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

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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.

Theodore Wiprud, Vice President, Education, The Sue B. Mercy Chair, has directed the Education Department of the New York Philharmonic since 2004. The Philharmonic's education programs include the histoRic Young People's Concerts, the Very Young People's Concerts, the School Partnership Program (one of the largest in-school programs among U.S. orchestras), Very Young Composers, adult education programs, and many special projects. Mr. Wiprud has also created innovative programs as director of education and community engagement at the Brooklyn Philharmonic and the American Composers Orchestra; served as associate director of The Commission Project; and assisted the Orchestra of St. Luke's on its education programs. He has worked as a teaching artist and resident composer in a number of New York City schools. From 1990 to 1997, he directed national grant-making programs at Meet the Composer. Prior to that position, he taught at and directed the music department for Walnut Hill School, a pre- professional arts boarding school near Boston. Mr. Wiprud is also an active composer, whose Violin Concerto (Katrina) was recently released on Champs Hill Records. His music for orchestra, chamber ensembles, and voice is published by Allemar Music. Theodore Wiprud holds degrees from Harvard and Boston Universities and studied at Cambridge University as a visiting scholar.

Tom Dulack is an award-winning playwright, novelist, and director. His play Incommunicado won a Kennedy Center Prize for New American Drama, and Friends Like These won the Kaufman and Hart Prize for New American Comedy. Among his other plays, which have appeared on and Off-Broadway as well as in leading regional theaters around the country, are Breaking Legs, Diminished Capacity, Francis, York Beach, Just Deserts, Solomon's Child, 1348, Shooting Craps, The Elephant, and Mrs. Rossetti. His novels include The Stigmata of Dr. Constantine and the forthcoming The Misanthropes. He is also the author of the theater memoir In Love With Shakespeare. He has written and directed the scripts for the YPCs since 2005. He is also professor of English Literature at the University of Connecticut.

Through its award-winning arts education programs, National Dance Institute (NDI) strives to reach every child, transcending barriers of language, culture, and physical and cognitive challenges. Under the artistic direction of Ellen Weinstein, professional teaching artists foster in students a love of the arts and a curiosity about the world, helping them learn to work together, develop standards of excellence, and cultivate a confidence in themselves that supports their success in school and in life. Since its founding in 1976 by New York City Ballet principal dancer Jacques d'Amboise, NDI has impacted the lives of more than two million children, free of charge. In 2011 NDI opened the doors to the National Dance Institute Center for Learning & the Arts on 147th Street in Harlem, allowing the institute to further its mission and expand its reach. In addition to its programming in New York City, NDI has 11 associate programs in the United States and one in Shanghai, China.

The dances of Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company fuse the dynamic freedom of American modern dance with the grace and splendor of Asian art. Recently, the company was honored by a distinctive grant award from both the President's Committee on Arts and Humanities and the Department of State to represent the United States in a seven-city tour arranged by the Tamaulipas International Arts Festival in Mexico. The Company has mounted twenty national tours and seven tours abroad. The Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company has received more than 12 awards from the National Endowment for the Arts and numerous Citations of Excellence and grants from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. In the First China International Dance Festival in Kunming, Yunan, the company received China Dance Association's Golden Lotus Award, its most prestigious honor for companies not based in China. The Company's commissioned dances include American Landscape (New Jersey Performing Arts Center), Peach Flower Landscape (Lincoln Center Institute), Qian Kun (Joyce Theater), Tianji/Dragons on the Wall (Andrew W. Mellon Foundation through the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, and the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust), The Way of Five (Towson University), and Unfolding (Dancing in the Streets).

Individual tickets for the Young People's Concerts are $12 to $39. All tickets include admission to Kidzone Live! Tickets may be purchased online at nyphil.org or by calling (212) 875-5656, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday; 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Saturday; and noon to 5:00 p.m. Sunday. Tickets may also be purchased at the Avery Fisher Hall Box Office. The Box Office opens at 10:00 a.m. Monday through Saturday, and at noon on Sunday. On performance evenings, the Box Office closes one-half hour after performance time; other evenings it closes at 6:00 p.m. To determine ticket availability, call the New York Philharmonic's Customer Relations Department at (212) 875-5656.

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