NYFOS to Present Free, 8-Hour Leonard Bernstein Marathon

By: Nov. 17, 2017

NYFOS to Present Free, 8-Hour Leonard Bernstein Marathon

New York Festival of Song continues its 30th anniversary season on Saturday, December 2, 2017 from 1:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m., when NYFOS co-founder Michael Barrett hosts a monumental eight-hour concert to celebrate Leonard Bernstein as part of the worldwide "Bernstein at 100" festivities.

The NYFOS Next portion, which will comprise a 90-minute period from 6:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m., will feature works by emerging composers who have been influenced by Bernstein's work, including world premieres by Denise Mei Yan Hofmann and Daniel Sabzgabhaei.

A protégé of Leonard Bernstein, Michael Barrett began his long association with the legendary conductor and composer as a student in 1982. He served as Maestro Bernstein's assistant conductor from 1985-1990. He currently serves as music advisor to the Leonard Bernstein Estate.

From Michael Barrett, NYFOS co-founder: "On December 2 at the CUNY Graduate Center, I'll be celebrating the music and legacy of Leonard Bernstein as part of the ongoing Centennial celebrations of perhaps the greatest musician of the 20th century. Over eight hours from 1-9 pm, my colleagues and I will perform works written during his earliest years as a composer (the Piano Sonata, the Piano Trio) to his final works completed before his death. Hearing so much Bernstein in just one day ought to allow the listener to take in the arc of Bernstein's compositional mastery and come to a deeper understanding of his place in American music and culture. I'm also honored that both Alexander and Jamie Bernstein will be on hand to share their personal perspectives on their father's creative output. In the NYFOS Next segment of the marathon, we will hear from two young composers who were born since Bernstein's death. Denise Mei Yan Hofmann and Daniel Sabzghabaei were introduced to me by composer Bright Sheng through his festival The Intimacy of Creativity held in Hong Kong."

Presented in partnership with the Graduate Center, CUNY, Ph.D./D.M.A. Program in Music.


1:00 Overture to Candide (Michael Barrett, Michael Brown, piano)
1:10 I Hate Music (Amy Owens, soprano; Norman Carey, piano)
1:20 Sonata for Clarinet and Piano (Igor Begelman, clarinet; Michael Barrett, piano)
1:35 The Harvard Krokodiloes
2:00 Piano Sonata
2:20 Piano Trio (Osterkamp, piano, Nathan Vickery, cello, Jason Insuk, violin)
2:40 Overture to Candide (Barrett, Brown)
2:45 Anniversary Project (Lara Downs)
3:40 Lamentation from Symphony No.1 "Jeremiah" (Katherine Pracht, mezzo-soprano, Michael Barrett, piano)
4:00 Touches (Michael Brown, piano)
4:15 Bridal Suite for Piano 3-hands (Leann Osterkamp, Ursula Oppens, piano)
4:30 Overture to Candide (Barrett, Brown)
4:40 Leonard Bernstein: His World Through His Music (Alexander Bernstein, narrator; Carla Dirlikov, mezzo-soprano; Justin Snyder, piano)
5:45 Overture to Candide (Barrett, Brown)
5:50 Glitter and Be Gay from Candide. (Amy Owens, Soprano, Michael Barrett, piano)
6:00 NYFOS Next (songs by Bernstein, premieres by Daniel Sabzgabahaei,
Denice Mei Yan Hofmann)
(Amy Owens, soprano; Katherine Pracht, mezzo-soprano;
Vale Rideout, tenor; Jesse Blumberg, baritone; Michael Barrett,
Leann Osterkamp, piano)
7:50 Overture to Candide (Barrett, Brown)
8:00 Halil (Paula Robison, flute; Michael Brown, piano; Michael Barrett, conductor)
8:25 Three Meditations from Mass (Nick Cannelakis, cello, Michael Brown, piano, Michael Barrett, conductor)
8:45 I Go On from Mass (Amy Owens, soprano, Michael Barrett, piano)
8:50 Somewhere

Additional NYFOS "Bernstein at 100" Events:

Wednesday, January 31, 2018
Arias & Barcarolles and other Bernstein Songs
Presented by Arizona Friends of Chamber Music, Tucson, AZ
Artists: Rebecca Jo Loeb, mezzo-soprano; Joshua Jeremiah, baritone
Michael Barrett and Steven Blier, piano
Tickets & venue info: arizonachambermusic.org

Friday, February 2, 2018
Arias & Barcarolles and other Bernstein Songs
Presented by Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, Vienna, VA
Program & artists same as January 31, 2018 concert.
Tickets & venue info: wolftrap.org

Now in its 30th season, New York Festival of Song (NYFOS) is dedicated to creating intimate song concerts of great beauty and originality. Weaving music, poetry, history and humor into evenings of compelling theater, NYFOS fosters community among artists and audiences. Each program entertains and educates in equal measure.

Founded by pianists Michael Barrett and Steven Blier in 1988, NYFOS continues to produce its series of thematic song programs, drawing together rarely-heard songs of all kinds, overriding traditional distinctions between musical genres, exploring the character and language of other cultures, and the personal voices of song composers and lyricists.

Since its founding, NYFOS has particularly celebrated American song. Among the many highlights is the double bill of one-act comic operas, Bastianello and Lucrezia, by John Musto and William Bolcom, both with libretti by Mark Campbell, commissioned and premiered by NYFOS in 2008 and recorded on Bridge Records. In addition to Bastianelloand Lucrezia and the 2008 Bridge Records release of Spanish Love Songs with Joseph Kaiser and the late Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, NYFOS has produced five recordings on the Koch label, including a Grammy Award-winning disc of Bernstein's Arias and Barcarolles, and the Grammy-nominated recording of Ned Rorem's Evidence of Things Not Seen (also a NYFOS commission) on New World Records. In 2014, Canción Amorosa, a CD of Spanish song-Basque, Catalan, Castilian, and Sephardic-was released on the GPR label, with soprano Corinne Winters accompanied by Steven Blier.

In November 2010, NYFOS debuted NYFOS Next, a mini-series for new songs, hosted by guest composers in intimate venues, including OPERA America's National Opera Center, National Sawdust, and the DiMenna Center for Classical Music.

NYFOS is passionate about nurturing the artistry and careers of young singers, and has developed training residencies around the country, including with The Juilliard School's Ellen and James S. Marcus Institute for Vocal Arts (now in its 13th year); Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts (its 10th year in March 2018); San Francisco Opera Center (over 20 years as of February 2018); Glimmerglass Opera (2008-2010); and its newest project, NYFOS@North Fork in Orient, NY.

NYFOS's concert series, touring programs, radio broadcasts, recordings, and educational activities continue to spark new interest in the creative possibilities of the song program, and have inspired the creation of thematic vocal series around the world.

NYFOS Associate Artistic Director Michael Barrett started NYFOS in 1988 with his friend and colleague Steven Blier. In 1992, he co-founded the Moab Music Festival with his wife, violist Leslie Tomkins. From 1994 to 1997, he was the Director of the Tisch Center for the Arts at the 92nd Street Y in New York, and from 2003 to 2012, he was Chief Executive and General Director of the Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts in Katonah, NY.

He has distinguished himself as a conductor with major orchestras here and abroad in the symphonic, operatic, and dance repertoire. A protégé of Leonard Bernstein, he began his long association with the renowned conductor and composer as a student in 1982. He served as Maestro Bernstein's assistant conductor from 1985-1990. He currently serves as music advisor to the Leonard Bernstein Estate.

A champion of new music, Mr. Barrett has conducted and played premieres by Bernstein, Blitzstein, Bolcom, Danielpour, Kernis, Sellars, Harrison, Takemitsu, Del Tredici, John Corigliano, Lowell Liebermann, and John Musto. He has collaborated with the directors Jerome Robbins, John Houseman, Sir Peter Hall, David Alden, Christopher Alden, and Gregory Mosher.

The Graduate Center, CUNY, is the focal point for advanced teaching and research at The City University of New York (CUNY), the nation's largest urban public university. With over 35 doctoral and master's programs of the highest caliber, the Graduate Center fosters pioneering research and scholarship in the arts and sciences and prepares students for careers in universities and the private, nonprofit, and government sectors. The Graduate Center's commitment to research and scholarship for the public good is exemplified by its more than 30 centers, institutes, and initiatives, including its Advanced Science Research Center, a 200,000 square-foot facility in upper Manhattan, designed to promote collaboration among scientists in five areas of global research and innovation: nanoscience, photonics, structural biology, neuroscience, and environmental sciences.

The Graduate Center benefits from highly ambitious and diverse students and alumni-who in turn teach hundreds of thousands of undergraduates every year. Through its public programs, the Graduate Center enhances New York City's intellectual and cultural life. Visit www.gc.cuny.edu to learn more.

Pictured: Young Bernstein composing. Photo Courtesy of The Leonard Bernstein Office, Inc.

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