Kaufman Music Center Announces 2018/2019 Season At Merkin Hall
The new classical series Only at Merkin with Terrance McKnight, featuring, among others, the world-renowned pianists André Watts and Ursula Oppens; the world premiere of a piano quintet by acclaimed new music composer Laura Kaminsky; and presentations by Academy and Grammy Awards winner Kristen Anderson-Lopez (Frozen); Emmy, Tony, Grammy and Academy Awards winner Bobby Lopez (Frozen); Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize winners Tom Kitt and Brian Yorkey (Next to Normal); and 10-time Tony winner Maury Yeston (Titanic, Nine) are among the numerous highlights of the Kaufman Music Center's diverse 2018-19 season at Merkin Hall.
"We are excited to present a 2018-19 season filled with inspiring performances and enlightening conversations for intellectually curious audiences," says Amy Roberts Frawley, Director of Merkin Hall at Kaufman Music Center. "Audiences will find familiar series they love as well as new offerings that expand their horizons and speak to their spirit of adventure."
This winter, beginning Feb. 2, 2019, Kaufman will launch Only at Merkin with Terrance McKnight by presenting three intimate evenings of conversation and performance hosted by Mr. McKnight and featuring Mr. Watts, harpist Bridget Kibbey, pianist Ursula Oppens with the Cassatt String Quartet, and the world premiere of Ms. Kaminsky's piano quintet.
A long-time favorite of theater insiders, the Broadway Close Up series, which kicks off on Oct. 8, will present Ms. Anderson-Lopez; Mr. Lopez; Messrs. Kitt and Yorkey; and Mr. Yeston.
In 2019, beginning Jan. 7, the adventurous Ecstatic Music Festival will feature performances by ETHEL, Bang on a Can All-Stars, Irreversible Entanglements, Amina Claudine Myers and Nicole Mitchell.
In the spring of 2019, starting May 30, Kaufman Music Center teams up with New York City Opera and American Opera Projects to present five performances of the chamber opera As One by Ms. Kaminsky, librettist Mark Campbell and librettist/filmmaker Kimberly Reed, as part of the citywide celebrations marking the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Inn uprising.
For the second year, Merkin Hall will be a venue partner for The New York Times's TimesTalks, a live conversation and performance series that pairs Times journalists with the most creative and seminal figures in the fields of film and theater, art, music, literature, innovation and fashion.
In Your Face-New York returns to Merkin Hall for a new season of live extravaganzas of stories, sketches and songs featuring the best of NYC's actors, writers and musicians, including Adam Gopnik, Ruth Reichl, Ari Melber and the band Betty.
Crowd favorite What Makes It Great hosted by NPR and PBS music commentator Rob Kapilow will explore masterpieces from Mozart to Cole Porter.
The Tuesday Matinees series presents rising classical stars including violinists Tessa Lark and Itamar Zorman, and the Argus String Quartet.
Special children's programming includes Broadway Playhouse, which introduces children to classic musicals by the legendary Broadway songwriting teams Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe, Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick, and Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty. And the musical revue Hanukkah Playhouse provides a fresh, funny take on the holiday.
Kaufman Music Center is New York's go-to place for music education and performance. It's where music lovers and intellectually curious audiences come together to explore their musical passions. Founded in 1952 as a community music school, today's Kaufman Music Center is home to Merkin Hall; Lucy Moses School, New York's largest community arts school; Special Music School, New York's only K-12 public school that teaches music as a core subject; and the youth new music ensemble Face the Music.
Merkin Hall at Kaufman Music Center
129 West 67th Street (btw Broadway & Amsterdam Avenue)
Tickets at 212 501 3330 or http://www.kaufmanmusiccenter.org/mch/
The 2018-2019 Schedule (to date) is:
Only at Merkin with Terrance McKnight (Feb 2, Mar 2, Apr 6): Three intimate evenings of conversation and performance hosted by WQXR's TERRANCE MCKNIGHT and featuring legendary pianist ANDRÉ WATTS, harpist Bridget Kibbey, a 75th birthday celebration for pianist URSULA OPPENS with the CASSATT STRING QUARTET and the world premiere of LAURA KAMINSKY'S Piano Quintet. Official Media Partner: WQXR
2019 Ecstatic Music Festival (Jan 7, Feb 16, Feb 28, Mar 6, Mar 17, Mar 21): Adventurous collaborations across the sonic spectrum include ETHEL & FACE THE MUSIC, the BANG ON A CAN PEOPLE'S COMMISSIONING FUND CONCERT, WILD UP with ZOLA JESUS & WILLIAM BRITTELLE, IRREVERSIBLE ENTANGLEMENTS with AMINA CLAUDINE MYERS & NICOLE MITCHELL, and BROOKLYN YOUTH CHORUS. Official Media Partner: New Sounds
As One (May 30, June 1, June 4, June 6, June 8): In this chamber opera for two singers and string quartet by composer LAURA KAMINSKY, librettist Mark Campbell and librettist/filmmaker Kimberly Reed, a mezzo-soprano and a baritone depict the experiences of its transgender protagonist. Presented by Kaufman Music Center in a co-production with New York City Opera and American Opera Projects and part of the citywide celebrations marking the 50th Anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. Two rotating casts emphasize diversity and the universal nature of its story.
In Your Face - New York (Oct 24, Dec 6, Mar 13, May 16): A dynamic variety show for the 21st century, this extravaganza of stories, sketches and songs features the best of NYC's actors, writers, musicians and more. The new season will feature New Yorker writer Adam Gopnik, food writer Ruth Reichl, MSNBC's ARI MELBER, the band BETTY, violinist Kelly Hall-Tompkins, Sex and the City writers JULIE ROTTENBERG and ELISA ZURITSKY and more.
Broadway Close Up (Oct 8, Oct 29, Nov 1, Nov 12, Dec 10): Featuring Academy Award winner and Grammy winner Kristen Anderson-Lopez (Frozen); Emmy, Tony, Grammy & Academy Award winner Bobby Lopez (Frozen); Tony Award and Pulitzer Prize winners Tom Kitt & Brian Yorkey (Next to Normal); and 10-time Tony winner Maury Yeston (Titanic, Nine) along with NIKKI RENÉE DANIELS and many more. Liz Callaway kicks off the new season with a taste of some of the best new musicals headed for New York theaters at Bound for Broadway. Broadway Close Up producer Sean Hartley hosts an evening of great songs by Frank Loesser, Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen and others from musicals that never made it big, and tells the stories of Broadway writers like Cole Porter, Jerome Kern and the GERSHWINS who went west to write for Hollywood musicals in the 1920s. A star-studded group of alumni from the BMI Lehman Engel MUSICAL THEATRE WORKSHOP pulls back the curtain to show what happens in the workshop, and why it's so important to Broadway.
What Makes It Great (Oct 22, Nov 19, Jan 28, Feb 25, Mar 25): Performances explore musical masterpieces from Mozart to Cole Porter. This season, host and NPR and PBS music commentator ROB KAPILOW takes on MOZART's Eine kleine Nachtmisik, Dvoák's American Quartet, SCHUBERT's Unfinished Symphony as well as the songs of Cole Porter and jazz masters Glenn Miller, Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Wynton Marsalis. Featuring the ROLSTON STRING QUARTET, the AEOLUS QUARTET, the big band KYLE ATHAYDE DANCE PARTY and Broadway stars Sally Wilfert and Michael Winther.
TimesTalks (Fall 2018 dates TBA): Merkin Hall is a venue partner for The New York Times's live conversation and performance series, which pairs Times journalists with the most creative and seminal figures in the fields of film and theater, art, music, literature, innovation and fashion.
The Alonso Brothers: Cuban Classics (May 23): A two-piano program presented by Kaufman Music Center and the Cuban Cultural Center of New York features virtuoso pianists and Cuban brothers ORLAY ALONSO and ORLANDO ALONSO and showcases the Golden Era of Cuban music from the 1940s and 1950s.
Tuesday Matinees (Oct 9, Nov 6, Dec 4, Jan 8, Feb 5, Apr 9, May 7): Series presents rising classical stars, including Avery Fisher Career Grant winners TESSA LARK, violin and ITAMAR ZORMAN, violin; Young Concert Artists Auditions winner DANIEL LEBHARDT; piano; International Concert Artists Guild Competition winner MARIANNA PRJEVALSKAYA, piano, MULTIPIANO ENSEMBLE with TREMOLO PERCUSSION ENSEMBLE; the ARGUS QUARTET and Wilhelm Stenhammar International Music Competition Winner CHRYSTAL E. WILLIAMS, mezzo-soprano.
New York Festival of Song (Nov 14, Feb 20, Mar 19, Apr 24): The season explores the world of "Father of the Blues" W.C. HANDY and honors composers from abroad in the U.S. and first-generation American composers. NYFOS enacts romantic scenarios from Stephen Sondheim and Cy Coleman to BRITTEN and BRAHMS and concludes the season with a musical portrait of the great Spanish poet GARCÍA LORCA. These intimate song concerts will feature soprano Amy Owens, baritone Jesse Blumberg and many more.
PREformances with Allison Charney (Oct 22, Dec 3, Feb 11, Mar 11, May 6): Exclusive previews of performances featuring host Allison Charney, soprano; Kelly Hall-Tompkins, violin; CAROL WINCENC, flute; New York Philharmonic Principal Cellist Carter Brey and BLAIR MCMILLEN, piano among others.
Musical Theater for Kids (Dec 2, Feb 3, Mar 3, Mar 24): BROADWAY PLAYHOUSE introduces children to classic musicals by the legendary Broadway songwriting teams Alan Jay Lerner & Frederick Loewe (My Fair Lady, Brigadoon), Jerry Bock & Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof, Fiorello!) and Lynn Ahrens & Stephen Flaherty (Seussical, Anastasia). The holiday musical revue Hanukkah Playhouse provides a fresh, funny take on the traditional Biblical stories.