Iván Fischer and Violinist Nikolaj Znaider to Return to New York Philharmonic

Mike Lawson • News • October 19, 2016

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Iván Fischer, Photo credit: Marco BorggreveIván Fischer will return to the New York Philharmonic to conduct Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, with Nikolaj Znaider as soloist, and Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8, Wednesday, November 23, 2016, at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, November 25 at 8:00 p.m.; and Saturday, November 26 at 8:00 p.m.

These performances mark Znaider’s return to the Philharmonic following his October 2012 performances of Nielsen’s Violin Concerto, led by music director Alan Gilbert, as part of the Philharmonic’s multi-year The Nielsen Project, resulting in a recording and complete box set of Nielsen’s symphonies and concertos. The New York Times called the performance “the best concert I have heard from Gilbert and the Philharmonic since he became music director in 2009.” BBC Music Magazine wrote of the recording, released by Dacapo and distributed by Naxos: “In the Violin Concerto Nikolaj Znaider, sweet and slender in tone, is equal to all the work’s ferocious technical demands. He treats the first movement’s Bach-inspired cadenzas with convincing spontaneity, and dances his way delightfully through theRondo finale.”

Znaider plays the “Kreisler” Guarnerius “del Gesu” 1741, the violin once played by Fritz Kreisler, who wrote the Beethoven Violin Concerto cadenzas that Znaider will perform. Gramophone magazine writes that “his accounts of the Kreisler cadenzas are a marvel of technique and musicality.”

Fischer and Znaider collaborated on Beethoven’s Violin Concerto in November 2007 with the National Symphony Orchestra. The Washington Post wrote that Fischer “led brisk, meticulous, supercharged renditions that made these pieces seem brand-new” and that Nikolaj Znaider “shaped the music in the manner of a storyteller, starting off nearly inaudibly and then building and climbing before taking off into an inspired and beautifully ornamented narrative. … He combines his near-superhuman technique with a very human sense of song.”

The Saturday Matinee Concert on November 26 at 2:00 p.m. opens with Dvořák’s String Quartet in F major, American,with Philharmonic concertmaster Frank Huang, principal associate concertmaster Sheryl Staples, principal viola Cynthia Phelps, and principal cello Carter Brey. The rest of the program features Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8, conducted by Fischer. The chamber works featured on the saturday matinee concerts this season, the Philharmonic’s 175th anniversary season, are all tied to the Philharmonic’s history. Dvořák is the focus of the Philharmonic’s The New World Initiative, a season-long, citywide project revolving around Dvořák’s New World Symphony and its theme of “home” through performances, community outreach, and education projects. The Philharmonic gave the World Premiere of theNew World Symphony in December 1893, marking the Orchestra’s first World Premiere of a work written in New York City that would become part of the standard repertoire. Dvořák wrote his American Quartet on vacation from his position as director of the National Conservatory of Music, the role that brought Dvořák to New York City, where he would write the New World Symphony.



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