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NY Philharmonic's Young People's Concerts to Continue with Britten, 2/1

Joshua Weilerstein conducting a Young People's Concert.
Photo by Michael DiVito.

The New York Philharmonic Young People's Concerts (YPCs) continue with a focus on Britten's The Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra, led by Philharmonic Assistant Conductor Joshua Weilerstein, Saturday, February 1, 2014, at 2:00 p.m.

This is the third program in this season's series, Points of Entry, in which each concert explores facets of music and the orchestra itself through one influential score. Designed for ages 6 to 12, the series is hosted by Philharmonic Vice President, Education, Theodore Wiprud, The Sue B. Mercy Chair, and written and directed by Tom Dulack.

The concert will also feature selections from Britten's Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes, as well as the premiere of a suite of new pieces, collectively titled Music for Fukushima, written by three young Japanese composers living in Fukushima, studying with Professor Takehito Shimazu of Fukushima University, and three New York-based students of the Philharmonic's Very Young Composers program. The young composers are ages 10-13. The students in New York and in Fukushima have been engaged in musical correspondence and cultural exchange. The Orchestra will also perform Music for Fukushima in Tokyo with the young Japanese composers in attendance on February 11, during the Orchestra's ASIA / WINTER 2014 tour, February 6- 19, 2014.

Following the Young People's Concert, families in attendance can participate in the Philharmonic's free outdoor event celebrating the Chinese New Year, 3:00-4:00 p.m. on Lincoln Center's Josie Robertson Plaza. Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company will perform traditional Chinese dances, such as the Dragon Dance accompanied by live percussion, and 40 American children from the National Dance Institute will perform Chinese New Year: The Year of the Horse, inspired by Mongolian folk dances. The fac?ade of Avery Fisher Hall will be decorated in honor of the festivities with two large inflatable horses and Chinese lanterns. The outdoor event precedes that evening's Chinese New Year Concert and Gala, conducted by Long Yu and featuring vocal artist Song Zuying, pianist Yuja Wang, violinist Cho-Liang Lin, and cellist Jian Wang.

All YPCs are preceded by Kidzone Live!, an interactive music fair at which children meet Philharmonic musicians, create and hear their own music, try out orchestral instruments, and learn new technologies on the Grand Promenade and upper tiers of Avery Fisher Hall at 12:45 p.m. Beginning one week before each YPC, a special podcast for children is made available, at nyphil.org/ypc, as is TuneUp, the children's concert program, complete with activities related to the event. During Kidzone Live! on February 1, children will have the opportunity to participate in Chinese New Year celebrations through dance demonstrations and arts and crafts.

The final YPC program in the 2013-14 season's Points of Entry series will focus on Brahms's Piano Concerto No. 1 (April 12, 2014).

Artists:

Joshua Weilerstein is in his third season as a New York Philharmonic Assistant Conductor. In 2009 Mr. Weilerstein, then 21 years old, was unanimously named the winner of the 2009 Malko Competition for Young Conductors in Copenhagen, Denmark. His first-prize honors included a series of engagements with major Scandinavian orchestras, the first of which was the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra in June 2009, marking his professional conducting debut. During the 2013-14 season, he makes several debuts in the United States with the symphony orchestras of Baltimore, Fort Worth, and New Mexico, and he returns to the Florida Orchestra. In Europe he debuts with the Orchestre National de Lyon, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Bergen Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Belgique, Salzburg Mozarteumorchester, and Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne. He also returns to the BBC, Danish National, and Finnish Radio symphony orchestras; Oslo Philharmonic; Swedish Chamber Orchestra; and Northern Sinfonia. Born into a musical family, Joshua Weilerstein studied at the New England Conservatory, from which he received his dual master of music degrees in orchestral conducting (with Hugh Wolff) and in violin (with Lucy Chapman) in 2011. He spent the summers of 2009 and 2010 studying with David Zinman and Robert Spano at the Aspen Music Festival and School, where he was awarded the Robert J. Harth and Aspen Conducting Prizes, its most distinguished honors. In 2007 the Simo?n Boli?var Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela (SBSO) engaged Mr. Weilerstein as a violin soloist. Shortly after this appearance, the SBSO asked him to join the first violin section for the orchestra's 2007 American tour with music director Gustavo Dudamel, making Mr. Weilerstein the ensemble's first non-Venezuelan guest member. In January 2010 he made his guest conducting debut with the SBSO. Recent engagements include the Los Angeles, Copenhagen, Royal Stockholm, and Brussels philharmonic orchestras; Toronto, BBC, and BBC Scottish symphony orchestras; and Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra. Mr. Weilerstein made his subscription debut with the New York Philharmonic in October 2013 leading works by Osvaldo Golijov, Mendelssohn, and Dvor?a?k with violinist Arabella Steinbacher as soloist.

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