Hindemith, the Klaviermusik mit Orchester, Op. 29 for piano left-hand and orchestra. The New York Times has called it, "a fantastic work that requires tremendous technique and stamina" (December 2, 2006). The disc also features Antonn Dvok's popular Symphony No. 9 ("From the New World").

Hindemith wrote this concerto in 1923 for the left-hand pianist Paul Wittgenstein, who lost his right arm during the First World War. Wittgenstein never performed it, and it was only upon the death of his widow, in 2002, that the piece was discovered in a farmhouse in Pennsylvania; the work received an acclaimed 2004 world premiere in Berlin, with piano legend Leon Fleisher as soloist and the Berlin Philharmonic under Sir Simon Rattle. Leon Fleisher, who is one of the most prominent specialists of left-hand repertoire, is the soloist on this recording.

Watch the Christoph Eschenbach and the Curtis Symphony Orchestra performing Dvok Symphony No. 9 on YouTube.

********************************** KRIIKKU, CLARINET



JAN SDERBLOM, conductor

ODE 1140-2

Release date: April 28, 2009

Hailed by press and public as one of the world's foremost clarinetists, Kari Kriikku is celebrated for his musical inventiveness and fresh attitude towards traditional performance. His versatility covers numerous periods, ranging from Mozart to the contemporary, and has been a muse for composers such as Magnus Lindberg, Kaija Saariaho and Kimmo Hakola.

Kari Kriikku's passion for traditional folk music shines through in Bizarre Bazaar, his new album release on Ondine. The eclectic programme showcases the diverse use of the clarinet in Jewish klezmer, Portuguese fado, Argentinean tango and Arab music. "I have followed my instincts in gradually bringing together works from various cultures that have impressed me on my travels and then unabashedly adapted those works for concert use," says Kari Kriikku who performs here with the chamber orchestra Tapiola Sinfonietta and additional oud, qanun and laud players. The Finnish press hailed their live performances as "vibrantly energetic and entertaining" (Helsingin Sanomat).

********************************** HALLGRMSSON




JOHN STORGRDS, conductor

ODE 1133-2

Release date: April 28, 2009

The celebrated Norwegian cellist Truls Mrk is known as a tireless champion of the best contemporary music. On this release, he presents the Icelandic composer Haflii Hallgrmsson himself a professional cellist with his two works for cello and orchestra. Truls Mrk joins forces with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, one of the finest ensembles of its kind, under the direction of John Storgrds. This CD includes the first commercial recording of the Cello Concerto, which Hallgrmsson dedicated to Mrk in 2003. Since the premiere, he has championed the work in a number of performances across Europe to great acclaim; The Times called it, "a remarkable new addition to the cello repertoireĶ one of his [Hallgrmsson's] finest work to dateĶ" (Hilary Finch, The Times, 28 January 2004), Scotland's Herald spoke of "a work of haunting beauty" (Michael Tumelty, The Herald, 26 January 2004).


About Ondine: Ondine was founded more than twenty years ago in Helsinki, Finland, where the company is still based and today offers an extremely eclectic catalogue of both contemporary Finnish music, as well as recordings with major Finnish and international artists.

Ondine's extensive catalogue includes more than four hundred recordings (two hundred and fifty of which are available physically) of artists and ensembles such as conductor and pianist Christoph Eschenbach, conductors Vladimir Ashkenazy, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Sakari Oramo, Leif Segerstam, John Storgrds and Mikko Franck, orchestras such as The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Orchestre de Paris, the London Sinfonietta, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Czech Philharmonic, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Helsinki Philharmonic, sopranos Karita Mattila and Soile Isokoski, pianist Olli Mustonen, violinist Pekka Kuusisto and clarinettist Kari Kriikku. The label has also had a long and fruitful association with the Finnish composer Einojuhani Rautavaara, having recorded the premieres of many of his works and garnering many awards along the way.

The roots of Ondine date back to 1985 when founder Reijo Kiilunen released the very first Ondine album under the auspices of the renowned Finnish Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival. The label's initial mission was to produce one live album at the Festival each season. The fourth album, however, featured Einojuhani Rautavaara's opera Thomas (ODE 704-2), raising major international attention and opening up the possibility for North American distribution. Kiilunen, who was running the Festival's concert agency and had begun the recording activity part-time, soon decided to devote himself fully to the development of this new business, producing and editing the first 50 releases himself. In 1991, Seppo Siirala joined as producer, and the Helsinki-based company has been expanding steadily since, currently numbering six full-time employees. Today, Ondine continues to uphold its reputation as one of the most respected labels in classical music, and its products have received numerous prizes at the Cannes (MIDEM) Classical Awards, the Gramophone Awards, the BBC Music Magazine Awards and the Classical Internet Awards.

Universal Music Classical and Ondine entered into a distribution agreement that began on January 1, 2008. Both physical and digital distribution in the United States and Canada are covered under the agreement. Universal Music Classical comprises the Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, Philips, and ECM labels and is a division of the Universal Music Group. For more information about Ondine, visit

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Thursday, February 26, 2009

2009 NAC Gala: a Magical Evening with Yo-Yo Ma and Pinchas Zukerman on Oct. 3

The 2009 NAC Gala offers a Magical Evening with Yo-Yo Ma and the NAC Orchestra led by Pinchas Zukerman on Oct. 3

Ottawa, Canada Yo-Yo Ma is the greatest cellist today. Everything he touches he turns to gold...gorgeous, almost voluptuous playing. Boston Herald

The National Arts Centre is delighted to announce that superstar cellist Yo-Yo Ma, the most popular artist in classical music today, will return as special guest for the 2009 NAC Gala on Saturday, October 3. Music Director Pinchas Zukerman will lead the National Arts Centre Orchestra for this Magical Evening with Yo-Yo Ma, presented by TELUS. The fundraising evening benefits the National Youth and Education Trust which provides funds for the NACs wide array of performing arts programming for young artists, young audiences and schools.

Yo-Yo Ma has been a cultural beacon for decades. Young and old flock to his sold-out concerts, coming away moved, thrilled, and inspired. This astonishing artist has performed at the Oscars, the Grammys, the Olympics, and recently before a live audience of over a million at the inauguration of President Barack Obama. He returns to the NAC Orchestra to perform Dvorks beloved Cello Concerto with the NACs own luminary Pinchas Zukerman leading the National Arts Centre Orchestra. Additional programming will be announced at a later date.

There will be a pre-concert reception for all patrons at 5:30 p.m., followed by the concert at 6:30 p.m. Those who purchase Encore Seating will join Gala sponsors at a post-concert reception, followed by dinner on the Southam Hall stage.

Subscribers who sign up for the 2009-2010 National Arts Centre Orchestra season, which will be announced on March 3, will benefit from a priority purchasing period from April 1 to 15 before tickets go on sale to the general public on May 18.

The NAC is honoured once again to have TELUS, Founding Partner of the National Youth and Education Trust, as the Presenting Sponsor of the Gala a commitment that reflects TELUSs continuing support of this primary resource for supporting the artistic development of young Canadians through educational materials, professional training, mentoring programs and young audience performances. The Trust is also supported by Michael Potter and Vronique Dhieux, supporters and patrons of the National Arts Centre Gala, and members of the NAC Foundations Donors Circle.

The NAC is delighted to announce that Janet Yale, TELUS executive vice president, Corporate Affairs, has agreed to chair the Gala Committee for the fourth year.

Yo-Yo Ma was born in 1955 to Chinese parents living in Paris. He began to study the cello with his father at age four and soon came with his family to New York, where he spent most of his formative years. Later, his principal teacher was Leonard Rose at the Juilliard School. He sought out a traditional liberal arts education to expand upon his conservatory training, graduating from Harvard University in 1976. He has received numerous awards, including 15 Grammy Awards from his discography of over 75 albums, the Avery Fisher Prize (1978), the Glenn Gould Prize (1999), the National Medal of the Arts (2001), and the World Economic Forums Crystal Award (2008). Appointed a CultureConnect Ambassador by the United States Department of State in 2002, Yo-Yo Ma has met with, trained and mentored thousands of students worldwide. In 2006, Secretary General Kofi Annan named him a U.N. Messenger of Peace and in 2007 Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon extended his appointment.

Pinchas Zukerman has been Music Director of the National Arts Centre Orchestra since 1998, and his genius and prodigious technique have been a marvel to critics and audiences for over four decades. He is equally respected as a violinist, violist, conductor, and chamber musician while his dedication to teaching has been a major catalyst for many of the education initiatives supported by the National Youth and Education Trust. Pinchas Zukerman's discography contains over 100 titles, and has earned him 21 Grammy nominations and two Grammy awards. He was named first-prize winner of the 1969 Leventritt Competition, and, in 1983, President Reagan awarded him a Medal of Arts for his leadership in the musical world. In October 2002, he became the first recipient of the Isaac Stern Award for Artistic Excellence at the National Arts Awards Gala in New York City.

Pinchas Zukerman and the National Arts Centre Orchestra donate their services for the NACs annual Gala.

Concert tickets for the NAC Gala on Saturday, October 3 are priced at $70, $125 and $150 and include the pre-concert reception with wine and canaps at 5:30 p.m., followed by the concert at 6:30 p.m. These go on sale on April 1 to members of the NAC Donors Circle and to subscribers to the National Arts Centre Orchestras 2009-2010 season which goes on sale on March 3. Orders can be made only with a valid order form which will be accepted online, by mail, by fax, or dropped off in person in the NAC Box Office from Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. This priority period lasts until April 15. The Box Office opens to the general public on May 18.

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Sunday, February 8, 2009

'Cellissimo!' - Denise Djokic Plays Saint-Saens


Sinfonia Toronto will present a Masterpiece Series concert on Friday, March 6, at 8 pm at Grace Church on-the-Hill (300 Lonsdale Road). Titled 'Cellissimo!' the concert will feature the brilliant Canadian cello sensation Denise Djokic. Orchestra's Music Director Nurhan Arman will conduct.

The soaring melodies of Saint-Saens' Cello Concerto in A Minor and Shostakovich's Sinfonia op. 73 will be heard, along with Sonatina and Partita Danzante by Czech composer Jan Slimacek.

One of the most captivating young artists of her generation, cellist Denise Djokic has thrilled audiences and critics worldwide with the passion, vigor, and sensitivity of her playing. Already one of North America's most sought after soloists, she has performed as guest soloist with every leading orchestra in Canada, including the orchestras of Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra. She has also appeared with many orchestras in the United States and in Mexico.

As a recitalist and chamber musician, Denise performs throughout North America and Europe. She has performed in Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Cologne, Mexico City, San Miguel de Allende, at Chicago's Dame Myra Hess Series, at Bargemusic and with the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players in New York, in addition to all major Canadian centers. Her avid involvement in chamber music brings her to many festivals yearly, including the chamber festivals of Caramoor, Ottawa, Vancouver, Park City, Parry Sound, Domaine Forget, and Ravinia.

Denise has toured Canada extensively, during which she was featured as the subject of the documentary film "Seven Days, Seven Nights", which aired on Bravo TV and was screened at the Atlantic Film Festival. She was also named by MacLean's magazine as one of "25 Young Canadians who are changing our World", and by ELLE magazine as one of "Canada's 30 most Powerful Women".

Denise's debut recording was released in 2002 on the Sony Classical label to great critical acclaim, and won her an East Coast Music Award for "Best Classical Recording of the Year". During the same year, Denise was a featured performer at the 2002 Grammy Awards. She recently released her second recording, entitled "Folklore", on the Allegro/Endeavor label, which was featured on NPR's renowned "All Things Considered" program.
Born in Halifax, Nova Scotia, into a large musical family, Denise began her studies with Olive Shaw and Shimon Walt. She is a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music's "Young Artist Program", where she was a student of Richard Aaron, and later continued her studies in Boston with Paul Katz and Laurence Lesser.

There will be a free post-concert reception, giving audience members a chance to meet the orchestra members, conductor and soloist.

Online discount tickets are $35 adult, $27 senior, $7 student (16-29) and can be purchased at
or at regular price by phone 416-499-0403 or at the door.
Buy tickets and CDs at
Sinfonia Toronto
3901 Don Mills Road, Box 5
Toronto, ON M2H 2S7
Tel/Fax: 416.499.0403

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Friday, November 21, 2008

Nielsen's "The Inextinguishable" and Elgar's Cello Concerto both performed in one incredible Victoria Symphony concert

Raging timpani battle highlights Nielsen Symphony No. 4, The Inextinguishable

Victoria, BC On December 7 and 8, Maestra Tania Miller conducts the Victoria Symphonys premiere performance of Carl Nielsens Symphony no.4, The Inextinguishable. Solo performances on timpani create a dramatic and grand finale to this acclaimed work. Canadian cellist John Friesen is the featured guest soloist performing Elgars beautifulCello Concerto.

Nielsen Symphony no. 4 begins with a violent and expansive principal theme that links the entire work together. The title The Inextinguishable reflects Nielsens personal motto: Music is life, and, like life, inextinguishable. The second movement opens passionately with a long line in the violins and climaxes to an oboe solo by Principal Oboe Mike Byrne. The highlight of the final movement is the timpani solos that pit mentor against student; Principal Timpani Bill Linwood and his student Corey Rae. View the finale movement as performed by the BBC Orchestra:

Canadian cellist John Friesen known for his exciting and passionate playing ability performs Edward Elgars Cello Concerto in E minor. His four solo recordings, and his latest disc, Ascendance have been met with critical acclaim for their beauty of tone and depth of expression. Music from his recordings appears in Oscar winning actor, Sir Ben Kingsleys, latest movie Fifty Dead Men Walking scheduled for release in 2009.

Elgars Cello Concerto in E minor is a cornerstone of the cello repertoire and is also said to be Elgars last great success. The cello opens the work with a darkly dramatic theme, recurrent as the emotional force, binding the concerto together. Opposing minor and major key signatures creates a tonal instability in sharp contrast with the lyrical melodies heard both in the orchestra and the solo cello. Yo-Yo Ma can be viewed on youtube playing the concerto:

The 2008-2009 season marks Tania Millers sixth as music director of the Victoria Symphony, an appointment that made her the first woman to hold such a significant position in Canada. Her vibrancy and dynamic approach to music making have inspired many innovations with the Victoria Symphony and a new era of artistic growth for
the orchestra.

Victoria Symphony is
Vancouver Islands largest and most active arts organization offering its audiences 68 years of tradition, a commitment to fostering new music and a dedication to community involvement through music education. Showcasing the outstanding talents of its musicians and guest artists the Victoria Symphonys 2008-2009 season offers a diverse and exciting line-up of over 50 concerts led by its vibrant Music Director
Tania Miller.

The Victoria Symphony led by Maestra Tania Miller performs The Inextinguishable and Elgars Cello Concerto featuring soloist John Friesen on Sunday, December 7 at 2:30pm and Monday, December 8 at 8:00pm at the Royal Theatre. Tickets from $28.50 for adults, $16.00 for students can be purchased by calling 250.385.6515 or 250.386.6121 or online at

The Victoria Symphony wishes to thank and acknowledge concert sponsor
The Wedgewood Hotel based in
Vancouver, BC.

For complete programming details of the 2008-2009 season please visit

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Friday, October 24, 2008

Concert - Matt Haimovitz et DJ Olive


Odd Couple: Duos pour Violoncelle & Piano ET

Violoncelle et Platines

Montral, le vendredi 24 octobre 2008 - La 30e saison de la srie des concerts CBC/McGill se poursuit avec un concert mettant en vedette le professeur de McGill et violoncelliste de rputation internationale Matt Haimovitz, avec Geoffrey Burleson au piano et DJ Olive. Le concert aura lieu 19 h 30 le jeudi 6 novembre la salle Pollack (555, rue Sherbrooke Ouest). Les billets sont en vente la billetterie de la salle Pollack au prix de 15 $, 10 $ pour les tudiants et ans.

C'est donc au tour de Montral d'accueillir le projet Odd Couple propos par Haimovitz, Burleson et DJ Olive, qui offre des duos pour violoncelle et piano de Beethoven et d'Elliot Carter ainsi que des duos pour violoncelle et tables tournantes de Tod Machover et de la Montralaise Nicole Lize. Mettant l'accent sur la farouche individualit de chaque instrument, Haimovitz affirme : Il est aussi inusit pour un violoncelliste de s'associer un pianiste qu' un platiniste. Le duo Burleson-Haimovitz a choisi la sonate opus 102, no 2 dans l'uvre de Beethoven, typique du style qu'avait adopt le compositeur la fin de sa vie, tandis que DJ Olive et Haimovitz, frquents collaborateurs, s'appliquent crer une musique de chambre pour violoncelle et tables tournantes. Les trois musiciens donneront libre cours leur crativit en improvisant des liens entre les diffrents styles des uvres interprtes pour jeter un nouvel clairage sur le rpertoire tabli et briser la parfois trop grande prvisibilit des concerts. Aprs Montral, les musiciens sont attendus sur la scne du Black Sheep Inn Wakefield (Qubec), ainsi qu'au Poisson Rouge de New York le 13 novembre.

galement au programme du concert, la premire mondiale de Bookburners, une uvre pour violoncelle et tables tournantes commande par CBC la Montralaise Nicole Lize, toile montante des compositions pour instruments classiques et tables tournantes. Les uvres de Nicole Lize ont t interprtes par de nombreux ensembles, dont l'Orchestre Mtropolitain et le Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Compose en 2007, sa pice pour ensemble de musique de chambre et tables tournantes intitule This Will Not Be Televised s'est classe parmi les finalistes du prix Jules-Lger et est la seule uvre canadienne recommande par l'International Music Council Paris cette anne.

Le concert Odd Couple a ravi les critiques. Le Washington Post a crit : Haimovitz alterne entre la sensibilit et le dramatique, tandis que Burleson marie parfaitement la vivacit et la posie dans son jeu. Quant au Boston Phoenix, il a dcrit VinylCello de Tod Machover (2007) d'mouvante et d'une grande beaut . Le disque Odd Couple de Haimovitz et Burleson sera galement lanc Montral l'occasion du concert, le lancement l'chelle canadienne sur l'tiquette Oxingale Records devant avoir lieu le 4 novembre.

Pour de plus amples renseignements sur ce concert ainsi que sur l'ensemble de la saison, nous vous invitons composer le 514-398-4547 ou visiter le site Tous les billets peuvent tre achets la billetterie de la salle Pollack, tous les jours de 12 h 18 h en semaine ou une heure avant chaque concert ou encore, sur le rseau Admission au 514-790-1245 ou sur le site Pour de plus amples renseignements sur Matt Haimovitz et les autres musiciens, voir sur

Le concert sera diffus sur CBC Radio 2 dans le cadre des missions Sunday Afternoon In Concert, anime par Bill Richardson (les dimanches de 13 h 17 h), Tempo, anime par Julie Nesrallah (du lundi au vendredi de 10 h 15 h), The Signal, anime par Laurie Brown et Pat Carrabr (tous les soirs de 22 h 24 h) ainsi que sur CBC Radio One l'mission 5 6 (les samedis de 13 h 17 h). Montral, CBC Radio One : 88,5 FM, et CBC Radio 2 : 93,5 FM. Les concerts CBC/McGill sont galement offerts sur Internet, au volet Concerts on Demand ( Kelly Rice est le directeur artistique et premier ralisateur de la srie CBC/McGill.

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Monday, October 20, 2008

Matt Haimovitz with Geoff Burleson and DJ Olive - Nov 6 in Montreal!

CBC/McGill Presents


A Celebration of an "Odd Couple": Duos for Cello & Piano by Beethoven and Elliot Carter and for Cello & Turntables by Tod Machover and Montreal composer Nicole Lize with the world premiere of "Bookburners" for Cello and DJ

Pollack Hall in Montreal, Thursday, November 6 @ 7:30pm

"Odd Couple" CD in stores November 4 on Oxingale Records

For Immediate Release, October 8, 2008 Ķ With a cutting-edge program already lauded by the press in Washington DC, Boston and across the US on NPR's All Things Considered, cellist Matt Haimovitz and pianist Geoffrey Burleson bring "Odd Couple" to Montreal's Pollack Hall on Thursday, November 6th at 7:30pm, featuring special guest DJ Olive. The following night, November 7th, Haimovitz, Burleson and DJ Olive take their Montreal set list to Wakefield, Quebec's Black Sheep Inn, then on to New York's downtown multi-media art cabaret space, Le Poisson Rouge, on November 13th.

The Montreal concert also launches the "Odd Couple" CD, to be released in Canada on November 4th on Oxingale Records. "Odd Couple" explores the defiant individuality between cello and piano. With the addition of DJ, Haimovitz says, "I'd like to experience and illustrate that it is just as odd for a cellist to be performing with a pianist as with a turntablist." "Odd Couple" includes David Sanford's funk-driven 22 Part I, Augusta Read Thomas's Cantos for Slava both heard in their world premiere recordings - alongside Samuel Barber's neo-Romantic classic, Sonata for Cello and Piano, Op. 6 and Elliot Carter's landmark Sonata for Cello and Piano, in honour of the Carter centennial year.

"Haimovitz brought his prodigious technique and unsparing advocacy of the modern cello repertoire," said The Washington Post following an "Odd Couple" recital last month, "Haimovitz was emotive and dramatic by turns, with Burleson's piquancy and poetry blending beautifully." Following Boston's Ditson Music Festival, The Boston Phoenix called Tod Machover's VinylCello (2007), also planned for Pollack Hall, "exciting and very beautiful." Haimovitz and Burleson go back to the origin of genre with Beethoven's Sonata Op. 102 No. 2, a gateway into the composer's late style. DJ Olive and Haimovitz have collaborated a number of times over the last several years; in their attempt to establish the new genre of chamber music for cello and turntables, the concert will also feature a new work for cello and DJ by Montrealer Nicole Lize, commissioned especially for the occasion by the CBC.

The improvisation skills of all three musicians will also be on display as they create improvised interludes between the composed works bridging the various styles further giving new context to established works, and poking wholes in the predictable routine of the concert experience.

A professor at McGill University's Schulich School of Music, Haimovitz is heard frequently in Montreal this season, including the Brahms Double Concerto with violinist Ida Haendel and the McGill Symphony (Pollack Hall, October 18 & 19); Luna Pearl Woolf's Aprs Moi Le Deluge with the McGill Chamber Singers (Pollack Hall, December 2) and Montreal's MusiMarch (Redpath Hall, March 5-7). The season culminates with a brand new cello concerto from Quebec composer Denis Bouliane for Haimovitz, the Montreal Symphony, and conducted by Kent Nagano in the final concert of the OSM season (May 26 & 28).

Matt Haimovitz has also recently released a new recording of J.S Bach's Goldberg Variations for String Trio (October 2 on Oxingale Records) with McGill colleagues, violinist Jonathan Crow and violist Douglas McNabney. For more information see:

CBC/McGill presents Matt Haimovitz, Geoffrey Burleson & DJ Olive

Thursday, November 6 @ 7:30pm Pollack Hall, 555 Sherbrooke Street West

$15 ($10 students and seniors) Information: 514-398-4547

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Friday, October 17, 2008

Cellist Steven Isserlis visits U of T

British cellist Steven Isserlis to perform and teach master classes at faculty of music as 2008 Lorand Fenyves resident artist

"The music world - and music itself - is infinitely richer for the presence of Steven Isserlis." - Gramophone Magazine (UK)

TORONTO Steven Isserlis is acclaimed worldwide for his musicality and technique alike. A leading cellist of his generation, he is especially renowned for his interpretation of the music of Robert Schumann, and has received the coveted Schumann Prize of the City of Zwickau (Schumanns birthplace). From November 3 -5, Mr. Isserlis will visit the University of Toronto Faculty of Music as the Lorand Fenyves Resident Artist. His residency includes a cello recital with pianist Connie Shih (including works by Schumann) and two cello master classes featuring advanced cello students of the Faculty of Music.

Details of the residency:

Monday, November 3, 2008
Cello Recital with Connie Shih on the Chamber Music Series

Mendelssohn: Variations concertantes
Schumann: Adagio and Allegro, op 70
Schumann (arranged for cello by Isserlis): Violin Sonata No. 3
Britten: Sonata
Poulenc: Sonata

The concert takes place at 7:30 pm in Walter Hall in the Edward Johnson Building at 80 Queens Park. Tickets ($25 adults and $15 seniors/students) can be purchased at the box office in person or by calling 416-978-3744.

Tuesday & Wednesday, November 4 & 5, 2008
Cello Master Class

1 pm. Walter Hall. Free

Steven Isserlis is a cellist whose passion for music transcends conventional divisions. He is equally at home in chamber music or in recital; delving into the historical archives to emerge with a forgotten gem; or on the concert platform with some of the world's most prestigious orchestras and conductors.
This season's highlights include a residency at Frankfurt's Alte Oper, who prominently features Isserlis as its 'Auftakt' artist, incorporating a concert with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe; and performances with the Orchestre de Paris under Christoph Eschenbach at the Enescu Festival in Bucharest. Isserlis appears with the Philharmonia under Paavo Jrvi, the Philadelphia Orchestra under Charles Dutoit and tours with both the City of Birmingham Symphony and the Australian Chamber orchestras. He also participates in a Gala Concert with the Israel Philharmonic to mark the 50th anniversary of the Mann Auditorium, performing Bloch's Schelomo under Zubin Mehta's baton. With a strong interest in authentic performance, Isserlis plays with many of the foremost period instrument orchestras. He has recently performed all Beethoven's works for cello with fortepianist Robert Levin in Boston and at Londons Wigmore Hall. Last season he performed the Dvork Cello Concerto with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under Sir Simon Rattle.
The chamber concerts of Isserlis' devising are renowned, not only for the quality of performance, but also for his ingenuity and innovation in programming. Schumann is a particular passion for Isserlis, and last season he performed Schumann's Cello Concerto on a major tour of Germany with the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie under Marc Albrecht, spearheaded a Schumann project in Japan, and performed in an evening of words and music dedicated to the story of Schumann and Brahms with a script written by Isserlis in London and New York. This season, Isserlis presents a Russian series of his own devising at the Wigmore Hall, French and Russian programmes as part of his residency at Frankfurt's Alte Oper, and a series of chamber music and educational events at the New Zealand International Arts Festival.
Last season, he launched his own series at the 92nd St Y in New York; such was its success that the series continues and develops in the present season. Isserliss interest in musical education has another outlet in the masterclasses he gives regularly all over the world; and for the past ten years he has been Artistic Director of the masterclass and chamber music seminar IMS Prussia Cove. He has also published several editions and arrangements, principally for Faber Music.
Steven Isserlis is a keen exponent of contemporary music and works with many composers on new commissions. He recently gave the world premire of Wolfgang Rihms Cello Concerto at the Salzburg Festival, and future plans include the premire performances of works written for him by Mikhail Pletnev and Thomas Ads.
With an award-winning discography, Isserlis' recordings reflect his diverse interests in repertoire. His most recent release is of the complete Solo Cello Suites by Bach on the Hyperion label, which has been met with the highest critical acclaim and won many awards. Other recent releases include two recordings with Stephen Hough: the Brahms sonatas, coupled with works by Dvork and Suk, for Hyperion Records, voted Listeners' Disc of the Year on BBC Radio 3's CD review; and a highly-acclaimed disc of children's cello music for BIS Records.
Awarded a CBE in 1998 in recognition of his services to music, Steven Isserlis has received many honours, including in 2000 the Schumann Prize of the City of Zwickau (Schumann's birthplace); previous recipients include Gilels, Masur, Richter and Fischer-Dieskau.
Steven Isserlis plays the Feuermann Stradivarius of 1730, kindly loaned by The Nippon Music Foundation of Japan

Pianist Connie Shih, born in Canada, is considered to be one of Canada's most outstanding young artists. In 1993, she won the Sylva Gelber Award for most outstanding classical artist under age 30. At the age of nine, she made her orchestral debut with Mendelssohn's First Piano Concerto with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra. At 12, she was the youngest ever protg of Gyorgy Sebok at Indiana University, and then continued her studies at the Curtis Institute with Claude Frank. Later studies were undertaken with Fou Ts'ong in Europe. As soloist, she has appeared extensively with orchestras throughout Canada, U.S. and Europe and in recitals she has made countless appearances in Canada, the U.S., Iceland, England, Germany, and China. She frequently performs chamber music with many world renowned musicians. To critical acclaim, she appears regularly in recital with Steven Isserlis. She has performed at Londons Wigmore Hall in London, Carnegie Hall, and at the prestigious Bath Music Festival and the Kronberg Festival. This past season included collaborations with Steven Isserlis, Susan Gritton and Anthony Marwood at the Aldeburgh Festival and other performances with Tabea Zimmermann and Isabelle Faust.

The Lorand Fenyves Residency program was established by the Fenyves family in 2006 to perpetuate the legacy and pedagogical vision of the late Lorand Fenyves, violin professor at the University of Toronto for over 35 years.
The purpose of the Residency is to provide undergraduate and graduate string students direct access to world renowned master teachers and artists in the spirit of Mr. Fenyves. Visiting Artists residencies include intensive individual coaching, master classes, and public recitals.

The Faculty of Music Chamber Music Series brings to Walter Hall some of the worlds finest chamber music groups. Recent and upcoming performers include the Miro Quartet, Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet, St. Lawrence String Quartet, cellist Steven Isserlis, and the Gryphon Trio. For more information on this and other Faculty of Music concert series, please visit our website at or contact the Box Office at 416-978-3744.

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Faculty of Music Box Office
Hours: 1 7 pm, Monday to Friday, with extended hours on performance nights.
Phone: 416-978-3744
Address: Lobby level, Edward Johnson Building, 80 Queens Park, Toronto ON M5S 2C5

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