Monday, August 15, 2011

9/11: JoAnn Falletta

Can anyone be the same after 9/11? Can I ever forget the images I saw on television...or later, the heartrending homemade altars of flowers and candles on the New York city streets we thought were invincible? Can I ever forget my beloved and noisy hometown turned silent by a numbing grief that changed a city of vibrant humanity into a place of incomprehensible sorrow?
But most of all, I remember how important it was to be together that weekend at our concert, to sit in that darkened hall and draw comfort from Beethoven and from each other, to sing our National Anthem with a searing intensity we had never felt before, to believe that the part of man that could create such beauty as music was the part of us that would sustain and heal us and, somehow, make us whole again.

The Beethoven they played was his Symphony No. 9, " Choral."

JoAnn Falletta
JoAnn Falletta has a rapidly growing international reputation as a vibrant ambassador for music and an inspiring artistic leader. An effervescent and exuberant figure on the podium, she has been praised by The Washington Post as having “Toscanini’s tight control over ensemble, Walter’s affectionate balancing of inner voices, Stokowski’s gutsy showmanship, and a controlled frenzy worthy of Bernstein.” Acclaimed by The New York Times as “one of the finest conductors of her generation”, she serves as the Music Director of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Principal Conductor of the Ulster Orchestra in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Brevard Music Center.
Ms. Falletta is invited to guest conduct many of the world’s finest symphony orchestras. This year, she will make her South American debut with the Orquesta Sinfonica de Chile in Santiago Chile, guest conduct the London Symphony in a program of music of Kenneth Fuchs to be recorded for the Naxos label, return to Asia to conduct the Korean Broadcast Symphony in Seoul and the Beijing Symphony in China, and make a tour of Germany and Italy with the Sudwestdeutsche Philharmonie. This summer will be her first as Principal Guest Conductor of the Brevard Music Center.
Highlights of her recent international guest conducting appearances include the Haifa Symphony (Israel), Goettingen Symphony (Germany), Ulster Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Orchestra, National Philharmonic of Lithuania, Orquestra de Extremadura (Spain), Warsaw National Philharmonic, Krak√≥w Philharmonic, Orchestra National de Belgique, Seoul Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic in Manchester, Ensemble Kanazawa (Japan), Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra, Orchestra of Asturias (Spain), Rotterdam Philharmonic, Orchestre National De Lyon, Northwest German Philharmonic, Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the Lisbon Metropolitan Symphony. She has guest conducted over 100 orchestras in North America, including the orchestras of Philadelphia, Detroit, Montreal, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, St. Louis, Houston, Rochester, Utah, Edmonton, Quebec and the National Symphony. Ms. Falletta’s summer activities have taken her to numerous music festivals including Aspen, Tanglewood, Hollywood Bowl, Grand Teton, Wolf Trap, Eastern Music, Cabrillo, OK Mozart International, Lanaudiere, Peter Britt, Breckenridge, Brevard and Interlochen, among others.
She is the recipient of many of the most prestigious conducting awards including the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award, the coveted Stokowski Competition, and the Toscanini, Ditson and Bruno Walter Awards for conducting, as well as the American Symphony Orchestra League’s prestigious John S. Edwards Award. She is an ardent champion of music of our time, introducing over 400 works by American composers, including more than 100 world premieres. Hailing her as a “leading force for the music of our time”, she was honored with her 10th ASCAP award in 2008. Ms. Falletta serves as a Member of the National Council on the Arts.
The Buffalo Philharmonic, which celebrated its 75th Anniversary Season, last year, will release three new recordings, and record a fourth this season and has been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall in May 2013, as part of the Spring for Music Festival. This spring, the League of American Orchestras and ASCAP presented the BPO with a 2010-2011 ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming and second place nationally for Programming of Contemporary Music.

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