Hartford Symphony Orchestra presents Russian Intensity May 12-14


The HSO presents a program of Russian composers with Russian Intensity Friday, May 12 through Sunday, May 14 in the Belding Theater at The Bushnell in Hartford. These concerts will feature HSO Concertmaster Leonid Sigal on violin and guest conductor Donato Cabrera. Visit hartfordsymphony.org for information.

The program includes Borodin’s Prince Igor Overture, Glazunov’s Concerto for Violin in A minor, Op. 82, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36, TH 27. A free pre-concert talk led by Donato Cabrera and Leonid Sigal will take place one hour prior to each performance.

The 2016-2017 Masterworks Series is sponsored by The Edward C. and Ann T. Roberts Foundation. Russian Intensity is The Koski Memorial Concert.

Alexander Borodin died before he finished his Prince Igor opera; it was Rimsky-Korsakov and Glazunov who completed the work for him after he passed, with Glazunov composing much of the Overture. Glazunov’s Concerto for Violin in A minor was written at the height of the composer’s fame, while he was spending time at his summer home in Oserki. The pastoral setting inspired the lyrical mood of the concerto, which is superbly imagined and vivacious. Tchaikovsky’s great Symphony No. 4 was dedicated to his patroness, Nadezhda von Meck; he claimed she would find in it “an echo of your most intimate thoughts and emotions.” With the theme of Fate running throughout, Symphony No. 4 is emotionally and musically complex.

About Leonid Sigal

HSO Concertmaster Leonid Sigal has enjoyed a multi-faceted career as recitalist, chamber musician and orchestra leader. Since early performances he was praised by audiences and critics for his virtuosity and musical sensitivity. The Miami Herald wrote: “Sigal demonstrated what a fine violinist he is, playing passionately and cleanly with a soaring tone,” and the Hartford Courant echoes: “His tone was consistently sweet. He brought a clear sense of phrasing, articulation and effortless virtuosity.”

Born in Moscow, Russia, he began violin studies at the age 5, and was accepted to the renowned Gnessin School of Music. He went on attending and graduating with excellence from the Tchaikovsky Conservatory.

Winner of several violin competitions and recipient of the 1993 Meadows Artistic Scholarship Award, he moved to the US, where he had also studied with Erick Friedman and had taken masterclasses with Isaac Stern and Pinchas Zukerman. In 1995 he was invited by Michael Tilson Thomas to a prestigious fellowship at the New World Symphony, where he was one of the principals and also coached as conductor.

His experience includes recitals, chamber music, festival and orchestral appearances in the US, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Great Britain, France, Italy, Austria, Switzerland, Russia, Japan and South Korea. He had performed under Sir Georg Solti, Leonard Bernstein, Christoph Eschenbach, Michael Tilson Thomas, James Levine, Herbert Blomstedt to name a few. A passionate chamber musician, he collaborated with Mstislav Rostropovich, Evgeny Kissin, Edgar Meyer, Joseph Silverstein, James Ehnes, Roberto Diaz and William Wolfram among others. In 2007 he inaugurated and became Artistic Director of the HSO’s Sunday Serenades chamber music series at the Wadsworth Atheneum.

Mr. Sigal’s annual appearances as soloist with the HSO include highly acclaimed performances of Bruch’s Scottish Fantasy, Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons, concertos by Mozart, Brahms, Sibelius, Barber and Shostakovich. In 2011 Mr. Sigal performed, and later recorded, a world premiere of Stephen Michael Gryc’ Violin Concerto Harmonia Mundi, written for him and commissioned by the HSO. Recent and upcoming season highlights include Brahms’ Double Concerto with cellist David Finckel,  Concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Chausson’s Poeme and Waxman’s Carmen Fantasy, Saint Saens’ Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso and Tzigane by Ravel, as well as Leonard Bernstein’s Serenade after Plato’s Symposium to commemorate the composer’s 100th birthday in 2018.

Mr. Sigal also serves as concertmaster and assistant conductor of the Atlantic Classical Orchestra, as well as faculty member at University of Hartford’s The Hartt School. Previously Associate Concertmaster of the Florida Philharmonic, he had performed with the San Diego Symphony and Boston Symphony Orchestra. He had served as Artistic Director of the Miami Chamber Symphony, as well as violin faculty at the Eastern Music Festival. Since August of 2012, at the invitation of Music Director Gerard Schwarz, he has been part of the Emmy Award-winning and nationally syndicated program All Star Orchestra alongside fellow concertmasters and principals from the Philadelphia Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, The Met Orchestra, Boston, San Francisco, Cincinnati, Minnesota and other major American orchestras.

About Donato Cabrera

Donato Cabrera has been the Music Director of the Las Vegas Philharmonic Orchestra since 2014 and Music Director of the California Symphony since 2013. He served as the Resident Conductor of the San Francisco Symphony (SFS) and the Wattis Foundation Music Director of the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra (SFSYO) from 2009-2016.

Under Donato’s leadership, the Las Vegas Philharmonic has enjoyed subscription sales higher than ever and expanded its season, adding Sunday matinees. In addition to time-honored symphonic works by Dvo?ák, Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart, Strauss, and Schumann, the Las Vegas Philharmonic’s 2016-2017 season will include new music by acclaimed American composers Kevin Beavers, Nathaniel Stookey, Jennifer Bellor, and Michael Torke, plus Brazillian-American composer Clarice Assad, demonstrating Cabrera’s commitment to programming music by living composers.

A champion of new music, Donato Cabrera was a co-founder of the New York-based American Contemporary Music Ensemble (ACME), which is dedicated to the outstanding performance of masterworks from the 20th and 21st centuries. In September 2012 he conducted ACME in the world premiere of the all-live version of Steve Reich’s WTC 9/11 for three string quartets and tape at Le Poisson Rouge in New York City. Cabrera will lead performances of Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson’s Drone Mass with ACME and Theatre of Voices at Duke Performances and the Big Ears Festival in spring 2017. He made his Carnegie Hall and Cal Performances debuts leading the world and California premieres, respectively, of Mark Grey’s ?tash Sorushan. In 2010, Cabrera stepped in on short notice for the acclaimed British composer/conductor/pianist Thomas Adès to conduct the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.

Calendar Listing
Masterworks Series
Friday – Sunday, May 12-14
Belding Theater at The Bushnell
Friday & Saturday 8pm?Sunday 3pm
Tickets starting at $33.00; $10.00 for students with ID
860-987-5900 or www.hartfordsymphony.org

Prince Igor Overture
Glazunov Concerto for Violin in A minor, Op. 82
Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36, TH 27

Donato Cabrera conductor
Leonid Sigal violin





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The Bushnell: 166 Capitol Ave. Hartford, CT 06106