BERNSTEIN IN BLACK AND WHITE Kicks Off Copland House's 2012-13 Season, 9/8

BERNSTEIN IN BLACK AND WHITE Kicks Off Copland House's 2012-13 Season, 9/8

Spirituals, several premieres, the sounds of Broadway, appearances by two Pulitzer Prize-winners and five Copland House resident composers, and music inspired by the words of Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, and William Shakespeare are among the highlights of Copland House's 2012-13 mainstage concert season, announced today.

The season, Copland House's fourth at Mount Kisco's majestic Merestead estate, includes nine performances, begins on August 5, 2012 and runs through June 2, 2013. "We are presenting a remarkable showcase of American musical creativity," explained Copland House's Artistic and Executive Director Michael Boriskin. "Listeners will travel musically from World War II-era Los Angeles and 1950s Broadway to the present-day Italian cinema, taking in even the heavens and outer space!"

Among the only ongoing series in the U.S. that exclusively showcases past and present American composers, the often sold-out series at Merestead has been hailed by The New York Times for its "reputation for quality" and "first-rate fare focused on the modern American Repertory," and Westchester magazine hailed the "award-winning Music from Copland House ensemble behind it, pushing for something great." Concerts combine mesmerizing performances by Music from Copland House, appearances by America's preeminent composers personally introducing their works and leading audience Q&As, and an intimate atmosphere where listeners can almost "touch" the music.

A special pre-season event on Sunday afternoon, August 5 at 3PM marks the launch of CULTIVATE, Copland House's all-scholarship, intensive, annual creative workshop & mentoring program for highly-gifted composers at the beginnings of their careers. The concert features the world premieres of five brand new works composed especially for the program.

The season's Opening Night Celebration takes place on Saturday evening, September 8 at 8PM with Bernstein in Black and White. Pianist Michael Boriskin will join Emmy Award-winning composer and pianist John Musto, a Copland House favorite, to perform Musto's dazzling two-piano version of the iconic West Side Story. Other classics from Candide and Wonderful Town, as well as tantalizing Bernstein rarities, will complete a dynamic and personal portrait of this American music giant.

Paul Moravec's stunning Tempest Fantasy won the 2004 Pulitzer Prize, and is the featured work on a program called "Sounds and Sweet Airs": Shakespeare in Music on Sunday afternoon, October 14 at 3PM. The concert also includes music by the inspiring and indefatigable David Amram, who wrote many scores for legendary director Joseph Papp's first Shakespeare in the Park productions, and Foor for Love by Copland House Resident Robert Xavier Rodriguez. Moravec will be on hand to discuss the Bard's influence on his music.

Sounds of the American Riviera: German Emigres in Hollywood, on Sunday, November 18 at 3PM, showcases southern California's brilliant gathering of composers, conductors, and other musicians who fled Nazi tyranny before and during World War II turning the region in to a hotbed of creativity. Featured are works of Kurt Weill, Ernst Toch, Hanns Eisler, Ingolf Dahl, Franz Waxman, and other renowned émigrés who transformed the music world and influenced two generations of American composers. Composer Arnold Schoenberg's son Lawrence and music historian and Schoenberg student Pia Gilbert re-create that vibrant milieu and lead an audience Q&A.

Hol' de Light, on Sunday, December 2 at 3PM, revels in the rich tradition of African-American spirituals, hymns, and art songs by Duke Ellington, Scott Joplin, Harry T. Burleigh, William Grant Still, and others. Copland House's first holiday program features renowned baritone James Martin, who has captivated Copland House audiences in previous appearances, and will guide this festive musical panorama.

From Stravinsky to Sophia Loren is a multi-media collaboration with the Jacob Burns Film Center's

International Film Artist-in-Residence program, which features the Burns's first composer-in-residence, Lucio Gregoretti, on Sunday, March 3 at 3PM. In addition to being part of a prominent Italian theatrical family, and working with film legends Lina Wertmuller, Sophia Loren, Giancarlo Gianinni, and many others, Gregoretti has written operas and concert works that have been performed across Europe. The concert presents the world premiere of a brand new work Gregoretti is writing especially for this program, as well as music by Stravinsky, Ravel, and others who have deeply influenced him.

On Sunday, April 7 at 3PM, A Solitude of Sound offers the work of several generations of composers who were inspired by the elusive, vivid imagery of the writings of Emily Dickinson. One of Aaron Copland's masterworks, the richly-evocative Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson, and the New York premiere of Henry Mollicone's Flowers of the Soul, commissioned for Music from Copland House, are featured, along with songs by Lee Hoiby, Craig Urquhart, and Copland House residents Tom Cipullo and Greg Kallor, setting Dickinson texts about life and death, love and longing, nature and gardens, and cooking and writing.

On Saturday evening, May 4 at 8PM, a special concert titled Celestial Harmonies: The Poetry of Science

celebrates the naming of a major crater on the planet Mercury after Aaron Copland. Professor Ronald Dantowitz, a prominent astronomer, avid music lover, and Director of the Clay Center Observatory in Brookline, Massachusetts, discovered the crater, and will be on hand for this program of music inspired by the heavens and space, and by the shared passions of scientists, astronomers, and artists for crossing existing frontiers and exploring the unknown. This dazzling concert features Traveler by 2012 Pulitzer Prize-winner Kevin Puts, Moon Jig by Augusta Read Thomas, Northern Lights by Roger Zare, and songs from from Il Mondo della Luna by Franz Josef Haydn and from Galileo by Hanns Eisler and Berthold Brecht. A pre-concert wine and hors d'oeuvres reception and a post-concert, outdoor astronomical tour led by Professor Dantowitz and members of the Westchester Astronomers Association will be offered to VIP ticket holders.

The season finale on Sunday afternoon, June 2 at 3PM, "I Hear America Singing," is a tribute to the rugged grandeur, expansive lyricism, and raw exuberance of poet Walt Whitman. Copland House resident Russell Platt's acclaimed From Noon to Starry Night: A Whitman Cantata highlights the program, which also includes music by no fewer than three Pulitzer Prize winners, Charles Ives, George Crumb, and Ned Rorem.

Copland House, winner of the American Music Center's coveted Letter of Distinction, is a unique creative center for American music based at Aaron Copland's National Historic Landmark home in New York's lower Hudson River Valley. It is the only composer's home in the U.S. devoted to nurturing and renewingAmerica's rich musical heritage through a broad range of activities, and fostering greater public awareness and appreciation of our nation's composers and their work. Building upon Copland's seminal artistic and personal legacies, it furthers this mission through composer residencies; live, broadcast, and recorded performances; and educational and community outreach programs. In 2009, it began expanding its activities to the historic Merestead estate in Mount Kisco through an innovative public-private partnership with the Westchester County government. Support for Copland House's 2012-13 Merestead concerts comes from the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, Aaron Copland Fund for Music, ArtsWestchester, Westchester Community Foundation, and Friends of Copland House.

Tickets to most Copland House at Merestead performances are popularly-priced at $25 and $20 (for Friends of Copland House), and less in various subscription packages; student tickets are $10. For more information, contact Copland House at (914) 788-4659 or office@coplandhouse.org.

Visit Copland House's new website at www.coplandhouse.org.