Abbado Conducts Beethoven
Artis—Naples Masterworks Series
Roberto Abbado, conductor
Vladimir Feltsman, piano
Wagner — Overture to Tannhäuser
Grieg — Piano Concerto
Beethoven — Symphony No. 7
Prelude at 7pm
All Masterworks tickets include same-day admission to The Baker Museum. Special museum hours on day of performance: 10am-8pm.
Acclaimed as “a conductor you want to hear again and again,” Roberto Abbado’s crisp, dramatic music-making, instinctive lyricism and evocative command of varied composers and styles have made him an esteemed conductor among orchestras and opera companies today. He is both a sophisticated and energetic conductor, which, combined with superb communicative skills, have made him a favorite among musicians and public alike.
A popular figure in the United States, Abbado’s most extensive relationship is currently with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, where he is an Artistic Partner, a position that has now been extended into an unprecedented third three-year term. He has performed regularly with the Atlanta and St. Louis Symphony orchestras and often appears with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Houston Symphony and San Francisco Symphony.
In 2009 Abbado was honored with the “Franco Abbiati” award of the National Association of Italian Music Critics — Italy’s most prestigious classical music award—as Conductor of the Year, “for the maturity of interpretation and for his breadth and curiosity of repertoire.”
Pianist and conductor Vladimir Feltsman is one of the most versatile and consistently interesting musicians of our time. His vast repertoire encompasses music from the baroque to 21st-century composers. He has appeared with all the major American orchestras and on the most prestigious musical stages and festivals worldwide.
In the 2015-16 season, Feltsman played recitals in several US cities, including Washington, D.C,. as well as several abroad. Highlights of his 2014-15 season included concerto appearances with the Russian State Symphony on tour in the US as well as concerts in Palm Beach, Duke University, Ravinia, the Aspen Music Festival and at Summerfest in La Jolla.
Feltsman expressed his lifelong devotion to the music of J.S. Bach in a cycle of concerts, which presented the major clavier works of the composer and spanned four consecutive seasons (1992-96) at the 92nd Street YMCA in New York. His more recent project, Masterpieces of the Russian Underground, unfolded a panorama of Russian contemporary music through an unprecedented survey of piano and chamber works by 14 different composers, from Shostakovich to the present day and was presented by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center in January 2003 with great success. Feltsman served as artistic director for this project as well as performing in most of the pieces presented during the three concerts cycle. The programs included a number of world and North American premieres and were also presented in Portland, Oregon, and in Tucson, Arizona, at the University of Arizona. In fall 2006, Feltsman performed all of the Mozart Piano Sonatas in New York at the Mannes School of Music and NYU’s Tisch Center presented by New School on a specially built replica of the Walter fortepiano.
Born in Moscow in 1952, Feltsman debuted with the Moscow Philharmonic at age 11. In 1969, he entered the Moscow Tchaikovsky State Conservatory of Music to study piano under the guidance of professor Jacob Flier. He also studied conducting at both the Moscow and Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) Conservatories. In 1971, Feltsman won the Grand Prix at the Marguerite Long International Piano Competition in Paris; extensive touring throughout the former Soviet Union, Europe and Japan followed.
In 1979, because of his growing discontent with the restrictions on artistic freedom under the Soviet regime, Feltsman signaled his intention to emigrate by applying for an exit visa. In response, he was immediately banned from performing in public and his recordings were suppressed. After eight years of virtual artistic exile, he was finally granted permission to leave the Soviet Union. Upon his arrival in the US in 1987, Feltsman was warmly greeted at the White House, where he performed his first recital in North America. That same year, his debut at Carnegie Hall established him as a major pianist on the American and international scene.
A dedicated educator of young musicians, Feltsman holds the distinguished chair of professor of piano at the State University of New York, New Paltz, and is a member of the piano faculty at the Mannes College of Music in New York City. He is the founder and artistic director of the International Festival-Institute PianoSummer at New Paltz, a three-week-long, intensive training program for advanced piano students that attracts major young talents from all over the world.