The Chappaqua Orchestra is proud to present pianist Cynthia Peterson, soprano Leigh Folta, tenor Alan Briones, and bass John Dominick in A Little Mozart as part of The Chappaqua Orchestra’s orchestral concert series. The concert will be held on Sunday, May 19, 2013 at 3:00 PM at the Horace Greeley High School Auditorium, Chappaqua, New York. The concert features music Mozart wrote mostly in his teenage years, including excerpts from his third opera (written when he was 11!), Bastien and Bastienne, Concerto for piano and orchestra, no. 9, in E flat Major (known as the “Jeunnehomme” or appropriately the “young man”), and his masterful 29th Symphony.Music Director Michael Shapiro says about this concert, “it’s a remarkable mix of the creative brew that the young Mozart cooked up in his teenage years – opera, piano concerti, and symphony – all feeding into each other and influencing the development simultaneously of different forms. Mozart’s piano concerti are mini-operas, his early stage works a training ground for his solo and symphonic writing. And it all can be first heard in these youthful works written at a time of life when boys just want to be boys and not Wunderkinds. Truly amazing stuff and masterpieces all.” Tickets for the concert (available at the door on the day of the concert) are general admission of $20, and students (under 18 or student I.D.) can attend free of charge.
For more information, go to www.chappaquaorchestra.org.
About the artists:
Pianist Cynthia Peterson performs works from a broad solo, chamber, and contemporary repertoire. Her performances include the American Academy in Rome, radio broadcasts in Washington D.C. and Virginia, Anderson House Museum in Washington, D.C., Minnesota, and chamber music touring in Canada. She has appeared at many venues in the New York area including the Brooklyn Museum, the Museum of the City of New York, Bruno Walter Auditorium at Lincoln Center, and the Garden State Center for the Arts. As prize-winner of concerto competitions, she performed the Beethoven First Piano Concerto with the Philharmonic Symphony of Westchester, and the Gershwin Concerto with the Virginia Beach Pops Orchestra, and was soloist with several local orchestras including the Yonkers Civic Orchestra and the Westchester Youth Symphony.
She appeared at Yale University and the Metropolitan Museum with violinist Kyung-Jun Kim, and as the featured pianist in works by John Corigliano at the CUNY Graduate Center Auditorium, her performance hailed by the composer as “extraordinary.”
She received a Masters degree in performance from Juilliard, where she was awarded the prestigious Irwin Freundlich Memorial Scholarship Award, and holds a doctorate from the University of Connecticut. She also received fellowships at Tanglewood, the Banff Centre, the Festival at Sandpoint, and the Ravinia Festival.
Ms. Peterson has taught at the City University of New York/Lehman as head of the piano faculty, SUNY/New Paltz, Dutchess Community College, and at the Barry Tuckwell Institute at Gettysburg College, performing with renowned horn player/conductor Barry Tuckwell and other faculty.
Cynthia has also composed music to “Sabbath Service” in collaboration with choreographer Nina Stein White, which was performed at the Scarsdale Congregational Temple.
She co-directed “PlayWeekend,” an adult amateur chamber music workshop held in Cold Spring, New York.
She is currently the Executive Director of the Chappaqua Orchestra.
Leigh Folta, a soprano originally from Westchester County, New York, is a recent graduate from the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California. She received a Bachelor of Music degree and a law and society minor, along with honors recognition upon graduation. Leigh has appeared in various productions with USC Opera and the Chamber Opera of USC. She began performing as a child with the Westchester Girls Choir, where she was a chorister and a featured soloist. Later, as a member of the Young People’s Chorus of New York City, she performed for four years and travelled the world singing in numerous venues including Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center in New York City and in Kyoto, Japan, Salzburg, Austria, and York, England. Leigh competed in the Choir Olympics in Graz, Austria in 2008 as the soprano section leader with the Young People’s Chorus Concert Choir, which was awarded three gold medals. She was recently named a finalist in the Undergraduate Division of the Classical Singer Competition. She is currently working as a music theory teacher in Pasadena, CA, and is looking forward to singing more in the LA area before going to graduate school to pursue Masters degree.
Tenor Alan Briones, raised in Shrub Oak and currently studying at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) with Cesar Ulloa, returns to Westchester to sing Bastien. Alan sang the role of Parpignol in La Boheme with Livermore Opera and the roles of Don Curzio in Le Nozze di Figaro and Dr. Blind in Die Fledermous at SFCM. Alan started as a boy alto, making his role debut at New York City Opera as the 3rd Spirit in The Magic Flute in 2003. Other roles performed include Roderigo in Otello, Toby in The Medium, and Malcolm in Macbeth, all with Taconic Opera. In the summer of 2013, he will participate in the Castleton Artists Training Seminar (C.A.T.S) in Virginia with Lorin Maazel.
John Dominick III, Bass-Baritone, was born in Pineville, Louisiana. His broad career includes work in Opera: Wotan in Wagner’s Die Walküre, Osmin in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail, King Philip in Verdi’s Don Carlo, Colline in Puccini’s La boheme, Ferrando in Verdi’s Il trovatore, Frank Maurrant in Weil’s Street Scene, the title role in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Mikado, Publius in Mozart’s La clamenza di Tito, King Balthazar in Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors, Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Cosi fan Tutte, Bide-the-Bent in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, Pistola in Verdi’s Falstaff, the Bonze in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Sparafucile in Verdi’s Rigoletto, Jacopo Loredano in Verdi’s I Due Foscari, and the Four Villains in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann with such companies as the New York City Opera, Sarasota Opera, Opera Orchestra of New York, New York Lyric Opera, Opera Brooklyn, the Martina Arroyo Foundation, and Natchez Opera. Oratorio: Bass Soloist in Mozart’s “Great” Mass in C Minor, Handel’s Messiah, the Verdi Requiem, the C.P.E. Bach Magnificat and the Mozart Requiem, Schubert’s Mass in E Flat Major, at Carnegie Hall. Awards: The Wagner Society of New York, The Schuyler Foundation for Career Bridges, The Licia Albanese Foundation, and the Sergio Franchi Memorial Foundation. Upcoming Performances: Title Role in Wagner’s Der fliegende Holländer.
Michael Shapiro has performed internationally including appearances in Berlin, Siena, Victoria, New York, Boston, Minneapolis, and Washington, D.C. His repertoire as a conductor includes most of the standard symphonic, operatic, and ballet works as well as an insider’s understanding and appreciation for new music. Michael Shapiro’s background as an opera coach and concert pianist illuminates his work with soloists in vocal, operatic, and concerto performances.
Michael Shapiro has also collaborated with such artists as Teresa Stratas, Jose Ferrer, Janos Starker, Marin Alsop, Sergiu Comissiona, Eugene Drucker, Kim Cattrall, Timothy Fain, Edward Arron, Jerome Rose, Mariko Anraku, Clamma Dale, Anita Darian, Florence Levitt, Ayako Yoshida, Harris Poor, Kathryn Amyotte, Emily Wong, the Hawthorne String Quartet, Locrian Chamber Ensemble, Artemis, and Dateline NBC. In a celebration of the 75th birthday of WQXR radio personality, Robert Sherman, Michael Shapiro conducted the first performance of a new version of John Corigliano’s The Red Violin Suite with narration with the composer in attendance. Michael Shapiro served for two years as Music Consultant to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C. where he produced and performed the music of composers who perished in or fled Europe during the Second World War. He also served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Conductor’s Guild.
Michael Shapiro worked as an assistant conductor at the Zurich Opera Studio and has appeared internationally as the conductor of his own music (including recording the film score for the Israel Broadcasting Authority documentary Distant Relatives). He regularly performs his own music and conducted The Chappaqua Orchestra in the world premiere of his score for the classic film Frankenstein directed by James Whale and starring Boris Karloff at the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Jacob Burns Film Center and later at the Paramount Theater, the Coolidge Corner Theater in Boston (and featured on the cover of the Boston Globe), the Berkshire Museum, and historic Memorial Hall in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts. Frankenstein recently received its Delaware premiere with the UDel Chamber Orchestra, James Allen Anderson, conductor and next Halloween season will garner five performances in Traverse, Michigan and Marist College, and Mr. Shapiro will conduct performances of the film score live with the classic talkie with the Springfield Symphony in Massachusetts at Symphony Hall and the West Point Band at Eisenhower Hall. During The Chappaqua Orchestra’s 50th Season, he conducted the world premiere of his new work for orchestra Roller Coaster (which received its West Coast premiere at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music conducted by Marin Alsop).
In addition to the upcoming performances of Frankenstein, next season will see the recordings on Paumanok Records of Michael Shapiro’s Yiddish Quartet by the Amernet String Quartet after multiple performances in Florida and Israel, the Piano Quintet by Inna Faliks, piano, and the Amernet in Tel Aviv, and the Second Sonata for Violin and Piano played by Tim Fain, violin, and Ms. Faliks as the pianist following performances in Los Angeles and New York. Mr. Shapiro’s Archangel Concerto for Piano and Orchestra will be premiered by Jose Ramos Santana, piano, in New York with the New York Repertory Orchestra, David Leibowitz, conductor, followed by performances in Interlochen, Michigan, with the Traverse Symphony, Kevin Rhodes, conductor, and the Orquesta Sinfonica de Puerto Rico, Maximiano Valdes, conductor, in San Juan.
Trained in conducting by Carl Bamberger at The Mannes School and more recently with Harold Farberman at Bard College, Michael Shapiro also studied solfège and score reading at The Juilliard School with Renee Longy. He was also the winner of various piano competitions during his youth and continues performing as an accompanist to singers and as a chamber music pianist.