During these unprecedented and ever-changing times, we thought it would be nice to have something predictable, and musical, in your life. Each Tuesday afternoon at 2:00 pm (PDT), we shall be sending out “Tuesdays at Two,” with links to videos of Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival musicians in performance (you can watch at any time – these are not going away!). Because whatever else is happening around us all, we do still believe music is essential.
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Introducing the Tuesdays at Two Salon! (click to open)
Thank you all for joining us on our Tuesdays at Two journey these last few months! We are so grateful to all the artists who have provided such wonderful music. Now that our 23rd Festival Season is nearly upon us, we thought we would shake things up a little…
While our online livestreaming concerts are going to be incredible musically and will have a live chat feature, we will sure be missing our Festival receptions and parties. So here’s the plan – each Tuesday, beginning on July 21st and going through August 18th at 2:00pm PDT, we shall be hosting a Zoom Party! We can visit with each other, chat about the concerts from the weekend before, look forward to the upcoming performances, catch up with each other, maybe nosh a little something, sip a little something, just visit and be together. Depending on how many folks want to join in, we might all stay together, or we might break up into smaller groups – just like a regular Festival gathering! (except you’ll need to bring your own treats. And flowers.)
Each Monday I shall send out the invitation. There will be a link to my email in it, and with your RSVP to that, I shall send you the link to the party – the Tuesdays at Two Salon!
I look forward to seeing you there, and meanwhile, how about a little Miró Quartet Beethoven Op 95 to get us in the mood for Opening Night, this Thursday. Hope to see you next Tuesday at Two!
All the best,
Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival
Tuesday July 7th, 2020 (click to open)
As we approach our 23rd Season, featuring the Miró Quartet performing the complete Beethoven String Quartets livestreaming online (starting next week! More information and tickets are available at OurConcerts.live), we thought it might be a good time to revisit a Miró moment from the past…
As part of our festive 20th Season, we commissioned a work for Musical Saw and String Quartet by the remarkable Jake Heggie. Here is the exquisite, ethereal Earthrise at its world premiere in August 2017, played by Daniel Ching, violin, William Fedkenheuer, violin, John Largess, viola, Joshua Gindele, cello, and Anita Orne, saw, in front of a beautiful tapestry of the original Bill Anders Earthrise photo, woven by Geoffrey Shilling, fibre artist.
Tuesday June 30th, 2020 (click to open)
How is it we have gone all these Tuesdays at Two with no upright bass representation? This week we’re going to make up for that with a pair of very different works showing two sides of the fantastic bass player David Grossman, who joined us for our 21st Season in 2018. In the above video, David performs Mazzoli’s Dark With Excessive Bright for Double Bass and Strings with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. (You might recognize concertmaster Margaret Batjer who was also with us in 2018!)
It is not all about classical for David, and below you’ll find him in a jazz duo, playing Some of These Days with Bram Wijnands on piano. We hope you enjoy spending some time at the bottom end of things!
Tuesday June 23rd, 2020 (click to open)
This week we are so pleased to share a sweet and historic video – three generations of the Friedmann/Parker family in concert in the Music Roomat Rosario Resort on Orcas Island in December 2014!
Please enjoy Laila Storch, oboe, Aloysia Friedmann, violin, Martin Friedmann, viola, Sophie Parker, viola, and Jon Kimura Parker, piano,playing a sonata by Johann Christian Bach.
Tuesday June 16th, 2020 (click to open)
You may be asking yourself “Jeff O’Kelly…Jeff O’Kelly…I know that name…why is that?” If you are a regular listener to Snooze Button on Radio Lillooet (British Columbia), you’d know him as your host. If you followed the Vancouver Opera Chorus from 1996 until 2006, or the Lillooet Community choir today, you’d know him from there. If you are a birder in the British Columbia Sea to Sky country, you may well have crossed paths. You might recall his lectures or page turning in earlier OICMF days. But most likely, you know Jeff as the longtime OICMF Program Annotator.
We know, love, appreciate, and have learned so much from his words; now it is time for us to enjoy some of his music, as Jeff is also a composer and pianist!
I think it best to let Jeff describe his own works, as he has so artfully described the works of others for us. About the fun piece above, he says:
“This is a piece I wrote last year called Moscas Locas (crazy flies). I started it in April of 2019, right around the time the weather was getting nice enough to leave the door open. On the 2nd or 3rd day I worked on it, a couple of houseflies were zooming around in the crazy, chaotic flight paths they employ, which served as inspiration for the title and some of the music.”
And the lovely work below:
“This is a piece called Melankholiya that I wrote in the summer of 2019 for my friend Halina, here in Lillooet, who plays the mandolin. We’ve played together on a number of occasions, so I wanted to write something original that we could play together. Halina has a family and a full-time job so she’s very busy. It occurred to me as I was finishing the mandolin/piano version that I should make a solo piano arrangement for those times when she wasn’t available to play. I still think I like the effect of the mandolin/piano version better but the version I play here is definitely more fun for the pianist.”
Tuesday June 9th, 2020 (click to open)
One highlight of our 22nd Summer Festival in 2018 was our Orcas~trations concert of the complete Brandenburg Concertos. That night, we were all enthralled by the flute playing of Joachim Becerra Thomsen. Today, we are pleased to share a beautifully produced video of him playing the Poulenc Flute Sonata, above. Below, please enjoy a short and very lovely traditional Danish song (looks like Orcas!)
You can find more videos of Joachim on his YouTube channel, here.
Tuesday June 2nd, 2020 (click to open)
May was Asian Pacific American Heritage month. It may be June now, but we would like to continue the celebration by sharing with you this video of our Artistic Advisor, Jon Kimura Parker, aka Jackie, performing Alexina Louie’s Memories in an Ancient Garden as part of a feature put together by New York Public Radio Station WQXR.
You can see it in context with many other amazing performances here, on the WQXR web page. There are a lot of amazing musicians and works here, and we are so pleased that Jackie is a part of their Heritage and Harmony video series feature!
Tuesday May 26th, 2020 (click to open)
Cellist Bion Tsang performed a stunning version of Felix Mendelssohn’s Song Without Words, Op. 109, for Cello and Piano with Jon Kimura Parker as part of our 20th Summer Season in August 2017. We trust you will enjoy the above video of the performance.
Bion has an entire YouTube channel for you to explore!
You can watch all of his beautiful videos HERE.
Tuesday May 19th, 2020 (click to open)
We have an audio Tuesdays at Two for you this week as violist Toby Hoffman shares a very special, lovely, and sonorous recording.
In his own words:
This is a CD that I made in Japan in December 2018. The recording was produced by a wonderful luthier in Japan, Yu Ida, whose two violas I played in the recording. They are copies of my own Amati viola.
The recording studio is up in the forest on the side of Mount Fuji where Yu Ida lives and has his workshop.
The peace of that special studio and the beauty of the setting and the instruments certainly shine through. We hope you enjoy it.
Tuesday May 12th, 2020 (click to open)
This week’s Tuesday at Two takes us to New York City and the sublime oboe playing of Nathan Hughes.
He made the above short video of the oboe solo from Aida last month. He is playing in front of the deserted Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center, where he is regularly the Principal Oboe in the Met Orchestra.
But we know that is not enough oboe (or Nathan), so we thought you might also enjoy the following video of Nathan performing Mozart’s Quintet in E-flat Major at La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest 2017.
Tuesday May 5th, 2020 (click to open)
Time for some cello!
It has been a few years since Lachezar Kostov has been on Orcas Island, but we all remember his exciting, fiery playing, often as part of the Kostov-Valkov Duo with pianist Viktor Valkov. In the above video, you can enjoy them playing the Castelnuovo-Tedesco Figaro Fantasy, which they also performed in the opening concert of the OICMF 2015 season.
Lachezar is now Associate Principal Cellist of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. He and his partner, pianist Andrea Bautista, will be playing this Sunday, May 10th at noon PDT as part of the BSO Offstage series, on Facebook Live. Here is a greeting from them both, and a lovely preview of what Sunday’s performance has in store.
Tuesday April 28th, 2020 (click to open)
Today we feature a pair of lovely videos from the very lovely Robyn Bollinger. Above, you will find a stunning rendition of J.S. Bach’s Ciaccona. Below, Robyn plays Tchaikovsky’s Melodie, Op. 42 on Performance Today, back in 2014 (Dina Vainshtein, piano). She and Jackie played this same piece as a bonus surprise in the closing concert of our 2018 season.
Tuesday April 21st, 2020 (click to open)
This week we have a Tuesdays at Two that lasts all the way through Saturday! Our friends at WindSync have an exciting series of events coming up that we are so excited to share with you! In the words of bassoonist Kara LaMoure:
“The Online Offstage Chamber Music Festival replaces our “onstage” version that we present each year in Houston. It will now take place virtually, with live interactive sessions with WindSync musicians, music video premieres, and virtual concerts, featuring collaborations with incredible musical friends from around Texas. We’ll stream each event on both the WindSync Facebook page and at our website: windsync.org“
Here is the full schedule:
But of course it is Tuesday at Two right now (at least here in the Pacific time zone), so you know we wouldn’t leave you without a couple of videos to watch…here are a couple from WindSync – first a little Beethoven, followed by some jazz to bring some sunshine to your day!
Tuesday April 14th, 2020 (click to open)
Time for some flute! Lorna McGhee and her mellifluous artistry have graced the Festival many times since her first appearance in our second season, back in 1999. Today she shares a number of works with us, starting with 12 Miniatures for Flute and Piano by Weinberg, performed at ChamberFest Cleveland in 2018 (Zoltán Fejérvári, piano).
Lorna’s husband, violist David Harding, is another long time Festival favorite. We know you will enjoy this exquisite work, featuring the two of them along with harpist Lori Gemmell, performing Debussy’s Sonate pour flûte, alto et harpe.
We’ll leave you with something a bit flashier so we can truly appreciate Lorna’s virtuosity – Wieniawsiki’s Scherzo Tarantella (Joseph Havlat, piano)
Tuesday April 4th, 2020 (click to open)
While chamber music does not regularly call for a conductor, there are the occasional Rhapsody in Blue and other moments when OICMF needs one. At times like these, we turn to our dear friend Adam Stern…and not only for conducting; Adam has also been a part of the Festival as composer, arranger, narrator, lecturer, Zoom teacher, pianist.
Today we are pleased to bring Adam to you from Benaroya Hall, conducting the Seattle Philharmonic Orchestra performing the U.S. premiere of Symphony No. 2 by Ruth Gipps. She was a prolific British musician, who, in Adam’s words, was “…a 20th-century woman composer who was shamefully ignored during her lifetime”.
Tuesday March 24th, 2020 (click to open)
Welcome to our second Tuesdays at Two. We thought that, for this week, since we are all spending so much time in our residences, we would bring you our very own Quartet-in-Residence, the Miró Quartet. In honor of Beethoven’s 250th Anniversary Year, we are pleased to share Daniel Ching and William Fedkenheuer (violins), John Largess (viola), and Joshua Gindele (cello), performing Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 16 in F Major, Op. 135 in concert at Tokyo’s Suntory Hall. Ahhhh……
Tuesday March 17th, 2020 (click to open)
Nothing could be more appropriate for our founding “Tuesdays at Two” than to feature our Founder and Artistic Director, Aloysia Friedmann, violin and viola, with Artistic Advisor and pianist Jon “Jackie” Kimura Parker (page turner Sophie Parker) playing “Orcas Island Ferry”, a work composed by Jake Heggie, commissioned for our 15th Season in 2012. We hope you enjoy it. See you next Tuesday!