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ACADEMY OF ST. MARTIN IN THE FIELDS WITH JULIAN RACHLIN, DIRECTOR AND VIOLIN AND VIOLA SOLOIST
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GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY’S CENTER FOR THE ARTS
ACADEMY OF ST. MARTIN IN THE FIELDS
WITH JULIAN RACHLIN, DIRECTOR AND VIOLIN AND VIOLA SOLOIST
Sunday, April 18, 2010 at 4 p.m.
FAIRFAX, Va., March 18, 2010 – Sir Neville Marriner says that the small ensemble he founded in 1958 “had no intention of giving any concerts or continuing forever.” Fifty years and countless performances later, it seems that the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields has a change of heart, and the music world is better off for it. This impressive ensemble has firmly established itself as one of the world’s leading chamber orchestras and boasts more than 500 recordings in its library, making it the most recorded chamber orchestra worldwide. “As you travel around the globe, the Academy’s name has an aura possessed by no other British orchestra,” extols the Times of London. Led by viola and violin soloist Julian Rachlin, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields appears at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts on Sunday, April 18 at 4 p.m., presenting a program that includes Edvard Grieg’s “Holberg Suite,” Op. 40; Beethoven’s “Kreutzer” Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 9 in A major, Op. 47; Schubert’s Arpeggione Sonata, D. 821, arranged for viola and strings; and Astor Piazzólla’s “Cuatro estaciónes porteñas” (The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires), a delightful blend of stirring violin and Tango Nuevo, evocative of the city the composer called his home. A pre-performance discussion, free to ticket holders, begins 45 minutes prior to the performance on the Center’s Grand Tier III. Pre-performance discussions are sponsored by the Friends of the Center for the Arts. HSBC Bank is the Magnificent Music series sponsor for the 2009-10 season.
“Mr. Rachlin has a brilliant high-octane technique.” (The New York Times) Known as one of the most charismatic and exciting violinists of his generation, Rachlin has performed with many of the world’s leading orchestras and has been praised for his powerful and refreshing interpretations of classical music. Born in Lithuania in 1974, he immigrated to Austria with his musician parents in 1978. Rachlin studied violin with both Boris Kuschnir and Pinchas Zukerman before gaining international acclaim overnight in 1988, winning the "Young Musician of the Year" Award at the Eurovision Competition held at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. This prompted Lorin Maazel to invite the young virtuoso to debut at the Berlin Festival with the Orchestre National de France and to tour Europe and Japan with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and soon after he became the youngest soloist ever to play with the Vienna Philharmonic. Rachlin and his duo partner, pianist Itamar Golan, frequently perform at recitals around the globe, including performances of the complete Beethoven Sonata Cycle in Vienna at the Musikverein. Eight years ago, Rachlin established his own chamber music festival in Dubrovnik, Croatia. The “Julian Rachlin and Friends” festival is rapidly gaining international renown and his “Friends” have included Leif Ove Andsnes, Janine Jansen, Maxim Vengerov, Mischa Maisky, Martin Fröst, Sir Roger Moore, John Malkovich, Krysztof Penderecki, Daniele Gatti and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. In recognition of his immense talent, Rachlin has also been honored with one of the most prestigious awards for classical musicians, the “Accademia Musicale Chigiana” International Prize.
“The musicianship that streamed from the stage last night was beyond superlatives … The playing from this legendary conductor-less orchestra coupled all the grandeur of epic Beethovenian playing with the flawless intimacy of seasoned chamber musicians.” (Glasgow Herald) Formed from a group of leading London musicians without a conductor, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields made its debut in its namesake church on November 13, 1959. Soon the demand for the Academy, particularly in the recording studio, began to grow as fast as its membership and its repertoire, and Sir Neville Marriner soon was forced to exchange his violin for a conductor’s baton. Although the size of the orchestra has increased significantly since its inception, it still retains the collegiate spirit and flexibility from its early days, and today the Academy performs in combinations from a chamber group to a symphony orchestra. Known for its outstanding performances and award-winning recordings, the Academy maintains an active international concert schedule, and alongside its performances with Sir Neville Marriner and Kenneth Sillito, it collaborates with some of today’s most thrilling musicians, including Murray Perahia, Joshua Bell, Julia Fischer, Julian Rachlin, Janine Jansen and Anthony Marwood.
HSBC Bank is the Magnificent Music series sponsor for the 2009-10 season.
Tickets for ACADEMY OF ST. MARTIN IN THE FIELDS are $60, $52, $30. Charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit cfa.gmu.edu. The Center for the Arts complex is located on the Fairfax campus of George Mason University at the intersection of Braddock Road and Route 123. Paid parking is located in the deck adjacent to the mainstage Concert Hall and FREE parking is located in university lot K. Visit cfa.gmu.edu.
About Great Performances at Mason
Great Performances at Mason is a program of George Mason University's Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA). CVPA provides an academic environment in which the arts are explored as individual disciplines and interdisciplinary forms that strengthen one another. The college prepares students for careers as creators, performers, teachers, scholars, arts leaders and arts entrepreneurs. Understanding that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the college, welcomes a variety of professional and world-renowned artists, musicians and actors to its stage. Students have the opportunity to perform, create and exhibit their work in a wide variety of public venues including a 2,000-seat Concert Hall. CVPA is home to the Schools of Music, Dance and Art, the Department of Theater, as well as the Computer Game Design, Arts Management and Film and Video Studies programs.
About George Mason University
Named the #1 national university to watch in the 2009 rankings of U.S. News & World Report, George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university.