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ANNA THORVALDSDOTTIR: Aeriality
RACHMANINOFF: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, op. 43
STRAVINSKY: The Rite of Spring
The dreamy lyricism of Rachmaninoff combines with the angular brilliance of The Rite of Spring in this supremely satisfying program.
Hearing Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring in the fresh open-air surroundings of the Benedict Music Tent is an experience not to be missed. This iconic work, with its groundbreaking rhythmic complexities and often savage depiction of pagan rites, has maintained its visceral impact and continues to fascinate, provoke, and increase the blood pressure of audiences more than 100 years after its legendary debut.
Russian pianist Nikolai Lugansky has exploded recently on the classical scene and was acclaimed by the U.K.’s Independent for his “quintessentially Russian sound with a boldly singing tone and a wonderful array of colors.” His name has been inextricably linked with the music of Rachmaninoff, whose Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini was such an overwhelming hit with audiences that it disconcerted the composer. “It somehow looks suspicious that the Rhapsody has had such an immediate success with everybody,” said Rachmaninoff after the work’s 1934 Baltimore premiere.
Also on the program is Icelandic composer Anna Thorvaldsdottir’s Aereality, which she describes as “vast sound-textures combined—and contrasted—with various forms of lyrical material,” was called “a highlight of last season’s New York Philharmonic programming” by The New York Times.
Don't miss Nikolai Lugansky in recital on August 6.