RiverArts to Present Stravinsky & Rachmaninoff: Bridging an Era

Igor’s Soldier’s Tale by Patrushka

On Saturday, April 22 at 8PM, RiverArts® will present a complete performance of Igor Stravinsky’s allegory of love and redemption L’Histoire du Soldat or A Soldier’s Tale. The concert, at Reformed Church of the Tarrytowns in Tarrytown, will also include Artistic Director Peter Seidenberg playing Sergei Rachmaninoff’s soul-stirring Cello Sonata, along with Joan Tower’s highly praised 1980 chamber piece Petrushskates. Seidenberg has assembled a stellar group of musicians to interpret this diverse program.

Concert Details
Saturday, April 22nd, 8pm
Reformed Church of the Tarrytowns
42 N. Broadway
Tarrytown, NY 10591

Approximate concert time: 120 minutes including a 10-minute intermission

Tickets: $40/ea *reduced-price tickets available; see below for details on how to access discount code.

For more information and to purchase tickets visit: riverarts.org/event/riverarts-presents-stravinsky-rachmaninoff-bridging-an-era/

First performed in 1918 towards the end of World War I, Stravinsky was living in Switzerland and wanted to compose a theater piece of modest scale that could be performed in smaller towns. Based on a Russian folk tale, The Runaway Soldier and the Devil, it tells the story of a soldier who trades his violin to the devil in exchange for great wealth. Stravinsky scored the work for seven musicians- a high and low representative from each of three sections of the orchestra- violin and double bass [strings], clarinet and bassoon [winds], and trumpet and trombone [brass]. Additionally, he included a percussionist who performs on numerous percussion instruments, providing a great variety of textures and tones. Stravinsky reveled in percussion sounds and these are often a hallmark of his compositions. This performance of the complete work follows upon our performance of the trio chamber suite version in March of 2022. Award winning actor/narrator D.C. Anderson joins us as actor/narrator.

Joan Tower’s quintet, descriptively titled Petrushskates, was inspired both by a movement from Stravinsky’s Petrushka and by movements of ice skating. She wrote in a program note at the original 1980 performance “While watching the figure skating event at the recent winter Olympics, I became fascinated with the way the curving, twirling, and jumping figure are woven around a singular continuous flowing action. Combining these two ideas creates a kind of carnival on ice – a possible subtitle for this piece.” Derived from a seminal work of Stravinsky, it is both an apt companion to L’Histoire and continues our exploration of contemporary female composers begun at our last concert in March.

The Sonata for Cello and Piano by Sergei Rachmaninoff is a work of soaring and lyrical beauty. According to Peter Seidenberg, Artistic Director of RiverArts’ Chamber Music Series, “While Rachmaninoff’s cello sonata is perhaps one of his most personal statements, it also embodies the nostalgia of the Russian old guard. It yearns for the simplicity of erstwhile life of the Czars. In that way, it is the programs foil for the brash, percussive life of after the Revolution and the Great War.”

* Reduced-price tickets – Part of RiverArts’ mission is to make the arts affordable for everyone as well as to grow its network of chamber music fans in the communities it serves. Thanks to the support of Michael Tremonte, RiverArts is offering reduced-cost tickets to those either in financial need or attending a RiverArts chamber music concert for the first time. To access this discount code before purchasing tickets, email info@riverarts.org and title your message: “RIVERARTS CHAMBER DISCOUNT.”

About the Artists

D.C. Anderson [narrator] is a New York based film/television and theater actor. He received his degree in Theater Arts at Baldwin Wallace College (now University) and did post graduate work at North Dakota State University. His film/television credits include work with Oscar nominated writer/director Joseph Cedar and in Emmy nominated series The Blacklist, theater credits include roles on Broadway, Off Broadway, National Tours and Regional Theaters including work with famed U.S. theater companies Steppenwolf, Guthrie, Great Lakes Shakespeare Festival (now Great Lakes Theater Festival). www.dcanderson.net

Gregg August [double bass] is a member of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra (Associate) as well as the American Composers Orchestra, Westchester Philharmonic and Orchestra of St. Luke’s. Gregg is also the former Principal Bass of La Orquestra Ciutat de Barcelona and the Brooklyn Philharmonic. An adjunct professor at New York University and the University of Connecticut, Gregg has also been on faculty at the Bang on a Can Summer Music Festival at MASS MoCA (North Adams, MA) since 2003. Gregg received his bachelor’s degree from the Eastman School of Music and his master’s from the Juilliard School. https://www.greggaugust.com

Joshua Butcher [bassoon] is an active freelance chamber and orchestral bassoonist in the New York City area. Receiving his Masters degree in Music Performance from New York University after attending the Curtis Institute of Music and CUNY Brooklyn College, he has performed as a soloist, chamber and orchestral musician with such groups as the Albany Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Exponential Ensemble and Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players.

Britton-René Collins [percussion] Hailed as an “Astounding Virtuoso” and “Exhilarating” performer, percussionist Britton-René Collins is a winner of numerous competitions. She has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in the United States, Canada, and Europe. Britton-René began playing the piano at age five. She discovered percussion at eight years old when she became intrigued by the drum set. She quickly fell in love with playing rock, jazz, and pop music on the drum set, which ignited her enthusiasm to explore various percussion instruments and styles of music. https://brittonrene.com/

Sylvia Danburg [violin] is Associate Principal Second Violin of the Metropolitan Opera orchestra. She plays with the MET Chamber Ensemble concert series at Carnegie Hall, and has performed a wide variety of classical and cross-over music both here and abroad.metorchestramusicians.org/sylvia-volpe

Raymond Riccomini [trumpet] joined the Metropolitan Opera orchestra in 2004. Prior to this, Raymond frequently performed, toured and recorded with the New York Philharmonic, including as guest Principal trumpet. He was a founding member of the Manhattan Brass Quintet and was a winner in the 1993 Fischoff Chamber music competition. Raymond is currently on the faculty of The Mannes College of Music and serves as the Brass Department Chairman.

Anton Rist [clarinet] was recently appointed Principal Clarinet of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. He has performed with the American Ballet Theater, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the Louisiana Philharmonic, and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. In addition, he served as the Principal Clarinetist of the Princeton and New Haven Symphonies. Mr. Rist has performed at the Verbier, St. Barts, Pacific, Bravo! Vail, and Aspen Music Festivals, and is a founding member of the Montserrat Music Festival in the West Indies.

John Rojak [trombone] joined the American Brass Quintet in 1991. He has performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Boston Symphony, as well as the 16 year Broadway run of Les Misérables. Additionally, Mr. Rojak has performed with many ballet companies, including the Bolshoi, Kirov, Royal, Netherlands Dance Theatre, China, and San Francisco. He has played with the big bands of Mel Lewis, Gerry Mulligan, and Bob Mintzer. He can be heard on many classical recordings, as well as soundtracks for commercials and film, and played with Metallica, Peter Gabriel, and Styx. He is on the faculties of Juilliard, Colorado College Summer Music Festival, and the Aspen Music Festival and School. http://www.jdrojak.com/

Peter Seidenberg [cello and Artistic Director] has played in major halls throughout the US, Europe, and Asia, and served as principal cellist with the Century Orchestra of Osaka. He was a founding member of the critically acclaimed Elements Quartet which created groundbreaking commissioning projects of 30 composers. He is the cellist for the Oracle Trio, the Queen’s Chamber Band, and the New York Chamber Soloists. peterseidenberg.com

Reiko Uchida [piano] A native of California, Ms. Uchida made her solo debut with the Los Angeles Repertory Orchestra at age nine and appeared twice on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, as well as on the Emmy Awards. Ms. Uchida holds a bachelor’s degree from the Curtis Institute of Music, a Masters degree from the Mannes College of Music, and an Artist Diploma from the Juilliard School. She studied with Claude Frank, Leon Fleisher, Edward Aldwell, Sophia Rosoff, and Margo Garrett. She has taught at the Brevard Music Center and is currently a Music Associate at Columbia University.

Anna Urrey [flute] A versatile solo and chamber musician, flutist Anna Urrey has performed with the International Contemporary Ensemble, NJ Symphony Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra, New Haven Symphony, Mark Morris Dance Company, and NOVUS NY. Anna can be heard in the feature films Radium Girls, Little Women, and Goodnight Mommy, and played Principal Flute in the Experiential Orchestra’s GRAMMY-winning recording of Dame Ethel Smyth’s work, The Prison. As Co-Artistic Director of the Exponential Ensemble, she is passionate about chamber music and curating concert/educational programs. Anna is a New York Philharmonic Teaching Artist, a Wm. S. Haynes Ambassador Clinician, and on faculty at the Marymount School of NY.

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