Ojai Music Festival Announces 2012 Programming

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Ojai Music Festival Announces 2012 Programming

Pianist Leif Ove Andsnes debuts as Music Director

June 7-10, 2012

Leif Ove Andsnes makes his Ojai debut, leading the 66th annual Ojai Music Festival June 7-12, 2012, as Music Director. Joining Mr. Andsnes and also making Ojai debuts are the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra, pianist Marc-André Hamelin, clarinetist Martin Fröst, mezzo-soprano Christianne Stotijn, violist Antoine Tamestit, conductor/composer Reinbert de Leeuw, and composer John Luther Adams. Returning to Ojai for the first time since 2008 will be actress Barbara Sukowa.

Featured works include the United States premiere of Piano Concerto No. 2 “La Mattina” by Bent Sørensen; Reinbert de Leeuw’s cycle of 21 Schubert and Schumann songs ingeniously reworked for singing actress and ensemble, Im wunderschönen Monat Mai  (“In the Merry Month of May”) with Barbara Sukowa; and the West Coast premiere of John Luther Adams’ Inuksuit for 48 percussionists to be performed throughout Libbey Park.

“The Ojai Music Festival places music of our time at the center of what it does, but unlike a contemporary music festival that concentrates on just what’s new, Ojai builds a case for how the music of today fits into the context of the longer, historical conversation – it explores why music matters today. Four years ago, I invited the pianist Leif Ove Andsnes to serve as Ojai’s 2012 Music Director. One of the great musicians of our day, Leif Ove’s inquisitive commitment to creative programming and to building a community of artists, audience and place makes him an ideal artistic partner for Ojai.”  Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris 

November 9, 2011 Ojai, California — Ojai Music Festival Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris and 2012 Music Director Leif Ove Andsnes today announce programming highlights for the upcoming 66th Festival. From June 7 to June 10, 2012, the Ojai Music Festival will explore the musical interests and celebrate artistic collaborations of this year’s music director, Leif Ove Andsnes.

Norwegian pianist Leif Ove Andsnes is one of the most sought-after pianists of his generation. He appears regularly with the world’s leading orchestras and gives recitals in the foremost concert halls. Also an active chamber musician and award-winning recording artist, Mr. Andsnes performs at the Risør Chamber Music Festival, Norway, which he co-founded and served as artistic director from 1992 to 2010. As in Risør, the Ojai Music Festival is – at its core – a community of artists in residence who join together in a journey of lively and eclectic music-making and exploration with an engaged and open-minded audience. Coupled with an extensive series of free Beyond the Bowl events (to be announced at a later date), the 66th Ojai Music Festival will celebrate the convergence of exceptional artists, stimulating and diverse repertoire, one of the most remarkable audiences for music anywhere, and the idyllic setting of Ojai in a four-day immersion of almost continual music-making, discussion and community.

“When I visited Ojai for the first time last April, I fell in love with the place, saw the possibilities and came away with the inspiration for our Festival. Ojai, and its famously engaged audiences, offer an ideal, nurturing environment for intimate musical exploration by me and my colleagues. My thoughts on programming are heavily influenced by place. As in Risør, the idyllic, unspoiled and honest atmosphere of Ojai seemed to demand programs that are built not around specific artists but rather pieces in both a spatial and temporal context. Our Ojai programs reflect these views of context, whether in the spare transparent music of Bent Sørensen, the vivid musical pictures of place and literature by Charles Ives, the reflections upon and refractions of Robert Schumann and Franz Schubert by György Kurtag and Reinbert de Leeuw, the vast open spaces captured in music of John Luther Adams, or the focused intensity of Stravinsky’s own two-piano arrangement of his massive Sacre du Printemps,” commented 2012 Music Director Leif Ove Andsnes.

Joining Mr. Andsnes will be many of his favorite artistic collaborators: the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra; pianist Marc-André Hamelin; conductor/composer Reinbert de Leeuw; clarinetist Martin Fröst; violist Antoine Tamestit; mezzo soprano Christianne Stotijn; actress Barbara Sukowa; and composer John Luther Adams.

The 2012 Festival opens on Thursday, June 7 at 5pm with a special free Beyond the Bowl event – a performance of John Luther Adams’ Inuksuit – an extraordinary work written to be performed outside, for between 9 and 99 percussionists and piccolo players. In Ojai, Inuksuit will be performed by 48 players stationed throughout Libbey Park and Libbey Bowl. In this enveloping work, the players move throughout the park, while audience members wander through them as they play. The performance is directed by percussionist/conductor Steven Schick for whom the work was written. As part of the 2011 Festival, Mr. Schick appeared in the world premiere performance of Peter Sellars’ staging of George Crumb’s Winds of Destiny.

Thursday night’s concert features Mr. Andsnes’ frequent collaborator, the celebrated pianist Marc-André Hamelin, in Charles Ives’ Concord Sonata, a work that Mr. Hamelin has been performing regularly since he was fifteen. Also on the program will be Dmitri Shostakovich’s late song cycle Six Poems of Mariana Tsvetaeva, Op. 143 with rising star mezzo-soprano Christianne Stotijn, accompanied by Mr. Andsnes.

Reinbert de Leeuw’s cycle of 21 songs inspired by works of Schumann and Schubert, Im wunderschönen Monat Mai (“In the Merry Month of May”), is the centerpiece of Friday evening’s concert on June 8. Written for actress Barbara Sukowa, who first performed at the Ojai Music Festival in 2008 in Michael Jarrell’s Cassandre conducted by David Robertson, Im wunderschönen Monat Mai is an ingenious reworking of Schubert and Schumann songs for a singing actress and ensemble. The composer joins the ensemble of 15 musicians from the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra at the piano. Opening the program is the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra’s string orchestra arrangement of Janáček’s Quartet No. 2 Intimate Letters.

The two Saturday concerts showcase the many facets of Leif Ove Andsnes – concerto soloist, advocate of new music, chamber musician, accompanist, musical collaborator and recitalist.

The morning concert explores Germanic composers Richard Wagner, Alban Berg and Ludwig van Beethoven, as well as emerging Norwegian composer Elvind Buene’s Langsam und Schmachtend, which reflects on the music of Wagner. The centerpiece of the program will be Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder featuring Christianne Stotijn joined by the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra. The work will be interspersed with movements of Alban Berg’s Four Pieces for Clarinet and Piano Op. 5 performed by the captivating Martin Fröst with Mr. Andsnes at the piano. For the rest of the program, Mr. Hamelin joins Ms. Stotijn in Berg’s early Four Songs, Op. 2, and the concert concludes with Mr. Andsnes performing Beethoven Waldstein Sonata.

The Saturday evening concert features the U.S. premiere of Norwegian composer Bent Sørensen’s Piano Concerto No. 2 “La Mattina” with Mr. Andsnes as soloist. After intermission, Martin Fröst performs Ander Hillborg’s theatrical Peacock Tales, a choreographed concerto for solo clarinet and tape. The concert concludes with two trios with Mr. Fröst, Mr. Andsnes and Antoine Tamestit – Mozart’s Trio in E flat “Kegelstatt” and Kurtág’s haunting Hommage à Robert Schumann. The concert opens with a work by the Icelandic composer Haflidi Hallgrímsson.

The June 10 Sunday morning concert promises to be lively and surprising with Ms. Stotijn, joined by Mr. Hamelin, performing five of William Bolcom’s animated Cabaret Songs and concluding with Aaron Copland’s Clarinet Concerto performed and led by Martin Fröst with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra. The first half includes Bartók’s delightful Contrasts for clarinet, piano and violin, and the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra’s unique interpretation of the Holberg Suite by their countryman Edvard Grieg.

The Festival closes Sunday evening with Igor Stravinsky’s trailblazing arrangement for two pianos of the massive Sacre du Printemps in a pianistic tour de force with Leif Ove Andsnes and Marc-André Hamelin. The concert also features Reinbert de Leeuw conducting the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra in John Adams’ iconic Shaker Loops, the only piece in the entire Festival with conductor. The concert opens with Debussy’s Danses Sacrée et profane for strings and solo harp.

In addition to the above Festival core concerts, Ojai’s eclectic Beyond the Bowl events will be expanded and interspersed throughout the weekend to enhance the Festival experience. The purpose is to give Festival patrons the opportunity for an even richer and more varied musical and intellectual experience through the weekend. Beyond the Bowl events are free, with priority seating given to Festival subscribers and donors followed by a release of limited tickets for the general public.  Announcement of these events takes place in February.

An Ojai tradition, the Festival Symposium, moderated by former Festival Artistic Director and Dean of The Julliard School Ara Guzelimian, immerses audiences in Festival programming, ideas, and artists. The Symposium events, starting Thursday afternoon June 7 and running through Friday June 8, will also be announced in February 2012.

One hour before each Libbey Bowl concert, musicologist and internationally recognized lecturer Christopher Hailey offers Concert Insights, a free discussion of the program with featured artists.

Ojai North! in Berkeley, CA, June 12-14, 2012

Ojai North!, a new multi-year residency project in partnership with Cal Performances in Berkeley, debuted following the 2011 Festival in Ojai.  From June 12 – 14, 2012, Ojai Music Festival programs and artists will be in residence for six concerts on the campus of the University of California Berkeley marking the second year of a multi-year partnership. Ojai North! includes annual reprises of some Ojai Festival concerts in Berkeley, as well as joint commissions and co-productions. With Ojai North!, signature Ojai Music Festival programming is available through live performances to a wider audience, expanding the Festival’s reach beyond Ojai.  Additional information on Ojai North! can be found at OjaiFestival.org and CalPerformances.org.

Detailed concert program information is included below, and updated concert and additional event information will be available in February 2012.

66th OJAI MUSIC FESTIVAL, June 7-10, 2012
Thomas W. Morris, Artistic Director
Leif Ove Andsnes, Music Director
Concerts at the new Libbey Bowl unless otherwise noted

Thursday June, 2012
location TBA
Festival Symposium
3:00pm-4:30pm

Ara Guzelimian, symposium director
Topics and guests to be announced

Thursday, June 7, 2012
SPECIAL FREE BEYOND THE BOWL EVENT
5:00pm
Libbey Park
John Luther Adams: Inuksuit (for 48 percussionists)
Steven Schick, director

Thursday, June 7, 2012
8:00pm
Libbey Bowl

Program to include:
Shostakovich: Six Poems of Marina Tsvetaeva, Op. 143
Christianne Stotijn, mezzo soprano
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano

            *****

Ives: Concord Sonata
Marc-André Hamelin, piano

Friday 9, 2012
Ojai Community Church
Festival Symposium
1:00pm-4:30pm

Ara Guzelimian, symposium director
Topics and guests to be announced

Friday, June 8, 2012
8:00pm
Libbey Bowl

Janáček: String Quartet No. 2 “Intimate Letters”  (arr. for string orchestra)
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

                                    *****

Reinbert de Leeuw: Im wunderschönen Monat Mai (“In the Merry Month of May”)
A Cycle of 21 Songs on Schumann and Schubert”
Reinbert de Leeuw, piano
Barbara Sukowa, actress
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

Saturday, June 9, 2012
11:00am
Libbey Bowl

Eivind Buene: Langsam und Schmachtend
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

Wagner (arr. Mottl): Wesendonck Liede
Christianne Stotijn, mezzo soprano
Norwegian Chamber Orchestre

interspersed with

Berg: Four Pieces Op. 5
Martin Fröst, clarinet
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano

                        *****

Berg: Four Songs, Op. 2
Christianne Stotijn, mezzo soprano
Marc-André Hamelin, pian

Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 21 C major, Op. 53 “Waldstein”
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano

Saturday June 9, 2012
8:00pm
Libbey Bowl

Haflidi Hallgrímsson: Poemi, Op. 7
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra
Terje Tønneson, violin

Bent Sørensen: Piano Concerto No. 2 “La Mattina”   American premiere
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

                        *****

Anders Hillborg: Peacock Tales (version for clarinet and tape)
Martin Fröst, clarinet

Mozart: Trio in E flat “Kegelstatt”  K. 498
Martin Fröst, clarinet
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano
Antoine Tamestit, viola

György Kurtág: Hommage à Robert Schumann
Martin Fröst, clarinet and bass drum
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano
Antoine Tamestit, violin

Sunday, June 10, 2012
11:00am
Libbey Bowl

Bartók: Contrasts
Marc-André Hamelin, piano
Martin Fröst, clarinet
Øyvind Bjorå, violin

Grieg: Holberg Suite (arr. for string orchestra)
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

*****

William Bolcom: Cabaret Songs (selections)
Marc-André Hamelin, piano
Christianne Stotijn, mezzo soprano

Copland: Clarinet Concerto
Martin Fröst, clarinet
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

Sunday June 10, 2012
5:30pm
Libbey Bowl

Debussy: Danses sacrée et profane
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

John Adams: Shaker Loops
Reinbert de Leeuw, conductor
Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

                                    *****

John Luther Adams: Dark Waves (version for two pianos and tape)
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano
Marc-André Hamelin, piano

Stravinsky: Sacre du printemps
Leif Ove Andsnes, piano
Marc-André Hamelin, piano

Artists and programs are subject to change. 

*******

LEIF OVE ANDSNES, music director

The New York Times has called Leif Ove Andsnes “a pianist of magisterial elegance, power and insight,” and the Wall Street Journal described him as “one of the most gifted musicians of his generation.” He has won international acclaim giving recitals and playing concertos in the world’s leading concert halls and with the foremost orchestras. Mr. Andsnes is an active recording artist, as well as an avid chamber musician, regularly appearing at Norway’s Risør Festival of Chamber Music. In 2012, he will serve as Music Director of the Ojai Music Festival in California.

Beethoven will figure prominently in Leif Ove Andsnes’s 2011-12 season and beyond, in concerto performances, recitals and recordings. He will perform the First Piano Concerto in Vienna, Pittsburgh, Montreal and Boston; and will play the Third Piano Concerto in Spain with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, and in Philadelphia under Herbert Blomstedt.  Both works are scheduled for concerts across Scandinavia, and Andsnes will take them on tour with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra through Italy, plus Dresden, Prague, and Bergen. His Prague performances will be recorded live for his Sony Classical label debut: the beginning of a multi-year project entitled “Beethoven – A Journey,” playing and recording all five of Beethoven’s piano concertos.

During the 2011-12 season, Andsnes will perform Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with Hannover’s NDR Radiophilharmonie, Japan’s NHK Symphony, and his hometown orchestra, the Bergen Philharmonic; music by Chopin, Debussy, Bartók and Haydn will be featured on a recital program in sixteen cities across North America and Europe; and a spring recital tour featuring songs by Mahler and Shostakovich brings Andsnes back to the States for performances with baritone Matthias Goerne.

Among the many highlights of Leif Ove Andsnes’s 2010-11 season were two residencies: with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Bergen Philharmonic. He also signed an exclusive recording contract with Sony Classical; his previous releases – more than 30 discs for EMI Classics – have earned him seven Grammy nominations and five Gramophone Awards, with the New York Times calling his 2004 recording of the Grieg Piano Concerto a “Best CD of the Year.”

Leif Ove Andsnes has received Norway’s most distinguished honor – Commander of the Royal Norwegian Order of St. Olav – as well as the prestigious Peer Gynt Prize, the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist Award, and the Gilmore Artist Award. Saluting his many achievements, Vanity Fair named Andsnes one of the “Best of the Best” in 2005.

Andsnes was born in Karmøy, Norway in 1970, and studied at the Bergen Music Conservatory under the renowned Czech professor Jiří Hlinka. Andsnes is a Professor at the Norwegian Academy of Music in Oslo, a Visiting Professor at the Royal Music Conservatory of Copenhagen, and a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music. In June 2010, he achieved one of his proudest accomplishments to date: he became a father.

Norwegian Chamber Orchestra

The Norwegian Chamber Orchestra is one of Norway´s cultural mainstays earning domestic recognition after the debut in 1977. The international breakthrough came with the 1979 release of Grieg´s complete works for string orchestra. Much of the orchestra’s continuity and artistic growth can be attributed to excellence in leadership. Terje Tønnessen was engaged as the orchestra´s artistic director at the orchestra’s inception; Iona Brown held the position from 1981 to 2001;and Tønnesen returned in 2001.In 2002, Leif Ove Andsnes became the orchestra’s first guest leader.

Many of the orchestra’s recordings have been awarded prizes, both nationally and internationally. This includes Gramophone´s CD-prize for the 2000 recording of Haydn piano concertos, with soloist Leif Ove Andsnes. This recording was also nominated for a Grammy Award in two categories, and received the Norwegian Musician Prize for best classical music recording. The orchestra is an independent foundation with federal and private funding. International engagements are arranged through IMG.

Reinbert de Leeuw
Born in Amsterdam, Reinbert de Leeuw is a conductor, composer and pianist widely known and highly respected in the field of modern and contemporary music. Since 1974 he has been conductor and music director of the Schönberg Ensemble. He is also the author of a book on Charles Ives, and collaborated on eight film documentary series of twentieth-century composers such as Messiaen, Ligeti, Gubaidulina, Vivier, and Górecki.

Mr. de Leeuw regularly conducts Holland’s foremost orchestras and ensembles, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, New Sinfonietta Amsterdam, Residentie Orchestra The Hague and ensembles such as the Netherlands Chamber Choir, the ASKO and the Netherlands Wind ensembles. He was guest artistic director of the Aldeburgh Festival (1992) and was artistic director of the Tanglewood Festival of Contemporary Music (1994-1998). In the 1995-96 season he was the center point of the ‘Carte Blanche’ series in the Concertgebouw Amsterdam. He is involved in the organization of the series ‘Contemporaries’ at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam. He lectures at the Juilliard School of Music in New York), Japan and Australia where he has served as artistic advisor for the contemporary music series of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra from 2000 up to 2004.

 

Martin Fröst
Martin Fröst is internationally recognized as one of the most exciting wind players around today. Forthcoming concerts include debuts with the Minnesota Orchestra and Los Angeles Philharmonic with Osmo Vänskä (performing Kalevi Aho’s Concerto which was commissioned for him by the Borletti-Buitoni Trust), Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra under Paavo Järvi, NHK Symphony Orchestra under Sir Neville Marriner, and both the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra and Radio Chamber Orchestra (at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw). He will also return to the Göteborg Symfoniker under Gustavo Dudamel, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra with Gianandrea Noseda, the Wiener Symphoniker under Vasily Petrenko (at the 2011 Bregenzer Festspiele), and the Academy of Saint Martin in the Fields. In spring 2011, He toured with the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie and Andrey Boreyko and with the Australian Chamber Orchestra with whom he is both performing and recording in Australia in May 2011 before their European tour.

Mr. Fröst has been artist in residence with the Hamburger Symphoniker, Göteborg Symfoniker, Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the Konzerthaus Dortmund. He will also play in and direct a number of projects with orchestras such as the Oslo Philharmonic and Swedish Chamber orchestras, the Zürcher Kammerorchester and the Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. Mr. Fröst is the artistic director of the Vinterfest in Mora, Sweden and artistic director of the International Chamber Music Festival in Stavanger, Norway. He records exclusively for BIS.

Marc-André Hamelin

Marc-André Hamelin’s unique blend of musicianship and virtuosity brings forth interpretations remarkable for their freedom, originality, and prodigious mastery of the piano’s resources. Long known for his bold exploration of unfamiliar pianistic terrain, Mr. Hamelin has increasingly turned his attention to the established masterworks of the piano literature, in performances and recordings of the piano sonatas of Haydn, major works by Mozart, Schumann, Brahms, Chopin and others. Highlights of recent seasons include a string of critically acclaimed appearances with the symphony orchestras of Boston, Minnesota, Indianapolis and San Francisco; a series of dates at New York City’s Lincoln Center – with Louis Langrée and Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, in recital for the “Great Performers” series, in chamber concerts with Midori, and playing Haydn and Mozart concerti with Sir Neville Marriner and the Academy of St. Martin the Fields; an international tour and subsequent recording of the Schumann Piano Quintet with the Takács String Quartet; and the Pro Musica Society of Montreal’s celebration of “The Art of Marc-André Hamelin” featuring a weeklong series of instrumental and vocal chamber music concerts, a solo recital and Beethoven and Haydn concerti.

Under exclusive contract with Hyperion Records, Mr. Hamelin has received eight Grammy nominations including a 2008 nomination for Marc-André Hamelin in a state of jazz (CDA67656). His latest solo release Haydn: Piano Sonatas, Vol. 2 (CDA67710), follows up the critically acclaimed first installment. In the fall of 2010 Hyperion releases a disc of Mr. Hamelin’s own compositions, Etudes and other works. His complete Hyperion discography numbers more than forty albums, and includes concertos and works for solo piano by composers such as Alkan, Busoni, Godowsky, and Medtner, as well as brilliantly received performances of Brahms, Chopin, Haydn, Liszt and Schumann.

Christianne Stotijn
Christianne Stotijn was born in Delft, the Netherlands and received her first solo diploma for violin in 2000. She then pursued intensive vocal studies with Udo Reinemann at the Amsterdam Conservatory graduating cum laude. She furthered her studies with Jard van Nes, Noelle Barker and Dame Janet Baker. She is the recipient of the prestigious 2005/06 ECHO Rising Star, 2005 Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award and the 2008 Dutch Music Prize, and was a BBC New Generation Artist in 2007. An impassioned performer of lieder, Ms. Stotijn has performed recitals in many of the world’s premier concert halls with her accompanist Joseph Breinl and Julius Drake with whom she has had a long standing and fruitful collaboration.

Ms. Sotijn’s recital career has included peformances at the Wigmore Hall, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Konzerthaus and Musikverein in Vienna, Carnegie Hall, Theatre des Champs-Elysées Theatre du Chatelet in Paris, Mozarteum Salzburg, the Palais des Beaux Arts Brussels, the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Spivey Hall in Atlanta. She made her debut at the Berlin Philharmonic performing Schoenberg’s “Das Buch der Hängende Gardens’ with pianist Mitsuko Uchida. The eminent conductor Bernard Haitink has been an influential figure in Ms Stotijn’s career. Following her successful performances of Mahler’s Rückert Lieder with the Orchestre National de France and the Concertgebouw Orchestra, Mr. Haitink invited her for the Mahler 2 with the BBC Proms, Beethoven 9 at the Lucerne Festival, Ruckert Lieder with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, St. Matthew Passion with the Boston Symphony as well as Das Lied von der Erde with the London Symphony Orchestra.

Barbara Sukowa
Barbara Sukowa is a German theatre and film actress, last seen in Ojai in 2008 performing Michael Jarrell’s Cassandre. Ms. Sukowa’s stage debut was in 1971 in Berlin, in a production of Peter Handke‘s Der Ritt über den Bodensee. Günter Beelitz invited her to join the ensemble of the Darmstädter National Theatre in the same year. She also worked in Frankfurt am Main and Hamburg, in collaboration with directors such as Luc Bondy and Ivan Nagel. Her roles included Marion in Büchner‘s Danton’s Death and Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Other Shakespeare roles in Europe were Rosalind in As You Like It and Desdemona in Othello. Ms. Sukowa also performed in Ibsen‘s The Master Builder.

Ms. Sukowa has also developed a further career as a classical music narrator and speaker. She has performed the speaker’s role in Arnold Schönberg’s Pierrot lunaire, first with the Schoenberg Ensemble under Reinbert de Leeuw. Other performances have been with ensembles in Paris, London, Berlin, St. Petersburg, Madrid, Rome, Tokyo, Salzburg, Los Angeles, and New York City. She has performed the Speaker’s role in Schönberg’s Gurrelieder with the Berlin Philharmonic under Claudio Abbado, and is featured on the recordings with Abbado and the Vienna Philharmonic, and Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Philharmonia. She narrated Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf both in concert and on record, as well as a recording of Mendelssohn’s music for A Midsummer Night’s Dream. She has performed in Arthur Honegger’s Jeanne d’Arc au bûcher and Kurt Weill’s The Threepenny Opera. She performed the speaking role in the US premiere of Michael Jarrell‘s Cassandre in March 2006, and in the New York City premiere that month, with musicians from the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra.

Antoine Tamestit
Antoine Tamestit was born in Paris and studied with Jean Sulem, Jesse Levine and Tabea Zimmermann. He was the recipient of several coveted prizes including First Prize at the Maurice Vieux Competition (Paris, 2000) and the William Primrose Competition (Chicago, 2001), First Prize at the Young Concert Artists (YCA) International Auditions which led to his New York, Boston and Washington recital debuts in 2003. In September 2004, he took First Prize at the 53rd ARD Munich International Music Competition. In April 2004, hewas selected to participate in BBC Radio 3’s New Generation Artists Scheme; he is one of the winners of the Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award 2006, as well as laureate the Förderpreis Deutschlandfunk in 2008 and of the Crédit Suisse Young Artist Award 2009.

His repertoire ranges from the Baroque period to the contemporary. He has performed and recorded many world premieres – Viola, Viola by George Benjamin with Tabea Zimmermann, which they played first in the Feldkirch Festival and subsequently recorded in 2003 for Nimbus Records. He premiered the Concerto for two violas by Bruno Mantovani written for Tabea Zimmermann and himself with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, the Liege Orchestra and the WDR Cologne. In 2009, the Austrian composer Olga Neuwirth wrote a concerto for Mr. Tamestit which he premiered in Vienna, Berlin, Tokyo and will soon play in Paris with the Orchestra Philharmonique de Radio France.

Mr. Tamestit is professor at the Cologne Musikhochschule. He plays on a viola made by Stradivarius in 1672, loaned by the Habisreutinger Foundation.

For complete bios visit the Festival website.

Ojai Music Festival Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris is recognized as one of the most visionary leaders and innovative concert programmers in the music industry. His tenure with the Festival began in 2004, and extends through 2014. As Artistic Director, Morris is responsible for identifying and engaging each Festival music director and, in collaboration with each music director, curating Festival programming in the fearless tradition for which Ojai has become renowned. In February 2004, Morris retired as executive director of The Cleveland Orchestra, a position he held since 1987. He has served in a number of capacities, including general manager of the Boston Symphony Orchestra from 1969 to 1985, where he had overall responsibility for the Boston Symphony, Boston Pops, Tanglewood, and Symphony Hall. In addition to his Ojai post, Morris is artistic director of Spring for Music Festival at New York’s Carnegie Hall, and is also active as a consultant, teacher, and writer.

Set among majestic oak and sycamore trees in the center of Ojai, the Libbey Bowl has been the heart of Ojai’s community and cultural events for over 50 years, and home for the Ojai Music Festival. Throughout the years, the Festival has welcomed some of the 20th century’s most notable musical luminaries to the Libbey Bowl stage. 2011 marked the opening of the new Libbey Bowl featuring major renovations to the venue including improved sight lines, seats and accessibility for the audience – as well as upgraded backstage facilities for artists – while keeping the same intimate ambience of the original Bowl. The new Libbey Bowl was designed by the late architect David Bury, whose vision for the new Bowl was grounded in his understanding of the Ojai community and the venue’s rich heritage. The Ojai Music Festival’s weekend in celebration of Libbey Bowl’s reopening preceeded the 2011 Festival, and included a free community Day of Music, a gala and concert featuring the reprise of Osvaldo Golijov’s Ayre performed at the Festival in 2006 with the same group of artists including Dawn Upshaw and eighth blackbird, and the unveiling of the permanent sound installation Sound Arch at the entrance of the venue by Ojai alumnus and renowned sound sculptor Trimpin.

The Ojai Music Festival continues its unmatched musical legacy and international reputation for artistic excellence, adventurous programs, and creative artistic camaraderie. Ojai’s tradition of inviting a new music director for each season guarantees variety and vitality across festivals.  The 2012 Festival explores the musical interests, and celebrates the artistic collaborations of Music Director Leif Ove Andsnes, one of today’s foremost pianists.  Choreographer Mark Morris will serve as the Festival’s 2013 Music Director and pianist Jeremy Denk will return to Ojai as the 2014 Music Director. Since 1947, the Ojai Valley has remained the quintessential haven for passionate music lovers and trailblazing artists, and serves as a creative laboratory where extraordinary music-making and provocative discussions flourish.  Thomas W. Morris, Artistic Director since 2004, and each appointed music director partner to create programs of wide-ranging repertoire and unexpected connections.  Among the Festival’s diverse music directors have been such renowned musical personalities as John Adams, Pierre-Laurent Aimard,  George Benjamin, Pierre Boulez, Aaron Copland, Ingolf Dahl, Peter Maxwell Davies, eighth blackbird, Lukas Foss, John Harbison, Oliver Knussen, Kent Nagano, David Robertson, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Robert Spano, Igor Stravinsky, Michael Tilson Thomas, Mitsuko Uchida and Dawn Upshaw. Considered a highlight of the summer classical music season, the Ojai Music Festival is a four-day series of concerts, symposia, and auxiliary events set in the idyllic Ojai Valley, known as California’s Shangri-la. Located 90 miles northwest of Los Angeles, Ojai Music Festival concerts take place at the newly renovated outdoor Libbey Bowl, on a site held sacred by the Chumash Indians.

Tickets and Information

This past June, the Ojai Music Festival experienced record-breaking sales with four sold-out concerts.  Early series ticket sales for the 2012 Festival are already pacing toward sell-outs. Festival series tickets are available now from OjaiFestival.org or by calling (805) 646-2053. Single tickets will be available in spring 2012. Lodging information and directions, as well as complimentary concierge services for visitors and other Ojai activities, are also available on the Ojai Festival website.

Follow Festival updates on the web at OjaiFestival.org, Facebook, and Twitter.

# # #

Ojai Music Festival: Gina Gutierrez, ggutierrez@ojaifestival.org                       (805) 646-2094

National/International: Nikki Scandalios, nikki@scandaliospr.com                   (704) 340-4094

Regional: Laura Cohen, lcmediapr@gmail.com                                                       (310) 867-3897

For photos and Ojai information visit the press page at OjaiFestival.org.