Orpheus Chamber Orchestra
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New York, NY 10027-5788

(212) 896 1700

Tickets & Concerts
New York Concerts

Orpheus & Pekka Kuusisto Mozart, Schubert & Hannah Kendall

Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage at Carnegie Hall | New York, NY

JAN 29 2022 | 8:00PM

Coming Home

Concert Duration: 2 hours (includes intermission)

  • Hannah Kendall

    Tuxedo: Plaid x Plaid
    World Premiere, commissioned by Orpheus

  • Mozart

    Concerto for Violin No. 5 in A Major ("Turkish") K. 219
    Pekka Kuusisto, violin

  • Schubert (arr. Heribert Breuer)

    Chamber Symphony in B-flat Major (after Piano Sonata D. 960)

1158 Pekka Kuusisto Felix Broede 20170119 1

Savvy audiences have known for decades that nothing is more revelatory than witnessing Orpheus romp through Mozart with an agile partner like Pekka Kuusisto, their every nuance magnified by the pristine acoustics of Carnegie Hall. To mark this long-awaited homecoming, the young British sensation Hannah Kendall sets the stage with a curtain raiser steeped in Classical brilliance. A late Schubert piano solo gets a new look as a rich Chamber Symphony, letting the ensemble work together to plumb the profound mysteries of a genius unbound.

Orpheus 2021-22 season at Carnegie Hall

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“Pekka Kuusisto…surely has the most personal sound of any classical violinist now alive”Ivan Hewett, The Telegraph

About the artists

Pekka Kuusisto
Violin

Violinist, conductor and composer Pekka Kuusisto is renowned for his artistic freedom and fresh approach to repertoire. Widely recognised for his flair in directing ensembles, Kuusisto is Artistic Director of the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra, and Artistic Partner with The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and Mahler Chamber Orchestra. He is also a Collaborative Partner of the San Francisco Symphony, and Artistic Best Friend of Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. In the 2021/22 season, he is the Philharmonia Orchestra’s Featured Artist, with whom he performs as both violinist and conductor and has programmed two concerts in the orchestra’s Music of Today series.

In the 2021/22 season Kuusisto performs the world premiere of Bryce Dessner’s violin concerto with the HR Sinfonieorchester, and later with the Philharmonia, San Francisco Symphony, and Munich Chamber orchestras and Orchestre de Paris. He performs the world premiere of Thomas Ades’s Märchentänze for violin and orchestra with the Finnish Radio Symphony orchestra and later with Barcelona Symphony, Gothenburg Symphony and Danish Radio Symphony orchestras. He performs the French premiere of Märchentänze for violin and piano with the composer at the Fondation Louis Vuitton and later at the Wigmore Hall in London. Kuusisto performs other concertos written for him including Nico Muhly’s violin concerto, Shrink and a new concerto by Djuro Zivkovic. In recent seasons Kuusisto has premiered new works by Sauli Zinovjev, Daníel Bjarnason, Anders Hillborg, Philip Venables and Andrea Tarrodi.

Kuusisto is an enthusiastic advocate of contemporary music and a gifted improviser and regularly engages with people across the artistic spectrum. Uninhibited by conventional genre boundaries and noted for his innovative programming, recent projects have included collaborations with Hauschka and Kosminen, Dutch neurologist Erik Scherder, pioneer of electronic music Brian Crabtree, eminent jazz-trumpeter Arve Henriksen, juggler Jay Gilligan, accordionist Dermot Dunne and folk artist Sam Amidon.

Kuusisto also tours around the world with orchestras such as Chicago and Los Angeles Philharmonic, Oregon and Portland symphony orchestras, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, BBC Scottish Orchestra, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

As a conductor, Kuusisto makes his debut in 2021/22 with the European Union Youth Orchestra and Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and he returns to conduct the Helsinki Philharmonic and the Philharmonia orchestras. In 2020/21, Kuusisto conducted the Concertgebouworkest, Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen for recordings of Beethoven violin concerto with Vilde Frang., hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt and Tapiola and Scottish Chamber orchestras. Other recent highlights have included his residencies with the hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt and Swedish Chamber Orchestra.

Kuusisto has released several recordings, notably for Ondine and BIS. With Pentatone, Kuusisto and the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra presented the album First Light in 2021 featuring the world premiere recording of Nico Muhly’s violin concerto, Shrink. Kuusisto has recently recorded Ades’ Violin Concerto with Aurora and Nicolas Collon for Deutsche Grammophon, Hillborg’s Bach Materia and Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos Nos.3 and 4 with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and Thomas Dausgaard for BIS and Daniel Bjarnason’s Violin Concerto with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra with the composer conducting for Sono Luminus. Past releases include Erkki-Sven Tüür’s Noesis concerto for violin and orchestra for Ondine and Sebastian Fagerlund’s violin concerto Darkness in Light for BIS, both recorded with Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Hannu Lintu.

Hannah Kendall
Composer

Known for her attentive arrangements and immersive world-building, Hannah Kendall’s music looks beyond the boundaries of composition. Her work bridges gaps between different musical cultures, both honoring and questioning the contemporary tradition while telling new stories through it. Contrasting fine detail with limitless abandon, she has become renowned both as a composer and a storyteller, confronting our collective history with narratively-driven pieces centered on bold mission statements.

Marked by striking and often polarizing dynamics, her large-scale work simmers on the surface, and is upturned by the briefest moments of bombast. Ensemble pieces subvert audience expectations of ‘quiet and loud’, ‘still and moving’; scattering those musical opposites unexpectedly. The sounds are visceral, but their placement is complicated, disclosing the detail that exists beneath. While hinging on intense moments, Kendall’s music is also staggeringly intricate, maneuvering tiny decisions that reveal themselves on further listens.

Kendall’s recent work has provided a meeting point for different types of music, carrying with it the weight of connected but unharmonized histories. Recently, she’s achieved this by looking beyond the typical tools of composition, using auxiliary instruments that exist outside of the concert hall. In Tuxedo: Vasco ‘de’ Gama, she integrated the spiritual Wade in the Water, transcribing its melody into a delicate music box, contrasting the fragility of the instrument against the song’s resounding place in history. Tuxedo: Hot Summer No Water (2020) for solo cello features an ACME Metropolitan whistle, placing a sonic timestamp on the piece; pointing to a year significantly defined by the police’s presence in black communities.

Her Tuxedo series is named after an artwork by American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. His eponymous piece provides one of many graphic scores that Kendall has used as inspiration throughout her career. Rather than create ‘representations’ of these images, she uses them to spark her writing process. Building pieces from a place of intuition, her compositions are just as likely to be become abstracted, turned inside out by surprises she finds along the way, as they are to have a firm narrative.

Kendall’s work has been widely celebrated. She has created pieces such as Disillusioned Dreamer (2018), which the San Francisco Chronicle praised for having a ‘rich inner life’, as well as The Knife of Dawn (2016), a chamber opera that received critical acclaim for its involving and claustrophobic representation of the incarceration of Guyanese political activist Martin Carter. Her work has been performed extensively, and across many platforms. She has worked with ensembles including London Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, The Hallé, Ensemble Modern, and London Sinfonietta, but you’ll also find her collaborating with choreographers, poets and art galleries; crossing over to different art-forms, and celebrating the impact these unique settings have on sound. She is currently composing an Afrofuturist opera for experimental vocalist and movement artist Elaine Mitchener, and is the recipient of the 2022 Hindemith Prize for music composition.

Born in London in 1984, Kendall is based in New York City as a Doctoral Fellow in composition at Columbia University.

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