The Charlotte Ballet dancers take their places on the stage. But they are not alone. As the lights come up, it is former U.S. poet laureate Robert Pinsky who stands beside them as the music begins.
It may be the end of another season for Chautauqua, but for the Institution’s senior administrative staff, it’s just the beginning of nine months spent brainstorming, planning and programming for summer 2015.
The perpetual motion of the 20th century — age of the Internet, speed and the bomb; of image and invention, for better or for worst, danced to an accelerated clock, ceaseless, relentless, stopping only on occasion, to catch a breath, to grieve, or for a night’s breeze, a dog’s bark, perhaps the last concert of the 2014 Chautauqua season.
The 2014 Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra season is officially one of 86 in the history books.
Online employment sites often suggest that last impressions make the best impressions, at least for job seekers who are last in a series of interviews for an open position. If that is true, the Israeli-American conductor Daniel Boico has an inside track among the field of eight vying to grab the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra’s vacant music director position.
One of Chautauqua’s favored sons makes his return to the Amphitheater stage this weekend, and he’s bringing another transcendent Chautauquan with him. At 8:15 p.m. Saturday, pianist Alexander Gavrylyuk will make his ninth appearance as a soloist with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra, this time under the direction of guest conductor Daniel Boico.
On Thursday night, the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra presented “Concerto for Viola and Orchestra,” a work Chautauqua Institution co-commissioned from composer Aaron Jay Kernis, with soloist Paul Neubauer in the spotlight. With a raw spirit and exceptional virtuosity, Neubauer beautifully portrayed Kernis’ masterwork, one underpinned by relationships and which focused on folk tunes, as the composer described it from the Amphitheater stage.
At 8:15 p.m. tonight in the Amphitheater, Neubauer will perform the Chautauqua premiere of renowned American composer Aaron Jay Kernis’ “Concerto for Violin and Orchestra” with the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra under the direction of guest conductor Christof Perick.
When a conductor demonstrates historical knowledge by adjusting the scope of expression to accommodate the composer’s — what a different kind of conductor might call restraint — the audience is in for a treat and an education.
At 8:15 p.m. tonight in the Amphitheater, German maestro Christof Perick will conduct his first of two concerts this week. Perick is the seventh of the eight candidates to appear with the CSO this summer; Daniel Boico will be with the orchestra for its final two concerts on Saturday and Aug. 19.