Carlos Kalmar leads Baltimore Symphony in Dvorák's Slavonic Dances, January 22-24
Martinu's Oboe Concerto features BSO principal Katherine Needleman
Baltimore, Md. (December 23, 2008)- Preeminent conductor Carlos Kalmar will lead the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in Dvorák's Slavonic Dances, Martinu's Oboe Concerto and Haydn's "Military" Symphony on Thursday, January 22, 2009 at the Music Center at Strathmore and Friday, January 23 at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. The oboe concerto's Baroque style features BSO principal Katherine Needleman's range and expressiveness. On Saturday, January 24 at 11 a.m., a shortened program as part of the BSO's Casual Series will feature Slavonic Dances and the "Military" Symphony. See below for complete program information.
The BSO will perform Dvorák's original set of Slavonic Dances, Nos. 1-8, opus 46. Composed in 1878, the dances are inspired by Czech folk and dance traditions. Despite popular belief, the melodies are of Dvorák's own composition and do not borrow the true traditional Czech tunes. Nos. 1 and 8 are in the style of furiant, the boldest of Czech folk dances. Other dances include a lively Ukranian dumka (No. 2), a Czech polka (No. 3), a stately sousedská (Nos. 4 and 6) and a hopping skocná (Nos. 5 and 7). With the help of his mentor, Johannes Brahms, this set of dances launched Dvorák to international fame.
Bohuslav Martinu's Oboe Concerto is the second Czech piece on the program and will feature BSO principal Katherine Needleman. Inspired by the Baroque era, this oboe concerto also features the trumpet and piano. The concerto's three movements are often described as "nervously brilliant," with a lively opening, a mysterious second movement and a high-spirited finale.
Haydn's "Military" Symphony No. 100 premiered on his 62nd birthday (1794) in London. After its premiere, the London Chronicle described it as "the advancing to battle; and the march of men, the sounding of the charge, the thundering of the onset, the clash of arms, the groans of the wounded, and what may well be called the hellish roar of war increasing to a climax of horrid sublimity." The addition of Turkish music themes and the use of the woodwinds lend dramatic flair to this piece.
Carols Kalmar, conductor
Carlos Kalmar was appointed music director of the Oregon Symphony Orchestra in 2003. He is also principal conductor of the Grant Park Music Festival in Chicago. During his career, he has served as music director of the Hamburg Symphony, Stuttgart Philharmonic, Vienna's Tonkunstlerorchester and the Anhaltisches Theater in Dessau, Germany.
Upcoming engagements include appearances with the Dallas Symphony, Saint Louis Symphony, the Czech Philharmonic, the Nashville Symphony, the San Francisco Symphony and the City of Birmingham Orchestra. Mr. Kalmar's recent guest conducting engagements in North America have included subscription concerts with The Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Houston Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, New World Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Cincinnati Symphony, Phoenix Symphony and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa.
His international conducting appearances have included the Prague Symphony, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, Berlin Radio Symphony, the National Orchestra of Spain, the ORT Orchestra of Florence, the Bournemouth Symphony, the Hamburg State Opera, the BBC Welsh, the Residentie, the Vienna State Opera, the Yomiuri Japan Orchestra, the Flemish Radio and the Zurich Opera.
Mr. Kalmar's most recent recordings on the Cedille label include two 2008 releases with the Grant Park Orchestra: featuring works by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Aaron Jay Kernis and the world-renowned mezzo-soprano Jennifer Larmore. His 2006 release of the Szymanowski, Martinu and Bartok Violin Concertos with the Grant Park Orchestra and Jennifer Koh, was highly acclaimed, as was the 2003 release of the Joachim and Brahms Violin Concertos featuring Rachel Barton and the Chicago Symphony, and American Works for Organ and Orchestra featuring David Schrader and the Grant Park Orchestra (2002).
Katherine Needleman, oboe
Katherine Needleman joined the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra as principal oboist in 2003, the same year she won first prize at the International Double Reed Society's Gillet-Fox Competition. In addition to her appearance with the BSO, Ms. Needleman has made solo appearances with The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Concerto Soloists Chamber Orchestra, the Haddonfield Symphony, and the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia. She has also appeared as guest principal oboist with the New York Philharmonic, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Boston, Atlanta, San Diego, and New Zealand. Prior to her appointment in Baltimore, she was principal oboist of the Richmond Symphony, and before that, the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia.
Ms. Needleman is a founding member of the oboe trio, Trio La Milpa, the first American chamber ensemble to perform in Greenland; the woodwind quintet, Astral Winds; and the Mico Nonet, an improvisational ambient chamber music ensemble. She has appeared at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, Italy's Spoleto Festival, the Alpenglow Festival, and the Newport Music Festival. A frequent participant at the Marlboro Music Festival, she has also appeared on two tours with "Musicians from Marlboro."
A Baltimore native, Ms. Needleman attended high school at the Baltimore School for the Arts but left early to attend the Curtis Institute of Music, where she received a bachelor's degree in music as a student of Richard Woodhams. She is a Yamaha Performing Artist and a member of the faculty at the Peabody Conservatory.
COMPLETE PROGRAM INFORMATION
Classical Concert Series: Slavonic Dances
Thursday, January 22, 2009 at 8:00 p.m. -The Music Center at Strathmore*
Friday, January 23, 2009 at 8:00 p.m. -Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
Casual Concert Series
Saturday, January 24, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. -Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall**
Carlos Kalmar, conductor
Katherine Needleman, oboe
Haydn: Symphony No. 100, "Military"
Martinu: Oboe Concerto ‡
Dvorák: Slavonic Dances
*Music Notes LIVE! is a free pre-concert lecture at the Music Center at Strathmore, hosted by WETA's David Ginder. The program begins at 7:00 p.m. and is free to ticket holders.
**Casual concert does not include Martin?'s Oboe Concerto.
‡ BSO premiere
Tickets for these concerts range from $25 to $80, and are available through the BSO Ticket Office, 877.BSO.1444 or 410.783.8000, or www.BSOmusic.org.