A local prodigy of the violin joins a masterful conductor for an unforgettable event.
Currently in its 19th season and past recipient of the ArtsWestchester Arts Organization of the Year Award, Taconic Opera will be hosting its annual chamber program – Concert in A: Works by Mozart and Holst – on April 22, 2017 in Mt. Kisco. Maestro Jun Nakabayashi, Taconic Opera’s Conductor and Music Director, will once again emerge from the orchestra pit to conduct the concert which features the Taconic Opera Orchestra and the winner of the company’s November 2016 Young Virtuosi competition as well as the 2014 Juilliard Concerto Competition, violinist Hahnsol Kim. The program will consist of Mozart’s Synphony No. 2 and also his Violin Concerto No. 5, along with Gustav Holst’s St. Paul’s Suite.
Maestro Nakabayashi has chosen the title of Concert in A since both of the Mozart pieces are written in that key, and while the original Holst piece is not written in the key of A, it has a strong association with the note of A. The key of A holds an important distinction in music: all orchestras tune to the pitch of A (440 Hz), even though not too many instruments are constructed to play the scale of A as their principal key. For example, a piano is not constructed in the key of A; if you depress all the white keys, it will play the scale of C, and the famous Do Re Mi song obviously starts on the pitch of C, not A, and yet the starting letter of the alphabet (A) was assigned to the pitch of 440 Hz, as though it should be the starting point of the scale. According to the conductor, “Some people believe that a certain pitch and its scale will cause a particular sensation. The scale in A is supposed to produce an uninterrupted joy in the minds of the listener. Whether it is true or not, I have no doubt that these three wonderful masterpieces will most assuredly bring enormous joy and fascinate all the listeners.”
Hahnsol Kim, currently enrolled in the Juilliard School pursuing a Master of Music degree, began his formal studies at the age of five. In the twenty years that have elapsed since then, he has studied both at home and abroad with highly accomplished teachers, has performed all over the world as both a soloist and as part of a chamber ensemble, and has been a prizewinner of numerous concerto competitions, including first place at Juilliard in 2014 and even earlier in Osaka at the age of 15. Local upcoming appearances include a recital at Juilliard on March 30, 3017. Maestro Nakabayashi and Taconic Opera are both thrilled and honored to present this young virtuoso to Westchester audiences.
As both loyal fans and music critics will agree, Jun Nakabayashi is a masterful and charismatic conductor who will shine brilliantly when he brings these three vibrant pieces to life. Nakabayashi has been active in both the symphonic and operatic fields for almost three decades. In addition to serving as Music Director of Taconic Opera for the past 16 years, he has conducted for several other opera and orchestral companies in Europe and throughout the U.S., including the Riverside Orchestra (New York) which rose to a level of excellence it had never achieved prior to his placement as music director. His total repertoire consists of over 100 symphonic works and 30 operas.
Maestro Nakabayashi also currently serves on the faculty of the acclaimed Hoff-Barthelson Music School in Scarsdale where he conducts the Festival Orchestra and gives classes in conducting. Under his direction, the Festival Orchestra, consisting of auditioned high school orchestra students of the highest caliber, has experienced an increase in the number of students from less than 30 in 2001 to now nearly 60 members, and it is ranked as one of the top 10 youth orchestras in the nation. In 2014, the New York Philharmonic selected the Festival Orchestra for a unique partnership called the Philharmonic Academy, Jr., whose goal is to help prepare the next generation of orchestra players as well as develop music-literate audiences for the future. Only two music academies in the entire metropolitan region participate in this program.
The concert will take place on Saturday, April 22, 2017, at 4:00 pm at the Presbyterian Church of Mount Kisco, 1605 Millwood Road, Mt. Kisco, NY. Tickets for this event are $27, $20 for seniors and $15 for students and can be purchased at the door, in advance online at www.taconicopera.org, or by calling Taconic Opera’s toll-free number (855) 886-7372.