A review of the summer concert series, so far.
Last season, Aston Magna tried out various venues in the Berkshires and the Hudson Valley. One of the most successful was the theater at Time & Space, Ltd. in Hudson.
PianoSummer founder and director Vladimir Feltsman describes the soon-to-perform pianist Vadym Kholodenko “one of the strongest pianists of his generation.”
The series, which features world-class jazz and classical music in a sylvan setting, has proceeded uninterrupted for over a century.
Optimism rules at Ars Choralis. The chorus’s program last week, which I heard at Overlook Methodist Church on March 30, was entitled “The Poets Speak: Mending a Broken World.” The musical selections were interspersed with inspirational poetry, well read by Gilles Malkine, and included numerous brief works with positive themes.
Previous winners of this award include Aaron Copland, Yo-Yo Ma, Leonard Bernstein, Beverly Sills and John Williams.
The postponed Woodstock Symphony Orchestra concert, scheduled for January 19, still drew a sizeable audience to the Woodstock Playhouse on January 26. I continue to be favorably impressed by the work music director Jonathan Handman and his enlarged ensemble are doing together.
Saturday, Nov. 10: The chamber orchestra could play Mozart and Haydn, and maybe Beethoven, but certainly not Schumann, Brahms and Dvorák. It needed to expand.
The classical music event of the season is certainly the premiere performance of the newly reconstituted Woodstock Symphony Orchestra, a change of name which acknowledges the expansion of the Woodstock Chamber Orchestra into a larger ensemble which can perform works from the symphonic repertoire.
Sunday, October 14: Pianist Hiroko Sakurazawa introduces a new concert series in a new venue that doesn’t even have a piano. “George Tsontakis, one of our great local musicians and a friend, helped to find and contact these performers. Since there is no piano at the venue, George reached out to some of his friends, including harpist Nancy Allen [of the New York Philharmonic] and violinist Phil Setzer [of the Emerson Quartet]. I am grateful that we could have such distinguished performers here ‘in the middle of nowhere’.”