Jeremy Denk and Friends
Mozart Reflected: Violin Sonatas with Interludes in Three Acts
Benjamin Beilman, Violin
Pamela Frank, Violin
Stefan Jackiw, Violin
Jeremy Denk, Piano
MOZART Violin Sonata in C Major, K. 6
RAVEL Allegretto from Violin Sonata
MOZART Violin Sonata in G Major, K. 301
JOHN ADAMS "Relaxed Groove" from Road Movies
MOZART Violin Sonata in D Major, K. 306
HANDEL Affetuoso and Allegro from Violin Sonata in D Major
MOZART Adagio—Allegro and Andantino cantabile (Theme and Variations) from Violin Sonata in G Major, K. 379
STRAVINSKY Gigue and Dithyrambe from Duo concertant
MOZART Violin Sonata in B-flat Major, K. 378
MOZART Violin Sonata in A Major, K. 305
WEBERN Four Pieces for Violin and Piano, Op. 7
MOZART Violin Sonata in E Minor, K. 304
SCHUBERT Allegro from Violin Sonata in A Minor, D. 385
MOZART Violin Sonata in A Major, K. 526
At a Glance
Over the course of his career, Mozart wrote no fewer than 32 duo sonatas for violin and keyboard. Most of the “juvenile” sonatas—starting with the Sonata in C Major, K. 6—were designed to showcase his virtuosity on the piano and cast the violin in a subordinate role. In contrast, the seven “mature” sonatas on tonight’s program illustrate Mozart’s increasingly evenhanded treatment of the two instruments. Five of these works—K. 301, 304, 305, 306, and 378—date from his tenure as a court musician in the service of Prince-Archbishop Colloredo in Salzburg. Traces of the older violin-accompaniment style linger in the Sonata in G Major, K. 379, written soon after Mozart moved to Vienna in 1781—but in the virtuosic A-Major Sonata, K. 526, the two parts are so intricately interwoven that it’s impossible to say which is the more prominent.
In the spirit of the smorgasbord-type concert programs of yore, Jeremy Denk has interlarded Mozart’s eight sonatas with assorted shorter pieces, ranging from the first two movements of Handel’s expansively conceived D-Major Violin Sonata to Webern’s radically condensed Four Pieces for Violin and Piano. Mozartean echoes, variously filtered through 19th-century Romanticism, 1920s-vintage neoclassicism, and contemporary minimalism can be heard in the excerpts from works by Ravel, John Adams, Stravinsky, and Schubert.
Jeremy Denk is one of America’s foremost pianists. Winner of a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship and the Avery Fisher Prize, he was recently elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He returns frequently to Carnegie Hall, and in recent seasons has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and The Cleveland Orchestra. He also recently appeared on tour with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and at Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms.
In the 2018–2019 season, Mr. Denk embarks on a three-week recital tour of the US, including appearances in Washington, Seattle, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh, culminating in a return to Carnegie Hall. His orchestral highlights include play-directing works by Mozart with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and on tour throughout the US with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, as well as continuing his work as artistic partner of the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra.
In the same season, Mr. Denk reunites with longtime collaborators Joshua Bell and Steven Isserlis on an 11-city tour of the US, including appearances in New York, Boston, Washington, and San Francisco. Further collaborations include performances of Winterreise with Eric Owens and Ives’s violin sonatas at Tanglewood with Stefan Jackiw. Abroad, he returns to the Barbican Centre in London with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, makes his debut with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and returns to the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra. He also appears in recital in Europe, including a return to Wigmore Hall as part of a three-year residency. Mr. Denk’s recording c. 1300–c. 2000 will be released this season by Nonesuch Records, with music ranging from Machaut, Binchois, and Gesualdo to Stockhausen, Ligeti, and Philip Glass. His previous recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations reached number one on the Billboard classical chart.
Mr. Denk is known for his original and insightful writing on music, which Alex Ross praises for its “arresting sensitivity and wit.” His writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The Guardian, and on the front page of The New York Times Book Review. One of his contributions to The New Yorker, “Every Good Boy Does Fine,” forms the basis of a book for future publication by Random House.
Benjamin Beilman has won praise for his passionate performances and deep, rich tone. He has appeared with many major orchestras worldwide, including The Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, hr-Sinfonieorchester, and Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich.
Highlights of Mr. Beilman’s 2018–2019 season include play-directing and curating a program with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, making debuts with Ensemble Resonanz, Munich Chamber Orchestra, and Royal Scottish National Orchestra; performing The Four Seasons with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra; and returning to the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. In recital, he appears at Lincoln Center, Spivey Hall, and the Kennedy Center, and in performances of Mozart’s violin sonatas with pianist Jeremy Denk at Philadelphia’s Perelman Theater and Carnegie Hall.
In early 2018, Mr. Beilman premiered Demons, a new work dedicated to political activist Angela Davis written by Frederic Rzewski and commissioned by Music Accord. He has performed the work across the US, including in recitals presented by the Celebrity Series of Boston, Shriver Hall, and the Gilmore Keyboard and Grand Teton Music festivals. He gave the European premiere at the Heidelberg Spring Music Festival.
In the 2017–2018 season, Mr. Beilman appeared as a soloist with the Detroit and Indianapolis symphony orchestras; Houston, Utah, Oregon, and North Carolina symphonies; and Orchestra of St. Luke’s. He also toured California with the New Century Chamber Orchestra, made his Australian concerto debut with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, and debuted with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.
Mr. Beilman came to worldwide attention following his first prize wins in the 2010 Young Concert Artists International Auditions and Montreal International Musical Competition. He went on to receive prestigious accolades, including a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship, an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and an exclusive recording contract with Warner Classics. Mr. Beilman released his first disc for the label in 2016.
Mr. Beilman studied with Almita and Roland Vamos at the Music Institute of Chicago, Ida Kavafian and Pamela Frank at the Curtis Institute of Music, and Christian Tetzlaff at the Kronberg Academy. He plays the “Engleman” Stradivarius of 1709, generously on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation.
Pamela Frank has established an outstanding international reputation across an unusually varied range of performing activity. She has performed as soloist with leading orchestras that include the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, Berliner Philharmoniker, and St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra. Ms. Frank performs regularly with the Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich and has recorded Mozart’s complete violin concertos with the orchestra and David Zinman. She has also recorded an album of works by Schubert and another of Beethoven’s violin sonatas—both with her father, Claude Frank. Ms. Frank is a sought-after chamber musician and has performed at many international festivals, including Aldeburgh, Verbier, Edinburgh, Salzburg, Tanglewood, Marlboro, and Ravinia.
In addition to her devotion to works of the standard repertoire, Ms. Frank has performed and recorded a number of contemporary works. Her accomplishments were recognized with the prestigious Avery Fisher Prize in 1999. Ms. Frank is professor of violin at the Curtis Institute of Music, and she teaches and coaches annually at the Tanglewood, Ravinia, and Verbier festivals. Since 2008, she has been artistic director of Evnin Rising Stars, a mentoring program for young artists at Caramoor. Her newest venture is Fit as a Fiddle, Inc., a collaboration with physical therapist Howard Nelson that applies their expertise toward injury prevention and treatment of musicians.
Stefan Jackiw is one of America’s foremost violinists, captivating audiences with playing that combines poetry and purity with an impeccable technique. He has appeared as soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and The Philadelphia Orchestra, among others.
This season, highlights include performances of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra under Juraj Valčuha and the Minnesota Orchestra under Ilyich Rivas. In the US, Mr. Jackiw returns to the Utah, Omaha, and Kansas City symphonies; in Europe, he tours with the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra and performs with the Residentie Orkest, Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra, and Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra. Farther afield, he appears with the Singapore Symphony Orchestra and Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, and returns to Korea to perform with the KBS Symphony Orchestra.
In recital, Mr. Jackiw performs Ives’s complete violin sonatas with Jeremy Denk at Tanglewood ahead of their upcoming recording of the works for Nonesuch Records. He also joins the acclaimed pianist alongside Benjamin Beilman and Pamela Frank in performances Mozart’s violin sonatas at Carnegie Hall and Philadelphia’s Perelman Theater. Mr. Jackiw also appears in recital with Conrad Tao, playing works by Stravinsky, Lutosławski, Brahms, and Kaija Saariaho.
Last season, following their performance of Korngold’s Violin Concerto with The Cleveland Orchestra, Mr. Jackiw reunited with Mr. Valcˇuha for performances with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra. He also made his debut with the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, DC, performing Bruch’s Violin Concerto with Marek Janowski. In recital, he appeared on tour throughout the US, with performances in Baltimore, Houston, Philadelphia, and at the Celebrity Series of Boston. He also returned to the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra with Andrew Litton and Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw with the Residentie Orkest, and made his debut at the Philharmonie de Paris.
A recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant, Mr. Jackiw holds a bachelor of arts from Harvard University and an artist diploma from the New England Conservatory. He lives in New York City.