Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival Issues Second Recording
As it approaches its three-decade mark, the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival, Long Island's longest-running classical music festival, presents a 2012 season showcasing the mix of renowned and emerging artists performing classic and new music that has made it one of the most noteworthy summer music festivals in the country. Offering one of the most beautiful seaside settings on the East Coast, this year's Festival features 11 events programmed by BCMF founder and Artistic Director Marya Martin-kicking off on July 26 with a free outdoor concert by the vibrant string quartet Brooklyn Rider, and continuing with programs featuring from six to 14 musicians playing music ranging from Vivaldi and Bach to Schnittke and Ligeti, and the world premiere of a work by Paul Brantley. And the Festival's first recording on its own label, BCMF Records, is to be released on June 1.
Joining flutist Martin on the 2012 BCMF artist roster are two colleagues who were also there at the beginning, in 1984: renowned artists Ani Kavafian, violin, and Fred Sherry, cello. The invigorating mix of more than 40 musicians also includes violinists Stefan Jackiw, Joseph Lin, and Arnaud Sussmann; violist Cynthia Phelps and Hsin-Yung Huang; cellists Carter Brey and Edward Arron; pianists Alessio Bax, Gilles Vonsattel, and Orion Weiss; and bass-baritone David Pittsinger (full roster below).
This year's programs continue in the Festival's tradition of what The New Yorker has described as "a piquant mix of classical and modern works," with chamber music gems by Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, and Brahms alongside music by Czech composers Dvo?ák and Martin? on four of the programs, as well as music of Gerard Beljon, Colin Jacobsen (violinist in Brooklyn Rider), Giya Kancheli, György Ligeti, Alfred Schnittke, and Carl Vine. "I think our audiences will love two of the newer works," said Marya Martin. "Dutch composer Gerard Beljon's Something Wicked for flute, piano, and electronic samples is music I can't wait to share with them. And Carl Vine's Café Concertino is a rhythmic romp which will have them on The Edge of their seats." (The full program listing is below).
And some examples emblematic of the Festival's exceptional groupings of musicians: violinist Joseph Lin, cellist Carter Brey, and pianist Alessio Bax performing Schubert's Piano Trio in B-flat Major; flutist Marya Martin, cellist Michael Nicolas, and pianist Orion Weiss performing Martin?'s Flute Trio; and violinists Ani Kavafian and Stefan Jackiw, violists Richard O'Neill and Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu, and cellists Edward Arron and Peter Stumpf ending the season with Brahms's String Sextet No. 2.
Paul Brantley's Swevens Sonata for Flute and Piano will have its world premiere performed by Marya Martin and Jeewon Park. Brantley describes it: "'Sweven' is a beautiful Middle English word that lies somewhere in the field of sleep, dream or vision, but is its own thing-a psychic value that apparently has been lost along with the use, and precise understanding, of this word. It was one of those synchronistic things that I came upon this much needed and beautiful concept as I was composing this sonata." Marya Martin performed Brantley's Syrinx-double, a work inspired by Debussy's flute classic Syrinx, at the 2010 Festival.
Tickets go on sale June 1 and may be purchased on the festival's website, www.bcmf.org, or by calling 212-741-9403 before July 19; after July 19, 633-537-6368.
New label, debut recording of new American music
Just in time for this year's season, BCMF has launched its own record label, BCMF Records. Signifying the Festival's commitment to American composers, the label's first recording, to be released on June 1, is bcmf premieres, a disc of contemporary American music featuring three works commissioned by the Festival-Ned Rorem's The Unquestioned Answer (2002), Bruce MacCombie's Light Upon the Turning Leaf (2010), and Kenji Bunch's Changes of Phase (1999)-as well as Paul Moravec's Wind Quintet (2010). This is the premiere recording of all four works, which were recorded at the Festival by Grammy-winning producer Adam Abeshouse and Leszek Wojcik (full personnel details below). The disc will be on sale at all BCMF concerts as well as at major retail and digital outlets through a partnership with Naxos. www.bcmf.org/media/recordings/
A festive summer setting, a loyal audience
The longest-running classical music festival on Long Island, BCMF has maintained its special sense of community ever since the festival debuted with four artists in two concerts in the intimate setting of the Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church. The festival is still based in the graceful 1842 church-which boasts admirable acoustics and a welcoming, air-conditioned space-and has expanded to the Bridgehampton Historical Society for the free kick-off concert, the Channing Sculpture Garden for the annual Wm. Brian Little Concert, and the Atlantic Golf Club for the Festival's annual benefit concert.
And BCMF has developed a loyal core audience among the local residents and summer visitors to this East End resort, who have had a wide range of music introduced to them over nearly 30 years. One 2011 audience member said, "We loved each and every concert. The music was diverse, interesting, beautiful. We marveled again and again at our good fortune to sit in the lovely church, with its great acoustics, listening to such gorgeous music."
Starting with the free outdoor concert, this year a modern and multi-cultural program performed by Brooklyn Rider on July 26, the season also includes the annual BCMF Benefit Concert, a one-hour program followed by dinner, at the Atlantic Golf Club on July 28. The Festival's annual Wm. Brian Little Concert (named after the late BCMF board member) on August 10 features a program of American music centering on Copland's Appalachian Spring in a 13-instrument arrangement, performed under a tent on the stunning grounds of the Channing Sculpture Garden adjacent to the Channing Daughters Winery; wine and hors d'oeuvres are served before the hour-long program. And there will be two Saturday Soirees, a one-hour program format introduced last year.
"This impressive festival balances the tried and true with the adventurous and mixes established performers with rising talent."
–The New York Times
In the 29 years since its founding, the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival has become known for presenting a broad and stimulating range of music performed by some of the best musicians in the country in one of the most beautiful seaside settings the East Coast has to offer. Currently comprising around a dozen events spanning four weeks, the Festival began with an inspired idea. New Zealand-born flutist Marya Martin and Manhattan businessman Ken Davidson had just married, as Allan Kozinn of The New York Times relates: "Davidson was dismayed by the prospect that Ms. Martin would be spending her summers traveling the festival circuit while he worked in the city and spent weekends on his own in the Hamptons." Ken and Marya's solution-to start their own festival, right in Bridgehampton-is now local legend.
Violinist Ani Kavafian, cellist Fred Sherry, and pianist André-Michel Schub joined Marya Martin for the Festival's first season. Each year, the Festival welcomes back many artists from years past along with new chamber music leaders to create, in Marya Martin's words, "the electricity of good friends making music together." The roster has included, among others, violinists Pamela Frank, Mark O'Connor, Todd Phillips, and Soovin Kim; cellists Timothy Eddy and Peter Wiley; bassist Edgar Meyer; pianists Jeremy Denk, Claude Frank, Ursula Oppens, and Pablo Ziegler; harpsichordist Kenneth Cooper; the late flutist Jean-Pierre Rampal; clarinetist Anthony McGill; and Tony-award winning singers Audra McDonald and Victoria Clark.
Committed to presenting a wide variety of music with emphasis on American composers, the Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival has commissioned works from composers Bruce Adolphe, Kenji Bunch, Bruce MacCombie, Mark O'Connor, and Pulitzer Prize-winners Paul Moravec, Kevin Puts, and Ned Rorem, and features each season between 10 and 15 new American works. A new BCMF commissioned work by 2012 Pulitzer winner Puts will have its premiere in the 30th anniversary season in 2013.
In 1991, Bridgehampton Chamber Music released its debut recording, featuring one of the Rorem commissions, on the New World Records label. The Festival documented its landmark 20th anniversary with a recording released in the summer of 2003 to much critical acclaim. A recording celebrating the Festival's 25th anniversary and featuring commissions by Paul Moravec was released to critical acclaim on the Naxos label in September 2008. In 2012, the Festival's own label, BCMF Records, releases its first disc, bcmf premieres. www.bcmf.org/media/recordings/
BCMF features brief video excerpts from previous concerts on its website: www.bcmf.org/media
Internationally acclaimed flutist Marya Martin enjoys a musical career of remarkable breadth and achievement. Gracefully balancing the roles of chamber musician, festival director, soloist, teacher, and supporter of musical institutions, she has performed throughout the world in such halls as London's Royal Albert Hall and Wigmore Hall, Sydney Opera House, Casals Hall in Tokyo, and other international venues.
A native of New Zealand, Ms. Martin studied at Yale University, and shortly thereafter moved to Paris to study with flutist Jean-Pierre Rampal. After winning top prizes in the Naumburg, Munich International, and Jean-Pierre Rampal International competitions, and the Concert Artists Guild and Young Concert Artists International Auditions-all within a two-year period-she returned to the U.S. and has since appeared as a soloist with major orchestras and at leading festivals and chamber music series throughout the country.
In 2006 she received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Auckland, and in 2011 received the Ian Mininberg Distinguished Service Award from Yale University. Committed to expanding the flute repertoire, she has commissioned more than 20 new works. She most recently commissioned eight works for flute and piano comprising Eight Visions, an anthology published by Theodore Presser, and recorded them for the Naxos label. In 2011, Albany Records released Marya Martin Plays Eric Ewazen. Ms. Martin has been a faculty member of the Manhattan School of Music since 1996.
Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival 2012 Artist Roster
Marya Martin, flute
John Snow, oboe
Sarah Beaty, clarinet
Romie de Guise-Langlois, clarinet
Seth Baer, bassoon
Peter Kolkay, bassoon
Stewart Rose, horn
Benjamin Beilman, violin
Aaron Boyd, violin
Jonathan Crow, violin
Stefan Jackiw, violin
Ani Kavafian, violin
Erin Keefe, violin
Jessica Lee, violin
Joseph Lin, violin
Arnaud Sussmann, violin
Tien-Hsin Cindy Wu, violin & viola
Nicholas Cords, viola
Hsin-Yun Huang, viola
Richard O'Neill, viola
Cynthia Phelps, viola
Jonathan Vinocour, viola
Edward Arron, cello
Carter Brey, cello
Nicholas Canellakis, cello
Dane Johansen, cello
Michael Nicolas, cello
Fred Sherry, cello
Peter Stumpf, cello
Jeffrey Beecher, double bass
Donald Palma, double bass
Alessio Bax, piano
Pedja Muzijevic, piano
Jeewon Park, piano
Gilles Vonsattel, piano
Orion Weiss, piano
Paolo Bordignon, harpsichord
David Pittsinger, bass-baritone