Park ICM & KC Chamber Announce Two Valentine's Concerts

Park ICM & KC Chamber Announce Two Valentine's Concerts

Stanislav Ioudenitch, Artistic Director at Park International Center for Music, announced Friday that Park ICM is offering not one, but two Valentines concerts. "If you are a classical music lover, we have a veritable buffet to choose from during Valentine's week. You can snuggle up with your loved one in the intimate 1900 Building on Saturday with Ben and Lolita and then enjoy all that downtown Kansas City has to offer at The Folly Theater on Wednesday with our magnificent soloists and the Chamber Orchestra," exclaimed Ioudenitch. "What more could you wish for to celebrate Valentine's Day?"

"These concerts are VERY romantic," said Ben Sayevich, Professor of Violin Studio at Park International Center for Music and founding Concertmaster of the Kansas City Chamber Orchestra. "We chose pieces for both of these concerts based upon their sensuousness, flirtation and their passion. There's even a tango which is one of the most provocative dances ever written."

"It is always a thrill to partner with the talent from the International Center for Music at Park University. This concert has crowd-pleasers perfect for Valentine's week. Featuring violin, cello, and piano soloists in bon-bons by Chopin, Tchaikovksy, Saint-Saens, and Kreisler, the performance will warm your heart and tickle your fancy!" said Maestro Bruce Sorrell, KCCO music director and conductor.

On February 9th at 7:30 p.m., the thrilling combination of husband and wife duo, Ben Sayevich, Violin, and Lolita Lisovskaya-Sayevich, Piano, will be taking the stage at The 1900 Building in Mission Woods, Kansas. The highlight of the evening will be the famed Violin Sonata No. 9, Op 47, by Ludwig Van Beethoven. Written in 1803 and notable for its technical difficulty, unusual length and emotional scope, it is commonly known as the "Kreutzer Sonata" after the violinist Rodolphe Kreutzer to whom it was eventually dedicated by the composer. Later author Leo Tolstoy took particular interest in the sonata, describing it as "holding special power to arouse erotic feelings from the powerful sensuous appeal of the music." As a result, he named his new novella, The Kreutzer Sonata. Published in 1889, The Kreutzer Sonata emphasizes Tolstoy's controversial view on sexuality, which asserted that physical desire is an obstacle to relations between men and women and may result in tragedy. Indeed Tolstoy's main character, "Pozdnyshev," a passenger on a train, tells the story to a captive audience in a train car of how he murdered his pianist wife after being enraged with jealousy that she played a duet with a visiting musician in their parlor. But regardless of its sexual themes in the late 19th Century, the novella soared in popularity and was adapted in various stage and film productions ultimately contributing to the fame of Beethoven's original sonata and linking the two forever together. The irony in all of this is that happily married Ben and Lolita will be performing the piece that will certainly be an unusual spin on love for Valentine's Day. Park ICM high- res photos can be found here. Kansas City Chamber Orchestra photos are available upon request.

Also on the program is Gabriel Fauré's Sonata for Violin and Piano in A-major, No. 1, Op. 13, Alexander Galzunov's "Meditation" for Violin and Piano in D-major, Op. 32, and John Williams' Tango "Por Una Cabeza" for Violin and Piano.

On February 13th, 7:30 p.m, at The Folly Theater in Kansas City, Missouri, you'll escape with gorgeous tunes and heartwarming concertos performed by the fantastic combination of soloists from the Park International Center for Music performing with the Kansas City Chamber Orchestra during Bridges of the Heart. The evening will feature award-winning soloists Dilshod Narzillaev (cello), Laurel Gagnon (violin), Igor Khukhua (violin), and Vladislav Kosminov (piano). Sayevich added, "Years ago when I was Concertmaster of KCCO, Maestro Sorrell and I made a pact that each year KCCO and Park ICM would partner for one concert of the season. It is incredibly advantageous for our students to play with a professional orchestra, as it is so different from performing a solo. Plus we provide our most promising, award-winning students as the soloists. They are our local stars!"

The Bridges of the Heart program will include:

Caroline Shaw: Entr'acte

Continuing KCCO's commitment to featuring women composers, Caroline Shaw's Entr'acte will open the concert. "Shaw is the youngest recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for music and is probably the most important composer of her generation. Certainly, she is the most well-known," said Maestro Sorrell.

Haydn: Concerto for Cello in C Major; Dilshod Narzillaev, cello soloist

Composed by Joseph Haydn around 1761-1765, it was created for his longtime friend, Joseph Franz Weigl, then principal cellist of Hungarian Prince Nicolaus's Esterházy Orchestra. Prince Nicolaus was Haydn's benefactor and supported the creation of most of Haydn's compositions. After Haydn's death, this concerto was believed to be lost until the early 1960's.

Saint-Saens: Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 28; Igor Khukhua, violin soloist
A composition for violin and orchestra written in 1863, it was composed for virtuoso violinist Pablo de Sarasate. Originally intended to be the rousing finale to Saint-Saëns' First Violin Concerto, the piece includes many virtuosic arpeggios that will certainly show off the incredible talents of violinist Igor Khukhua.

Kreisler: Liebesfreud; Igor Khukhua, violin soloist
Liebesfreud or "Love's Joy" was composed in 1910 by Friedrich "Fritz" Kreisler, an Austrian-born violinist and composer. One of the most noted violin masters of his day and regarded as one of the greatest violinists of all time; Kreisler was known for his sweet tone and expressive phrasing.

Tchaikovsky: Valse-Scherzo in C major, Op. 34; Laurel Gagnon, violin soloist
Written in 1877 by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, this work is for violin and orchestra and will feature the magnificence of award-winning ICM soloist, Laurel Gagnon. Dedicated to Tchaikovsky's lover and former student, violinist Iosif Kotek, it was Kotek's trip to visit Tchaikovsky in Switzerland in 1877 that most certainly inspired its creation. While short, it is known to make great technical demands on the soloist.

Kreisler: Caprice Viennois, Op. 2; Laurel Gagnon, violin soloist
Born in Vienna in 1875, Fritz Kreisler was a child prodigy who quickly confirmed his position as an international violin virtuoso at a very young age. Caprice Viennois is one of his most familiar short pieces for violin and orchestra and is full of turn-of-the-century Viennese gaiety and grace.

Chopin: Variations on "Là ci darem la mano," Op.2' Vladislav Kosminov, piano soloist

Written by Frédéric Chopin when he was aged 17, it was Chopin's first work for piano with orchestra. But Chopin often played the variations without the orchestra preferring to show off the brilliant piano part. When it premiered in 1827, Chopin himself was the soloist.

Park ICM Masters in Concert Presents Ben Sayevich & Lolita Lisovskaya-Sayevich begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Parkway Room of the 1900 Building, 1900 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Mission Woods, Kansas 66208. Tickets are available General Admission $30 and Students with ID $10. A reception with the artists will take place immediately following the concert in the Fountain Room and free and open to the public. Tickets may be purchased at Parking is free and freely available adjacent to the building.

Bridges of the Heart begins at 7:30 p.m. in the C. Stephen Metzler Hall at the Folly Theater, 300 W. 12th St, Kansas City, Missouri 64105. A free pre-show talk with conductor Bruce Sorrell about the music and composers will begin at 6:30 p.m. The evening will conclude with a Champagne and Chocolate Soiree for an additional fee; free for KCCO season subscribers. Individual tickets range from $20 to $35; senior and student discounts are available. Purchase tickets online at or (816) 235-6222.

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