Klaus Mäkelä

Klaus Mäkelä
Klaus Mäkelä, cellist & conductor (b. 1996, Helsinki). Photo by Juha Peurala

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Alistair Coleman: Moonshot – Abeo Quartet (HD 1080p)














Watch the premiere recording of Moonshot for string quartet by composer Alistair Coleman, written for and performed in this film by the Abeo Quartet.

The piece is inspired by a triptych of paintings by artist On Kawara depicting the three milestones of the Apollo 11 mission to the moon. Painting I: 16 July 1969 "Launch"; II: 20 July 1969 "Lunar landing"; and III. 21 July 1969 "The day people on Earth came together to celebrate humanity's first steps on the Moon".

Moonshot was commissioned by and premiered at the Glenstone Museum in Potomac, Maryland, where the triptych is on display. The film was made at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Chantilly, Virginia, inside the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar where the Discovery Space Shuttle is on permanent display. The video was produced for the Smithsonian Year of Music 2019 and released during the museum's year-long celebration of Apollo at 50. The premiere concert will be broadcast on WETA 90.9FM (Washington, DC's classical music station) on Monday 27 January at 9pm.

Source: thestrad.com



Alistair Coleman

♪ Moonshot

i. July 16, 1969, "Launch"
ii. July 20, 1969, "Lunar landing"
iii. July 21, 1969, "The day people on Earth came together to celebrate humanity's first steps on the Moon"

Abeo Quartet:
Ludvig Gudim, violin
Njioma Grevious, violin
James Kang, viola
Drew Cone, cello

James S. McDonnell Space Hangar, National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, December 2019

(HD 1080p)


Alistair Coleman is a young composer from Washington, DC. Recently, he was appointed the Composer-in-Residence of the National Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorale. This season, commissioned projects include a concerto for violinist Soovin Kim, a concerto for Grammy-award-winning cellist Zuill Bailey, and a sonata for Joseph Alessi, Principal Trombonist of the New York Philharmonic. Alessi premiered the new work on-tour in China in the summer of 2019 and will tour Japan this fall. In 2020, Alistair's trumpet sonata will be released on a new album by Chris Gekker. Upcoming projects include a new string quartet for the Abeo Quartet in collaboration with the Glenstone Museum, Four/Ten Media, and the Smithsonian Institution.

His music has been programmed broadly, including commissions and performances by the "President's Own" United States Marine Band, Atlantic Music Festival Orchestra, baritone Randall Scarlata, Houston Brass Band, Washington Master Chorale, Boston University Chapel Choir, National Cathedral Choral Society, and musicians from the Baltimore and National Symphonies, Carnegie Hall's Ensemble Connect, and Minnesota Opera Orchestra.

With three published works, Alistair is the youngest composer ever published by E.C. Schirmer Music Company in its one-hundred-year history. He has received awards and honors from ASCAP, American Composers Forum, and the National YoungArts Foundation. Alistair was featured on the National Public Radio show, "From the Top" with Host Christopher O'Riley in 2018.

Alistair was a fellow at the Lake Champlain Chamber Music Festival, and studied at the Atlantic Music Festival, Curtis Young Artists Program, Oberlin Composition Workshop, and the New York Summer Music Festival. His teachers have included Richard Danielpour and David Serkin Ludwig, faculty members at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. Currently, Alistair is pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree at The Juilliard School on the George Gershwin Scholarship. At Juilliard, he studies with Robert Beaser, takes academic coursework at Columbia University, and engages in mentorship with President Emeritus Joseph W. Polisi.

As a teacher and advocate, Alistair serves on the boards of the Maryland Music Educators Association and Opportunity Music Project NY, and worked with Strathmore Hall to launch music programs for underserved communities in Maryland. At Juilliard, Alistair is a Teaching Fellow in the Ear Training Department. He maintains a private teaching studio and mentors students of Vermont's Music-COMP program.

Source: alistaircoleman.com















The Abeo Quartet, silver medal winner of the 2019 Fischoff International Chamber Music Competition, has been featured in New York at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall and on WQXR's Midday Masterpieces. The quartet also won the Judges Special Recognition Award at the 2019 Plowman Chamber Music Competition. Abeo, formed at Juilliard, has recently performed at the Kennedy Center's Reach Festival, The Glenstone Museum in Potomac and in Norway's Vertavo Festival, playing seven works by Haydn.

The quartet won a Montreal International String Quartet Academy fellowship, studying with members of the Alban Berg Quartet, Quatuor Ebene, Takács String Quartet and the Artemis Quartet. Abeo also has had coachings with pianist Joseph Kalichstein and the Calidore String Quartet. Formed in 2018 at the Juilliard School, the Abeo Quartet has studied under the tutelage of Joseph Lin and Astrid Schween as part of the Juillard Honors Chamber Music Program.

When they were first year Juilliard students, Ludvig, Njioma, James, and Drew immediately recognized and discovered their natural chemistry as well as each other's passion for chamber music when they began sight reading together. The quartet chose the name Abeo / ah - bey - oh, representing an expression of joy in a Nigerian dialect, to reflect their love for playing chamber music and sharing it with others.

Source: abeoquartet.com


Ludvig Gudim, violin













Njioma Grevious, violin













James Kang, viola













Drew Cone, cello














More photos

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Sauli Zinovjev: Un Grande Sospiro – Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)














Under the baton of the young Finnish conductor and cellist Klaus Mäkelä, the Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne with the Tapiola Sinfonietta and Kymi Sinfonietta perform Sauli Zinovjev's Un Grande Sospiro. Recorded at Salle Métropole, Lausanne, Switzerland, on December 11, 2019.



A composition at its best has everything. The entire life in a single moment. This is how composer Sauli Zinovjev sees it.

Since graduating from the Sibelius-Academy he has been focusing mainly on orchestral music with commissions and performances by distinguished orchestras such as the Finnish and Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestras, Orchestra de Chambre de Lausanne and most important Finnish orchestras in collaboration with some of the frontline conductors and soloists such as Klaus Mäkelä and Pekka Kuusisto. Zinovjev's most recent works include a Piano Concerto for pianist Vikingur Olafsson commissioned by Finnish and Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestras to be premiered in 2020 and currently Zinovjev is composing a new orchestral piece to be premiered in the season 2020-2021.

Zinovjev composes music that conveys vast emotions. The kind of music which also made him a composer. Until the age of sixteen, he played the guitar in a rock band and skateboarded. Then he saw a clip online with György Cziffra performing Liszt.

"It was as if wallpaper had been torn off the wall revealing a window to an open landscape. The euphoria and the virtuoso performance left a fanatic impression on me. To have the ability to inject so much art into a single moment. The entire spectrum of life."

Zinovjev uses classical music to make his view of the world intelligible. To convey it – life – to others.

Source: Anna-Kaari Hakkarainen (saulizinovjev.com)



Sauli Zinovjev (b. 1988)

♪ Un Grande Sospiro (2018)

Tapiola Sinfonietta
Kymi Sinfonietta

Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne
Conductor: Klaus Mäkelä

Salle Métropole, Lausanne, Switzerland, December 11, 2019

(HD 1080p)


Photo by Otto Virtanen
Sauli Zinovjev (born 1988, Lahti) is a Finnish composer. Zinovjev studied composition in Sibelius Academy (2010-2015) and in HfM-Karlsruhe (2013-2014) under guidance of Tapio Nevanlinna and prof. Wolfgang Rihm.

Zinovjev's focus has been on orchestral music and his works have been performed by for example Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Lahti Symphony Orchestra, Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra, Turku Philharmonic Orchestra and Oulu Symphony Orchestra in collaboration with musicians such as Pekka Kuusisto, Klaus Mäkelä, André de Ridder and Okko Kamu. In 2019 Zinovjev was appointed as the Composer-in-Residence of the 60th Turku music festival.

On the concert season 2019-2020 Zinovjev's music will debut with the Bamberg Symphony, Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne and National Arts Centre Orchestra. In the spring 2020 pianist Víkingur Ólafsson will premiere a new Piano concerto by Sauli Zinovjev with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra.

In 2014 Zinovjev's composition "Gryf" was awarded the 3rd prize in the 3rd International Uuno Klami Composition Competition.

Source: en.wikipedia.org















Klaus Mäkelä (b. 1996, Helsinki) has established a strong international presence through his instant musical connection with orchestras around the world. Mäkelä is Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor Designate of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and will assume the position at the beginning of the 2020-2021 season. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Artist in Association with Tapiola Sinfonietta, and Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival.

In the 2019-2020 season, Mäkelä makes his first appearances with the NDR Elbphilharmonie, Münchner Philharmoniker, Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, Nederlands Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orquesta Nacional de España, London Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, The Hallé and Scottish Chamber Orchestra. He returns to the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, MDR Leipzig, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, The Minnesota Orchestra, NAC Ottawa, Gothenburg and Tokyo Metropolitan symphony orchestras, and Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne. Mäkelä also continues his tenures with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Tapiola Sinfonietta where he has embarked on a Beethoven Cycle which will continue over the next two seasons. This seasons' concert programmes also include masterworks by Bruckner, Rachmaninov, Shostakovich, and Debussy, Ravel and Berlioz.


Highlights from last season include appearances with Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de Lyon, Frankfurt Radio, Antwerp, Bern, and Malmö symphony orchestras, Bergen Philharmonic, Iceland Symphony Orchestra and Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse which have led to immediate and consistent re-invitations.


Also working in opera, Mäkelä made his operatic debut in with the Finnish National Opera conducting The Magic Flute and a concertante performance of Erkki Melartin’s Aino.


Mäkelä studied conducting at the Sibelius Academy with Jorma Panula and cello with Marko Ylönen, Timo Hanhinen and Hannu Kiiski. As a soloist, he has performed with Finnish orchestras such as the Lahti Symphony, Kuopio Symphony and Jyväskylä Sinfonia as well as appearing at many Finnish festivals including the Kuhmo Chamber Music and Naantali Music Festival. He plays a Giovanni Grancino cello from 1698, kindly made available to him by the OP Art Foundation.


Source: klausmakela.com








































More photos


See also


Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.7 in C major "Leningrad" – hr-Sinfonieorchester, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)

Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor – Martin Helmchen, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor "Choral" – Lauren Fagan, Hanna Hipp, Tuomas Katajala, Shenyang, Oslo Philharmonic Choir & Orcestra, Klaus Mäkelä (4K Ultra High Definition)


Monday, January 13, 2020

Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.7 in C major "Leningrad" – hr-Sinfonieorchester, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)














Under the baton of the young Finnish conductor and cellist Klaus Mäkelä, the hr-Sinfonieorchester performs Dmitri Shostakovich's Symphony No.7 in C major, Op.60 "Leningrad". Recorded at Alte Oper Frankfurt, on November 1, 2019.



The Symphony No.7 in C major, Op.60, by Dmitry Shostakovich, known as "Leningrad", premiered informally on March 5, 1942, at a rural retreat by the Volga, where the composer and many of his colleagues were seeking refuge from World War II. Five months later, it would be given in the city whose name it bore under highly dramatic circumstances; the work would come to stand for Russian courage in the face of crisis and still is imagined to represent survival against difficult odds.

Few important compositions ever been performed under quite so trying circumstances as Dmitri Shostakovich's Symphony No.7. It was August 9, 1942. Not only was Europe at war, but the German army stood at the gates of Leningrad. So long had the city been under siege that several orchestra members had succumbed to famine during the rehearsal period, and the ensemble, finding itself short of players, put out a call for help. The Russian military officer in command of defense forces released any soldier who could play an orchestral instrument reasonably well long enough for the performance, which was transmitted by loudspeakers around the perimeter of the city, both to hearten the Russian people and to make the point to the Germans that surrender was not at hand. During the concert, empty chairs were placed in the orchestra to represent musicians who had perished before the performance could be given.

That Leningrad performance had not been the Symphony's first hearing. Although he had begun the work in Leningrad the previous summer, that winter, Shostakovich and other prominent cultural resources of the nation had been forcibly evacuated for their own protection, sent to Kuybyshev in the Volga. The Symphony was finished there and premiered with a gathering of the composer’s colleagues on March 5, 1942. Then in a burst of foresight, Shostakovich arranged for the score to be microfilmed. In this form, it was then smuggled to Iran, driven to Egypt, and flown via South America to the U.S., where Toscanini and the NBC Symphony gave it an American premiere on July 19, 1942. So the Leningrad performance was its third hearing, though the first in the city for which it was named.

As for the composer himself, he was unable to attend the American performance in person, but was there in spirit, on the cover of Time magazine, with a photograph of him in fire-fighting gear. Given both his international fame and his near-sightedness, the Russian army had declined to give Shostakovich a front-line post and instead assigned him to a domestic fire-fighting team, quietly informing his colleagues that it was their responsibility to keep him out of harm's way.

Soviet authorities were quick to declare the Symphony a musical depiction of heroic military actions, though Shostakovich himself asserted that it was more emotional than pictorial. From either perspective, it is not exactly an optimistic work. The opening Allegretto movement sets powerful themes in contrast to gentler ones, the latter particularly for flute. A distant march develops, complete with snare drum, and growing gradually more fearsome. The procession, more sardonic than grim, is interrupted at times by outbursts of brass. Setting the march energy aside temporarily, Shostakovich brings in mournful themes for strings and an extended solo for bassoon, before closing the movement with a distant recollection of the martial theme.

The second movement, Moderato (poco allegretto), begins with the second violins, whose theme gradually reappears elsewhere in the orchestra in layers of counterpoint. A short spotlight for oboe adds further color to the textures, which until that point had largely been focused upon strings. The generally flowing spirit of the opening pages yields to increasing restlessness and anxiety, verging on desperation. As the close of the movement approaches, Shostakovich gives a prolonged solo to the oft-neglected bass clarinet, its low and somber voice contrasting nicely with the bassoon, which had been featured late in the first movement.

He does not label the third movement, Adagio, a "funeral march", but it is essentially that, with grim opening chords, despairing string lines, and a distant march beat developing. A melancholy theme heard first in the flute grows and evolves as it moves to other instruments. Brass and percussion bring a measure of even greater anguish as the movement progresses, though it will close with a return to the weary sorrows with which it had begun.

The last movement, Allegro non troppo, may be a vision of ultimate victory. Opening in a subdued fashion, it gradually builds in determination with a renewed march mood. It is not the despairing march of the Adagio, but rather one of firm resolution, as if to remind listeners of the forces lurking outside the city gates. Poignant passages appear, suggestive of remembered losses, though the last few minutes – built upon a repeating rhythmic fragment in the strings – brings back the firm energy of earlier pages. It is still not quite music of victory, but at least of survival.

Shostakovich's Symphony No.7, is indeed a work of heroic scope, roughly an hour in length and with an orchestra well supplied with additional winds and percussion. Although it set out to reflect a particular time and place, one can also perceive it in broader terms. Imagine it as a symphony reflecting any people persevering in the face of adversity, and it becomes a work with universal appeal.

Source: Betsy Schwarm, 2017 (britannica.com)




Dmitri Shostakovich (1906-1975)

♪ Symphony No.7 in C major, Op.60 "Leningrad" (1939-1940)

i. Allegretto
ii. Moderato (poco allegretto)
iii. Adagio
iv. Allegro non troppo

hr-Sinfonieorchester (Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra)
Conductor: Klaus Mäkelä

Alte Oper Frankfurt, November 1, 2019

(HD 1080p)















Klaus Mäkelä (b. 1996, Helsinki) has established a strong international presence through his instant musical connection with orchestras around the world. Mäkelä is Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor Designate of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and will assume the position at the beginning of the 2020-2021 season. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Artist in Association with Tapiola Sinfonietta, and Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival.

In the 2019-2020 season, Mäkelä makes his first appearances with the NDR Elbphilharmonie, Münchner Philharmoniker, Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, Nederlands Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orquesta Nacional de España, London Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, The Hallé and Scottish Chamber Orchestra. He returns to the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, MDR Leipzig, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, The Minnesota Orchestra, NAC Ottawa, Gothenburg and Tokyo Metropolitan symphony orchestras, and Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne. Mäkelä also continues his tenures with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Tapiola Sinfonietta where he has embarked on a Beethoven Cycle which will continue over the next two seasons. This seasons' concert programmes also include masterworks by Bruckner, Rachmaninov, Shostakovich, and Debussy, Ravel and Berlioz.


Highlights from last season include appearances with Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de Lyon, Frankfurt Radio, Antwerp, Bern, and Malmö symphony orchestras, Bergen Philharmonic, Iceland Symphony Orchestra and Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse which have led to immediate and consistent re-invitations.


Also working in opera, Mäkelä made his operatic debut in with the Finnish National Opera conducting The Magic Flute and a concertante performance of Erkki Melartin’s Aino.


Mäkelä studied conducting at the Sibelius Academy with Jorma Panula and cello with Marko Ylönen, Timo Hanhinen and Hannu Kiiski. As a soloist, he has performed with Finnish orchestras such as the Lahti Symphony, Kuopio Symphony and Jyväskylä Sinfonia as well as appearing at many Finnish festivals including the Kuhmo Chamber Music and Naantali Music Festival. He plays a Giovanni Grancino cello from 1698, kindly made available to him by the OP Art Foundation.


Source: klausmakela.com
























































































More photos


See also


Sauli Zinovjev: Un Grande Sospiro – Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)

Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor – Martin Helmchen, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor "Choral" – Lauren Fagan, Hanna Hipp, Tuomas Katajala, Shenyang, Oslo Philharmonic Choir & Orcestra, Klaus Mäkelä (4K Ultra High Definition)


Dmitri Shostakovich – All the posts

Friday, January 10, 2020

Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor – Martin Helmchen, hr-Sinfonieorchester, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)














Accompanied the hr-Sinfonieorchester under the baton of the young Finnish conductor and cellist Klaus Mäkelä, the rising German pianist Martin Helmchen plays Robert Schumann's Piano Concerto in A minor, Op.54. The concert was recorded at Alte Oper Frankfurt, on November 1, 2019.



In September 1840 Clara and Robert finally married. After years of producing one masterpiece for solo piano after another (his first twenty-three opus numbers are solo piano works) he turned gloriously to song, and in the space of a single year wrote something like 168 of them. Alongside his composing, he was editor of the Neue Zeitschrift für Musik. This didn't bring in much income, and he knew the time had come to prove himself with a big symphonic work. His first success in that field came with his "Spring" Symphony, sketched in just four days and premiered at the Gewandhaus on 31 March 1841 with Mendelssohn conducting.

Just over a month later, he began work on a Phantasy for piano and orchestra, again working with great speed and completing it in ten days. The following week he orchestrated it, and a few months later made some revisions. It was first played through during a rehearsal for his "Spring" Symphony at the Gewandhaus on 13 August 1841. The orchestra's concertmaster, Ferdinand David, conducted, and Clara, two weeks away from giving birth to their first child, was of course at the piano. In her diary she wrote: "I also played the Fantasie in A minor; unfortunately, the performer herself had little pleasure (in the empty auditorium, that is), she heard neither herself nor the orchestra. But I played it twice and found it wonderful! When properly rehearsed, it is certain to give audiences the greatest pleasure. The piano is superbly woven together with the orchestra – you cannot conceive of one without the other".


It seems, however, that nobody much wanted a one-movement work. Despite many attempts, a publisher could not be found and the work was put aside. Another four years passed before Schumann worked on it again. He generally immsersed himself in one genre at a time, and 1842 was his year for chamber music. His Piano Quintet Op.44, with its virtuoso piano part, served as a pseudo-concerto for Clara, still awaiting the real thing. In 1843 Schumann devoted himself to large-scale choral works, and the following year Robert and Clara undertook a five-month tour of Russia. Robert was seriously ill for some time after his return from Russia, and at the end of 1844 they moved to Dresden in order to find more peace and quiet to work.


When Schumann did finally turn his attention to his piano concerto once more, he started by composing the third movement finale, calling it a Rondo. Only after completing that did he write the Intermezzo that connects this with the original first movement (which he then revised). It also seems that the bridge passage connecting the Intermezzo with the Rondo gave him particular trouble (there exist seven different versions). We are all so familiar with this music now that it seems so evident, but it wasn't arrived at easily.


John Worthen in his excellent biography of Schumann notes how ironic it was that Schumann finally gave Clara "her" concerto at a time in her life when she could hardly practise. By now she had three children and knew a fourth was on its way (she was pregnant ten times in fourteen years), and because Robert needed silence to compose she could only practise when he took his afternoon walk. Often she was too exhausted by that time to get much work done, and her performances were not frequent. But finally she had her concerto, and the first performance was given in the Hôtel de Saxe in Dresden on 4 December 1845. Ferdinand Hiller, to whom the concerto is dedicated, conducted the orchestra of the subscription concerts.


The Concerto was a success, as was confirmed by the review in the Allgemeine Musikalische Zeitung: "We all have reason to hold this composition in very high esteem and place it among the best by this composer, primarily because the usual monotony of the genre is happily avoided and the entirely obbligato orchestra part, fashioned with great love and care, is given its full due without leaving the impression of impairing the piano's achievements, and both parts keep up their independence in a beautiful alliance". The second performance (although it is often referred to mistakenly as the premiere) was given in the Leipzig Gewandhaus on New Year's Day 1846. There seems to be some confusion over who conducted: some sources say Mendelssohn, others say Niels Wilhelm Gade, who shared the conductor's duties at the time with his illustrious colleague.


Few pieces attract the attention of the audience so quickly as this Concerto. As Michael Steinberg so vividly writes: "The orchestra fires the starting gun, a single eighth-note [quaver] E, and the piano moves out of the blocks with a powerful cascade of fully voiced chords". The soloist, in fact, hardly stops playing during the entire concerto. The winds are given the initial statement of the opening melody, one in which the "Clara" motif of descending notes – abundantly used throughout Schumann's piano works – is fully apparent. There is no change of tempo marking here, even if the "tradition" is to slow down. The subsequent piano entry of the theme is powerfully expressive but intimate at the same time. The dialogue between piano and orchestra is constant, each taking their turn to be soloist and accompanist. This is most striking in the slower passage, marked Andante espressivo, in the middle of the first movement – a magical moment of repose, where the clarinet and piano are the featured soloists. It is interesting to compare the piano part in the central Più animato with what remains of that early Phantasy in A minor, where the writing is a lot more difficult in the later version. Perhaps Clara complained that it wasn't showy enough? The written-out cadenza is perfectly paced, and gave Clara the chance to shine. It begins with counterpoint, goes through some recitative-like passages, gains huge momentum with a brilliant outburst of chords over descending octaves, and returns passionately to the opening theme. From there the cadenza dissolves into a trill, but ends not with the standard cadence but rather leads directly into the re-entry of the orchestra, now giving us the theme much faster but in hushed tones. The crescendo to the final, uncompromising chords is dramatic to say the least.


Having written the last movement next, it is understandable that Schumann didn't want anything too "meaty" for the "slow" movement, when he finally got round to composing it. After the drama and shifting moods of the first movement, a short Intermezzo seems just the thing. Here, the notes of the first movement's descending motif are turned upside down and now go upwards, but the chamber-music feeling continues and is even amplified. The clarinet again features strongly, but so does the cello section, called upon to give us a "big tune". So often this central section can become distorted, wallowing in sentiment rather than retaining its confidentiality.


The bridge that Schumann finally settled on to link the Intermezzo with the finale returns to the "Clara" motif, first in the major, then in the minor, before bursting into the theme of the Allegro vivace. Here the ascending notes create a sense of unbounded joy. All the passagework in the piano part must sing and be heard. All that scurrying about in different keys during the most difficult moment of the Concerto – where Schumann inserts a prime example of his beloved rhythmic games, terrifying every conductor, even Mendelssohn himself it seems – must sound easy and coherent. And danceable. But what an exhilarating piece of music it is. Clara waited a long time for it, but it was worth it in the end.


Source: Angela Hewitt, 2012 (hyperion-records.co.uk)




Robert Schumann (1810-1856)

♪ Piano Concerto in A minor, Op.54 (1841-1845)

i. Allegro affetuoso
ii. Intermezzo: Andantino grazioso
iii. Allegro vivace

Martin Helmchen, piano

hr-Sinfonieorchester (Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra)
Conductor: Klaus Mäkelä

Alte Oper Frankfurt, November 1, 2019

(HD 1080p)















“Nothing disconcerts the glorious, unshowy Martin Helmchen – the kind of performer who lifts his audiences up to heaven just by penetrating inside his music with nimble fingers, questing intelligence and a beating heart.” — The Times

Martin Helmchen has established himself as one of the prominent exceptional pianists of the younger generation. He performs with such orchestras as Berliner Philharmoniker under Herbert Blomstedt, Wiener Philharmoniker under Valery Gergiev, London Philharmonic Orchestra under Vladimir Jurowski, City of Birmigham Symphony Orchestra and Boston Symphony under Andris Nelsons and New York Philharmonic under Christoph von Dohnányi.

He also enjoys collaborations with conductors such as David Afkham, Marc Albrecht, Sir Mark Elder, Edward Gardner, Philippe Herreweghe, Manfred Honeck, Paavo Järvi, Emmanuel Krivine, Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Christoph Poppen, Michael Sanderling and David Zinman.

His quest for exploring all facets of music-making is born in his passion for chamber music – which was largely ignited in early collaborations with the late cellist Boris Pergamenschikow. Helmchen's chamber music partners have included Juliane Banse, Matthias Goerne, Veronika Eberle, Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, Christian Tetzlaff, Antje Weithaas, Carolin Widmann and Frank Peter Zimmermann. He is a regular guest to London's Wigmore Hall.

Scandinavia is a focus of his 2018-2019 season, which includes his debut with Oslo Philharmonic, plus returns to the Danish National Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. Elsewhere, he debuts with the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai / Italy and the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg. Helmchen continues his close cooperation with the Deutsches Symphonie Orchester Berlin under Andrew Manze, and also returns to the Boston Symphony Orchestra.

He furthermore embarks on his Beethoven Cycle project with Frank Peter Zimmermann, which will span into 2019-2020, and features the duo in London, Berlin, Dresden, Freiburg, Warsaw, Madrid and Bilbao. To round off the season, he will additionally tour with Sabine Meyer and wind ensemble.

Martin Helmchen is an exclusive artist of Alpha Classics. Last year he released a solo CD of Beethoven's Diabelli Variations, a CD of Schumann's chamber music featuring Marie-Elisabeth Hecker and Antje Weithaas, and a Duo CD of Brahms featuring Marie-Elisabeth Hecker. He has recorded numerous CDs for Pentatone Classics, which include piano concertos by Mozart, Schumann and Mendelssohn, as well as chamber music by Schubert, Schumann and Brahms.

Born in Berlin in 1982 and a former student of Galina Iwanzowa in Berlin, Helmchen continued his studies with Arie Vardie at the Hochschule für Musik Hannover. His other mentors include William Grant Naboré and Alfred Brendel. In 2001 he won the "Concours Clara Haskil" and in 2006 he was awarded the "Credit Suisse Young Artist Award". Since 2010, Martin Helmchen has been an Associate Professor of chamber music at the Kronberg Academy.

Source: martin-helmchen.de















Klaus Mäkelä (b. 1996, Helsinki) has established a strong international presence through his instant musical connection with orchestras around the world. Mäkelä is Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor Designate of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra and will assume the position at the beginning of the 2020-2021 season. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Artist in Association with Tapiola Sinfonietta, and Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival.

In the 2019-2020 season, Mäkelä makes his first appearances with the NDR Elbphilharmonie, Münchner Philharmoniker, Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, Nederlands Radio Filharmonisch Orkest, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orquesta Nacional de España, London Philharmonic Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, The Hallé and Scottish Chamber Orchestra. He returns to the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, MDR Leipzig, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, The Minnesota Orchestra, NAC Ottawa, Gothenburg and Tokyo Metropolitan symphony orchestras, and Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne. Mäkelä also continues his tenures with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, and Tapiola Sinfonietta where he has embarked on a Beethoven Cycle which will continue over the next two seasons. This seasons' concert programmes also include masterworks by Bruckner, Rachmaninov, Shostakovich, and Debussy, Ravel and Berlioz.


Highlights from last season include appearances with Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de Lyon, Frankfurt Radio, Antwerp, Bern, and Malmö symphony orchestras, Bergen Philharmonic, Iceland Symphony Orchestra and Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse which have led to immediate and consistent re-invitations.


Also working in opera, Mäkelä made his operatic debut in with the Finnish National Opera conducting The Magic Flute and a concertante performance of Erkki Melartin’s Aino.


Mäkelä studied conducting at the Sibelius Academy with Jorma Panula and cello with Marko Ylönen, Timo Hanhinen and Hannu Kiiski. As a soloist, he has performed with Finnish orchestras such as the Lahti Symphony, Kuopio Symphony and Jyväskylä Sinfonia as well as appearing at many Finnish festivals including the Kuhmo Chamber Music and Naantali Music Festival. He plays a Giovanni Grancino cello from 1698, kindly made available to him by the OP Art Foundation.


Source: klausmakela.com












































































More photos


See also


Sauli Zinovjev: Un Grande Sospiro – Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)

Dmitri Shostakovich: Symphony No.7 in C major "Leningrad" – hr-Sinfonieorchester, Klaus Mäkelä (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.9 in D minor "Choral" – Lauren Fagan, Hanna Hipp, Tuomas Katajala, Shenyang, Oslo Philharmonic Choir & Orcestra, Klaus Mäkelä (4K Ultra High Definition)

Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor – Hélène Grimaud, NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester, Thomas Hengelbrock


Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor – Jan Lisiecki, Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Antonio Pappano


Robert Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor – Nelson Freire, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Claus Peter Flor


Tuesday, January 07, 2020

Yuan-Chen Li: “Wandering Viewpoint”, Concerto for Solo Cello and Two Ensembles – Michael Kaufman, Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)














Accompanied by the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra, the American cellist Michael Kaufman performs Yuan-Chen Li's "Wandering Viewpoint", Concerto for Solo Cello and Two Ensembles. The concert was recorded at First Presbyterian Church in Santa Monica, on January 15, 2017.



The concerto for solo cello and two ensembles "Wandering Viewpoint" was premiered at U of Chicago Logan Center for the Arts on April 23rd, 2015. Featuring the cellist Nicholas Photinos, supported by resident ensembles Pacifica String Quartet, the eighth blackbird, and guest musicians Deidre Huckbabay (flute), Susan Warner (clarinet), and Joshua Zajac (cello), the premiere of the evening was successfully led by the conductor Cliff Colnot. Having been working with some of these artists in the past years, I find this premiere of my latest work, in particular, as one of many meaningful experiences to me that this ensemble of people shows different strengths of the musicianships. And as the result, it leads to a gratifying performance to the audience. The critic Tim Sawyier writes: "The work was an effective concertante showcase for Photinos. Li's compositional voice is original and somewhat difficult to describe; texturally the work possesses an Impressionist  surface but its spirit was richly imbued with distinctly 21st-century dissonance, aggression, and volatility". — Yuan-Chen Li, April 25, 2015



Yuan-Chen Li (b. 1980, Taiwan)

♪ "Wandering Viewpoint", Concerto for Solo Cello and Two Ensembles (2014)

Michael Kaufman, solo cello

Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra

First Presbyterian Church in Santa Monica, January 15, 2017


(HD 1080p)
















"A fine cellist with a well-developed sense of musical characterization, Michael Kaufman plays with intensity, commitment and deep understanding", says Robert Levin, internationally renowned Mozart scholar and piano virtuoso. An exciting cellist exploring the various facets of the classical music scene, Michael Kaufman was the soloist for the opening of the renovated Kodak Hall at Eastman Theater and has performed at prestigious venues such as Zankel and Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall. He has performed as soloist and chamber musician in the United States, Canada, England, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, and Switzerland. He recently joined the Los Angeles Opera and the faculty of the Colburn Community School of Performing Arts.

Concerto highlights include Michael's performance of Wandering Viewpoint by Yuan-Chen Li with the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra and the world premiere of Sean Friar's Dynamics for Cello and Chamber Winds with the Eastman Wind Ensemble. He also recently gave the west coast premiere of Dynamics with Thornton Edge.

"Helmut Lachenmann's solo, ‘Pression’, played with rapt percussive presence by Michael Kaufman, explores sounds the cello isn't supposed to make, be they ethereal scraping of the strings or industrial level strumming and banging", said Mark Swed, LA Times. Passionately involved in contemporary music, Michael has premiered works written for him by composers such as BMI Competition winner Justin Hoke, Daniel Silliman, Jeffrey Parola and many others. He has worked with composers such as Thomas Adès, Jörg Widmann, John Adams, Donald Crockett and Stephen Hartke in interpreting their own music. After hearing Michael's performance of Lieux retrouvés, Thomas Adès (the composer) declared it to be "breathtakingly good". In April 2013, Michael participated in a Carnegie Hall professional training workshop with John Adams and David Robertson called American Soundscapes. In June 2014, he gave the west coast premiere of Sean Friar's piece Teaser. He has performed in the concert series Jacaranda, the Hear Now Festival, what's next? ensemble, and in the Callings out of Context series at RedCat.

Michael is a regular and avid chamber musician. He is a founding member of SAKURA, an ensemble of five cellists which has been described by the LA Times as "brilliant" and "superb". SAKURA has performed in Disney Hall as part of the Piatigorsky International Cello Festival and is currently Young Ensemble in Residence at the Da Camera Society. This season, it performs concerts in LA, Orange County, and the Bay Area.

In addition to regular chamber music groups, Michael has collaborated in concert with artists such as Leon Fleisher, Midori, Kim Kashkashian, Anthony Marwood, Donald Weilerstein, Steven Tenenbom, Roger Tapping, and the Calder Quartet. He has participated in music festivals such as Open Chamber Music at Prussia Cove, Yellow Barn, Music@Menlo, Verbier, Kneisel Hall, Norfolk and Sarasota. Michael is the founder and artistic director of Sunset ChamberFest, which looks forward to its sixth season in June 2019.

Michael loves teaching and is on the music faculty of Loyola Marymount University. He also recently started coaching chamber music at Colburn. Additionally, he teaches privately in LA and has taught masterclasses at schools such as Bowling Green, UC Irvine, Caltech, Texas Christian University, and Saddleback College. He served on the USC faculty of student instructors from 2011 to 2014.

In an orchestral setting, Michael is a member of the Los Angeles Opera and former Associate Principal Cello of the Redlands Symphony. He has also performed as guest Principal Cello of La Monnaie in Brussels. He was a founding member of the LA-based conductorless orchestra Kaleidoscope.

Michael is also passionate about baroque cello, for which he received a minor at USC, studying with William Skeen. He has frequently played principal cello with Musica Angelica Baroque Orchestra of Los Angeles and enjoys other small projects on period instruments.

Born in 1987 in New York City, Michael moved to Cleveland at the age of three. One year later, he began cello lessons with teacher Pamela Kelly, and continued with her into his teens. By the age of seventeen, he was already participating in music festivals in Sarasota and Norfolk. In 2004, he was the only cellist to be accepted to the Young Artist Program of the Cleveland Institute of Music, where he studied with Alison Wells. He then received a Bachelor of Music Degree with distinction and a Performer's Certificate from the Eastman School of Music, studying with Steven Doane. During this time, he had masterclasses with cellists such as Steven Isserlis, Frans Helmerson, Pieter Wispelwey and Miklós Perényi and chamber music coachings with Robert Levin, Pamela Frank, Daniel Hope and members of the Tokyo, Emerson and Orion String Quartets. Michael earned his Master's Degree and Doctorate from the University of Southern California, studying with Ralph Kirshbaum.

Source: kaufmancello.com


Yuan-Chen Li (b. 1980, Taiwan) first arrived on the contemporary music scene in Taiwan with her very personal use of instrumentation and style in her chamber music piece Zang (the funeral) in 2000. In 2003, the expression and orchestration of her orchestral work Awakening won the Tsang-Houei Hsu Memorial Prize at the Asian Music Festival 2003 in Tokyo from the Asian Composers' League, and was premiered by the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra. In recent years, Li's music reflects her transformation of processes and concepts in Chinese phonology, Asian chamber and aboriginal music, Asian traditional arts, literature, and Buddhism into a compositional technique for instruments of both Western and Chinese practices, offering new experience to her audience and collaborators with the cross-cultural and cross-disciplined approach to musical time, space, and drama. With her virtuosity in instrumentation and fluency in converging and synthesizing contrastingly cultural, musical and conceptual ideas, her treatment of the space of the sonority, temporality, texture, and syntax have engaged musicians of different practices, critics, researchers, and worldwide listeners. Her works have been included in catalogs such as Alexander Street Music and Londeix Guide To The Saxophone Repertoire, Composer Diversity Database, and etc.

Li has worked with Grammy-Award ensembles such as eighth blackbird, Pacifica Quartet, producer Brad Michel, and PARMA, and world renounced artists and groups such as Timothy McAllister, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Featuring her distinct artistry speaking to audience of different contexts, Li's work has been programmed in many concert series and festivals in Asia, Europe, and North America: Chamber Music North West (2019), Georgia Tech Institute (2019), Oberlin Conservatory (2018) and Peabody Conservatory (2018), Ensemble Mise-En Festival (New York, 2018), World Saxophone Congress (Zagreb 2018, Thailand 2009), Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (LA, 2017), EarTaxi New Music Festival (Chicago, 2016), American Composers Orchestra's EarShot (Buffalo, 2015), Northwestern University Institute for New Music NUNC! (Chicago, 2014), Asian Composers' League (Tel-Aviv 2012, Tokyo 2003), 2012 Thailand International Composition Festival, IMANI Winds Chamber Music Festival (New York, 2012), Contempo series (University of Chicago, 2010-2015), Peace Cross-strait Orchestra Concert (China and Taiwan, 2009), Composers/Pianists concert series (New England, 2008-2009), New Music New Haven (Yale, 2006-2008), The Female Form: Women Composers (New York, 2008) by Tanya Bannister, Listening to the 21Century (Taipei, 2007), Soundbridges (Berlin, 2007), Norfolk Chamber Music Festival (Norfolk, 2007), Tune in to Taiwan 2003 (Taipei, 2003), New Ideal Dance Festival (Taipei, 2003), and Kuan-Du Musical Soiree (Taipei, 2001).

Major honors and awards include an Artist Residency at the Omi International Art Center (2018), Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris (2010), grants from the Regional Arts and Culture Council, National Culture and Arts Foundation of Taiwan, the Ezra Laderman Prize, the Rena Greenwalk Memorial Prize, Finalist Martirano Award 2016 and ASU Gammage Beyond 2018, First prize of Literature and Art Creation Award (Taiwan), the Chang-Hui Hsu Memorial Prize of Asian Composers League, Study Abroad Scholarship from the Education Minister (Taiwan), and Scholarship of Arts from Tzu Chi Foundation. Recent commissions are such as from the Yale-Taiwan Music Group, National Performing Arts Center (Taiwan), ensembles such as Sound of Dragon Society, and soloists such as American saxophonist Jessica Maxfield, harpist Li-Ya Huang, and clarinetist Tsai-Pei Lun.

Li received Ph.D. in music composition from the University of Chicago in 2015. Her primary advisors are composers such as Marta Ptaszynska and Shulamit Ran, conductor Cliff Colnot, musicologist Martha Feldman, and theorist Lawrence Zbikowski. Her dissertation "Wandering Viewpoint", a concerto for solo cello and two ensembles, is about maintaining the freedom and the independence of the soloist in a highly assimilated texture and sound competed by two ensembles of similar instrumentations, which The piece receives review that Li's compositional voice "original and somewhat difficult to describe", "engaging" (Chicago Classical Review, 2015/4/24). Accompanied with her Ph.D. degree is a paper entitled "Difficult Voice in Vocal Composition, Composers' Aesthetic Responses to Secondhand Holocaust Experiences", featuring three case studies, such as Chaya Czernowin's opera Pnima... ins innere, Meredith Monk's theater opera Quarry, and Schoenberg A Survivor from Warsaw, using psychoanalytic theory to discuss musical transgenerational phenomenon of the post-war music. Li also holds Artist Diploma from The Yale University School of Music (2008), studying composition with Martin Bresnick, and M.F.A. (2006) and B.F.A. (2003) from Taipei University of the Arts, having studied composition and theory with Tsung-Hsien Yang (Brandeis) and Chung-Kun Hung (Yale). Before entering college she studied composition and classical music for ten years with Ting-Lien Wu (UCLA). In addition, Li has presented music in master classes for composers such as Zygmunt Krauser, Shi-Hui Chen, Chou Wen-Chung, Robert Beaser, Zhou Long, and Eric Moe, among many.

Committed to cultivate the combination of new music composition, interpretation, and community, she has frequently collaborated with Paul Ching-Po Chiang, conductor of Moment Musicaux Philharmonia (Taiwan), National Symphony Orchestra (Taiwan), and Chinese ensemble Chai-Found Music Workshop (Taiwan). Since 2011, Li has been mentored by Maestro Cliff Colnot, from whom she has been introduced to professional notation, rehearsal techniques, and editorial work for orchestra, chamber music and songs. After holding a visiting professor position at Reed College (Portland, Oregon, U.S.A.), she has since lived and worked in Portland.

Source: yuanchenli.wordpress.com







































More photos


See also


Samuel Barber: Knoxville, Summer of 1915 – Maria Valdes, Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Leoš Janáček: Mládí (Youth), suite for wind sextet – Members of the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Olivier Messiaen: L'Ascension, 4 meditations for orchestra – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.6 in F major "Pastoral" – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Sergei Prokofiev: Symphony No.1 in D major "Classical" – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Gustav Mahler: Symphony No.4 in G major – Janai Brugger, Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)

Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.7 in A major – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Ralph Vaughan Williams: The Lark Ascending – William Hagen, Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Aaron Copland: Appalachian Spring – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Symphony No.39 in E flat major – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Sergei Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No.3 in C major – Irene Kim, Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Ludwig van Beethoven: Symphony No.5 in C minor – Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra (HD 1080p)


Kaleidoscope: Meet a different, colorful orchestra