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Organist Paul Jacobs Performs as Featured Soloist In Barber's Toccata Festiva And Poulenc's Organ Concerto

The first concert will take place on Thursday, April 8, 2021, 7:00 PM EDT, with The Cleveland Orchestra led by conductor Franz Welser-Möst.

Organist Paul Jacobs Performs as Featured Soloist In Barber's Toccata Festiva And Poulenc's Organ Concerto Harmonia Mundi will be releasing a recording on May 28, 2021 of Samuel Barber's Toccata Festiva (catalog numberHMM902611) featuring GRAMMY award-winning organist Paul Jacobs as soloist with the Lucerne Symphony under conductor James Gaffigan. The performance was recorded live in concert in Lucerne, November 2018.

In a fortuitous coincidence, Mr. Jacobs will be the featured soloist in Poulenc's celebrated Organ Concerto with both The Cleveland Orchestra and The Philadelphia Orchestra.

The first concert will take place on Thursday, April 8, 2021, 7:00 PM EDT, with The Cleveland Orchestra led by conductor Franz Welser-Möst. This concert, Episode 8: "Visions and Impressions," which also includes works by Takemitsu, Prokofiev, and Debussy, is the first of four new programs from the orchestra's "In Focus" Series. Mr. Jacobs will also offer a fascinating behind-the-scenes visit inside the organ chamber at Severance Hall. Full program follows:

Takemitsu Air
Prokofiev Visions fugitives, Opus 22a
Debussy Syrinx
Poulenc Organ Concerto

The concert will air on Adella and remain available on demand for three months after its debut. A $35 monthly subscription is required to view the programs. For more information, or to subscribe, visit Adella or The Cleveland Orchestra.

On Thursday, April 29, 2021, 8:00 PM EDT, Mr. Jacobs, again the soloist in the Poulenc Organ Concerto will join The Philadelphia Orchestra under maestro Yannick Nézet-Séguin. This concert also features works by Foumai and Farrenc. Full program follows:

Foumai Concerto grosso
Poulenc Organ Concerto
Farrenc Symphony No. 2

The concert is a Digital Stage concert which will begin with a performance premiere and followed by on-demand access for one week until May 6, 2021, 11:00 PM EDT. For more information and tickets, visit The Philadelphia Orchestra.

In addition, Mr. Jacobs will be heard in solo recital presented by The Philadelphia Orchestra on April 26, 2021,

with a program of Bach and Handel. He will also offer commentary on the specific works and on the preparation of the Fred J. Cooper Memorial Organ at Philadelphia's Verizon Hall, Kimmel Center. Full program follows:

Handel Organ Concerto in F Major, Op. 4, No. 4

Bach Air (on the G String), BWV 1068

Handel Organ Concerto in B-flat Major Op. 4, No. 2

The concert, also a Digital Stage concert, will begin with a performance premiere and followed by on-demand access for one week until May 3, 2021, 11:00 PM EDT. For more information and tickets, visit The Philadelphia Orchestra.

A staple of the organ-orchestral repertoire since its commission in 1960 and a highlight of American organ composition, Barber's Toccata Festiva features a combination of lyricism, extroverted fanfare music, and dance-like figurations. Reviewing Mr. Jacobs' November 2016 performance of this work with the Philadelphia Orchestra and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Linda Holt of The Broad Street Review noted, "Paul Jacobs, the only classical organist to win a Grammy and the concerto's dedicatee, was at the keyboard for this and every other work in the program, as music of astonishing variety and attitude poured from the Cooper console" (November 21, 2016). ArtBlog's Donald Hunt wrote of the same performance, "The vibrant concert co-opener showcased Jacobs' ability to show flashes of virtuosity among many lyrical phrases. During the bravura cadenza section, Jacobs used only the pedal in a wonderful display of his quick-as-lightning feet" (November 29, 2016).

The internationally celebrated organist Paul Jacobs combines a probing intellect and extraordinary technical mastery with an unusually large repertoire, both old and new. An eloquent champion of his instrument, Mr. Jacobs is known for his imaginative interpretations and charismatic stage presence. He has performed to great critical acclaim on five continents and in each of the fifty United States and is the only organist ever to have won a Grammy Award-in 2011 for Messiaen's towering "Livre du Saint-Sacrément."

No other organist is so frequently re-invited as soloist to perform with prestigious orchestras, thus making him a pioneer in the movement for the revival of symphonic music featuring the organ. Mr. Jacobs regularly appears with the Chicago Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, Edmonton Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Lucerne Symphony Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Montreal Symphony, Nashville Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, Pacific Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Toledo Symphony, and Utah Symphony, among others.

Mr. Jacobs has transfixed audiences, colleagues, and critics alike with landmark performances of the complete works for solo organ by J.S. Bach and Messiaen, as well as works by a vast array of other composers. He made musical history at the age of 23 when he played Bach's complete organ works in an 18-hour marathon performance on the 250th anniversary of the composer's death. A fierce advocate of new music, Mr. Jacobs has premiered works by Samuel Adler, Mason Bates, Michael Daugherty, Bernd Richard Deutsch, John Harbison, Wayne Oquin, Stephen Paulus, Christopher Theofanidis, and Christopher Rouse, among others. As a teacher he has also been a vocal proponent of the redeeming nature of traditional and contemporary classical music.

His recital engagements have included performances under the aegis of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Cleveland Orchestra, Dallas Symphony, Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center White Light Festival, Los Angeles Philharmonic at Disney Hall, Madison Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra, Phoenix Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Oregon Bach Festival, San Francisco Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Spivey Hall in Atlanta, the St. Louis Cathedral-Basilica, Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, as well as at the American Guild of Organists.

He has given the world premiere of Christopher Rouse's Organ Concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra-
co-commissioned by the National Symphony and the Los Angeles Philharmonic-and, with the Toledo Symphony, has performed Michael Daugherty's Once Upon a Castle, a work he recorded in 2015 with the Nashville Symphony Orchestra and conductor Giancarlo Guerrero which was released by Naxos in September 2016, and awarded three Grammys, including Best Classical Compendium.

Last spring Mr. Jacobs performed Michael Daugherty's Once Upon a Castle with the Philadelphia Orchestra under the baton of conductor Edward Gardner and with the Kansas City Symphony under the baton of conductor Jason Seber. Cameron Kelsall of Broad Street Review wrote on March 3, 2020:

"Step aside, Hugh Jackman. If anyone deserves to be called the greatest showman, it's organ virtuoso Paul Jacobs, who returned to the Philadelphia Orchestra this past weekend for the local premiere of a witty, memorable work written specifically for him."

Linda Holt of BachTrack had this to say on February 29, 2020:

"No stranger to Philadelphia audiences, Jacobs performed with the orchestra on the mighty Fred J. Cooper Memorial Organ, and one could not imagine a more colorful, thrilling and artistically nuanced presentation. Jacobs is a showman in the best possible sense, exploring and exploiting all the possibilities of this king of instruments, but always in the service of the composer's intent."

In the fall of 2019, Mr. Jacobs highlighted the organ on the New York concert scene, performing in a three-recital series for solo organ to critical acclaim. The series, entitled "The Great French Organ Tradition", gave New Yorkers the rare opportunity to hear this master organist on three important New York instruments: on the Holtkamp organ in the Juilliard School's Paul Recital Hall; the 1933 Aeolian-Skinner "Opus 891" at the Church of St. Mary the Virgin; and St. Ignatius Loyola's 1993 Mander Organ.


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