Acclaimed pianist Garrick Ohlsson joins Poland’s internationally renowned Wroclaw Philharmonic Orchestra for a Feb. 19 concert at North Central College.
The performance begins at 6 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19, in North Central College’s acoustically stunning Wentz Concert Hall at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave, Naperville. Tickets are $75 and $65; call the North Central College Box Office at 630-637-SHOW (7469) or visit northcentralcollege.edu/showtix.
Since winning the 1970 Chopin International Piano Competition, Ohlsson has established himself worldwide as a musician of magisterial interpretive and technical prowess. In addition to his reputation as among the world’s foremost exponents of the music of Frederic Chopin, Ohlsson commands a broad repertoire that includes masterful interpretations of Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert.
“With the imprimatur of the Chopin competition and the interpretive acuity that helped him win it, he has built an unassailable reputation as a Chopin pianist whose recordings of the composer’s works belong in every Chopin lover’s collection,” The New York Times said in a Jan. 13, 2012, article about Ohlsson. “Yet he has confounded those who would bind him to Chopin by exploring a huge repertory.”
Ohlsson will perform Karol Szymanowski’s Concert Overture in E major, Op. 12 and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, Op. 58 with the Wroclaw Philharmonic Feb. 19. The program includes the orchestra’s performance of Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No. 7 in D Minor, Op. 70.
Since its inception in 1954, the National Forum of Music (NFM) Wroclaw Philharmonic Orchestra has drawn on the rich traditions of its home city in Poland, which has played host to great artists such as Wagner, Brahms and Mahler.
The Wroclaw Philharmonic was established by Adam Kopycinski and Radomir Reszke and owes its professional development to its director-conductors. The Wroclaw Philharmonic’s current general director is Andrzej Kosendiak, a conductor and proponent of early and choral music as well as the initiator of numerous musical festivals and competitions.
The artistic director is Maestro Jacek Kaspszyk, former artistic and general director of the Polish National Opera and a leading guest conductor with orchestras, including the London Symphony and Chamber Orchestra of Europe. His experiences have given Wroclaw audiences the opportunity to fully appreciate the power and beauty of the masterworks performed.
During its 2011-2012 season, Wroclaw Philharmonic musicians will perform works by such composers as Shostakovich, Kolar, Tchaikovsky, Brahms, Prokofiev, Stravinsky and J. Strauss, as well as contemporary pieces.
Major soloists appearing with the Wroclaw Philharmonic have included Martha Argerich, Midori, Juan Diego Florez, Ramon Jaffé and Peter Jablonski. The orchestral soloists are graduates of prestigious European music academies, educated under the guidance of respected artists and teachers. Wroclaw Philharmonic players are not only professional musicians, but passionate aficionados of music representing several generations.
The ensemble performs about 100 programs per season in renowned concert halls throughout the world, including Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center in New York, the Musikverein in Vienna and Festspielhaus in Salzburg. The Philharmonic also records for radio and television and has many CD recordings to its credit. In 2009, the Orchestra was awarded a Gold Disc for its recording of its DVD, “Symphonically Perfect.”
USG Corporation and Navistar, Inc. are underwriting sponsors of North Central College’s 2011-2012 Sesquicentennial Fine & Performing Arts Season. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. This performance is one of many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. North Central offers a variety of venues accommodating a rich range of local and world-class events, performances and space needs for the public. For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit northcentralcollege.edu/show or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).