The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music Best Bets for Feb. 3-9: UW pianists, others play to Help Haiti; and legendary violinist Pinchas Zukerman to perform Mozart with the Madison Symphony Orchestra.

February 3, 2010
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By Jacob Stockinger

If you are looking for a chance to help earthquake-stricken Haiti though classical music, to mix art and social justice,  here is your chance.

I am reprinting an e-mail concert I received from UW Piano Partners:

“In the wake of the devastating earthquake in Haiti, the Music Teachers National Association UW-Madison Collegiate Chapter has joined forces with Arts Enterprise Madison to host and perform two fundraising concerts for Haiti relief, entitled Music for Haiti.

“Our goal is to raise $2,000 total from these two concerts:

Thursday, Feb. 4, at 7:15 p.m. in the Steinway Gallery of Madison, 6629 Mineral Point Rd. on Madison’s far west side. (Here are the program and performers: Schubert, Sonata in G major, D. 894 (Paola Savvidou); Robert Schumann,  Faschingsschwank aus Wien, I. Alleogro (Margie Runaas); F0ranz Liszt, Transcendental Etude No. 4, “Mazeppa” (Melody Ng); Robert Schumann, Six Canonic Etudes for two pianos (Jonathan Kuuskoski and Paola Savvidou); E. Bourdeau, “Premier Solo” for bassoon and piano (Amanda Horn, piano and Florin Loghin)

“Saturday, Feb. 13 at 6:30 p.m. in Morphy Hall in UW Humanities Building. (L.V. Beethoven, Sonata in Ab major op.26, I. Variations (Hikari Maekawa); Beethoven, Sonata No. 30 in E-flat, Op. 109  (Jihun Cho); Alban Berg, Sonata, Op. 1 (Paola Savvidou); Beethoven, Piano Sonata No.31 in A flat Major, Op. 110, I. Moderato cantabile molto espressivo (Justin Krawitz); Aaron Copland, Violin Sonata (Leah Marie Emineth, violin, and Carson Rose Schneider, piano )

“Both concerts will be followed by receptions with light refreshments.

“There is no minimum donation required or an entry fee. We do encourage audience members to donate whatever they may be willing to give to support this effort. 100% of our proceeds will go to Hope for Haiti, one of the top non-profit organizations working on-site to help those affected by the earthquake.

“To read more, please visit:

“Thank you for supporting our efforts, we hope to see you at these concerts!”

And I say a big Thank You to the young UW musicians who want to pout their art at the service of people in desperate need. My guess is you do not have to attend the concerts in order to make a donation through the same group.

On Friday, Feb. 5, from 12:15 to 1 p.m. at the First Unitarian Society’s weekly free Noon Musicale, soprano Crystal Buck with perform with pianist Greg Punswick. The program includes songs by Massenet, Cole Porter, Gershwin and Lehar.

Admission and coffee are free. The address is 900 University Bay Drive, near UW Hospital. For information, call 608 233-9774.

The big concert this week is the appearance of legendary violinist Pinchas Zukerman and his wife, acclaimed cellist Amanda Forsyth, who will perform this weekend with the Madison Symphony Orchestra under the baton of John DeMain.

Performances are in Overture Hall on Friday at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday at 8 p.m.; and Sunday at 2:30 p.m (over in time to catch the kickoff for the SuperBowl).

The program includes Max Bruch’s “Kol Nidrei” with Forsyth; Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5 (“Turkish”) with Zukerman as both soloist and conductor; the Madison premiere of Saint-Saens’ “The Muse and the Poet” with both Zukerman and Forsyth; and then the same composer’s epic and glorious Symphony No. 3 “Organ” with MSO organist Samuel Hutchison performing on the impressively grand and beautiful Overture Organ. (That same piece helped to inaugurate the custom-built organ for the opening of the Overture Center.)

It will be interesting to hear both a familiar and unfamiliar work by Saint-Saens, who was a prodigy on the order of Mozart and Mendelssohn, but who remains one of the most unjustly underprogrammed and underperformed performed composers of all time.

Tickets run $15 to $75. Call the Overture box office (608) 258-4141 or visit Here’s a link to the concert page with bios, audio clips and program notes.

On Saturday, Feb. 6, the Wisconsin Youth Symphony Orchestras will hold a Winter Open House.

The event will begin at 10 a.m. with a meet-and-greet featuring breakfast snacks in the Strelow Lounge of the UW Humanities building. Guests will be able to talk with WYSO staff and parents of current members, and will get a chance to tour WYSO’s four orchestras in rehearsal. After the tour, guests will have an opportunity to speak with current WYSO members in a Q&A session.

Since 1966, WYSO has been providing excellence in musical opportunities for more than 5,000 young people in southern Wisconsin. WYSO includes three full orchestras and a string orchestra, a chamber music program, a harp program, a percussion ensemble, and a brass choir program.

The orchestras rehearse on Saturday mornings during the academic year, perform three to four public concerts per season, and tour regionally, nationally and internationally. The Youth Orchestra toured to Eastern Europe in 2005 and has toured to Canada, Japan, Scotland, Spain, France, Colorado, Iowa and Washington, D.C. in the past.

UW Humanities Building, is located at 455 N. Park Street, Madison. Contact Nicole Sparacino, WYSO Communications Manager at (608) 263-3320 x 11 for more information or to RSVP.

Sunday, Feb. 7, will bring us “Sunday Afternoon Live From the Chazen,” on which UW cellist Parry Karp (below) and pianist Eli Kalman will perform.

The concert, to run from 12:30 to 2 p.m. and to be broadcast live on Wisconsin Public Radio, will take place in Brittingham Gallery III at the Chazen Museum of Art.

The program of rarely performed work will feature Ildebrando Pizzetti’s Sonata in F major for violoncello and piano and Charles-Valentin Alkan’s Concert Sonata for violoncello and piano.

Parry Karp is Artist-in-Residence and Professor of Chamber Music and Cello at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he is director of the string chamber music program, and has been cellist of the Pro Arte Quartet for 34 years.

Hailing from Israel, Kalman was the recipient of the Paul Collins Wisconsin Distinguished Graduate Fellowship for Excellence at UW-Madison. He was an enthusiastic artist in-residence at the Chamber Music Festival at Banff, Canada where he has performed for three consecutive years in the Art of the Ensemble concert series.

Members of the Chazen Museum of Art or Wisconsin Public Radio can call ahead and reserve seats for Sunday Afternoon Live performances. Seating is limited.

All reservations must be made Monday through Friday before the concert and claimed by 12:20 p.m. on the day of the performance. For more information or to learn how to become a museum member, contact the Chazen Museum at (608) 263-2246.

A reception follows the performance, with refreshments donated by Whole Foods, Coffee Bytes and Steep & Brew. A free docent-led tour in the Chazen galleries begins every Sunday at 2 p.m.

For more information or for information about upcoming concerts, call 608.263.2246 or visit the Chazen website at

On Monday, Feb. 8, at 7:30 p.m. in Morphy Hall,  guest bassoonist Nadina Mackie Jackson (below) and UW pianist Ina Selvelieva will perform.

This program features works by Shostakovich, Weber, Saint-Saens, Tansman, Prokofiev, Christopher Willes and Mathieu Lussier.

Admission is free.

Nadina Mackie Jackson is co-director with Guy Few of the Grand River Baroque Festival and principal bassoon of the Toronto Chamber Orchestra, the Group of Twenty-Seven and the Aradia Baroque Ensemble.

She teaches at Wilfrid Laurier University, the University of Toronto and the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music.

Posted in Classical music

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