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A Concert for Peace: Sviridov “Petersburg,” Schumann & Rachmaninoff Songs at St. John’s in the Village

Saturday November 17, 2018, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

$10 – $20

Attend individual concerts for inspiration every Sunday afternoon — or, subscribe to our series, to support the work of the Foundation for the Revival of Classical Culture; Its “Bach To The Future” Music/Science Program for Students; and the new Foundation for the Revival of Classical Culture Youth Chorus. Accepting new student applications for the chorus — ages 12 to 18! http://www.ffrcc.org! To Subscribe: https://www.ffrcc.org/bach-to-the-future-page
ARTISTS: Jonathan DePeri, piano; Frank Mathis, Baritone
PROGRAM: All Russian songs
SVIRIDOV Petersburg
I. "The Weathercock"II. "The Golden Oar"III. "The Bride"IV. "A Voice from the Chorus"V. "I Am Nailed to a Tavern Counter"VI. "The Breeze Has Brought from Afar"VII. "Petersburg Song"VIII. "Those Born in Obscure Years"IX. "The Virgin in the City"
Russian songs
Two American musicians, pianist Jonathan DePeri and baritone Frank Mathis, resurrect the rarely-performed Russian song-cycle Petersburg, prompting reflection upon 100 years of Russian-American cultural exchange, and the future of music.
About the Program:
Petersburg, a song cycle by Georgy Sviridov, one of Russia's most important composers in the last half of the 20th century, is a setting of nine poems by Alexander Blok. Blok, who lived from 1880 to 1921, is often called a "Symbolist" poet, as Sviridov is called a "neo-Romantic" composer. These terms are virtually useless, especially to the listener who has the opportunity to experience this music for the first time, filled with all possible as well no particular expectations.
More than anything else, Petersburg recalls the approach to "the short story as music" that Franz Schubert's 24-song cycle, Winterreise, and several of Robert Schumann's and Johannes Brahms' song cycles and even individual songs had also advanced.  Sviridov's settings of Blok's poems are a jarring "throwback" to the lieder song cycle — a set of poems. Beethoven invented this idea with his Op. 98, An die ferne Geliebte; Brahms' Vier ernste Gesänge, (Four Serious Songs), Op. 121, his last composition, is sometimes thought of as the final word in the genre.
Sviridov and Blok, in other words, dared to write beautifully about tragedy, to reject the pervasive culture of non-musical ugliness, and to uplift the audience of both the present and the future for whom the songs were composed. This was a courageous act.
In performing Petersburg and the other selections in this concert program, the two American artists hope that the humanity clearly portrayed in these Russian songs, the dialogue of over a century among poets and musicians from Europe, Russia and the United States, might prompt the replication of the same spirit of beauty and purpose that produced them.
Frank Mathis, baritone was a soloist in the Roland Hayes Life of Christ song cycle performed at Carnegie Hall in 2016. He studied with Antonella Banaudi, among others. He has directed choruses and voice training in US and Germany. He has been a leading part of a program to expose public school children in NYC, Bronx, Harlem and Brooklyn to classical music and choral singing, and will direct the Foundation's 2018 summer music program. Jonathan de Peri, piano. Jonathan de Peri studied piano at the Manhattan School of Music before transferring to Columbia University. In 2013, he formed the Gotham Arts Salon, which creates artistic and musical gatherings that blur the line between private and public.

To Subscribe and attend any concerts in our weekly concert series: https://www.ffrcc.org/bach-to-the-future-page


Saturday November 17, 2018
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
$10 – $20
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New York, NY United States