Wednesday, January 09, 2013

January 2013 Music Preview

There are other classical music concerts this month outside of the San Francisco Symphony that are of unusual interest. Old First Church Concerts at Van Ness and Sacramento is featuring the Santa Rosa String Quartet this Friday the 11th at 8PM in music from 1799 (Boccherini, Beethoven and Haydn). Friday the 25th will feature ZOFO, the two-pianist/one piano combo of Keisuke Nakagoshi above and Eva-Maria Zimmermann, in music they have commissioned.

I recently complained about a lack of Benjamin Britten programming (above) for his 100th birthday around San Francisco this year, but San Francisco Performances is doing its part with four Saturday 10AM concerts at the Herbst Theatre with Robert Greenberg lecturing and the Alexander String Quartet playing. The series is called The String Quartet at a Time of War: Benjamin Britten and His Contemporaries, with Britten's string quartets paired with ones by Haas, Bartok, Walton and Shostakovich. The various program titles are taken from Winston Churchill's history of World War Two, which is rather odd since Britten was a lifelong pacifist and a conscientious objector during that conflict.

The New Century Chamber Orchestra, led by violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, is going on tour again across the country and is having a bon voyage concert this Sunday at Herbst Theatre at 4PM. You can also attend an Open Rehearsal at 10AM on Friday of the same program of Mendelssohn, Villa-Lobos, Bolcom and Richard Strauss with coffee and doughnuts (photo above is of an earlier NCCO open rehearsal.)

The San Francisco Conservatory of Music on Oak Street starts their calendar of almost nightly concerts, with a highlight recital on Saturday the 19th by alumnus soprano Marnie Breckinridge above. She will be singing the works of contemporary Bay Area composers: Jake Heggie, Henry Mollicone, David Conte, David Garner, Jack Perla, Kurt Erickson, Conrad Susa and Gordon Getty. Everybody will probably be there, so you should be there too.

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