The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music news: Wisconsin Union Theater announces its 2010-11 classical music season

March 12, 2010
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By Jacob Stockinger

The Wisconsin Union Theater has announced its classical music line-up for the 2010-11 season.

All five concerts will begin at 7:30 p.m. — a major change from the 8 p.m. curtain time in past years.

Some artists have not yet announced their programs.

Specific ticket prices are still being worked out –but  general admission for the public will be as low as $20, and tickets for UW students will remain $10.  There will also be a Choose Your Own subscriptions series ticket.

All subscription and single tickets will be available starting APRIL 9 at the Wisconsin Union Theater box office (608 262-2201) or on the Union Theater’s website http://www.uniontheater.wisc.edu/index.asp

Here is the line-up, with details from a press release:

FRIDAY, OCT. 22: The Jerusalem String Quartet (below). Readers of this blog and the general public will be asked to vote on a choice of programs at a later date.


One of the most dynamic and exciting quartets currently performing, the Jerusalem String Quartet is “one of the most exciting string quartets to emerge for many years, its members’ outstanding technical accomplishment and musical insight belying their youth,” according to the British Strad magazine, which adds, “superlatives are inadequate in describing just how fine this playing was from one of the young, yet great quartets of our time.”

This prize-winning quartet, known especially for Haydn and Shostakovich, has recently begun touring North America, and will be making its Wisconsin debut at the Wisconsin Union Theater.

SUNDAY, NOV. 21: Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra (below) with conductor Edo de Waart.


Under the direction of world-renowned conductor Edo de Waart, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra returns to the Wisconsin Union Theater stage. It will perform the Barber Violin Concerto with Frank Almond, soloist, and other works.

SATURDAY, DEC. 11: “All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914” – a musical drama performed by Cantus (below) & Theater Latte Da.


It is the Western Front, Christmas Eve, 1914. Out of the violence of the Great War’s trenches comes a silence, then a song as a young German soldier steps into no man’s land singing “Stille Nacht” (Silent Night). Thus begins an extraordinary night of camaraderie, music, and peace.

Cantus, Theater Latté Da and Hennepin Theatre Trust present All Is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914 by Peter Rothstein, with musical arrangements by Erick Lichte and Timothy C. Takach.

Through new arrangements of European carols and war-songs, “All Is Calm” recalls the remarkable World War I truce between Allied Forces and German soldiers in No Man’s Land on Christmas, 1914.

THURSDAY, FEB 17: Violinist Hilary Hahn (below) with Valentina Lisitsa on piano.

The program will include Tartini (arranged by Kreisler) “Variations on a Theme by Corelli”; Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No. 5 in F Major, “Spring”; Charles Ives’ Violin Sonata No. 4; J.S. Bach’s Solo Violin Sonata No. 1; and Antheil’s Violin Sonata No. 1.

Two-time Grammy Award-winning violinist Hilary Hahn is celebrated for her innovative interpretations, technical assurance and captivating stage presence. Named the 2008 Gramophone Artist of the Year, Hahn appears regularly with the world’s leading orchestras and in the most prestigious recital series in Europe, Asia, and North and South America.

THURSDAY, APRIL 21: Pianist Jeremy Denk (below).


In 1998 Jeremy Denk — who accompanied violinist Joshua Bell at the Wisconsin Union Theater — won the Young Concert Artists International Auditions and received a prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant. Since then the pianist’s career has flourished.

The New York Times described his playing as “bracing, effortlessly virtuosic and utterly joyous,” and he has garnered comparable critical acclaim for his engagements with leading orchestras nationwide.

The versatile American pianist’s repertoire ranges from the standard works of the 18th and 19th centuries to twentieth-century masters such as Ives, Ligeti, Lutoslawski and Messiaen, and further to new works by leading composers of today.

In addition, “KEYBOARD CONVERSATIONS” by pianist JEFFREY SIEGEL (below) are going from three this season to two:

They are on Tuesdays at 7:30 in Mills Hall at the UW School of Music.

November 9: “THE ROMANTIC MUSIC OF ROBERT SCHUMANN: FANTASIES FORBIDDEN AND FULFILLED”: Celebrate the 200th birthday of this beloved composer with some of the most love inspired music ever written. Program includes the fantastic “Fantasy Pieces,” Opus 12 and the stunning, virtuosic “Symphonic Etudes,” Opus 13 – or “Variations on a melody of a false Father-in-Law”!

March 22:  PARIS – 1911!  A CENTURY CELEBRATION! Enduring, forever engaging masterpieces composed exactly one hundred years ago! Ravel’s “Noble and Sentimental Waltzes”; exotic Preludes of Debussy and Faure; humorous short pieces by Eric Satie; and Stravinsky’s colorful “Petrouchka.”


Posted in Classical music

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