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11.2.09

(Rest of) February Concert Planner

Looking ahead to the rest of the month, what concerts will we be attending or wanting to attend? See Jens Laurson's picks at WETA, too.

THE BEST:
>> Count me in for a concert by the Hilliard Ensemble, especially when it is a program of Renaissance music -- Lassus's Requiem Mass and works by Palestrina -- in the intimate venue of the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater. February 12

Available from Amazon
Bach Concertos, J. Fischer, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
>> Without a doubt, you will want to hear both the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and their soloist, violinist Julia Fischer, in the Music Center at Strathmore. The program includes some of the Bach concertos on their recent hit CD. February 24

>> We have heard some very promising reports about up-and-coming soprano Mary Elizabeth Williams. She will sing the title role in Virginia Opera's Tosca, just in time for Valentine's Day weekend at the George Mason University Center for the Arts. February 13 and 15

>> The Alexandria Symphony Orchestra also presents an operatic valentine this weekend, and we have admired performances by the two women on the bill, soprano Julia Rolwing and mezzo-soprano Leslie Mutchler. Again, you wonder why a Valentine's program would include an opera about a conniving wife plotting to cheat on her husband (Ravel's L'heure espagnole) and love duets from ultimately doomed relationships (La bohème and Madama Butterfly), but it's opera! February 14 and 15

>> Dynamo pianist Yuja Wang brings the Prokofiev second concerto, under the baton of Charles Dutoit with the National Symphony Orchestra. The program also features Stravinsky's Firebird. February 19 to 21

>> Don't count out collegiate orchestras -- check out the program offered by the University of Maryland Symphony and Choirs at the Clarice Smith Center: Elliott Carter's Holiday Overture, Lili Boulanger's De Profundis, Richard Strauss's Death and Transfiguration, and Anton Bruckner Te Deum. Plus the proceeds from ticket sales goes to the university's undergraduate scholarship fund, to help future generations of musicians. February 21

OTHER ORCHESTRAS:
>> Washington Performing Arts Society will host the London Philharmonic at Strathmore, offering a chance to hear their dynamic young conductor, Vladimir Jurowski. February 26

>> The National Symphony Orchestra concerts at the end of the month will bring together Finnish conductor Hannu Lintu and violinist Gil Shaham in a daring program of music by Adès, Weill, and Stravinsky. February 26 to 28

CHAMBER MUSIC:
>> Many events are worth hearing this month: NSO Principal Cellist David Hardy and pianist Lambert Orkis undertake a two-concert performance of everything Beethoven wrote for that combination, at the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater (February 15); Trio con Brio Copenhagen teams up with violist James Dunham in a free concert at the Library of Congress (February 18); another free concert by musicians from the Marlboro Festival, at the Freer Gallery of Art (February 19); the St. Petersburg String Quartet plays the third string quartet of promising young composer Tudor Dominik Maican, at Dumbarton Concerts (February 21); the Bennewitz Quartet plays on the Candlelight Concert Society series at Howard Community College's Smith Theater (February 21);

BONUS:
>> Not a concert, but the leading scholar on Felix Mendelssohn, R. Larry Todd, will give a free lecture in observance of the composer's bicentenary, at the Library of Congress. No ticket required. February 19

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