Ravina Festival's 2009-2010 Rising Stars Series Opens With Ian Howell & More

Ravinia's 2009-2010 Rising Stars series opens with countertenor Ian Howell, first-prize-winner of the American Bach Soloists's International Solo Competition, at 8 p.m. on Oct. 9 in Bennett • Gordon Hall in the John D. Harza building on the Ravinia grounds. His program entitled "With a Beginner's Ear" will include works by Purcell, Falla, Handel, Strauss and others and will feature pianist Douglas Dickson and guitarist Karl Wohlwend. As a member of the all-male chamber choir Chanticleer, Howell has recorded seven CDs, including the Grammy-Award winning Lamentations and Praises and has recently sung the alto solos in Handel's Messiah at Carnegie Hall, the title role of Handel's Solomon, Endimion in Cavalli's La Calisto and Lichas in Handel's Hercules.

First-prize-winner of the 2008 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, 20-year-old Armenian cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan performs at 8 p.m. on Oct. 23 in a program featuring works by Schumann, Beethoven, Shostakovich, Scriabin/Piatigorsky, Tchaikovsky and Rostropovich. Hakhnazaryan has appeared as soloist with the Westmoreland Symphony and in recitals at Saint Vincent College, Lincoln County Concert Association, Patrons for Young Artists, the Paramount Theatre and the Colonial Theatre. He is joined by pianist Noreen Polera.

Described as "prodigiously gifted" by Arte.tv, pianist Sodi Braide performs at Ravinia Oct. 30. His program includes Mozart's Fantasy in D minor, K. 397; Schubert's Sonata in C minor, D. 958; and Liszt's Années de Pélerinage II: L'Italie, No. 5, Venezia e Napoli, Der Müller und der Bach and Erlkönig. A cosmopolitan artist influenced by numerous cultures, Braide explores a large repertoire of different styles and periods. A prize-winner in the 2003 Leeds Competition and recipient of the Jury Discretional Prize at the 2005 Van Cliburn Competition, he performs recitals and chamber concerts throughout Europe and the United States. In 1994 Braide was invited to perform in South Africa, becoming one of the first black African pianists to perform there after the end of apartheid.

Designed to provide gifted young musicians with the opportunity to refine their performing skills, the Rising Stars series encourages audiences to experience and support new talent while presenting musicians with the chance to perform before discerning audiences in an intimate setting. Back by popular demand, seven concert/dining packages will be offered at a speciAl Price of $45 on Oct. 30, Nov. 6, March 5, March 26, April 9, April 30 and May 7. Dinners will begin at 6 p.m. in Ravinia's Park View ® restaurant in the festival's dining pavilion. Patrons will also receive a $10 gift certificate redeemable at Ravinia Gifts if they purchase all seven concert/dining packages.

The festival is dedicated to developing the full potential of emerging artists, beginning with their performances on the Rising Stars series and, ultimately, their Chicago Symphony Orchestra debut on the pavilion stage during the festival's summer season. Rising Stars concerts have introduced Ravinia patrons to such major artists as pianists Jonathan Biss and Lang Lang and violinist Pamela Frank. Held in Ravinia's acoustically splendid Bennett • Gordon Hall, Ravinia's Rising Stars series gives audiences an intimate introduction to the superstars of tomorrow.

In addition to their Rising Stars performances, each artist will also perform in free concerts for students through Ravinia's Education and Community Partnerships Programs throughout Chicagoland. These performing opportunities give students a chance to make an intimate connection not only to the young artist, but also to classical music. Ravinia's

education programs make music accessible to thousands of children, K-12 in Chicago and the north suburbs teaming working musicians with teachers to put music back into the public schools.

Following the October concerts are bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni, who has performed internationally at the Metropolitian Opera in New York, Teatro Real in Madrid, Carnegie Hall in New York and Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, on Nov. 6; and violinist Elena Urioste, featured in the Emmy Award-winning documentary Breaking the Sound Barrier, on Nov. 13.

The spring series continues with pianist Tanya Bannister, winner of awards at the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, New Orleans International Piano Competition and one of Symphony magazine's 2007 "Artists to Watch," on

March 5; pianist Ilya Yakushev, student of Vladimir Feltsman and gold-medal-winner of the 2005 World Piano Competition, on March 12; Curtis on Tour, a touring group of artists who have studied at the Curtis Institute of Music alongside celebrated alumni and faculty, on March 26; Artists from Ravinia's Steans Institute, a touring group of musicians who have attended the festival's prestigious institute with the finest teachers, on April 9; Evgeni Bozhanov, finalist at the 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, on April 16; violinist Dan Zhu, praised by Strad magazine for being "an artist of affecting humility and beautiful tone production," on April 23; the Lincoln Trio, the ensemble-in-residence at the Music Institute of Chicago that toured Illinois as part of Ravinia's celebration of the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial this past spring, on April 30; and cabaret artist Claudia Hommel, known for her concerts celebrating Paris through French and American song, on May 7.

Ravinia Festival gratefully acknowledges the support of The Albert Pick, Jr. Fund and The Bruning Foundation for their generous participation as sponsors of the Rising Stars series.

All but one of the Rising Stars concerts are held on Fridays and begin at 8 p.m. in Bennett • Gordon Hall, Ravinia's acoustically perfect indoor 450-seat recitAl Hall. The May 7 concert will take place in the National City Bank Private Dining located on the second floor of Ravinia's dining pavilion at 8 p.m.

Bennett • Gordon Hall is located in the John D. Harza building on the Ravinia Festival grounds at 201 St. Johns Ave. in Highland Park. Tickets for Rising Stars concerts are $20, with a 20 percent discount on orders for tickets to four or more concerts. For information or to order tickets with a major credit card, please call the Ravinia box office at (847) 266-5100 or visit www.ravinia.org. Ravinia welcomes all festival fans to follow, connect and interact online at backstage.ravinia.org, twitter.com/raviniafestival, myspace.com/raviniafestival and facebook.com (search Ravinia Festival). Ravinia Gifts will also be open on select Rising Stars concert nights. Ravinia Festival is a not-for-profit organization.

Friday, October 9, 8 p.m. - Bennett • Gordon Hall

"With a Beginner's Ear"

Ian Howell, Countertenor

Douglas Dickson, Piano

Karl Wohlwend, Guitar

Purcell: An Evening Hymn

Kodály: Tantum ergo sacramentum V & I

Dowland: Flow My Tears

Cavalli: "Lucisissima Face" from La Calisto

Traditional: Soon One Morning

Honegger: Mimaamaquim

De Falla: Nana

Barnson: Snow

Conte: Levit exurgit zephirus

Handel: Süße stille, sanfte Quelle

Parry: Crossing the Bar

Handel: "Fammi combattere" from Orlando

Matamoros: Juramento

Strauss: Lob des Leidens

Johnson: Have You Seen the Bright Lilly Grow?

Tickets: $20

Friday, October 23, 8 p.m. - Bennett • Gordon Hall

Narek Hakhnazaryan, Cello

Noreen Polera, Piano

Schumann: Phantasiestücke, Op. 73

Beethoven: Cello Sonata No. 3 in A Major, Op. 69

Shostakovich: Cello Sonata in D minor, Op. 40

Scriabin/Piatigorsky: Romance

Tchaikovsky: Nocturne in C-sharp Minor, Op. 19, No. 4

Rostropovich: Humoresque Op. 5

Tickets: $20

The Joseph M. Fabbioli Rising Stars Concert

Friday, October 30, 8 p.m. - Bennett • Gordon Hall

Sodi Braide, Piano

Mozart: Fantasy in D minor, K. 397

Schubert: Sonata in C minor, D. 958

Liszt: Années de Pélerinage II: L'Italie, No. 5: Sonetto 104 del Petrarca
Venezia e Napoli
Der Müller und der Bach

Tickets: $20

Special dining package: $45 for reserved seat and dinner at the Park View® restaurant


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