Montalvo Arts Center Presents Afternoon Concerts With The Saint Michael Trio In Villa Chamber Music Series
The fun, friendly, and informative Saint Michael Trio will return to Montalvo Arts Center to highlight behind-the-scene looks at creators of classical music, from child prodigies to amazing women to the father of Czech music. The Saint Michael Trio will perform Sundays, February 10, March 31, May 5, 2019 at 3:00pm in the historic Villa as part of the Villa Chamber Music Series at Montalvo Arts Center, 15400 Montalvo Rd., Saratoga. For tickets ($20 Student with ID, $38 General) or more information, the public may visit www.montalvoarts.org or call 408-961-5858.
Exploring the musical genius of composers considered other-worldly prodigies, Child Prodigies! will feature classic works from Mozart and Beethoven, to modern compositions from Alma Deutscher, the current 12 year-old sensation who has been called the next Mozart (Associated Press). Listeners will judge for themselves whether tremendous talent comes naturally or is cultivated through years of training, as the Saint Michael Trio treats audience members to pieces throughout legendary composers' careers, celebrating their gifts and contributions to classical music.
The trio will look closely at Czech composer Bed ich Smetana, known as one of his country's greatest creators of music, as well as leader of the movement toward musical nationalism. In Smetana Uncovered, the Saint Michael Trio will explore Smetana's Piano Trio in G minor, a remarkably expressive piece rooted in personal tragedy that first revealed his full power as a composer. Considered the father of Czech music, Smetana's other works depict the legends, history, and landscape of his native land.
In anticipation of Mother's Day and women everywhere the Saint Michael Trio will highlight the music of famed female composers in its lively Tribute to Women. Celebrating the fearless female musicians who overcame the gender prejudices of their times, the performance will feature works by Fanny Mendelssohn, a brilliant pianist forced to publish a number of her songs under her brother's name, and Clara Schumann, one of the most distinguished composers and pianists of the Romantic area credited with transforming the format and repertoire of the piano recital. This will be a sure treat for listeners as they celebrate Mother's Day, honoring the extraordinary women who helped shape classical music. (Men will be admitted, of course but ideally accompanied by a wife, daughter, sister, or mother-in-law.)
Considered California's premiere piano trio, the Saint Michael Trio and their recordings have inspired ongoing accolades in the national press. Named artists-in-residence at Menlo College in 2008, the Trio quickly outgrew the auditorium and established a rapid fan base. In 2012, they were named the first resident chamber artists at the Montalvo Arts Center, where they present numerous concerts and educational programs. One of the trio's most distinguishing features is the popularity of their informances presentations which explore a single composer in depth, incorporating extensive commentary, slides, and demonstrations of the composer's compositional devices. Based in Palo Alto, California, the group appears throughout the United States and is heard on Pandora, Spotify, and FM radio stations throughout the United States and Canada.
Russell Hancock (Piano) made his concert debut with Seattle's Northwest Symphony at the age of eleven, and has since appeared as concerto soloist with orchestras throughout the United States. A graduate of Harvard, he holds a Ph.D from Stanford where he teaches in the Public Policy Program. Russell also serves as president and CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, an influential group of business and government leaders tackling regional problems.
Michael Flexer (Cello) performed throughout his youth with the Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra. While attending Harvard, he also studied at the New England Conservatory under the tutelage of Bernard Greenhouse (Beaux Arts Trio). A software architect and a serial entrepreneur, Michael is most recently the co-founder of Duck Duck Moose which provides award-winning children's applications.
Robin Sharp (violin) joined the Saint Michael Trio in 2017, succeeding Daniel Cher. A graduate of Juilliard, she is a member of the music faculty at Stanford University and concert master of the San Francisco Chamber of Orchestra. Her worldwide appearances include Carnegie Hall (New York), the Musikverein (Vienna), the Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), and the National Music Hall (Taipei).
For decades, Montalvo Arts Center has presented world-class chamber music performances as part of its Villa Chamber Music Series in the Great Hall of the historic Villa Montalvo. For the past six years, this series has exclusively featured concerts by the Saint Michael Trio, who were named Montalvo's Resident Chamber Music ensemble in 2014. These intimate performances only accommodate 90 guests and range in repertoire from contemporary to classical. Visitors may also enjoy refreshments, including coffee, soda, wine and beer, at a no-host bar prior to the performance in the solarium of the Villa.
Montalvo Arts Center is a donor-supported nonprofit institution, whose mission is to engage the public in the creative process, acting as a catalyst for exploring the arts, unleashing creativity, and advancing different cultural and cross-cultural perspectives. Located in Silicon Valley's Saratoga Hills, Montalvo occupies a Mediterranean-style Villa, built in 1912 by Senator James Duval Phelan, surrounded by 175 stunning acres. Senator Phelan bequeathed the Villa and grounds to the people of California for the encouragement of art, music, literature, and architecture, a mandate Montalvo has carried forward ever since its founding. The grounds include the campus of the Sally and Don Lucas Artists Program (LAP), the Claire Loftus Carriage House Theatre, and the Lillian Fontaine Garden Theatre, as well as miles of hiking trails, terraces, gardens, and other picturesque public areas.
For information or to order tickets visit montalvoarts.org or call 408-961-5858.