Music

Catch the Closing of the Classical Music Season with Unmissable Attractions

Written By Sebastián Spreng
April 29, 2024 at 3:20 PM

Distinguished Canadian violinist James Ehnes will perform John Williams’ “First Violin Concerto” on Saturday, May 11 and Sunday, May 12, with the New World Symphony under the direction of Stéphane Denève at the New World Center, Miami Beach. (Photo courtesy of Benjamin Ealovega)

It is the last month of the “official” musical season, and those fearing the boredom that summer will impose will rush to attend the May attractions, which are many and most varied. Here is a list to make the most of it possible and catch everything.

ORCHESTRAS AND STARS

Two spectacular concerts will end the New World Symphony (NWS) season. The first marks the return of the indefatigable Michael Tilson Thomas (MTT for classical music fans), creator and laureate director of America’s Orchestral Academy, with star pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet in one of his most celebrated works, the “Piano Concerto” by the French composer Maurice Ravel (1875-1937).

To complete the night, MTT conducts the “Fantasy Romeo and Juliet” by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky (1840-1893) and the “Symphony 15” by Dimitri Shostakovich (1906-1975). The performances are Saturday, May 4, and Sunday, May 5, at the New World Center (500 17th St., Miami Beach).

Pianist Marina Radiushina, one of the biggest attractions at Miami Chamber Fest 2024, will offer a program featuring music by Ravel, Schumann, and Dvorak on Thursday, May 9, at The Hub at Temple Beth Am. (Photo courtesy of Miami Chamber Music)

Prepare to be spellbound as Stéphane Denève, MTT’s worthy successor as NWS artistic director, concludes the 2023-24 cycle on Saturday, May 11 and Sunday, May 12, also at the New World Center, with the remarkable Canadian violinist James Ehnes in the “First Violin Concerto” by John Williams. As an opener, Molly Turner, fellow director, will conduct “Just Down Street on the Left,” a short piece from 2015 by Williams.

Then brace yourself for the premiere of a work commissioned by the NWS to Guillaume Connesson and the monumental “The Rite of Spring” by Stravinsky as a powerful grand finale.  The two Saturday concerts can also be enjoyed via WALLCAST at SoundsScape Park at 8 p.m.

On Saturday, May 4, at the Sanctuary of the Arts (410 Andalusia Ave, Coral Gables), a delicious “Viennese Night” will be presented by the Miami Orchestra under the baton of its creator Elaine Rinaldi and baritone Benjamin Howard as soloist in Gustav Mahler’s “Songs of a Wayfarer” in Arnold Schönberg’s exquisite chamber arrangement (1974-1951). The program is completed with the symphonic poem “Til Eulenspiegel” by Richard Strauss (1864-1949) and a selection of waltzes by Johann Strauss (1825-1899).

CHAMBER MUSIC

The Miami Chamber Fest 2024 will take place throughout the month and in different venues.

The festival begins on Thursday, May 9, with the Ariel Quartet and Marina Radiushina at the piano with an appealing program of Ravel, Schumann, and Dvorak in a brand-new auditorium, The Hub at Temple Beth Am (5950 N. Kendall Drive, Pinecrest).

On Saturday, May 18 and Sunday May 19, at the Sanctuary of the Arts and the Miami Beach Community Church (1620 Drexel Ave., Miami Beach), pianist Zhu Wang will perform works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791), Franz Schubert (1797-1828), Claude Debussy (1862-1918) and Johannes Brahms (1833-1897).

Violinist Arnaud Sussmann will participate in a few programs presented by Miami Chamber Fest 2024. (Photo courtesy of Miami Chamber Music)

On Thursday, May 23, and Friday, May 24, violinist Arnaud Sussmann, clarinetist Moran Katz, and pianist Marina Radiushina will perform in the abovementioned venues. Radiushina also performs on Saturday, May 25, at the Coral Gables Art Cinema (260 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables) with cellist Alexander Hersh in “Absinthe,” a fascinating multimedia program with works by Debussy, Nadia Boulanger (1887-1979), the Czech Leos Janacek (1854-1928), and Scriabin created by the cellist and.

On Sunday, May 26, with violinist Sussmann and cellist Hersh, it will be an afternoon with Mozart, Beethoven, Clara Schumann and Mendelssohn at the new Knight Innovation Center, Newman Recital Hall of the Frost School of Music (1314 Miller Dr, Coral Gables). A juicy offering, plus the opportunity to get to know the brand-new auditorium of the University of Miami (UM).

The Amernet Quartet & Friends (namely, violinists Maria Ioudenitch and Hyunjee Chung; Nathan Schram, viola; Gabriel Martins, cello and Marina Radiushina, piano) in “Serenade in Eighth” come together to play works by Mozart, Dvorak and Mendelssohn’s splendid Octet, in the Newman Recital Hall UM.

The festival concludes on Saturday, June 1, and Sunday, June 2, at the Sanctuary of the Arts and the Trust Pavilion of the New World Center, respectively, with Maria Loudenitch (violin), Nathan Schram (viola), Gabriel Martins (cello) and Radiushina (piano) for a grand finale with Strauss, Mozart and Brahms’s String Quartet and Piano Opus 25.

Baritone Jesse Blumberg will perform in “Love’s Magic,” on Thursday, May 16 at the Sanctuary of the Arts, Coral Gables. (Photo courtesy of IlluminArts)

The last installment of the season of the innovative IlluminArts is “Love’s Magic” on Thursday, May 16 at the Sanctuary of the Arts and on Friday, May 17, at St. Nicholas Episcopal Church (1111 E. Sample Road, Pompano Beach) with a performance of baritone Jesse Blumberg in the song cycle “Green Sneakers” specifically composed for him by Ricky Ian Gordon plus songs by Gabriel Fauré, Astor Piazzolla, Fanny Mendelssohn, Clara Schumann and Florence Price.  It promises to be an evening of fascinating edges.

Last but not least, on Tuesday, May 21, the venerable Friends of Chamber Music of Miami closes its season with the return of the notable Benjamin Grosvenor. The acclaimed British pianist will perform works by Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849) and Franz Liszt (1811-1886) at the FIU Wertheim Auditorium (11200 SW 8th St., Miami), It is worth noting that his recent recital on CD dedicated to the Hungarian composer won several international awards. Unmissable.

ArtburstMiami.com is a nonprofit media source for the arts featuring fresh and original stories by writers dedicated to theater, dance, visual arts, film, music, and more. Don’t miss a story at www.artburstmiami.com

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