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Summer Music at its Best: Tanglewood, Tannery Pond and Manchester
By Stephen Dankner, Special to iBerkshires.com
11:51AM / Wednesday, July 13, 2016
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TMC Conducting Fellow Nuno Coelho led the TMCO in three dances from Bernstein's On the Town and Rimsky-Korsakov's Capriccio espanol on July 10 at Tanglewood.

Tanglewood enters its second week of classical programming, with inspiring and thought-provoking concerts in the Shed and in Ozawa Hall. As always, diversity is the watchword: from an all-Mozart evening to Ives and Gershwin; from Beethoven and Tchaikovsky to the cutting-edge orchestra “The Knights” performing arrangements of Cat Stevens, The Troggs and Bob Dylan. And, as always, there’s heartfelt chamber music: this week by Brahms and Alban Berg.

In New Lebanon, N.Y., at Tannery Pond, there’s a not-to-be-missed evening of solo piano music (Schubert, Franck, Liszt and Hough), to be performed by MacArthur (‘genius-award’) Fellow-virtuoso pianist/composer Stephen Hough.

And in Manchester, Vt., there’s the ever-popular Manchester Music Festival. MMF concerts are always thrilling to hear and to experience, both in terms of repertoire and the level of musical artistry of their gifted performers. As a result, the Festival has cultivated a devoted and enthusiastic following over many years.

Why go? Simply stated, what you’ll see and hear this week is the very best in classical music programming and performances in our region.

 

Tanglewood

• Wednesday July 13, 8 p.m. in Ozawa Hall: The legendary American soprano and Metropolitan Opera superstar Renée Fleming joins the renowned Emerson String Quartet to celebrate the Quartet’s 40th anniversary. Ms. Fleming takes the stage with the Emersons for Alban Berg’s incomparable masterpiece - “Lyric Suite,” and for the “Sonnets by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Op. 52,” a work by Berg’s contemporary Egon Wellesz that sets German translations of Barrett Browning’s poetry by Rainer Maria Rilke. Opening the program is Brahms’s passionate Quartet in A minor, Op. 51, No. 2.

• Thursday July 14, 8 p.m. in Ozawa Hall: The cutting-edge Brooklyn-based chamber orchestra The Knights returns to Ozawa Hall for a program titled “The Times They Are A-Changin’,” after the famous Bob Dylan song, which closes this program. Also included are Haydn’s Symphony No. 64, ‘tempora mutantor’ (a Latin aphorism, which, translated, means “times change”); “Crane Palimpsest” by Gabriel Kahane (the composer joins the orchestra on electric guitar, piano, and voice); and the jazz classic “The Big Noise from Winnetka,” by Bobby Haggart and Ray Bauduc. Vocalist Christina Courtin will be making her Tanglewood debut, joining The Knights in a selection of songs.

• Friday, July 15, 8 p.m. in the Shed: The revered violist/violinist/conductor Pinchas Zukerman - a celebrated Mozart performer - joins the Boston Symphony as both conductor and soloist in a program devoted entirely to the works by the Viennese master. From the podium, Mr. Zukerman will lead the orchestra in the powerfully tragic Symphony in G Minor, No. 25, and the great Symphony No. 39.  Mr. Zukerman takes up his violin to lead the BSO as soloist in the “Violin Concerto” – also known as the second, third, and fourth movements—from the composer’s “Serenade in D” (‘Haffner’), K.250.

• Saturday, July 16, 8 p.m. in the Shed: The esteemed BSO guest conductor Christoph von Dohnányi returns to Tanglewood, along with the celebrated American soprano Renée Fleming for a performance of Strauss’s emotionally rich and autumnally beautiful “Four Last Songs,” one of the last major works by the composer. Also on the program are Tchaikovsky’s adored Symphony No. 6, which was the composer’s final work, and Ives’s celestial and mystical “The Unanswered Question”.

• Sunday, July 17, 2:30 p.m. in the Shed: Spanish conductor Gustavo Gimeno makes both his BSO /Tanglewood debut leading the Orchestra in Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 1, (‘Classical’) - a work that was inspired by Haydn. It is one of the seminal works in the ‘Neoclassical’ style, which became the dominant art-music idiom in the first quarter of the 20th century. The “Suite” from Stravinsky’s landmark 1909 ballet and orchestral showpiece, “The Firebird” follows. The brilliant Yuja Wang, a gifted artist who possesses an amazing pianistic technique, joins Mr. Gimeno and the BSO for two heavily jazz-influenced works: Ravel’s “Piano Concerto in G Major,” at turns breathless and lyrically beautiful, and George Gershwin’s jazz/blues/klezmer-inspired showpiece, the 1924 “Rhapsody in Blue” – one of the most beloved works of the 20th century.

• Monday, July 18, 8 p.m. in Ozawa Hall: Led by maestro Christoph von Dohnányi, the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra presents its second performance in Ozawa Hall. Conducting Fellows Christian Reif and Nuno Coehlo will also conduct, and Richard Sebring, the BSO’s associate principal horn (and principal horn in the Boston Pops), will be featured in two works—“Siegfried’s Rhine Journey,” from Wagner’s “Götterdämmerung,” (led by Mr. Reif), and the soloist in the “Horn Concerto No. 1,” by Richard Strauss, (led by Mr. Coehlo). The program concludes with Beethoven’s revolutionary Symphony No. 3, (‘Eroica’) led by Mr. von Dohnányi.

Tickets for all Tanglewood events can be purchased online at tanglewood.org, via SymphonyCharge, 888-266-1200 or 888-266-1200, and at the Tanglewood box office located at the main gate, on West Street in Lenox. For further information call 413-637-1600.

 

Tannery Pond Concerts

This gem of a series offers outstanding chamber music in a 19th century Shaker-built barn (the ‘Tannery’) located on the grounds of the Darrow School in New Lebanon, N.Y.

• Saturday, July 16, 8 p.m.: Stephen Hough, the brilliant polymath visual artist/pianist/composer, will be performing major works by Schubert, Franck, Liszt and Hough – his own “Third Sonata” (‘Trinitas’).

For tickets, call 888-820-1696 or visit tannerypondconcerts.org. Tickets are $30 and $39. Tannery Pond is located on the grounds of Mount Lebanon Shaker Village and Darrow School, New Lebanon, N.Y., one and a half miles east of the town center on Route 20.

 

Manchester Music Festival

The Manchester Music Festival, based in picturesque Manchester, Vt., is celebrating its 42nd anniversary this summer. The concerts are presented on the bucolic campus of the Southern Vermont Arts Center, as well as others in various local venues. The next MMF concert is listed below:

• Thursday, July 14, 7:30 p.m. at the Southern Vermont Arts Center: “Flirting with Fusion” – A concert of chamber music by Fanny Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann, Dora Pejacevic, Gabriela Lena Frank and Sato Matsui. The performers are: Joana Genova and Austin Hartman, violins; Ariel Rudiakov, viola; Nathaniel Parke, cello and Renate Rohlfing pianist, with special guests flautist Susanna Loewy and Laura Molinelli, guitarist and vocalist.

For tickets and complete information, visit the Manchester Music Festival’s website at www.mmfvt.org/concerts or contact the MMF by phone at 802-362-1956. For MMF concert updates, send an email to info@mmfvt.org.

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