Hadelich Plays Paganini
Michael Francis, conductor
Augustin Hadelich, violin
CHRISTOPHER ROUSE: “Prospero’s Rooms”
PAGANINI: Violin Concerto No. 1
RACHMANINOFF: Symphony No. 3
Preview Talk with KUSC's Alan Chapman at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:45 p.m.
What’s interesting about this concert:
- Where piano fans look to Rachmaninoff for keyboard virtuosity, violinists turn to Paganini.
- An outrageously gifted musician and one of the first “rock stars” of classical music, Paganini was also an accomplished composer writing hundreds of pieces including six violin concertos.
- Sparks will fly as violinist Augustin Hadelich takes the stage in the first concerto of this legendary composer, thought to have been in league with the devil.
- Rachmaninoff’s expressive and quintessentially Russian Symphony No. 3 caps the evening.
Watch Augustin Hadelich perform Paganini's Caprice No. 1:
Listen to Hilary Hahn playing Paganini's Violin Concerto No. 1:
Watch a clip from "The Devil's Violinist," a 2013 film based on the life of the 19th-century Italian violinist and composer Niccolò Paganini:
Learn more about the music and the artists in the program notes.
Music Director, The Florida Orchestra - Chief Conductor, Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz - Music Director, Mainly Mozart, San Diego
Michael Francis has quickly established himself internationally. Known for maintaining a diverse repertoire while paying particular homage to the composers of his native Britain, Francis enjoys great reception throughout North America, Europe and Far East Asia. This season, Francis has been appointed the new Chief Conductor of Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz. He returns with MDR Leipzig Radio Symphony Orchestra, Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra and debuts with St. Louis Symphony Orchestra as well as Phoenix and San Diego symphonies.
After several years as a tenured double-bass player in the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), he came to prominence as a conductor in January 2007, replacing an indisposed Valery Gergiev for concerts with the LSO during the BBC’s Gubaidulina festival at the Barbican Centre. Just one month later, Francis was asked, this time with only two hours’ notice, to replace the composer/conductor John Adams in a performance of his own works with the LSO with the Philharmonie Luxembourg. Soon after in January 2009, he replaced André Previn leading a German tour of the Stuttgart Radio Symphony with Anne-Sophie Mutter.
Francis’ discography includes the Rachmaninov piano concertos with Valentina Lisitsa and the London Symphony Orchestra, Wolfgang Rihm’s Lichtes Spiel with Anne-Sophie Mutter and the New York Philharmonic, and the Ravel & Gershwin piano concertos with Ian Parker.
Now entering his fourth season as Music Director of The Florida Orchestra, he has led a transformative community engagement initiative, which has included statewide residencies, programmatic collaborations with local museums, and a hugely expanded lecture series. He is also Music Director of the Mainly Mozart Festival in San Diego, where he has launched an ambitious multi-year exploration of Mozart’s life. He was previously Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra from 2012 to 2016.
Augustin Hadelich is one of the great violinists of our time. From Adès to Paganini, from Brahms to Bartók, he has mastered a wide-ranging and adventurous repertoire and is often referred to by colleagues as a "musician's musician.” Named Musical America’s 2018 "Instrumentalist of the Year", he is consistently cited around the world for his phenomenal technique, soulful approach, and insightful interpretations.
Mr. Hadelich will appear with over 25 North American orchestras in the 2019/2020 season, including the symphony orchestras of Boston, Cleveland, New York, Montréal, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, Houston, Oregon, Seattle, Toronto, and numerous others. International highlights of the 2019/2020 season include performances with the Philharmonia Orchestra (London), and the NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchestra (Hamburg), as well as engagements with the BBC Philharmonic, Danish National Symphony, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Finnish Radio Orchestra, Hong Kong
Born in Italy, the son of German parents, Augustin Hadelich is now an American citizen. He holds an Artist Diploma from The Juilliard School, where he was a student of Joel Smirnoff. After winning the Gold Medal at the 2006 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, concerto and recital appearances on many of the world’s top stages quickly followed, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Chicago’s Symphony Hall, the Kennedy Center, Wigmore Hall/London, and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. Other distinctions include an Avery Fisher Career Grant (2009); a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship in the UK (2011); the inaugural Warner Music Prize (2015); a Grammy Award (2016); as well as an honorary doctorate from the University of Exeter in the UK (2017).
Augustin Hadelich plays the violin "Leduc, ex-Szeryng" by Giuseppe Guarneri del Gesù of 1744, generously loaned by a patron through the Tarisio Trust.