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Philharmonic presents Grammy-nominated violinist in season’s final concert

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Violinist Jennifer Frautschi is set to play April 8 with the Brevard Philharmonic.

Sunday April 8 at 3 p.m., two spirited performers will take the Porter Center Stage at Brevard College for the final concert of Brevard Philharmonic’s Artistic Director Search Season. The guest soloist will be two time Grammy nominee and Avery Fisher career grant recipient, violinist Jennifer Frautschi, playing Concerto No. 1 in G Minor for Violin and Orchestra by Max Bruch. Frautschi and the Philharmonic will be under the expert direction of the final Artistic Director/Conductor candidate, James Fellenbaum, currently Resident Conductor of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra and Director of Orchestras at the University of Tennessee. The theme of the afternoon is Free Spirits. Maestro Fellenbaum and the orchestra will also take flight with the delightful Overture to Die Fledermaus by Strauss and Dvorak’s Symphony No. 8 in G Major, op.88.

The concert will open with the exuberant chords of the overture to the well known operetta, Die Fledermaus, “The Bat.” The operetta premiered in 1874 at the Theater An Der Wien in Vienna and has been a part of its regular repertoire ever since. The piece was so well received at its debut that the audience interrupted the music several times with applause.

Jennifer Frautschi joins the orchestra on stage next, with the Bruch, one of the most popular violin concertos in the repertoire. Bruch, 26 when he started the piece, labored for four long years on the composition. At last in 1868, after “having rewritten it over a dozen times,” Bruch was ready to debut the piece, which was picked up and played so often by all the great violinists of the day to the extent that it overshadowed all of Bruch’s’ other works.

Ms. Frautschi has garnered worldwide acclaim as an adventurous classical musician with a remarkably wide-ranging repertoire. In addition to performing with orchestras all over the world as well as this country, Ms. Frautschi has appeared as soloist with Pierre Boulez and the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Christoph Eschenbach and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Festival, and at Wigmore Hall and Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival.

Her extensive discography includes several recordings for the Naxos label: the Stravinsky Violin Concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra of London, conducted by the legendary Robert Craft, and two GRAMMY-nominated recordings with the Fred Sherry Quartet, of Schoenberg’s Concerto for String Quartet and Orchestra [nominated for ‘Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (with Orchestra)’ in 2006] and the Schoenberg Third String Quartet [nominated for ‘Best Chamber Music Performance’ in 2011].

Reviewers have used words like, “…staggering energy and finesse,” “…wonderfully nuanced,” and “…a joyful, flawless performance.” The Washington Post says of her, “ Frautschi stole the show with a commanding, incisive and absolutely riveting performance.”

After intermission, the Philharmonic takes on Dvorak with his Symphony No. 8 in G Major. An unusually cheerful and optimistic piece for Dvorak, it was composed in 1889 on the occasion of his election to the Bohemian Academy of Science, Literature and the Arts. The symphony is cheery and lyrical and draws its inspiration from the Bohemian folk music that Dvorak loved.

Maestro Fellenbaum is not only the Resident Conductor of the Knoxville Symphony, but also the Music Director of the Knoxville Symphony Youth Orchestra Association. His involvement with young people and music in the schools plus his innovative and dynamic programming for the Knoxville Symphony have added a bright dimension to the quality of life in Knoxville.

Jennifer Frautschi’s appearance is sponsored by Manuel Reyes-Otalora and Elizabeth Illg-Reyes.

A bonus this season is the opportunity to buy a raffle ticket for an oil painting by local Brevard artist, Barbara Hawk. Raffle tickets are $30 each to benefit the Philharmonic’s Music in the Schools Program and its other outreach work. The painting will be on display at the concert and at the Philharmonic’s new office. The winner will be announced at intermission at the last concert, April 8, 2018. You need not be present to win.

The Brevard Philharmonic is a non profit organization comprised of local and regional musicians, presenting five concerts annually at Brevard College’s Porter Center for the Performing Arts. Its mission is to inspire, educate, and enrich our audiences through exceptional, professional musical performances and community outreach.

Tickets are on sale now and will be available at $25 to $35 per concert. Call 828-884-4221 for details, stop in at our brand new office across from Brevard College at 521 North Broad Street, or use our Pick Your Seat option at brevardphilharmonic.org.

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