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Johann Strauss, Sr., arr. Stephen Hough
The Radetzky March for orchestra by Johann Strauss, Sr., is an imperial march traditionally performed every year at the Vienna Philharmonic’s New Year’s Concert. In Radetzky Waltz, pianist Stephen Hough (who recently acquired Australian citizenship) takes Strauss’s march and turns it into a waltz. In this delicious new creation, Hough adds one beat to every bar of Strauss’s march along with some Poulenc and a little Gershwin.
The concert caprices are based on Norwegian folk music traditions. The piece includes a typical dance called “halling”, which was danced as a way for young men to show off, and was often seen at weddings and similar events. Johan Halvorsen was one of Norway's national romantic composers, along with Edvard Grieg. Besides being a composer, Halvorsen was a conductor and a master at violin. Among his most famous compositions is the Passacaglia and Sarabande based on a theme by Handel for violin and viola.
Qin Xi Xuan (music) / Li Bai (lyrics)
This 20th century Chinese art song is based on a poem by Tang Dynasty poet Li Bai, regarded as one of the most famous poets in Chinese literature. His poetry has been set to music by composers like Mahler (in Das Lied von der Erde) and Harry Partch. Although this selection is not Singaporean in origin, it is a reflection of one of the many musical styles that make up the musical landscape of modern-day Singapore, a confluence of many cultures including Chinese, Malay and Indian.
Americ Goh (music) / Cyril Wong (lyrics)
Based on a poem written by Singapore's leading contemporary gay poet, Cyril Wong, the song Cockroach by Singaporean composer Americ Goh is one of the first examples of original Singaporean, contemporary classical, solo vocal literature. The playfulness of the music juxtaposes starkly with the sense of paternal alienation pervasive in the text, in which the poet likens his father to a cockroach. The song is unique in its use of contemporary vocal techniques and theatrical elements and also reflects the influence of a multicultural Singaporean landscape on the composer with its suggestion of Indian musical sequences within the composition.
Eugène Ysaÿe, arr. Carolin Pook
This is an arrangement of Eugene Ysaye’s 3rd solo sonata for violin, Ballade. German jazz violinist Carolin Pook has added interesting free improvisations and grooves to this famous piece, so it transforms into a contemporary trio.
Iyo Kailan Pa Man is a song about unrequited love. Written by one of the Philippines’ most notable pioneers of jazz music, the work belongs to the genre of Philippine Romantic Music known as the Kundiman. The song consists of a haunting melody that serves to reinforce its text which is a paradox of lament and hope.
Pablo de Sarasate
Sarasate is known as one of the violin’s virtuosos. His reputation as a composer is mainly of showpieces and encores or miniatures, although as a performer he also enjoyed playing chamber music works, especially the Brahms string quartets. Among his 50 published works lies Navarra, his only violin duet, written as a tribute to his birthplace, which was published in Berlin in 1889 and later orchestrated. In Navarra, Sarasate uses melodies that might have been used in Spanish bagpipes, blending and contrasting them with more flamenco-like character and rhythms.
Aram Khachaturian, arr. W. Sarkissian
Aram Khachaturian was the first composer to place Armenian music within an international context. By synthesizing the musical achievements of his age with Armenian traditions such as peasant song, urban instrumental folklore, the art of the ashugh, the ornamental style of medieval monody and the purism of national idioms of Komitas, he created a new aesthetic. He was also the first composer in the country to write music for films with sound. Between 1950 and 1954, he wrote the ballets Gayane and Spartacus, the latter being first performed at the Kirov Theatre in Leningrad in 1956 and in a revised form at the Bol’shoy in Moscow in 1968. Khachaturian’s music was one of the bridges that most effectively connected European and Eastern traditions during the 20th century.
Modern Passages is a multimedia work written for Canadian clarinetist Christine Carter by recent MSM graduate composer Jean-Olivier Begin. This four-movement piece is a reflection on how rites of passage are experienced among ancient and modern societies. Using black and white pictures from Christine’s family and footage from different African and South-American tribes, the second movement represents the passage from childhood to adulthood.
Hayk Arsenyan was born in 1978 in Yerevan in Armenia. He began his musical education as a violinist and composer at the Tchaikovsky Specialized Music Secondary School affiliated with the Yerevan State Conservatory. In 1993, he went to Paris to study piano at the Ecole Normale de Paris with Alfred Cortot. He continued his piano studies at the Paris National Music Conservatory. From 1996-2001, he was a graduate student and teaching assistant at the Russian Gnessin Music Academy in Moscow. From 2003-2006 he was a teaching assistant and a doctoral student in Piano Performance and Pedagogy at the University of Iowa. In 2007, Mr. Arsenyan received a full tuition “Yevgeny Kissin” Scholarship for the Performance Studies Certificate at Manhattan School of Music in the piano studio of Dr. Solomon Mikowsky.
Mr. Arsenyan is a 1st prize winner and laureate of several international piano and composition competitions including the Ibla Grand Prize International Piano and Composition Competition (Italy), Radio France Grand National Competition (France), Claude Kahn Piano Competition (France), Lucien Wurmser Artistic Competition (France), Khachaturian National Competition (Armenia), and the “Young Talents” All-Union Young Composers Competition (Ukraine).
Beginning at a very young age, Mr. Arsenyan has appeared in recitals in Armenia, Russia, France, the USA, England, Spain, Switzerland, Italy, the Czech Republic, Argentina, and Uruguay, many of which were broadcast on various television and radio stations. The venues in which Mr. Arsenyan has performed include Zankel Hall at Carnegie Hall (New York), Palais d’UNESCO (Paris), Tchaikovsky Concert Hall (Moscow), “Petranka” Museum of Mozart (Prague), the Khachaturian Grand Concert Hall (Yerevan) “Dame Myra Hess” concert series`(Chicago), and the Phillips Collection Concert Series (Washington DC,). In 2001, he was awarded a diploma by the Federation for Peace and Conciliation with consultative status at the United Nations for his active participation in the course of Peace, Consolidation, Concordance, Collaboration and Mutual Understanding. In 2000, he presented series of recitals in Moscow and Paris dedicated to the 1700th anniversary of Christianity in Armenia as a State religion. In November of 2000, he played a concert at the Armenian Embassy in Moscow in honor of the President of Armenia R. Kocharyan’s official visit. In 1997, he performed with the Radio France Republican Orchestra and was awarded a platinum medal by the City of Paris.
Hayk Arsenyan has been a member of the French Society of Authors and Composers since 1993. In 2000, he also became a junior member of the “Ararat” International Academy of Sciences in Paris.
Jean-Olivier Begin, a native of Montreal, is a recent Masters graduate from the Manhattan School of Music. A young film composer at the forefront of his generation, he discovered his passion for film scoring while attending the Henri Mancini Summer Education Program in Los Angeles. His first movie score, Nicole Brending's short "Operated By Invisible Hands," won the Best Composition category at the 2008 Edition of the College TV/Emmy Awards. He is currently working on various multimedia and film projects, including "A Piece for Peace," a recording to promote Peace in the Middle-East for the Davis 100 Projects for Peace Foundation. He is also an accomplished jazz trombone player.
Christine Carter is a current student in the Doctoral program at the Manhattan School of Music, and also holds a Master of Music Degree from McGill University and an Honors Bachelor of Music from the University of Western Ontario for which she was awarded the prestigious University Gold Medal. Christine has performed with orchestras across Canada, including two national tours with the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, a week of concerts with the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, and two productions of Schoenberg's monumental "Gurrelieder" with Kent Nagano and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Last summer, she competed as one of twelve finalists in the International Clarinet Association’s Young Artist Competition. She also performed in the Canadian Music Competition’s National Finals. This summer, she will join the clarinet section of the National Repertory Orchestra in Breckenridge, Colorado for a summer of over twenty concerts.
Indah Lestari Hertanto started her piano study privately at the age of six before continuing a more serious study at the Yayasan Pendidikan Musik in Jakarta, Indonesia. She studied with several different teachers including a few of Indonesia’s best pianists such as Aisha Ariadna Pletscher and Levi Gunardi (both alumnus of MSM). In the fall of 2000, Ms. Hertanto went to Towson University to study Piano Performance under the guidance of Prof. Reynaldo Reyes. During her time at Towson, she successfully won several competitions including the Talent Award, the Henry Sanborn Scholarship Competition, and the Peggy-Friedman Gordon Competition. She also received the Honorable Mention in the International Young Artist Piano Competition. Ms. Hertanto received both her BM and MM in Piano Performance with honors. In the fall of 2007, she enrolled at MSM to study Vocal Accompanying in the Professional Studies program under the guidance of Mr. Kenneth Merrill. During her studies at both Towson University and MSM, Ms. Hertanto has participated in master classes with Mark Markham, Ubaldo Fabbri, Stephanie Blythe, Thomas Hampson, and Marilyn Horne.
Joe Hertenstein is currently using his DAAD fellowship to complete his Master's degree in Jazz Studies in New York City. Previously, he studied Jazz in Munich, Rotterdam, Berlin and Cologne. He has won prizes in a number of European Jazz competitions including the Concours Ceramique Jazzcontest (2003, with the band Five Spotz) and the NRW-Jazzart-Prize (2004, with the band Fantasmofonika). His festival appearances include Hoeilaart Jazzfestival Brussels, JekerJazzMaastricht, Leverkusener Jazztage, and the Moers New Jazz Festival. In May 2007, he made his debut at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall. From 2002 until 2007 Mr. Hertenstein was a member of the faculty at the Offene Jazzhausschule Cologne. He currently performs with a number of bands, including Terence Ngassa Afro 6tet, The Sideburns, James Choice Orchestra, and DADAMAFZ. Mr. Hertenstein has worked with many German and international musicians such as Heiner Wiberny, Claudius Valk, Frank Gratkowski, Dieter Manderscheid, Dave King, Matthias Schubert, Werner Neumann, and many others. He toured Europe in 2004 and 2005 with world renowned blues harp player Carlos del Junco.
Melissa Khong began piano lessons at the age of 4 and violin lessons at age 7. While in Singapore, she studied the piano under renowned teacher Benjamin Loh. As a student of the Music Elective Program in Singapore, she performed regularly in well-known concert spaces such as the Esplanade Arts Center and the Victoria Concert Hall. In 2003, Melissa was awarded a scholarship by the Singapore government to further her musical studies. She was granted the same award the following year. In 2005, Melissa was accepted by the Manhattan School of Music to study piano performance.
A keen chamber musician, Melissa was invited to perform at the inaugural Singapore Chamber Festival in 2003. She is also a regular participant of the Chamber Music Series in the Manhattan School of Music, performing an eclectic mix of chamber music ranging from piano duos to wind quintets. Melissa has worked with conductors Chan Tze Law and Chua Lik Wuk and has given recitals in Singapore and New York. She has also been selected to participate in master classes by Dennis Lee, Albert Tiu and Timothy Ku.
Melissa Khong was recently awarded the 1st prize in the Young Pianist Competition in Singapore. She is currently based in New York where she studies with pianist Daniel Epstein.
Anna Margrethe Haugland Nilsen (born 5. September 1987 in Bærum, Norway) began to play violin at the age of four. When she was six-years-old, she started studying with Professor Isaac Schuldman. From 2004-2006, she was a student as a Young Musician at the Norwegian Academy of Music while finishing the last year of high school. She is now in her second year of the Bachelor of Music program at Manhattan School of Music, and is a student of Patinka Kopec.
At the age of nine, Anna was soloist with the Norwegian Broadcasting Orchestra, followed the next year by a performance with the Kaliningrad Chamber Orchestra. Later, she was a soloist with many other orchestras, including the Novgorod Chamber Orchestra, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, Kristiansand Symphony Orchestra, Bærum Symphony Orchestra, Asker Symphony Orchestra, Juenesses Musicales Orchestra, Norwegian Opera Orchestra, and the St. Petersburg State Philharmonic Orchestra. Ms. Nilsen toured Norway with The State Chamber Orchestra of Belarus in 2002, 2003, and 2004.
Between 1998 and 2002, Anna played in Russia at several international festivals and gave concerts in Moscow, St. Petersburg and Kaliningrad. In 2000, she toured Norway with a Russian pianist. She has participated in many national and international festivals, including the Oslo Chamber Music Festival, Holland International Music Sessions, Juenesses Musicales, and Pinchas Zukerman’s Young Artist Program in Canada. She has played concerts in Norway, Germany, Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary, China, Israel, the Netherlands, Russia, Brazil, Canada and USA.
Anna has had master classes with, among others, Pinchas Zukerman, Georgy Pauk, Mark Lubotsky, Rudolf Koelman, Pierre Amoyal and Maxim Vengerov, and has played for the world-famous conductor Zubin Mehta. In 1999 and 2004, she won the first prize in the Sparre Olsen Competition. In 2002, she took the first prize in the National Violin Competition for Youth in Norway.
In May 2006, Anna held three serious recitals within two weeks, with a repertoire consisting of six complete violin concertos, three violin sonatas, and two virtuoso pieces. Last January she played the Carmen Fantasy by Franz Waxman with the Norwegian Opera Orchestra in the New Year’s concert in Oslo Concert Hall. Most recently, in October, she played three concerts with the State Chamber Orchestra of Belarus in Norway. This May, she will perform the Beethoven and Mendelssohn violin concertos with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra in Russia.
Rogelio B. Penaverde Jr. is a first year graduate student at the Manhattan School of Music. A merit scholar, he is in the vocal studio of Cynthia Hoffmann. He took his undergraduate studies in music at the Conservatory of the University of Santo Tomas in Manila, Philippines. There he was a scholar of the alumni association where he was under the tutelage of the late Maestra Salvacion Yniguez, and later on under Professor Eugene de los Santos.
Penaverde has performed extensively in the USA, Italy, Japan, Guam, and the Philippines. His opera roles include Ernesto from Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, Nadir from Bizet’s Les Pechuers de Perles, the Duke from Verdi’s Rigoletto, Don Octavio from Mozart’s Don Giovanni, and Rodolfo from Puccini’s La Bohéme. He has also performed the tenor lead for Mozart’s Misa Brevis in D Major, Dubois’ The Seven Last Words of Christ, and Haydn’s Nicolaimesse. He has been featured in various solo and ensemble performances produced by the Cultural Center of the Philippines, the Philippine National Commission for Culture and the Arts, and the International Bamboo Organ Festival Association.
Penaverde has sung with the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra, the Manila Chamber Orchestra, and the UST Conservatory of Music Symphony Orchestra. He is featured in Souvenirs de Filipinas – a recording of works composed by Philippine National Composer Francisco Santiago.
Penaverde will be performing the role of Tamino from Mozart’s Die Zauberflote at the International Opera Festival in Rome this summer. A versatile talent, he is also part of a Gershwin and Bernstein Musical Review at the Manhattan School of Music this spring.
Hoang Pham was born in Vietnam and moved to Australia with his parents at an early age. Hoang’s first teacher was his father but since the age of four, he has been a student of Rita Reichman. In Australia, Hoang studied at the Australian National Academy of Music in Melbourne from 2004-2005. During his time at the Academy, Hoang won a number of national awards, including the Lev Vlassenko Piano Competition. Since then, he has performed recitals in Australia, England and the USA and as soloist in Australia with the Melbourne, Queensland and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestras. Hoang has also won prizes at the Bösendorfer, Cleveland, and Hilton Head International Piano Competitions. In the fall of 2005, Hoang departed Australia and now divides his time between Melbourne and New York, where he is studying for a bachelor’s degree at the Manhattan School of Music with Marc Silverman.
Carolin Pook earned a double Master's degree (violin/drums) in Jazz Studies in 2006 at the Cologne Conservatory and is now using her DAAD fellowship to complete the Jazz Master's Program at Queens College in New York. With her trio Lillica (drums) and the Carolin Pook Quintett (violin), she performs her own compositions or free improvisations. Before moving to New York City, Ms. Pook lived in Berlin and performed all over Germany in all different kinds of music, especially contemporary classical. She has been a steady member of the string quartet "5356" and has performed with Peter Broetzmann, Benny Baily, Jimmy Woode, Junior Mance, Paul Kuhn, the Cologne Contemporary Jazz Orchestra, as well as touring with the renowned Fantastischen Vier. She has been involved in various dance projects and has written music for short movies. Ms. Pook played the solo violin part in Helmut Eisels's "Naftule und der König," performed by the orchestra of the Saarländischer Rundfunk, the Stadttheater Aachen and the Düsseldorfer Synfoniker
Jesús Reina was born in Malaga, Spain in 1986. He is currently pursuing his Bachelor of Music degree at Manhattan School of Music, under the tutelage of Patinka Kopec and Pinchas Zukerman.
Jesús’ major performances include Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins with Pinchas Zukerman and the NCO, an appearance as a soloist in the Perlman-Zukerman gala, and a performance of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with Eiji Oue and the Barcelona Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as with Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra in the 2007 El Escorial Festival. In addition, he has concertized at Wigmore Hall and the Royal Festival Hall in London; Kursaal Palau de Barcelona and Auditorio de Zaragoza in Spain; and Weill Recital Hall and Steinway Hall in New York.
Jesús began his studies at age four with his grandfather, learning Spanish folk music. He then studied with Vincenzo Puma and Ara Wartanian in Malaga before moving to London to join The Yehudi Menuhin School, where he took lessons from Natasha Boyarsky and Lord Menuhin himself. Later on, he went to the Reina Sofia Music School in Madrid, where he received the Outstanding Violinist Prize from Queen Sofia of Spain while studying with Garcia Asensio. Jesús then moved to Bloomington, Indiana to take lessons from pedagogue Mauricio Fuks.
Jesús has also received tutelage from teachers such as Hu Kun, Oleh Krisa, Zakhar Bron, Franco Gulli, Nellie Skornikova and Grigory Kalinovsky.
Jesús Reina would like to thank the Fundation Malaga and Mayor D. Francisco de la Torre for their help, support and dedication.
Ulrike Schmitz, born 1983 in Germany, is currently studying for her Master of Music degree at Manhattan School of Music. Her teachers are Pinchas Zukerman and Patinca Kopec. In 2004, Ulrike completed her degree „Künstlerische Ausbildung“ in Stuttgart after five years of studying with Professor Inglof Turban, then completed one year of postgraduate studies with Professor David Takeno in London at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She has won prizes in several competitions and played as a soloist with many orchestras,
including the „Bayerischen Staatsorchester“ with Zubin Mehta.
Leslie Tay, a Singaporean tenor, has a repertoire that spans opera, oratorio, musical theater, choral, a cappella and theater. His most recent performance was in the role of Thaddeus Davenant in Gregg Wramage’s Death in Summer, a part of “New American Opera Previews (2008)”. He has also appeared as Dick-in-the-Dark in Lukas Foss’ Griffelkin with the Manhattan School of Music Opera Theater. With the Singapore Lyric Opera (SLO), he has sung the part of Boy 1 in excerpts from Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti, the Witch in excerpts from Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel and has also performed with the SLO chorus in productions of La Traviata, Madama Butterfly, Le Nozze di Figaro, Street Scene and Fiddler on the Roof. With Artyfakt, he sang Bastien in Mozart’s Bastien und Bastienne and was the tenor soloist in Saint-Saëns’ Oratorio de Noël. With Musica Obscura, he sang the role of Plutone in Monteverdi’s Il Ballo delle Ingrate. He has participated in masterclasses with Rudolf Knoll, Krisztini Laki, Andrew Parrott and Rachelle Gerodias and was a finalist in the 2002 Young Singer of the Year Awards organized by the Singapore Lyric Opera.
Leslie has also sung with various vocal ensembles including the Singapore Youth Choir, the Singapore Armed Forces Choir, UpBeat, Ab Oriente and Curious Attacks. He has played ‘Banquo’ in Shakespeare’s Macbeth (SRT Young Co.) and ‘Prince Tarquin’ in The Snow Queen (Singapore Repertory Theatre). He has created lead roles in Stella Kon’s musicals (Musical Theatre Society) and was a part of youth acting group “Young & Wi!d” (Wild Rice) which presented their first production, “On North Diversion Road” in June 2007. He sang in Dim Sum Dollies: The History of Singapore and has also acted in school shows with D’rama, Theatreworks and Stagehandz.
Leslie will next be seen in Manhattan School of Music’s 2008 spring production of Kurt Weill’s Street Scene. He is currently pursuing a Master in Music in classical voice at Manhattan School of Music where he studies with Arthur Levy.