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All-Mozart Program with Emanuel Ax
UnderScore Friday Concert

Tanglewood

Koussevitzky Music Shed - Lenox, MA View Map

The Jackie and Larry Horn Family Concert

Patrons will hear comments about the program directly from onstage BSO musician Kathryn Sievers (viola). 

Herbert Blomstedt, a longtime collaborator with the BSO, conducts the orchestra in an all-Mozart program. Emanuel Ax joins the orchestra for the Piano Concerto No. 17 in G, K.453, a work Bernstein returned to frequently and performed several times at Tanglewood. The second half of the program is dedicated to the Symphony No. 41, Jupiter, the composer's final work in the genre and one of history's great symphonies.

Featured Performers

Herbert Blomstedt, conductor
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Noble, charming, sober, modest. Such qualities may play a major role in human coexistence and are certainly appreciated. However, they are rather untypical for extraordinary personalities such as conductors. Whatever the general public's notion of a conductor may be, Herbert Blomstedt is an exception, precisely because he possesses those very qualities which seemingly have so little to do with a conductor's claim to power. The fact that he disproves the usual clichés in many respects should certainly not lead to the assumption that this artist does not have the power to assert his clearly defined musical goals. Anyone who has once attended Herbert Blomstedt's rehearsals and experienced the concentration on the essence of the music, the precision in the phrasing of musical facts and circumstances as they appear from the score, the tenacity regarding the implementation of an aesthetic view, will probably have been amazed at how few despotic measures were required to this end. Basically, Herbert Blomstedt has always represented that type of artist whose professional competence and natural authority make all external emphasis superfluous. His work as a conductor is inseparably linked to his religious and human ethos, accordingly, his interpretations combine great faithfulness to the score and analytical precision with a soulfulness that awakens the music to pulsating life. In the more than sixty years of his career, he has acquired the unrestricted respect of the musical world.

Over the years, many outstanding ensembles around the globe have been able to secure the services of this highly respected Swedish conductor, born in the USA and educated in Uppsala, New York, Darmstadt and Basel. At the age of ninety, Herbert Blomstedt continues to be at the helm of all leading international orchestras with enormous mental and physical presence, verve and artistic drive.

Herbert Blomstedt, conductor Emanuel Ax, piano
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Born in modern day Lvov, Poland, Emanuel Ax moved to Winnipeg, Canada, with his family when he was a young boy. His studies at the Juilliard School were supported by the sponsorship of the Epstein Scholarship Program of the Boys Clubs of America, and he subsequently won the Young Concert Artists Award. Additionally, he attended Columbia University where he majored in French. Mr. Ax made his New York debut in the Young Concert Artists Series, and captured public attention in 1974 when he won the first Arthur Rubinstein International Piano Competition in Tel Aviv. In 1975 he won the Michaels Award of Young Concert Artists followed four years later by the coveted Avery Fisher Prize.

Always a committed exponent of contemporary composers with works written for him by John Adams, Christopher Rouse, Krzysztof Penderecki, Bright Sheng, and Melinda Wagner already in his repertoire, the 2016/2017 season will feature two newly commissioned works. With the New York Philharmonic conducted by Alan Gilbert, January will bring the world premiere of HK Gruber's Piano Concerto followed in March by the European premiere with the Berlin Philharmonic and Sir Simon Rattle. In recitals throughout the season his program will include works by Schubert and Chopin partnered with "Impromptus (2015-2016)" by Samuel Adams commissioned by Music Accord and inspired by Schubert. His ongoing relationship with the Boston Symphony will include visits with them to Carnegie Hall, Montreal, and Toronto; with the Cleveland Orchestra Mr. Ax will appear as the featured artist for their Gala opening concert of the season. As a regular visitor he will return to the orchestras of Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Cincinnati, Toronto, Seattle, Milwaukee, and Detroit.

A Sony Classical exclusive recording artist since 1987, recent releases include Mendelssohn Trios with Yo-Yo Ma and Itzhak Perlman, Strauss' Enoch Arden narrated by Patrick Stewart, and discs of two-piano music by Brahms and Rachmaninoff with Yefim Bronfman. In 2015 Deutche Grammophon released a duo recording with Mr. Perlman of Sonatas by Faure and Strauss which the two artists presented on tour during the 2015/2016 season. Mr. Ax has received GRAMMY® Awards for the second and third volumes of his cycle of Haydn's piano sonatas. He has also made a series of Grammy-winning recordings with cellist Yo-Yo Ma of the Beethoven and Brahms sonatas for cello and piano. His other recordings include the concertos of Liszt and Schoenberg, three solo Brahms albums, an album of tangos by Astor Piazzolla, and the premiere recording of John Adams's Century Rolls with the Cleveland Orchestra for Nonesuch. In the 2004/05 season Mr. Ax also contributed to an International EMMY® Award-Winning BBC documentary commemorating the Holocaust that aired on the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. In 2013, Mr. Ax's recording Variations received the Echo Klassik Award for Solo Recording of the Year (19th century music/Piano).

A frequent and committed partner for chamber music, he has worked regularly with such artists as Young Uck Kim, Cho-Liang Lin, Mr. Ma, Edgar Meyer, Peter Serkin, Jaime Laredo, and the late Isaac Stern.

Mr. Ax resides in New York City with his wife, pianist Yoko Nozaki. They have two children together, Joseph and Sarah. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and holds honorary doctorates of music from Yale and Columbia Universities. For more information about Mr. Ax's career, please visit www.EmanuelAx.com.

Emanuel Ax, piano
Program Notes Audio
MOZART - Piano Concerto No. 17 in G, K.453
MOZART - Symphony No. 41, Jupiter (39 min)
Full Program Notes - -
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