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Thursday, December 14, 2017

NJSO Chamber Players Winter Festival performances


Concertmaster Eric Wyrick and Associate Concertmaster Brennan Sweet - credit Tristan Cook

String quartet performs works by immigrant and refugee composers as part of ‘America, Inspiring’ Winter Festival

Program features Tan Dun’s Eight Colors for String Quartet,
Bartók’s Second String Quartet, Dvořák’s ‘American’ Quartet

Tue, Jan 23, at St. George’s-by-the-River Episcopal Church in Rumson

Thu, Jan 25, at Calvary Episcopal Church in Summit

NEWARK, NJ—The NJSO Chamber Players perform a diverse program of works by immigrant and refugee composers as part of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s 2018 Winter Festival—“America, Inspiring”—January 23 in Rumson and January 25 in Summit.

NJSO Concertmaster Eric Wyrick, Associate Concertmaster Brennan Sweet, violist David Blinn and Acting Assistant Principal Cello Na-Young Baek perform Tan Dun’s Eight Colors for String Quartet, Bartók’s String Quartet No. 2 and Dvořák’s “American” Quartet.

Performances take place on Tuesday, January 23, at 3 pm at St. George’s-by-the-River Episcopal Church in Rumson and Thursday, January 25, at 7:30 pm at Cavalry Episcopal Church in Summit. A free pre-concert reception begins at 2 pm on January 23.

Wyrick says: “The NJSO Chamber Players have taken on a quintessential quartet challenge by supporting the Winter Festival programming with some of the most difficult music in the quartet repertoire, by composers who have made this country theirs, their music ours, and have deeply enriched musical culture in America.”

The NJSO’s 2018 Winter Festival highlights the myriad ways America has inspired not only those who call it home but also those who have visited its welcoming shores. Leveraging the power of art to transcend differences, a series of NJSO Accents and special events further explore the immigrant experience and how foreign artists have illustrated American inspiration in their work.

For more information on the Winter Festival and related events, visit www.njsymphony.org/winterfestival.

TICKETS

Tickets start at $20 and are available for purchase online at www.njsymphony.org or by phone at 1.800.ALLEGRO (255.3476).

WINTER FESTIVAL PASS

Get the most from the Winter Festival with a Festival Pass! For just $150 you get a prime seat for any—or all—of the nine Festival concerts, a ticket to one of the chamber music concerts, complimentary entry to either wine tasting and a reserved front-row seat for all Festival Accent events.

THE PROGRAM

America, Inspiring: Special Chamber Music Concert

Tue, Jan 23, at 3 pm | St. George’s-by-the-River Episcopal Church in Rumson

Thu, Jan 25, at 7:30 pm | Calvary Episcopal Church in Summit

NJSO CHAMBER PLAYERS

Eric Wyrick, violin

Brennan Sweet, violin

David Blinn, viola

Na-Young Baek, cello

TAN DUN Eight Colors for String Quartet

BARTÓK String Quartet No. 2

DVOŘÁK String Quartet No. 12 in F Major, Op. 96, “American”

JAN 23 TICKETS: $20

JAN 25 TICKETS: $45 | $20

A free pre-concert reception begins at 2 pm on Jan 23.

Full concert information is available at www.njsymphony.org/events/detail/america-inspiring-special-chamber-music-concert.

THE ARTISTS

Eric Wyrick, violin

Violinist Eric Wyrick is Concertmaster of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and has been an Orpheus Chamber Orchestra member and frequent leader since 1988.

Born in New York City, Wyrick attended the Juilliard Pre-College Division and later The Juilliard School, studying with Dorothy DeLay. He has been concertmaster of, the American Symphony, Eos and L’opera Francais de New York, among others.

Wyrick has appeared as a soloist with the Danish Radio Orchestra, Orchestre de Toulouse, Hudson Valley Philharmonic and San Angelo Symphony Orchestra. In annual NJSO appearances, he has performed concertos of Ferruccio Busoni, Darryl Kubian, Edward T. Cone and Prokofiev, among others. In addition, Wyrick has made solo television appearances including “Dance in America” and the BBC’s “Great Composers” series.

An active chamber musician, Wyrick is a founding performer at the Bard Music Festival. He has recorded for Bridge Records, Vanguard and, with Orpheus, Deutsche Grammophon. He is the soloist on a recording of Kubian’s 3-2-1 Concerto for Acoustic and Electric Violin with the Orquesta Sinfonica of Michoacan.

Brennan Sweet, violin

Born in New York City, NJSO Associate Concertmaster Brennan Sweet began playing at age 2, and later studied at the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest, Hungary. He started college as an engineering student at Washington University, but transferred and earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University, serving as teaching assistant to Josef Gingold and later as lecturer.

Concertmaster of several orchestras, including the Evansville Philharmonic Orchestra, Sweet was also a founding member of the Evansville String Quartet. He joined the NJSO in 1994 as Associate Concertmaster, leading the Orchestra for three seasons as Acting Concertmaster under Zdenek Macal. Sweet is a founding member of the Mostly Mozart at Monteux Festival in Hancock, Maine, and has served as coach and performer at the Raphael Trio Chamber Music workshop in New Hampshire.

He is a concert artist on the faculty of Kean University and performs recitals with acclaimed pianist Jenny Lin.

David Blinn, viola

David Blinn has been a violist with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra since 1993. He received a bachelor’s degree from The Juilliard School, where he was principal of the Juilliard Orchestra for three years; he completed a graduate degree in orchestral studies at the Manhattan School of Music. A passionate chamber musician, Blinn frequently performs with a variety of ensembles in New York and New Jersey. He was a founding member of the Allendale String Quartet, which has performed in Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall.

Blinn enjoys a variety of music; he is currently the violist in Broadway’s hit revival of Evita. Other credits include the Tony Award-winning South Pacific at Lincoln Center, as well as Stephen Sondheim’s revivals of Follies and A Little Night Music. He is also a member of the City Center Encores! Orchestra. Blinn can be heard on many recordings and soundtracks.

Na-Young Baek, cello

Winner of the Philadelphia Orchestra Greenfield Competition, Korean-born cellist Na-Young Baek made her American debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra in 2000. Recent highlights include performances of Dvořák’s Cello Concerto with the Ulsan Symphony Orchestra and Beethoven’s Triple Concerto with the Macau-Hong Kong-Taipei Symphony Orchestra.

At age 15, Baek became the youngest winner of the prestigious Choong Ang Times competition in Korea and garnered the Virtuoso Prize at the first Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians in Moscow, Russia. Baek studied with Orlando Cole at the Curtis Institute of Music and earned her master’s degree at Yale University and Artist Diploma at The Juilliard School, studying with Aldo Parisot. She completed her Doctor of Musical Arts degree at Stony Brook University, where she studied and performed with Colin Carr.

She performs on the Matteo Goffriller cello, Venice, ca. 1715, on a generous loan by Samsung Music Foundation through the Strad Society.

2018 WINTER FESTIVAL: America, Inspiring

The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra and Music Director Xian Zhang present the 2018 Winter Festival—“America, Inspiring”—in January at eight venues across the state. The Festival celebrates foreign artists and composers whose experiences connect them to the nation’s legacy as a source of inspiration and beacon of ideals for people from all over the world.

Spanning three weekends, January 11–28, the Winter Festival includes orchestral performances at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick, Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, Richardson Auditorium in Princeton, Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown and bergenPAC in Englewood. The NJSO Chamber Players perform a special chamber music concert at St. George’s-by-the-River Episcopal Church in Rumson and Calvary Episcopal Church in Summit.

WEEK I: America, Inspiring: Respighi & Prokofiev

Thu, Jan 11, at 7:30 pm | bergenPAC in Englewood

Sat, Jan 13, at 8 pm | NJPAC in Newark

Sun, Jan 14, at 3 pm | State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick

Xian Zhang, conductor

George Li, piano

New Jersey Symphony Orchestra

CHEN YI Ge Xu (NJSO Premiere)

PROKOFIEV Piano Concerto No. 3

RESPIGHI Fountains of Rome (NJSO Premiere)

RESPIGHI Pines of Rome

NJSO ACCENTS:

Talkback—Thu, Jan 11, after the concert

Listen as members of the NJSO’s international roster of musicians describe their own journeys to the US and New Jersey in the opening panel of the Winter Festival, America, Inspiring.

Wine Tasting—Sat, Jan 13, before the concert

Join wine and music expert Ron Merlino in an exclusive tasting of wines made of old-world grapes in new-world soil. $15 for the tasting, reservations required. www.njsymphony.org/grapes

Talkback—Sun, Jan 14, after the concert

What does New Jersey's diverse population really look like? Principal Bassoon Robert Wagner discusses the NJSO's efforts to reach out to the many diverse communities in the Garden State.

Full concert information is available at www.njsymphony.org/events/detail/america-inspiring-respighi-prokofiev.

Winter Festival Week II – Ravel & Rachmaninoff

Fri, Jan 19, at 8 pm | Richardson Auditorium in Princeton

Sat, Jan 20, at 8 pm | State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick

Sun, Jan 21, at 3 pm | NJPAC in Newark

Andrew Constantine, conductor

Terrence Wilson, piano

New Jersey Symphony Orchestra

MARTINŮ Thunderbolt P-47 (NJSO Premiere)

RAVEL Piano Concerto in G Major

RACHMANINOFF Symphonic Dances

NJSO ACCENTS:

Panel Discussion—Fri, Jan 19, at 6:45 pm and Sun, Jan 21, at 1:45 pm

Host Naomi Lewin and a panel of experts discuss the political climate in Europe that drove so many of the Winter Festival’s composers to come to America.

Wine Tasting—Sat, Jan 20, before the concert

Join wine and music expert Ron Merlino in an exclusive tasting of wines made of old-world grapes in new-world soil. $15 for the tasting, reservations required.www.njsymphony.org/grapes

Performance & Painting—Sun, Jan 21, after the concert

Watch creative inspiration in action as artist Ken Ahlering (www.ken-ahlering.com) paints in response to a performance by the NJSO Chamber Players.

Full concert information is available at www.njsymphony.org/events/detail/america-inspiring-ravel-rachmaninoff.

WEEK III: America, Inspiring: Dvořák’s “New World” Symphony

Fri, Jan 26, at 8 pm                           NJPAC in Newark

Sat, Jan 27, at 8 pm                          Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank

Sun, Jan 28, at 3 pm                        Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown

Xian Zhang, conductor

Chloë Hanslip, violin

New Jersey Symphony Orchestra

BRITTEN Simple Symphony

KORNGOLD Violin Concerto

DVOŘÁK Symphony No. 9, “From the New World”

NJSO ACCENTS:

Prelude Performance—Fri, Jan 26, before the concert

Come early and hear the Anne Lieberson Ensemble from the NJSO's Youth Orchestras perform a selection inspired by the Winter Festival.

Poetry Reading—Sun, Jan 28, after the concert

Poets Maria Gillan and Patrick Rosal reflect on their own immigrant experiences in the closing event of the Winter Festival.

Full concert information is available at www.njsymphony.org/events/detail/america-inspiring-dvoraks-new-world-symphony.

The Jan 27 performance is generously sponsored by Bank of America.

NJSO ACCENTS

Inspired by the concerts and designed to inspire audiences, NJSO Accents are pre- or post-concert events that complement the concert experience and provide audience members with more opportunities to personally connect with the music and music makers.

NEW JERSEY SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

Named “a vital, artistically significant musical organization” by The Wall Street Journal, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra embodies that vitality through its statewide presence and critically acclaimed performances, education partnerships and unparalleled access to music and the Orchestra’s superb musicians.

Music Director Xian Zhang—a “dynamic podium presence” The New York Times has praised for her “technical abilities, musicianship and maturity”—continues her acclaimed leadership of the NJSO. The Orchestra presents classical, pops and family programs, as well as outdoor summer concerts and special events. Embracing its legacy as a statewide orchestra, the NJSO is the resident orchestra of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark and regularly performs at State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick, Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, Richardson Auditorium in Princeton, Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown and bergenPAC in Englewood. Partnerships with New Jersey arts organizations, universities and civic organizations remain a key element of the Orchestra’s statewide identity.

In addition to its lauded artistic programming, the NJSO presents a suite of education and community engagement programs that promote meaningful, lifelong engagement with live music. Programs include school-time Concerts for Young People; NJSO Youth Orchestras family of student ensembles, currently led by José Luis Domínguez; and El Sistema-inspired NJSO CHAMPS (Character, Achievement and Music Project). NJSO musicians annually perform original chamber music programs at community events in a variety of settings statewide through the NJSO Community Partners Program.

For more information about the NJSO, visit www.njsymphony.org or email information@njsymphony.org. Tickets are available for purchase by phone 1.800.ALLEGRO (255.3476) or on the Orchestra’s website.

The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra’s programs are made possible in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, along with many other foundations, corporations and individual donors.

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