Mario Venzago Leads the BSO in Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, March 17-19
Guest violinist Baiba Skride will perform Alban Berg's Violin Concerto
Baltimore, Md. (March 3, 2011) - Violinist Baiba Skride and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO), led by Mario Venzago, will perform Alban Berg's Violin Concerto on Thursday, March 17 at 8 p.m. at the Music Center at Strathmore and Friday, March 18 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, March 19 at 8 p.m. at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. Also on the program are the fifth symphonies of Beethoven and Schubert. Please see below for complete program details.
Beethoven's famous Fifth Symphony, containing the infamous "fate knocking at the door" theme, is one of the most recognized works in the repertory. Composed at the height of Beethoven's career, the work portrays romantic ideals within classical form. Beethoven conducted the premiere of this work in 1808 in Vienna.
Berg's Violin Concerto, subtitled "for the memory of an angel," was composed in memory of Manon Gropius, the daughter of Alma Mahler Gropius (once Gustav Mahler's wife). Originally commissioned by the American virtuoso violinist Louis Krasner, the work now finds itself in the able hands of Latvian violinist Baiba Skride, whose playing is described as "unfailingly intelligent" and her tone as "full but beautifully controlled" by International Record Review.
Franz Schubert, genius composer of art songs and chamber music, also has several exceptional symphonic works to his credit. Schubert composed and finished his lighthearted and exuberant fifth symphony in 1816 at the age of 19. Schubert composed his works at an astonishing rate despite his brief career ending at age 31. His short life typifies the tragic 19th-century artist, having gained little recognition for his work during his lifetime, his skill is celebrated posthumously.
Mario Venzago, conductor
After seven extremely successful years, Swiss-born conductor Mario Venzago resigned as Music Director of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra in 2009. From 2000 to 2003 he served as Artistic Director of the Summer Music Fest with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. In 2004, Mr.Venzago was appointed Principal Conductor of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra in Sweden.
He has previously held posts as Music Director of the Basel Symphony Orchestra (1997-2003), Principal Guest Conductor of the Malmö Symphony Orchestra (2001-03) and Music Director of the Basque Euskadi National Orchestra in Spain (1998-2001), the Graz Opera House in Austria (1990-1995), the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie in Frankfurt/Bremen (1989-1992) and the Heidelberg Opera (1986-1989).
In March 1995, he conducted the Baltimore Symphony on short notice, a success leading to a very close relationship with that orchestra, including subscription concerts each year since 1995, the opening of the 2000-01 season, and his artistic directorship of the summer festival 2000-03. Mr.Venzago's American debut took place in 1988 at the invitation of Leonard Bernstein, at the Hollywood Bowl with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Institute Orchestra.
Maestro Venzago's varied discography has earned him several major awards, including the Diapason d'or, two Grand Prix du Disque, and the Edison Prize. His latest CD on the Col legno label has been released in the United States, dedicated to the symphonic works of Luigi Nono.
Baiba Skride, violin
Still in her twenties, Baiba Skride has appeared with several prestigious orchestras such as the Sinfonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunk, Munich Philharmonic, Gewandhausorchester Leipzig, Tonhalle Orchester Zürich, Orchestre de Paris, London Philharmonic Orchestra and the U.S. orchestras of Philadelphia, Houston, Cincinnati and Detroit. Conductors with whom Ms. Skride regularly collaborates include Charles Dutoit, Thierry Fischer, Mark Janowski, Paavo Järvi, Neeme Järvi, Mikhail Pletnev and John Storgårds.
Ms. Skride has been recording for Sony Classical since 2004. Her highly praised discography was recently highlighted with a Tchaikovsky CD with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Andris Nelsons. She released a first duo recording with her sister (Schubert, Beethoven, Ravel) as well as a solo violin disc (Ysaye, Bartok, Bach) and two concerto discs (Mozart, Schubert and Michael Haydn and Shostakovich and Janácek).
In 2001, Ms. Skride won first prize at the Queen Elisabeth Competition. She plays the Stradivarius "Wilhelmj" violin (1725), which is generously on loan to her from the Nippon Music Foundation, with whom she will be on tour in Graz, Florence and Paris.
COMPLETE PROGRAM INFORMATION
BSO Classical Concert: Schubert, Berg and Beethoven
Thursday, March 17, 2011 at 8:00 p.m. - The Music Center at Strathmore
Friday, March 18, 2011 at 8:00 p.m. - Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
Saturday, March 19, 2011 at 8:00 p.m. - Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall
Mario Venzago, conductor
Baiba Skride, violin
Schubert: Symphony No. 5
Berg: Violin Concerto
Beethoven: Symphony No. 5
Tickets range from $28 to $88. Tickets are available through the BSO Ticket Office, 877.BSO.1444, 410.783.8000 or BSOmusic.org.