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American Classical Orchestra Opens Lincoln Center Season With All-Mozart Program

American Classical Orchestra Opens Lincoln Center Season With All-Mozart Program American Classical Orchestra (ACO) kicks off its 2018-19 season on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at 8:00pm in Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center with Mozart Serenade, a concert of festive music by Mozart. ACO is joined by acclaimed period violinist Krista Bennion Feeney in Mozart's Haffner Serenade and will use contrabasses instead of cellos as is indicated in the original score, creating a refreshingly transparent sound. Pianist Christian De Luca, a virtuosic Juilliard historical performance program graduate, makes his Lincoln Center debut on fortepiano in Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major, a work popularized in the Swedish film Elvira Madigan. The 2018-2019 season marks the orchestra's 34th year of presenting historically accurate, engaging, and educational concerts, led by Artistic Director and Founder Thomas Crawford.

Crawford writes, "Our September program is a rare opportunity to hear the fabulous Haffner family wedding music of 1776 on period instruments. This music is paired on the program with Mozart's most well-known of all concertos, No. 21, here performed on the dulcet tones of a 1780 fortepiano. The serene slow movement, loved by millions, is given an intimate portrayal that is both revealing and evocative of another world in another time."

ACO's additional concerts at Lincoln Center this season include Imperial Haydn (Saturday, November 17, 2018), Joyous Bach (Thursday, March 7, 2019 at 8:00pm), and Beethoven's Eroica (Friday, May 17, 2019 at 8:00pm). In addition to its Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center concerts, ACO presents two salon concerts in venues designated as National Historic Landmarks: Bass on Thursday, January 24, 2019 at the National Arts Club on Gramercy Park, a concert highlighting revelatory uses of the bass in classical music by bassist John Feeney; and A Ladies' Journey 1876 on Thursday, June 6, 2019 in the Cambridge Room of the Harvard Club building featuring Alex Cook (horn), Christina Kay (soprano), and Gwendolyn Toth (fortepiano).

Before each Alice Tully Hall performance, Maestro Thomas Crawford will present a lively Concert Preview with the full orchestra onstage. Crawford's engaging narratives, along with excerpts performed by the musicians, give audiences greater insight into the music they are about to hear. Concert previews are free to all ticket holders and begin at 8pm.

Program Information
Mozart Serenade
Wednesday, September 26, 2018 at 8:00pm
Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center | 1941 Broadway, New York, NY
Tickets: Single tickets start at $35 at To purchase an ACO subscription, please call the ACO office at 212.362.2727.

Mozart: Haffner Serenade
Krista Bennion Feeney, violin
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major
Christian De Luca, fortepiano

About Christian De Luca
Christian De Luca was born in San Giovanni Rotondo, Italy, in 1993 and began studying piano at age eight. At 17, he made his debut performing Brahms Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Umberto Giordano Conservatory Symphony Orchestra and at age 18, graduated from the conservatory under the tutelage of Claudio Trovajoli. De Luca holds a master's degree from The Juilliard School, where he studied with Matti Raekallio, Jerome Lowenthal, and Julian Martin. He currently continues his studies at Juilliard with fortepianist Audrey Axinn and harpsichordist Peter Sykes.

During his education in Italy, De Luca obtained first prize in many piano competitions, both national and international. In those years he also developed a strong interest in historical performance practice, as he had the opportunity to study with the Italian fortepianist Giuseppina De Berardinis, a pupil of Emilia Fadini. He has performed in prestigious Italian concert halls including the Teatro Sociale in Como, Teatro Verdi in Trieste, Teatro Ristori in Cividale del Friuli, the Academic Hall of the Pontifical Institute Sacred Music in Rome, the Teatro del Fuoco in Foggia, and the Teatro Comunale "Claudio Abbado" in Ferrara. In 2012, he was awarded with a "special mention" at the Premio Nazionale Delle Arti-a competition that brings together the best pianists from all Italian conservatories. That same year he began working as a teaching assistant of his mentor, C. Trovajoli, at the Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music in Rome.

In 2015, De Luca made his New York City debut at Yamaha Artist Service Piano Salon, and in 2016, he performed on piano at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center. Since fall 2016, he has performed regularly with cellist Madeleine Bouissou, both in modern and period-instrument settings. In June 2018, De Luca was the winner of the First International Early Piano Competition in Berkeley, California. Among his interests other than music, Christian De Luca has a strong passion for poetry.

About Krista Bennion Feeney
Krista Bennion Feeney has enjoyed an unusually varied career, much in demand as a soloist, chamber musician, music director, and concertmaster. Krista has been a member of the St. Luke's Chamber Ensemble (serving for eight years as director of chamber music) and the Orchestra of St. Luke's since 1983, where she performs frequently in the roles of concertmaster and violin soloist. She is currently involved in rediscovering and reviving a musical sound world from the past as the founding first violinist of the Serenade Orchestra and Quartet, playing music of the late-18th and early-19th centuries on historic instruments with original instrumental configurations. From 1999 to 2006, she was the music director of the un-conducted New Century Chamber Orchestra based in San Francisco.

She has made several solo appearances with the San Francisco Symphony (making her debut in Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto in E minor at age 15), with the St. Louis Symphony, the Philadelphia Chamber Orchestra in the world premiere of SolTierraLuna (a concerto written for her by Terry Riley), the Mostly Mozart Festival, and the New York String Orchestra at Carnegie Hall and at the Kennedy Center, in addition to several historic instrument ensembles.

She is the founding first violinist of the DNA Quintet, Loma Mar Quartet, and Ridge String Quartet (1979-1991), which, along with pianist Rudolf Firkusny, won the Diapason d'Or and a Grammy Award nomination in 1992 for its RCA recording of Dvo?ák's Piano Quintets. Krista studied violin with Anthony Doheny, then Isadore Tinkleman, and Stuart Canin at the San Francisco Conservatory, working later at the Curtis Institute with Jaime Laredo, Felix Galimer, and Mischa Schneider.

About Thomas Crawford
Atistic Director and Founder of the American Classical Orchestra, Thomas Crawford is a champion of historically accurate performance styles in Baroque, Classical and Early Romantic music. Throughout his career, he has collaborated with renowned soloists including Itzhak Perlman, Yo-Yo Ma, André Watts, Dawn Upshaw, Richard Goode, and Vladimir Feltsman; and has produced recordings with great American pianists Malcolm Bilson and Keith Jarrett.

A passionate activist determined to bring the beauty of period music to a wider audience, Crawford has been recognized for the ACO's dynamic music outreach to New York City schoolchildren. He holds a Bachelor of Music in composition and organ performance from Eastman School of Music, where he studied choral and orchestral conducting under Samuel Adler. After graduation, he went on to train with Hugo Fiorato, conductor of the New York City Ballet Orchestra, and to earn a Master of Arts in composition from Columbia University.

About American Classical Orchestra
Described as "simply splendid" by The New York Times, the American Classical Orchestra (ACO) is a leader in the field of historically accurate performance. A period instrument ensemble devoted to preserving and performing the repertoire of 17th, 18th, and 19th century composers, ACO recreates the sound world of the masters using priceless historic instruments, as well as era-specific performance techniques. Comprised of the world's top period instrumentalists, the ACO provides audiences with the opportunity to experience classical music as it was originally performed.

Highlights of the ACO's history include a concert at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in collaboration with the Museum's exhibition Art and the Empire City: New York, 1825 - 1861, a debut concert on the Lincoln Center Great Performers Series, a sold-out 25th Anniversary performance of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, and a staged performance of Handel's opera Alceste as part of the ACO's Handelfest 2014.

Founded by Artistic Director Thomas Crawford in 1984 as The Orchestra of the Old Fairfield Academy in Fairfield, Connecticut, the American Classical Orchestra moved to New York City in 2005, emerging as the City's premier period instrument ensemble.

The ACO is dedicated to the appreciation and understanding of classical music through educational programs, and spreading historically-informed performance practices to new generations. In order to provide audiences with first-hand insight into the music, Music Director Thomas Crawford gives informative concert previews with live musical examples from the orchestra prior to each concert. Through its immersive in-school program, Classical Music for Kids, the orchestra has inspired hundreds of thousands of young students and musicians. For this work, the ACO was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts grant and Early Music America prize. For more information, visit

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