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The Orchestra Now

Violinist as Composer

May 4–5

Add to Calendar2024-05-04 7:00 pm2024-05-04 7:00 pmEDTViolinist as ComposerFisher Center, Sosnoff Theater,
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Leon Botstein conductor
Nikita Boriso-Glebsky violin

Grażyna Bacewicz
Partita for Orchestra

Joseph Joachim
Variations for Violin and Orchestra

Eugène Ysaÿe
Violin Concerto in D minor (U.S. Premiere)

George Enescu
Symphony No. 2

Leon Botstein spotlights four European virtuoso violinists who were also major composers in their respective countries, yet are not household names elsewhere today.

Prolific Polish composer Grażyna Bacewicz, who was also a violinist, pianist, and accomplished author, is represented with her contemplative Partita for Orchestra. Internationally-acclaimed Russian violinist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky joins TŌN for Hungarian composer Joseph Joachim’s Variations for Violin and Orchestra. Then the orchestra gives the U.S. premiere of a recently discovered concerto by famed Belgian violinist and composer Eugène Ysaÿe. The program concludes with the energetic and passionate Second Symphony of Romanian composer George Enescu, written at a time when he was also one of the most in-demand concert violinists in the world.

Leon Botstein

Leon Botstein is founder and music director of The Orchestra Now (TŌN), music director and principal conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra (ASO), artistic codirector of Bard SummerScape and the Bard Music Festival, and conductor laureate and principal guest conductor of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra (JSO), where he served as music director from 2003 to 2011. He has been guest conductor with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Mariinsky Theatre, Russian National Orchestra in Moscow, Hessisches Staatstheater Wiesbaden, Taipei Symphony, Simón Bolivar Symphony Orchestra, and Sinfónica Juvenil de Caracas in Venezuela, among others. In 2018, he assumed artistic directorship of Campus Grafenegg and Grafenegg Academy in Austria.

Recordings include acclaimed recordings of Othmar Schoeck’s Lebendig begraben with TŌN, Hindemith’s The Long Christmas Dinner with the ASO, a Grammy-nominated recording of Popov’s First Symphony with the London Symphony Orchestra, and other various recordings with TŌN, ASO, the London Philharmonic, NDR Orchestra Hamburg, and JSO, among others. He is editor of The Musical Quarterly and author of numerous articles and books, including The Compleat Brahms (Norton), Jefferson’s Children (Doubleday), Judentum und Modernität (Bölau), and Von Beethoven zu Berg (Zsolnay). Honors include Harvard University’s prestigious Centennial Award; the American Academy of Arts and Letters award; and Cross of Honor, First Class, from the government of Austria, for his contributions to music. Other distinctions include the Bruckner Society’s Julio Kilenyi Medal of Honor for his interpretations of that composer’s music, the Leonard Bernstein Award for the Elevation of Music in Society, and Carnegie Foundation’s Academic Leadership Award. In 2011, he was inducted into the American Philosophical Society.

Nikita Boriso-Glebsky

Nikita Boriso-Glebsky is a Belgian-Russian violinist. In 2007, he won the Silver medal and five special prizes in the XIII International Tchaikovsky Competition. Even before the results were announced, “Nesavisimaya Gazeta” awarded Nikita the title of people’s favorite. The victory was followed by an exclusive contract with the Moscow Philharmonic and an eventful tour around Russia.

His next significant victory was the First prize in the Sibelius Competition in Helsinki in 2010. Since then, he’s become a regular in Finland, a guest star in the Turku Music Festival and the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival. He has performed with the Finnish Radio Orchestra conducted by Hannu Lintu in Moscow and St. Petersburg at concerts dedicated to the 100th anniversary of Finland’s Independence. The highlight of the 2020/21 season was a performance with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Emilia Hoving. The 2021/22 season included performances with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra conducted by Nicholas Collon, the Kuopio Symphony Orchestra with conductor Sasha Mäkilä, and the Turku Philharmonic Orchestra with Clemens Schuldt.

His next victory marked the beginning of his career in Austria. In 2010, Nikita became the I prize laureate of the Fritz Kreisler International Competition in Vienna. Fast forward to July 2021, he performed at the Wiener Konzerthaus as a part of the “star-studded” Quartet with Nikolai Lugansky, Narek Hakhnazaryan, and Maxim Rysanov. In the 2022/23 season, Nikita is a resident of the Wiener Konzerthaus, presenting a chamber music subscription as a part of a trio with Narek Hakhnazaryan and Georgy Tchaidze. He also performs in Graz and Linz on a regular basis.

The victories in the international competitions in Monaco, Brussels, and Montrealopened additional opportunities for Nikita — invitations to the world’s best concert halls and performances with the leading orchestras. The violinist collaborates with Dima Slobodeniouk, David Afkham, Jaime Martin, Sakari Oramo, Vasily Sinaisky, Vladimir Fedoseev, Klaus Mäkelä, and others. In the summer of 2022, Nikita took part in a large-scale project at the Suntory Hall, Tokyo as the first violin of the Atrium Quartet — a performance of all the string quartets by Ludwig van Beethoven.

He regularly takes part in festivals in Salzburg, Rheingau; La Folle Journee Festival in Nantes, Tokyo, and Yekaterinburg; December Nights of Svyatoslav Richter; Beethovenfest in Bonn; Stars of White Nights and Arts Square festivals in St. Petersburg; Violino il Magico in Italy, and many others.

In 2019, Nikita was the first to record the previously unknown concerto by Eugène Ysaÿe together with the Liege Philharmonic Orchestra and Jean-Jacques Kantorov. A Tribute to Ysaÿe CD, with a participation of Renaud Capuçon, Henri Demarquette, Pavel Kolesnikov, Stéphane Denève, was granted the Diapason d’Or award.

Nikita Boriso-Glebsky’s repertoire includes not only classic masterpieces we all know and love, but also music by contemporary composers of the 20th and 21st centuries. He has been trusted to premiere several compositions by Rodion Shchedrin, Alexander Tchaikovsky, and Kuzma Bodrov.

Nikita plays the violin created by the Austrian maker Martin Schwalb in 2020 based on the model of the Guarneri del Gesù violin from 1744.

Nikita Boriso-Glebsky was born in 1985 in Volgodonsk. He graduated from the Moscow State Conservatory (class of Professor Eduard Grach and Associate Professor Tatiana Berkul), followed by mastering his skills under the guidance of Augustin Dumay at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Belgium, as well as Ana Chumachenko at the Kronberg Academy. After years of living and studying in Belgium, and because of his influence on the cultural life of the country, Nikita was granted Belgian citizenship in 2019.

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