McIntire Department of Music

The Virginia Chamber Music Foundation will present world-renowned British cellist Steven Isserlis and Friends in an evening of chamber music on Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 8:00 pm, at the Paramount Theater on the Downtown Mall. This is the second local appearance by the cellist following his acclaimed performance here in 2005. The program of Russian and Czech music will include Tchaikovsky's "Souvenir de Florence," and major works for cello and piano by Shostakovich and Janácek.

The Times (London) has called Isserlis "a great romantic among cellists," and "the cello's best ambassador." Queen Elizabeth II named him "Commander of the British Empire" for his many contributions to music. Isserlis is a charismatic performer who appears frequently as soloist with many of the world's most prestigious orchestras, most recently the Boston, Dallas, and Toronto Symphony Orchestras, and the Leipzig Gewandhaus, Philadelphia, and Philharmonia Orchestras. He enjoys regular collaborations with such conductors as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Sir Colin Davis, and Christoph Eschenbach, and with such artists as Martha Argerich, Joshua Bell, and Stephen Hough.

Following the Tuesday evening performance at the Paramount Theater, Steven Isserlis will conduct a master class on Wednesday, February 21, 2007 at 9:30 am for student cellists from the University of Virginia and James Madison University. The master class will be held in Room B12 in Old Cabell Hall.

"Steven Isserlis and Friends" concerts are known for their outstanding music-making and congenial atmosphere. The "friends" format delivers the musical experience audiences expect: solo performances by the featured artist as well as dynamic collaborations with other chamber musicians. Isserlis will perform Shostakovich's cello sonata and Janá?ek's Pohádka ("Fairy Tale") with pianist Ya-Fei Chuang. The sonata by Shostakovich will especially give the cellist an opportunity to demonstrate the passionate playing for which he is celebrated. Tchaikovsky's beautiful "Souvenir de Florence" is a string sextet scored for two violins, two violas, and two cellos. Isserlis will be joined in this piece by violinists Jennifer Frautschi and Colin Jacobsen, violists Nicholas Cords and Tim Summers, and cellist Raphael Bell.

All of Isserlis' "musical friends" for this concert have thriving international careers as soloists and chamber musicians and appear with today's premier ensembles, including Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Project, the Metropolitan Museum Artists in Concert, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Pianist Chuang, who has previously performed in duo concerts with Isserlis, is appearing in Charlottesville for the first time. Bell, Cords, Frautschi, and Summers played with the cellist at the first "Isserlis and Friends" concert in 2005. With Jacobsen, they are frequent performers and audience favorites at the Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival, the annual series of concerts organized by artistic directors Raphael Bell and Tim Summers.

Tickets for the February 20th concert at the Paramount are $35 and $22 ($10 for students) and are available through the Virginia Chamber Music Foundation Box Office at 434-295-5395, online at www.cvillechambermusic.org or at the Paramount Theater box office in Charlottesville.

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Last Modified: Monday, 28-Jul-2008 23:27:23 EDT
112 Old Cabell Hall, Charlottesville, Virginia 22903
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