The Collegiate Chorale Announces Concerts in Israel and Salzburg This July

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 In a return engagement with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra (IPO), The Collegiate Chorale will perform 11 concerts in Tel Aviv and Haifa with the IPO under the baton of renowned conductors Zubin Mehta and Riccardo Muti. They will then travel with the IPO to Austria to make their Salzburg Festival debut, the first performance there by an American choir since the Chicago Symphony Chorus appeared in 1989.

 

ISRAEL TOUR

July 8-20, 2012, conducted by Zubin Mehta

Ernst Bloch, Sacred Service, featuring Thomas Hampson

Anton Bruckner, Te Deum

Noam SheriffMechaye Hametim

Arnold SchoenbergKol Nidre

 

July 19, 21, 22, 2012, conducted by Riccardo Muti

Giuseppe VerdiRequiem

Soloists: Krassimira Stoyanova, soprano

Ekaterina Gubanova, mezzo-soprano

Mario Zeffiri, tenor

Dmitry Beloselsky, bass

 

SALZBURG FESTIVAL, conducted by Zubin Mehta

July 24, 2012 at 8:30pm

Noam SheriffMechaye Hametim

Arnold SchoenbergKol Nidre

 

July 25, 2012 at 8:30pm

Ernst Bloch, Sacred Service, featuring Thomas Hampson

 

July 26, 2012 at 8:30pm

Anton Bruckner, Te Deum

 

The mission of The Collegiate Chorale, led by Music Director James Bagwell, is to enrich its audiences through innovative programming and exceptional performances of a broad range of vocal music featuring a premier choral ensemble. Founded in 1941 by the legendary conductor Robert Shaw, The Chorale has established a preeminent reputation for its interpretations of the traditional choral repertoire, vocal works by American composers, and rarely heard operas-in-concert, as well as for commissions and premieres of new works by today's most exciting creative artists. The many guest artists with whom The Chorale has performed in recent years include: Bryn Terfel, Stephanie Blythe, Nathan Gunn, Kelli O'Hara, Victoria Clark, Renée Fleming, Thomas Hampson, and Deborah Voigt. Last season's highlights included a Brahms program at Carnegie Hall featuring Stephanie Blythe, Eric Owens and Erin Morley, a critically acclaimed concert presentation of Kurt Weill's Knickerbocker Holiday featuring Victor Garber and Kelli O'Hara which was recorded and released commercially in the first complete cast album of that work, and a celebration of Broadway featuring Deborah Voigt and Paulo Szot under the baton of Ted Sperling. In addition to The Chorale's presentations, the chorus performed in five programs throughout the American Symphony Orchestra's 2010-11 season, returned to Verbier in the summer of 2011, and will perform with the Israel Philharmonic in Israel and Salzburg in July 2012.

 

Music Director James Bagwell maintains an active schedule throughout the United States as a conductor of choral, operatic, and orchestral music. He has recently been named Principal Guest Conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra in New York and is Director of the Music Program at Bard College. At Bard SummerScape he has led numerous theatrical works, most notably Copland's The Tender Land, which received unanimous praise from The New York TimesThe New Yorker, and Opera News. He frequently appears as guest conductor for orchestras around the country and abroad, including the Jerusalem Symphony, Tulsa Symphony, and the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra. He has also prepared The Concert Chorale of New York for performances with the American Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Mostly Mozart Festival (broadcast nationally in 2006 on Live from Lincoln Center), all in Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center. He has trained choruses for a number of major American and international orchestras and worked with noted conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Louis Langrée, Leon Botstein, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Raymond Leppard, James Conlon, Jesús López-Cobos, Erich Kunzel, Leon Fleischer, and Robert Shaw.

 

The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in 1936 by Bronislaw Huberman and its inaugural concert, on 26 December 1936, was conducted by Arturo Toscanini. The IPO plays in subscription series, including a special annotated Youth Concert Series, special concerts, concerts as part of the "Arts for the People" project throughout Israel, and special concerts for IDF soldiers at their outposts. The IPO annually tours the world's cultural centers and its prestigious festivals. Israel's creative artists are promoted by many IPO premieres of works by Israeli composers. The IPO also contributes to the absorption of new immigrants and includes in its ranks many new immigrant musicians. The orchestra has hosted most of the world's greatest conductors and soloists, and it also does much to develop Israeli artists and young talents from Israel and abroad. In 1968 Maestro Zubin Mehta was appointed Music Advisor to the IPO and in 1977 he became its Music Director. Leonard Bernstein was named IPO Laureate Conductor in 1988, in 1992 Kurt Masur was appointed Honorary Guest Conductor and since the 2001-02 season Yoel Levi has been Principal Guest Conductor of the IPO.

 

Zubin Mehta, Music Director of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra for 40 years, was born in Bombay, India, and grew up in a musical environment. His father, Mehli Mehta, founded the Bombay Symphony and was Music Director of the American Youth Symphony in Los Angeles. Despite this musical influence, his initial field of study was medicine. At the age of eighteen, he abandoned his medical career to attend the Academy of Music in Vienna. Seven years later, he conducted both the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics. He has rapidly become one of the world's most sought after orchestral and operatic conductors. From 1961 to 1967 he was Music Director of the Montreal Symphony. He was appointed Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 1962, a post he retained until 1978. The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra appointed Mr. Mehta Music Advisor in 1969, Music Director in 1977, and Music Director for Life in 1981. Combining concerts, recordings and tours, Zubin Mehta has conducted thousands of performances on five continents with the IPO.Since 1986, he has also acted as Music Advisor and Chief Conductor of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, the summer festival in Florence, Italy. September 1998 marked his five year appointment as Music Director of the Bavarian State Opera in Munich. In 1978, Maestro Mehta became the Music Director of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. During his thirteen years in New York, he conducted over 1,000 concerts, thus holding the position longer than any Music Director in the Orchestra's modern history.Zubin Mehta has won countless awards and distinctions in many countries. In Israel he has been awarded Honorary Doctorates by the Hebrew University Jerusalem, the Tel-Aviv University and the Weizmann Institute, and the Hebrew University has named a wing of the Musicology Department after him and his late father, conductor Mehli Mehta. In 1991, he was awarded a special prize at the ceremony of the Israel Prize presentation, and he is the recipient of the 1995-6 Wolf Foundation Prize for Music. He is an Honorary Citizen of Tel Aviv-Yafo. The Munich Philharmonic Orchestra has named him Honorary Conductor, a title created especially for him. In September 2006, he was presented with the prize "Una vita nella musica - Artur Rubinstein" at Teatro La Fenice in Venice, in December 2006 he received the Kennedy Center Honors and in March 2007 he was presented with the Dan David Prize.2006 also saw the publication in Germany and Israel of Zubin Mehta's autobiography, Die Partitur meines Leben: Erinnerungen (The Score of my Life: Memories).

In a city that has preserved its baroque architecture in almost perfect condition and therefore is a breathtaking backdrop in itself, the Salzburg Festival presents performances of opera, plays and concerts of the highest artistic standards over a period of five to six weeks each summer. The Salzburg Festival is often described as the greatest and most important festival in the world, and this reputation is confirmed by countless superlatives: witness the number of performances and of annual visitors, or the wide-ranging program me. Conductors, stage directors, orchestras, singers, actors and virtuoso instrumentalists of world renown can be seen and heard in July and August in the town on the river Salzach. Even the most eminent opera stars come together here to rehearse productions intensively for several weeks, thereby fulfilling the creed of the Salzburg Festival as it was originally envisioned by Hugo von Hofmannsthal, one of the Festival's founding fathers: "Dramatic play-acting in the strongest sense is our intention; routine, run-of-the-mill performances have no place here."

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