After a year full of so many questions and unknowns, we doubled down on artistic content, centered our community as our source of inspiration, and are ready to present one of our most ambitious seasons yet. Here are some exciting highlights for 2021-22. Talent – More than 30 gifted artists from around the country to entertain and move you with their musical story-telling. New Art – 6 new works of chamber music commissioned by CMSCVA from an exciting roster of composers. Virginia – We are focusing on our Richmond region as a source of inspiration and pride. “Our Pictures” – We will kick off an ambitious multi-year project to create a new musical work based on art found in the Richmond region. With all the exciting projects going on, we hope that you will focus on CMSCVA as your home for exciting, unique programming.
In 1828, Franz Schubert gave the only public concert of his own works and wrote some of his most famous pieces. In 1955, the esteemed activist Rosa Parks sparked the Civil Rights Movement. In 2021, the award-winning Thalea String Quartet joins CMCSVA Artistic Director James Wilson to perform two visionary works inspired by these years – Schubert’s majestic Cello Quintet in C major, D.956; and String Quartet no. 5 (“Parks”) by violinist/composer Daniel Bernard Roumain (aka DBR).
Let yourself be carried away by a program of music that captures the American artistic experience from the late 19th century to the 1930’s – Theme and Variations for flute and string quartet by Amy Beach, Florence Price’s String Quartet in A minor, and the “American” String Quartet by Antonín Dvořák. It’s a story that spans the continent and crosses an ocean, vividly told by violinists Johnny Gandelsman and Njioma Grevious, violist Jordan Bak, flutist Mary Boodell, and cellist James Wilson.
Grammy Award winning violinist Johnny Gandelsman returns to CMSCVA to perform a program of newly written music for solo violin focusing on the diverse and talented voices of American composers. The program features the world premiere of A través del manto luminoso, a work commissioned by CMSCVA from Puerto Rican-born composer Angélica Negrón, who has written recent works for the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the National Symphony Orchestra. This evening also includes pieces by Rhiannon Giddens, Tyshawn Sorey, Conrad Tao, and Christina Courtin. The New Yorker has called Johnny Gandelsman “revelatory” in concert. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to hear him perform this uniquely American program.
The magical sounds of the harp inspired this dreamy collection of music evoking evenings in the salons of Paris, the night sky in India, and the feverish dreams of Franz Schubert. Two French masterpieces anchor the program: the revolutionary Sonata for Flute, Viola and Harp by Debussy (the first major work to combine these three instruments) and the elegant Fantasie by Saint-Saëns. These are paired with the mysterious Eye of Night by David Bruce, and Onutė Narbutaitė’s Winterserenade, an atmospheric envisioning of Franz Schubert’s song “Good Night.” Harpist Charles Overton makes his CMSCVA debut, joined by flutist Mary Boodell, violist Melissa Reardon and violinist Njioma Grevious.
Coffeehouses in 18th century Germany were much like today – places where people could enjoy stimulating conversion, a comforting beverage, and musical entertainment. Travel back in time with us to enjoy a program you might have heard at Leipzig’s most famous and elegant coffeehouse, Café Zimmermann, where famous composers like Bach and Telemann ran their own concert series. Our Baroque musical evening includes sonatas and concertos by Pachelbel, Fasch, Pisendal and Vivaldi, performed by a complete 15-piece orchestra of period instruments. Tickets go on sale May 31.
We end our season as we started it, with an epic work of Franz Schubert paired with a spectacular piece of music from our time. This time we combine the celebratory Octet in F major by Franz Schubert, with the world premiere of “The Eight Immortals and the Sea” by Georgia-based composer and conductor Shuying Li. CMSCVA commissioned this work for eight players who each musically represent one of the legendary Immortals, famed mythological figures from the composer’s native China. CMSCVA regulars violinist Suliman Tekalli, violist Celia Hatton, clarinetist David Lemelin are joined by new friends including cellist Seth Parker Woods and horn player Kevin Newton.