Mischa Santora conducts concerts April 30 and May 1 featuring works by American composers Bernstein, Copland, Greenstein and Heitzeg; former principal clarinet Burt Hara returns as soloist in Copland concerto; Orchestra trumpeter Charles Lazarus featured in premiere of Minnesotan Steve Heitzeg’s American Nomad
MINNEAPOLIS (April 10, 2015) — Burt Hara, the Minnesota Orchestra’s principal clarinet from 1987 to 2013, returns to Orchestra Hall on April 30 and May 1 as soloist in an all-American program that features classics by Bernstein and Copland alongside two newer works written for premiere by the Minnesota Orchestra.
Former Associate Conductor Mischa Santora conducts the program, which features Hara, now a member of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, in Copland’s Clarinet Concerto. Also showcased is Orchestra trumpet player Charles Lazarus, who solos in the world premiere of St. Paul-based composer Steve Heitzeg’s American Nomad, a work commissioned by Paul Grangaard.
The program opens with Bernstein’s witty, nostalgic Divertimento and closes with Judd Greenstein’s Acadia, written for the Orchestra in 2012 on a grassroots “MicroCommission” funded by hundreds of Orchestra supporters, and premiered here the same year.
The concerts are performed at Orchestra Hall, the Minnesota Orchestra’s home venue in downtown Minneapolis: on Thursday, April 30, at 11 a.m., and Friday, May 1, at 8 p.m., with ticket prices ranging from $29 to $96. Subscription packages and individual tickets for all 2014-15 season concerts are available at minnesotaorchestra.org and by phone at 612-371-5656. For further purchasing details, see the information section at the conclusion of this press release.
All-American music, with local twists
Leonard Bernstein’s Divertimento for Orchestra, written for the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s centennial season, is an eight-movement suite filled with jubilant dances and jazz-infused passages.
Steve Heitzeg describes his American Nomad as a “series of soundscapes that depict various American landscapes.” This trumpet concerto, composed specifically for the Minnesota Orchestra’s Charles Lazarus, is inspired not only by scenery, but by America’s diverse cultures. It requires a soloist who is equally adept at performing classical music and improvising at jazz.
Aaron Copland’s virtuosic Clarinet Concerto, written for the great Benny Goodman, begins lyrically and concludes with a jazzy movement notable for its range of sounds: the clarinet in high register, basses played “slap style” and a lively piano part.
Judd Greenstein’s richly layered Acadia—commissioned in 2012 for the Minnesota Orchestra’s Inside the Classics series—displays a wealth of moods, from idyllic to intensely emotional, experienced during the composer’s camping and hiking weekend in Maine.
The artists: Mischa Santora, Burt Hara and Charles Lazarus
Mischa Santora, the Minnesota Orchestra’s associate conductor from 2003 to 2009, has conducted on five continents, leading such ensembles and companies as the Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra and West Australian Opera Company. This season he led the Minnesota Orchestra’s Guarantors’ concert and several Young People’s and Family concerts. He is also active locally as artistic director of the Spotlight Concert Series at the MacPhail Center for Music, and as founder and artistic director of the Minneapolis Music Company, specializing in creative collaborations with dance, theater and other performing arts organizations. For more information, visit williamreinert.com or mischasantora.com.
Burt Hara, who has been a featured soloist with many orchestras, joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic as associate principal clarinet in 2013 after 25 years as the Minnesota Orchestra’s principal clarinet. While in Minnesota he drew acclaim for his frequent solo and chamber music performances in works spanning the clarinet repertoire. He has served as principal clarinet of the Philadelphia Orchestra and Alabama Symphony, and he has been guest principal with the Chicago Symphony, New York Philharmonic and Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, among other ensembles. He is principal clarinet of the Aspen Chamber Symphony. An active chamber musician, he has performed on series and festivals in Hong Kong, Santa Fe, Aspen, La Jolla, Napa Valley, Maine, Wisconsin and Los Angeles. For more information, visit laphil.org.
Charles Lazarus, a member of the Minnesota Orchestra since 2000, has masterminded several original programs with the Orchestra, including “A Night in the Tropics,” “A Big Band Valentine’s Day Celebration” and, most recently, “American Riffs: A Veteran’s Day Celebration.” Next season he stars at Orchestra Hall in new Christmas- and Valentine’s Day-themed programs. Since debuting at Carnegie Hall at age 19 with the New York String Orchestra, he has been a member of the Dallas Brass, Meridian Arts Ensemble and Canadian Brass; he has also performed with such ensembles as the New York Big Brass, New York Trumpet Ensemble, London Brass and Montreal Symphony. In addition, he frequently performs at festivals, conferences and other events. His many recordings include the CDs Solo Settings, Zabava and Merry & Bright. For more information, visit minnesotaorchestra.orgor charleslazarus.com.
Minnesota Orchestra Classical Concerts
AMERICAN VOICES: BERNSTEIN AND COPLAND
Thursday, April 30, 2015, 11 a.m. / Orchestra Hall
Friday, May 1, 2015, 8 p.m. / Orchestra Hall
Mischa Santora, conductor
Burt Hara, clarinet
Charles Lazarus, trumpet
HEITZEG American Nomad [World Premiere] COPLAND Clarinet Concerto
Music Up Close: Concert Preview with Phillip Gainsley, Burt Hara, Steve Heitzeg and Charles Lazarus – Apr. 30, 10:15 a.m.(Auditorium)
Coffee Concert: Complimentary coffee, donuts and pre-concert entertainment in the lobby – Apr. 30
TICKET PURCHASING INFORMATION
Individual tickets and subscription packages can be purchased online at minnesotaorchestra.org, or by calling 612-371-5656 (612-371-5642 for subscriptions) or 800-292-4141. Tickets can be purchased in person at the Orchestra Hall Box Office, 1111 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and beginning two hours before all ticketed performances); and at the Minnesota Orchestra Administrative Office, International Centre, 5th floor, 920 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis (open Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to5 p.m.). For more information, call 612-371-5656, or visit minnesotaorchestra.org. For subscriptions, call 612-371-5642 or visitminnesotaorchestra.org/subscribe. For groups of 10 or more, call 612-371-5662.
Published prices include a non-discountable facility fee that ranges from $2 to $5 per ticket. For single ticket purchases, there are no service charges for in-person transactions. There is a $6 service charge per transaction for all phone, fax or mail orders. Save $1 by purchasing tickets online or by having the Orchestra e-mail your tickets. (This charge is waived for subscribers and group purchasers ordering by phone, mail or in person.) Subscription packages are subject to a one-time $8 processing fee. No refunds. Some fees and restrictions may apply to ticket exchanges. All sales are final. All programs, artists, dates, times and prices subject to change.
The Star Tribune is the Minnesota Orchestra’s media partner for the 2014-15 season.
This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.