Violinist Mikhail Simonyan to Replace Midori for BSO Concerts, October 21-23
Program will remain unchanged and features Shostakovich’s First Violin Concerto
Wednesday, October 20, 2010 (Baltimore, Md.)—Due to a sudden back injury, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra regrets to announce that violinist Midori has cancelled her upcoming engagement to perform with the BSO in the concerts on Thursday, October 21, 2010 at 8 p.m. at the Music Center at Strathmore and Friday, October 22, 2010 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, October 23, 2010 at 8 p.m. at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. Conductor Gilbert Varga is still scheduled to lead the program.
Midori expressed her regret, “I’m so disappointed to miss the opportunity to play with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Varga! I have strained my back and have been strongly advised against physical exertion at this time. I greatly appreciate the graciousness and understanding of the BSO, and look forward to re-scheduling our collaboration at the earliest opportunity.”
In her place, the BSO is pleased to welcome Russian-Armenian violinist Mikhail Simonyan (pronounced: MEE-ky-ell si-MOHN-yun), who will perform his BSO debut. At just 25 years old, Mr. Simonyan’s “breadth, lyricism and fleet technique” (The New York Times) have earned him early international acclaim and performance opportunities with some of the world’s most famed orchestras. In 1999, at 13, Mr. Simonyan made his New York debut at Lincoln Center with the American Russian Young Artists Orchestra (ARYO) and his debut in St. Petersburg, Russia at the Mariinsky (Kirov) Theatre. Mr. Simonyan has earned first-prize in several prestigious competitions, including the All-Russia Competition in Saint Petersburg, the Siberian Violin Competition, the National Prize Prizvanie in Moscow and the Salon de Virtuosi in New York.
About Mikhail Simonyan
Mikhail Simonyan, who hails from Novosibirsk, Russia, began to study the violin at the age of five. As part of the first generation of artists to forge careers in an era with substantially decreased government support, he has blazed a trail for young musicians in Russia. He is a winner of the Yehudi Menuhin Foundation Award, and received the 2000 Virtuoso of the Year award in Saint Petersburg. In 2003, the National Academy of Achievement selected him for an award in the Performing Arts. In 2005, he received the highest level of recognition when President Putin received him at the Kremlin, in acknowledgment of his status as one of Russia's most promising young musicians. In 2008, he won the Young Artist Award from the Classical Recording Foundation. Recent highlights for Mr. Simonyan include his debut with the New Jersey Symphony led by Kristjan Järvi; a recital during the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Musikfestival in Germany as part of the "Junge Elite" concert series; appearances with the Seoul Philharmonic, the Vienna Tonkünstler Orchestra at the Musikverein, and the Vancouver Symphony; and recitals in the United States and Russia. In June 2010 Mr. Simonyan made his New York Philharmonic debut with Bramwell Tovey conducting. The 2010-11 season will see his recital debuts at the Verbier Festival and Ravinia Festival, and orchestral debuts with the NHK Symphony Orchestra performing the Sibelius Violin Concerto under Sir Neville Marriner, the Dresden Philharmonic with Raefel Fruebeck de Burgos, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Aarhus Symphony Orchestra and Iceland Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Simonyan has just signed a multi CD exclusive recording contract with Deutsche Grammophon. He continues to work with Victor Danchenko in the United States and lives in New York. He plays a Giuseppe Gagliano violin made in Napoli, Italy in 1769.
About Gilbert Varga
Gilbert Varga, son of the celebrated Hungarian violinist Tibor Varga, studied under three very different and distinctive maestros: Franco Ferrara, Sergiu Celibidache and Charles Bruck. Renowned for his commanding and elegant baton technique, Mr. Varga has held positions with and guest conducted many of the major orchestras throughout the world. In North America, he made his debut with the Minnesota Orchestra in 2002 and has since developed a flourishing and long-standing relationship with the Orchestra, returning there every season. In 2005, he made a highly successful debut with The Philadelphia Orchestra, and works regularly with orchestras such as Atlanta, St. Louis, Dallas, Milwaukee and Indianapolis. In 2010, he will debut in Seattle and Baltimore. In Europe, he works regularly with the Oslo Philharmonic, Berlin Radio Symphony, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, MDR Leipzig, Gürzenich, Hungarian National Philharmonic, Spanish National, Frankfurt Museumgesellschaft and the Berlin Konzerthaus Orchestra. In South East Asia, he recently made his debuts with the Taipei Symphony Orchestra and with the Malaysian Philharmonic.
In the earlier part of his conducting career, he concentrated on work with chamber orchestras, particularly the Tibor Varga Chamber Orchestra, before rapidly developing a reputation as a symphonic conductor. He was chief conductor of the Hofer Symphoniker (1980-1985) and chief conductor of the Philharmonia Hungarica in Marl (1985-1990), conducting its debut tour to Hungary with Yehudi Menuhin. In 1991, he became permanent guest conductor of the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra until 1995, and from 1997-2000 was principal guest of the Malmö Symphony. From 1997–2008, he was music director of the Basque National Symphony Orchestra, leading them through 10 seasons, including tours across the U.K., Germany, Spain and South America. His discography includes recordings with ASV, Discover Records, Tring (The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra's Collection), Koch International (Munich Chamber Orchestra and Bamberg Symphony) and Claves Recordings (The Basque National Orchestra).
COMPLETE CONCERT DETAILS
Mikhail Simonyan Plays Shostakovich
Thursday, October 21, 2010 at 8 p.m.—The Music Center at Strathmore
Friday, October 22, 2010 at 8 p.m.—Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
Saturday, October 23, 2010 at 8 p.m.—Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
Gilbert Varga, conductor †
Mikhail Simonyan, violin †
Glinka: Ruslan and Ludmilla Overture
Shostakovich: Violin Concerto No. 1
† Denotes a BSO artist debut
Tickets range from $27 to $88 and are available through the BSO Ticket Office, 877.BSO.1444, 410.783.8000 or BSOmusic.org.