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NEW YORK PHILOMUSICA PRESENTS:
THE QUARTET FOR THE END OF TIME
A New York Philomusica Discovery
With Guest Artist Clarinetist Paquito D�Rivera
2005-06 Season Announced
Thursday, May 12, 2005 at 8PM - Merkin Concert Hall
The New York Philomusica Chamber Ensemble will perform the last concert of its 33rd season under the artistic direction of A. Robert Johnson on Thursday, May 12, 2005, at 8:00 p.m., in Merkin Concert Hall, Abraham Goodman House (129 West 67th Street), in New York City.
Expanding upon its review of the C.O.R.E. repertory, in May New York Philomusica presents The Quartet for the End of Time: A New York Philomusica Discovery. The evening will include Olivier Messiaen�s Quatuor pour la fin du temps (Quartet for the End of Time), and Ludwig van Beethoven�s Piano Trio No. 6 in B-flat, Opus 97, �Archduke.� Featured artists in this program are Rieko Aizawa, piano; Paquito D�Rivera, clarinet; Jesse Mills, violin; and Gregory Hesselink, �cello. There will be a Meet-the-Artists interview preceding the concert at 7:30 p.m., conducted by Mr. Johnson. A reception for the audience and artists follows the performance.
Two of the most poignant and ethereally beautiful pieces of the chamber music repertoire, Messiaen�s Quatuor pour la fin du temps and Beethoven�s Archduke Trio, fit together into a perfect program, despite being composed almost 150 years apart. Both works invoke an atmosphere of reflective serenity and greater purpose, relevant in our own time as much as at the moment they were composed.
New York Philomusica is particularly proud to present once again Olivier Messiaen�s Quatuor pour la fin du temps, having been one of the first ensembles in the world to recognize the importance of this quartet and perform it. The ensemble produced the first American recording of the quartet in 1972 and played a significant role in bringing this great work to the American consciousness.
Composed in 1941 while Messiaen was interned in a German prison camp, the Quatuor pour la fin du temps had its world premiere in an unheated barrack, with the composer�s fellow inmates forming the quartet itself. The composer claimed that the piece was not intended as a comment on his situation, but rather it was meant to be a musical expansion of the Biblical account of the �end of time� from the Book of Revelation. The quartet�s eight movements contain a plethora of theological and thematic connections, as well as a departure from the traditionally measured �time� of western music. The philosophical and political significance of this work has not lessened over the last century, and the beauty of the music has continued to awe and move audiences around the world.
Joining the ensemble as guest artist for this thrilling challenge is clarinetist Paquito D�Rivera. In demand as a composer, soloist and Latin jazz musician, D�Rivera has recorded over 30 albums and received several Grammies. Having toured throughout the world and played with some of the best orchestras, D�Rivera will add to the already stellar roster of musicians who will bring to life the delicate and formidable Messiaen quartet.
Complementing Messiaen�s masterpiece is Beethoven�s glorious Piano Trio No. 6 in B-flat, Opus 97, �Archduke,� composed over three weeks in 1811. Beethoven�s last and greatest work for piano trio, the piece is dedicated to the Archduke Rudolph, a friend and student of the composer. Recognized as a masterpiece from its very beginnings, this piece helped to set the standard for piano trios of later composers, blending a rich piano part with fully-realized strings. Audiences will be profoundly moved by the third movement, a set of variations that eloquently weaves increasingly intricate decorations into the original theme.
Both Messiaen�s quartet and Beethoven�s trio are considered crowning jewels in their respective composers� careers, and with good reason. Each is exquisitely poignant, creating an atmosphere of timelessness and contemplation, technically impressive and deeply stirring. New York Philomusica is honored to once again present the quartet it helped to nurture three decades ago.
2005-2006 SEASON: New York Philomusica has just announced its 34th season in New York City! The ensemble will present a total of five concerts next season, all but one of which will be held at Merkin Concert Hall at the Kaufman Center, Goodman House, 129 West 67th Street (the fourth concert will be held at Advent Lutheran Church, 2504 Broadway @ 93rd St.). The exciting array of repertoire includes several works commissioned by the ensemble from the late Sir Roland Hanna, who had a long and fruitful relationship with New York Philomusica, an examination of the influence of jazz on Stravinsky with Kurt Vonnegut�s original accompanying text for A Soldier�s Tale, and a special celebration of Mozart on his 250th birthday. The concerts will be held on the following Thursdays: September 29 and December 15, 2005, and February 16, March 30, and May 4, 2006. Program details and subscription information can be found at www.nyphilomusica.org
Upcoming New York City concerts: This is the last concert of the season, but we hope you will join us for the 2005-2006 season, beginning September 29, 2005. . New York Philomusica holds an additional annual concert series in Rockland County at the Nauraushaun Presbyterian Church, 51 Sickletown Road, Pearl River, NY. May 12th�s program will be performed in Rockland County on the preceding Saturday, May 7, at 8 p.m. For more information, call Orangetown Friends of Philomusica at (845) 359-5660.
NEW YORK PHILOMUSICA was founded in 1971 by A. Robert Johnson to provide a new and comprehensive model of presenting chamber music to the public, which has since been adopted by many chamber ensembles. The group helped pioneer the modern residency through its 1973 seven-week residency at Dartmouth College, followed by its New York City Metropolitan Subscription Concerts in all five boroughs (1975-1979) and New York State Capitol Region Residency (1979-1981). Always a breeding ground for the finest musicians, the ensemble has fostered the talent of such artists as Tim Eddy, Kim Kashkashian, David Jolley, David Krakauer, Robert Levin, Todd Phillips, and Bill Purvis early in their careers. The ensemble has performed concerts and master classes on three continents and been broadcast on radio and television. The centerpiece of all the ensemble�s activities is its annual concert series in New York City�s Merkin Concert Hall. Praised by critics worldwide, the ensemble�s range of programming includes its 1993 World Premiere of Stravinsky�s A Soldier�s Tale, with a new text by Kurt Vonnegut, the 1992 and 2002 premieres of works commissioned from John Harbison, the 1999 American premiere of Beethoven�s Concerto No. 4, for piano and string quintet, and numerous collaborations with renowned jazz pianist, the late Sir Roland Hanna. New York Philomusica has provided sustained exposure to the music of three composers�Iain Hamilton, Jacob Druckman, and John Harbison�through its Featured Composer program.
The first American ensemble to record Messiaen�s Quartet for the End of Time, New York Philomusica is the first group ever to record the entire Mozart Divertimento catalogue. The Divertimento recordings were originally released by VoxBox Productions in 1975 and were followed by a release of Mozart Wind Serenades. Both titles were reissued in October 2002�with updated, comprehensive liner notes by New York Philomusica�s Artist Laureate, Mozart scholar Robert Levin�on the ensemble�s own label, New York Philomusica Records, established in 1992. Following a new release in April 2004, George and Joseph in Paris, featuring Robert Levin on piano, New York Philomusica Records now has 16 titles, available online at Amazon.com or through the New York Philomusica at www.nyphilomusica.org.
TICKET PRICES for May 12th are $35 ($30 seniors, $17.50 students). Further special promotions available online and through participating schools. For information or tickets, call New York Philomusica at (212) 580-9933, or visit www.nyphilomusica.org.
For press tickets, photographs, or further information, please contact:
Kim Stanford, 917-697-7588, or Tali Chitaiad, 212-580-9933