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Guest Conductor Leonard Slatkin Leads Pittsburgh Symphony in Goethe, Dukas, Camilo, Ravel and More, Now thru 3/16

Guest Conductor Leonard Slatkin Leads Pittsburgh Symphony in Goethe, Dukas, Camilo, Ravel and More, Now thru 3/16

Guest Conductor Leonard Slatkin returns to Heinz Hall to lead the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in a BNY Mellon Grand Classics program featuring French masters and a composer performing his own concerto today, March 14-16.

Featured in the Disney film "Fantasia" and based on a poem by Goethe, Paul Dukas' "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" tells the story of a young apprentice who uses magical spells he has not yet learned to control. Dominican pianist Michel Camilo, whose musical sensibility combines elements of classical, jazz and world music, performs his own Piano Concerto No. 2. Maestro Slatkin finishes the concert with several works that demonstrate Maurice Ravel's penchant for reinterpreting the music of traditional dance forms, including his famous "Boléro."

The Saturday night performance is a Behind the Notes program, highlighting Ravel. In this concert, the conductor and orchestra will first discuss and then demonstrate the secrets behind Ravel's music, taking the audience inside the compositions and revealing fascinating details. Audience members will gain an enriched understanding of the composer and his work, which will show how to listen anew to Ravel's most popular work, "Boléro." Please note that Camilo will not be a part of the Saturday performance. Anne Martindale Williams and Noah Bendix-Balgley will be performing solos on Saturday.

The concert begins at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets, ranging in price from $25.75 to $109.75, can be purchased by calling the Heinz Hall box office at 412-392-4900 or by visiting pittsburghsymphony.org.

The Pittsburgh Symphony would like to recognize and thank BNY Mellon for its 2013-2014 title sponsorship of BNY Mellon Grand Classics. Fairmont Pittsburgh is the official hotel of the Pittsburgh Symphony. Delta Air Lines is the official airline of the Pittsburgh Symphony.

Pianist and composer Michel Camilo was born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, in 1954. Fascinated with music since childhood, he composed his first song at the age of five, then studied for 13 years at the National Conservatory. At 16, he became a member of the National Symphony Orchestra. Seeking to expand his musical horizons, he moved in 1979 to New York, where he continued his studies at Mannes and Juilliard School of Music. Camilo made his Carnegie Hall debut with his trio in 1985. Since then, he has become a prominent figure performing regularly in the United States, the Caribbean, Japan and Europe. December 1987 marked his debut as a classical conductor when the National Symphony Orchestra of the Dominican Republic invited him to conduct a recital featuring the works of Rimsky-Korsakoff, Beethoven, Dvorak and Camilo's own composition, The Goodwill Games Theme, which won an Emmy Award. That year, he became the musical director of the Heineken Jazz Festival in his native Dominican Republic, a post he held through 1992. In addition to compiling an extensive discography and maintaining a rigorous performance schedule, Camilo has composed and recorded a number of Spanish film scores over the years, and holds honorary degrees from his alma mater, Universidad Autonoma de Santo Domingo, and UTESA University of Santiago, Dominican Republic. In 1992, he was named a Knight of the Heraldic Order of Christopher Columbus by the Dominican Government. In addition to his activities as a composer and pianist, Camilo lectured and performed at many universities and colleges throughout Europe and the United States-including New York University, Berklee School of Music, MIT, William Paterson College (in New Jersey) and Puerto Rico Conservatory.

Leonard Slatkin is music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestre National de Lyon, France. Slatkin has received the United State's 2003 National Medal of Arts, the American Symphony Orchestra League's Gold Baton and several ASCAP awards. He has received France's Chevalierof the Legion of Honor, Austria's Declaration of Honor in Silver and honorary doctorates from The Julliard School, Indiana University, Michigan State University, and Washington University in St. Louis. Slatkin has served as music director of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra and the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C., and as chief conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra. He has held principal guest conductor positions with the Royal Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl, Philharmonia Orchestra of London and the Pittsburgh Symphony. Founder and director of both the National Conducting Institute and the Saint Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra, Slatkin continues his conducting and teaching activities at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, Manhattan School of Music and The Juilliard School. Born in Los Angeles to a distinguished musical family - his parents were the conductor-violinist Felix Slatkin and cellist Eleanor Aller, founding members of the famed Hollywood String Quartet - Slatkin began his musical studies on the violin and studied conducting with his father, Walter Susskind at Aspen and Jean Morel at The Juilliard School.

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