'After Bach': UCLA Live Welcomes Latvian Violinist Gidon Kremer
Joined by pianist Andrius Zlabys and percussionist Andrei Pushkarev, Kremer on Nov. 19 will perform celebrated works composed or influenced by Johann Sebastian Bach.
Published: Friday, November 17, 2006
UCLA LIVE presents iconoclastic Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer, lauded as one of the most expressive and compellingly original artists of his generation, joined by Lithuanian pianist Andrius Zlabys and Ukrainian percussionist Andrei Pushkarev in "After Bach," a program of Bach, Bartók, Pärt, Piazzolla and Tickmayer. The concert begins at 7 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 19, at Royce Hall on the UCLA campus and will run 1 hour and 30 minutes with an intermission. For tickets visit www.UCLALive.org, call 310-825-2101 or contact Ticketmaster.
Featuring celebrated works composed or influenced by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750), "After Bach" opens with Kremer and Pushkarev performing Bach's "Fuga Canonica," which gloriously presents Baroque fugal practice from his epic collection "Musical Offering," BWV 1079 (1747). The program will also feature Kremer and Zlabys in a radical reworking of Estonian composer Arvo Pärt's "Fratres," his most performed piece, first composed in 1977 for the early music group Hortus Musicus. Kremer will be showcased in Béla Bartók's "Sonata for Solo Violin," a formidable homage to the great Baroque master. Kremer, Zlabys and Pushkarev will perform Stevan Kovac Tickmayer's "Three Variations on a Hymn of J.S. Bach," based on the hymn "Brunnquell aller Güter" (BWV 445) from a 1653 melody by Johann Crüger. The trio will conclude the evening with popular Latin American classical composer Astor Piazzolla's "Grand Tango" and "Three Milongas," which offer similar opportunities and challenges to those found in both the baroque compositions of Bach's day and romantic music.
Performing with soul-stirring intensity and boundless imagination, Kremer has made waves with his commanding interpretations of even the most standard works in the course of his distinguished 30-year career. His wide-ranging repertoire encompasses classical and romantic violin works as well as music by modern masters.
Kremer has appeared on virtually every major concert stage with the leading orchestras of Europe and America and has collaborated with the world's foremost conductors, including Leonard Bernstein, Andre Previn and Zubin Mehta, and such diverse composers as Alfred Schnittke, Valentin Silvestrov, Aribert Reimann and John Adams. An exceptionally prolific recording artist, Kremer has made more than 100 albums and garnered many awards, including a Grammy for "After Mozart" (2001, Nonesuch). His most recent recording, "Johann Sebastian Bach: The Sonatas and Partitas for Violin Solo," was released as a two-CD set on ECM in fall 2005. In spring 2007, Kremer will embark on his fifth U.S. tour with Kremerata Baltica, a chamber orchestra that he founded in 1996 to foster outstanding young musicians from the three Baltic states.
Born in 1947 in Riga, Latvia, Kremer began studying the violin at age 4 with his father and grandfather, both accomplished string players. At 7, his formal education began, and at 16 he was awarded the First Prize of the Latvian Republic. Two years later he successfully auditioned for David Oistrakh and became one of the few students selected as his apprentice at the Moscow Conservatory. His many awards include the coveted first prize in the 1970 Tchaikovsky Competition and his first international prize in 1967 at the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels.
Pianist Andrius Zlabys has appeared throughout the world as a soloist, recitalist and chamber musician, performing with such artists as Kremer, Yuri Bashmet and Hilary Hahn. He made his Carnegie Hall debut with the New York Youth Symphony Orchestra in 2001 and participated in the Lockenhaus Music Festival in Austria in 2001 and 2002. A prizewinner at the 2003 Cleveland International Piano Competition, he performed as a soloist with the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony and Cleveland Orchestra. Zlabys has performed extensively with Kremer and collaborated with him on the Grammy-nominated "Enesco's Piano Quintet" (2003, Nonesuch). Zlabys began piano studies at age 6 in his native Lithuania and is currently a student of Claude Frank at the Yale School of Music. Zlabys will make his debut with the Rotterdam Philharmonic next spring.
Performing as a duo with Kremer in concert halls from London to Moscow since 2003, percussionist Andrei Pushkarev has also appeared with musicians including Yo-Yo Ma, Yury Bashmet, Peter Sadlo and Mario Brunello. He was awarded the Pro Europe Foundation Prize in 2004, and in 2001 recorded as a solo timpanist on Kremer's award-winning album, "After Mozart." He joined the Baltic Chamber Orchestra Kremerata Baltica as a percussionist in 1999, touring the world and recording with the ensemble. As a solo vibraphonist, he was awarded first prize in the New Names of Ukraine competition in 1995. Born in Kiev in 1974, Pushkarev began piano studies at age 6 and by 14 had commenced studies in percussion as a student of professor Aleksandr Blinov, with whom he continued his professional training until 1998.
Tickets for Gidon Kremer performing "After Bach" are available for $50, $38 and $28. They can be purchased online at www.UCLALive.org, via phone at (310) 825-2101, in person at the UCLA Central Ticket Office at the southwest corner of the James West Alumni Center and at Ticketmaster outlets. UCLA students may purchase tickets in advance for $15. Student rush tickets, subject to availability, are offered at the same price to all students with a valid ID one hour prior to show time.
This performance is sponsored, in part, by the Royce Center Circle memberships of Leonard Apt, M.D., Doreen and Meyer Luskin and Leah Superstein.
UCLA Live's 2006/2007 Classical/Chamber/Recital Concerts Continue:
- Sunday, Dec. 3: Chart-topping vocal ensemble Anonymous 4 performs selections from its new CD "Gloryland," featuring American folk songs, shape-note tunes and gospel hymns.
- Sunday, Dec. 10: The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra's Mozart Festival, celebrating the master's 250th birthday, continues with Mozart Gold.
- Sunday, Feb. 18, 2007: The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra's Mozart Festival continues with Mozart Coronation.
- Sunday, Feb. 25: Two classical music legends and longtime friends — Grammy-winning violinist Jaime Laredo and pianist Leon Fleisher — explore Schubert's sonatas for violin and piano.
- Saturday, March 3: The U.S. tour debut of the National Philharmonic of Russia, conducted by Vladimir Spivakov, features a program of Shostakovich, Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky.
- Thursday, March 8: Regal mezzo-soprano and international opera star Denyce Graves brings her rich vocalism and elegant stage presence to UCLA Live.
- Sunday, March 18: The Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra's Mozart Festival concludes its series of performances of Mozart's 23 original piano concertos in Mozart Finale.
UCLA Live is an internationally acclaimed producer and presenter of music, dance, theater and spoken word, bringing hundreds of outstanding and provocative artists to Los Angeles each year.