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Last night in Fort Worth, Texas, six pianists were chosen to progress to the final round of the Fifteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. They are as follows:

Kenneth Broberg, United States, 23
Rachel Cheung, Hong Kong, 25
Yury Favorin, Russia, 30
Daniel Hsu, United States, 19
Yekwon Sunwoo, South Korea, 28
Georgy Tchaidze, Russia, 29

Before announcing the winners, Leonard Slatkin (Jury Chair), gave a though-provoking speech, reminding us all that music has the power to transport us to a better place, and that the competitors all have the responsibility to advance the cause of great art.  Cliburn CEO Jacques Marquis, and Chairman Carla Kemp Thompson offered their thanks to all the competitors and the fantastic Cliburn team working so hard to make the competition such a great success for both Fort Worth, and classical music.

Image: Leonard Slatkin

The final round will begin on Wednesday at 7.30pm.  Each competitor performs twice: on June 7–8, each finalist will join the Brentano String Quartet for a piano quintet.   Then, on June 9–10, each will perform a concerto with the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra conducted by Leonard Slatkin.  Excitingly for the audience, no two competitors will play the same piano concerto, with repertoire consisting of: Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 2 and No. 3, Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1, Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 4, and Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 3 and Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.

The winners of the Fifteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition will be announced in the Awards Ceremony, which begins  at 7.00pm on June 10. As always, the finals can be streamed live at cliburn2017.medici.tv.  Besides the performances, presenters Anderson and Roe give a fascinating insight into life backstage.  The finals will also be broadcast at a later date on Classic FM, who are the Cliburn’s Official UK Broadcast Partner.

Image: The six finalists of the Cliburn

Kat and James are currently in Fort Worth for the finals, and will be tweeting from @WildKatPR. Follow us for updates.

(Written on June 6, 2017 )

April has been an incredibly busy month here at WildKat PR! Just in case you missed anything, here is a round-up of what we’ve been up to:

We were delighted to welcome Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival. It is the world’s largest festival of new opera and will return to King’s Cross from July for three weeks, with over 100 performances and 40 new works.

It seems we will have a very operatic summer as we welcome back composer Tim Benjamin. We worked with him last year on Madame X, an opera which was featured in the 2014 Grimeborn Festival at the Arcola Theatre. Tim is producing another opera this summer called ‘Life Stories’ at the Tête à Tête Festival and from there it will tour in the North of England.

sacconi-quartet

We also started working with the Sacconi Quartet on their project HEARTFELT. They are quickly getting a name for themselves as the ‘digital string quartet’ with lots of interesting technology-focused projects happening on a regular basis. HEARTFELT is being performed at the Spitalfields Festival, the Bristol Proms and Lichfield Festival. But what exactly is so cool about the projects? The Sacconi Quartet is recognised for being a compelling ensemble, consistently communicating with a fresh and imaginative approach and so they know how to create exciting projects. HEARTFELT is an immersive, interactive performance that re-imagines a Beethoven quartet through robotics and audience responsive lighting design.

We are also very pleased to introduce you to Mahler Chamber Orchestra who have recently signed with us. They are due to play three times at the annual BBC Proms with their Artistic Partner and Norwegian pianist Leif Ove Andsnes. Together they will perform all five of Beethoven’s piano concertos, which will represent the end of their wider project ‘The Beethoven Journey’ which has spanned four years.

ensemble-bpm

We attended a lot of exciting events in April which included Ensemble BPM’s performance of Steve Reich and Beryl Korot’s Three Tales which achieve reviews in the Financial Times, The Times and The Arts Desk. This was the first ever opera performed live in an IMAX Theatre and took place at the Science Museum. The second of the two nights (22 and 24 April) was sold out! The Ensemble want their work to illuminate the sights and sounds of an increasingly complex world: they certainly delighted a big audience.

Turning our attention to New York, a real highlight as was Danielle Schwob‘s world premiere performance of her new work Three Self Portraits in Brooklyn NYC. Danielle Schwob and John Zorn were joined by Vicky Chow, Jennifer Choi, and Michael Nicolas.

Launches were clearly en vogue this month as we attended lot of them in the last few weeks such as the launch event of Musical Orbit. Shortly after, Tom Service at the Guardian wrote an article about it saying that Musical Orbit is a great idea for offering one-on-one tutorials with top professionals.

Of course, WildKat PR also attended an event hosted by the fabulous After Nyne Magazine. The Magazine combines culture, lifestyle, arts, style and music so it was great to meet the editorial team properly and celebrate the first print issue with some drinks in a lovely gallery.

ensemble-perpetuo

On 23 April we celebrated our birthday but there was no time for partying too much as Ensemble Perpetuo gave a concert on 25 April at 47/49 Tanner Street. As an ensemble specialising in multi-art form collaborations, they give a new meaning to performances of both classical and contemporary music. They are known for taking music to unexpected venues and drawing in new audiences to share in their love for music as one experienced at Tanner Street. They played music inspired by cities, and the event included city-themed photography from the London Photo Festival, Art by Caroline Mackenzie and Tom Pearce and choreography by Lucia Sweigert. Read the review by LDN Card.

In times of so many brillant musicians it is not easy to find an individual voice and to get attention from a bigger audience. The virtuoso violinist Eric Silberger is one of these musicians combining both splendid technical skills and musicality which made his London debut with the Philharmonic Orchestra very special. Bachtrack and Classicalsource reported from the concert. Eric also released his video of Paganini’s 24th Caprice last month with all the variations layered on top of each other – it’s had almost 16,000 views on Youtube now!

Encouraging new audiences, especially in terms of classical music is not that easy. Orpheus Sinfonia‘s conductor Thomas Carroll spoke about their Beneath the Score Series on BBC Radio 3 In Tune ahead of their concert The People’s Politics on 28 April. The concert also received a 4 star review from LDN card. Orpheus Sinfonia’s second Networking for Young Professionals event also took place at this concert, continuing to encourage new audiences to engage with classical music. During April, Thomas was also interviewed by the Mayfair Times and it was great to have this support from a publication based in the same area that they are resident in.

haydn-2032-2As well as being busy in London and New York, in Berlin our team attended one of the brilliant Haydn nights with  Radiale Nacht – Il filosofo at Radialsystem V on 8th May. As the project Haydn 2032 is a huge work in progress, these nights offer an opportunity to get to know the project: conductor Giovanni Antonini, Bernhard Lassahn and Christian Moritz-Bauer gave lectures, were interviewed and talked to the audience. On 8th May, Il Giardino armonico under Giovanni Antonini played symphonies by both Joseph Haydn and Wilhelm Friedemann Bach which were received with massive applause.

With all the fantastic new clients who have recently joined us, as well as the BBC Proms, Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival and other annual highlights, it looks like a busy summer for WildKat PR.

Keep updated with news by visiting our blog, following us on Twitter and liking us on Facebook and LinkedIn.

(Written on May 15, 2015 )

Classical News

Classical Source

Frank Huang Appointed Concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic

Music Director Alan Gilbert and the New York Philharmonic announced today that Frank Huang has been appointed Concertmaster, The Charles E. Culpeper Chair, of the New York Philharmonic, beginning with the Opening Gala Concert of the 2015–16 season, September 24, 2015.

International Arts Manager

Manchester Camerata announces a blend of classical music and coffee

Coffee and classical music are coming together as Caffè Nero and Manchester Camerata brew up a new partnership.

Sinfini

Paganini’s 24 Caprices in 3 minutes

Ever thought that you’d love to hear all 24 of Paganini’s Caprices for Solo Violin played simultaneously? No, us neither.

Gramophone

Andris Nelsons and the Boston Symphony Orchestra sign deal with Deutsche Grammophon

DG to release five live albums centred on Shostakovich’s Symphonies Nos 5-10

New York Times

Toronto Orchestra Drops Pianist Over Tweets About Ukraine

The Toronto Symphony Orchestra abruptly canceled a performance of Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto on Wednesday after parting ways with a Ukrainian soloist over concerns that her ribald Twitter commentary had crossed the line into “intolerance.”

Die Welt

Tim Renner sollte Claus Peymann rausschmeißen

Claus Peymann, Intendant des Berliner Ensembles, verhöhnt Berlins Kulturstaatssekretär Tim Renner als „Lebenszwerg“ und „leeres, weißes Hemd“. Das sollte sich Renner nicht länger bieten lassen.

Berliner Zeitung

Gründungsintendant ist ein Glücksgriff für das Humboldt-Forum

Wenn einer das Humboldt-Forum in Gang bringen kann, dann Neil MacGregor, der Gründungsintendant. Er ist einer der rar gewordenen europabegeisterten Briten. Und er kennt Deutschland mit einer sehr hilfreichen kulturellen Intimität.

Der Tagesspiegel

Der nächste Karajan

Peter Ronnefeld war eine ganz große Begabung, sowohl als Dirigent wie als Komponist. Jetzt erinnert ein Berliner Gedenkkonzert an den brillanten Künstler, der 1965 starb, im Alter von nur 30 Jahren.

El País

Claudio Prieto, compositor en perpetua reinvención

Recorrió múltiples caminos para crear una obra poliédrica

npr music

Twitter outrage takes Toronto, canceling two pianists

Valentina Lisitsa is a pianist whose worldwide reputation was built on social media. She is now experiencing a major blacklash due to what she’s been writing on Twitter.

Twitter

Opera North @Opera_North: ‘Meet The Woman Bridging Innovative Fashion And #Classical Music’ http://thewindow.barneys.com/sugar-vendil/  via @BarneysNY #FashionFriday #TGIF

BBC ConcertOrchestra ‏@BBCCO: The BBC CO USA tour bus taking a break in Georgia yesterday with 330 miles to go ’til Florida!!! #roadtrip #BBCCOtour

Classic FM @ClassicFM: One of this country’s best-loved sopranos celebrates her birthday today – many happy returns to Lesley Garrett!

simultaneous-paganini-caprices-658x325Ever thought that you’d love to hear all 24 of Paganini’s Caprices for Solo Violin played simultaneously? No, us neither. Photo: Sinfini

(Written on April 10, 2015 )

BBC News

Sir Kenneth Branagh’s Macbeth impresses in Manchester

Sir Kenneth Branagh’s first appearance as Macbeth has confirmed him to be an “intemperately exciting Shakespearean actor” in what is a “great” production of the play, critics have decided.

New York Times

A Chamber Ensemble’s Passionate Swan Song

The Tokyo String Quartet says farewell at Norfolk Festival.

Gramophone

Doyle replaces Matthew Halls, who steps down due to increased conducting commitments.

Classic FM

Classic FM bags an Arqiva Award for jingles

Classic FM has triumphed in the Station Imaging category at the 2013 Arqiva Awards, for their ‘The Sound Of Classic FM’ jingle package.

Limelight Magazine

Australian expat orchestra takes on London

Limelight Magazine talk to the daring young female conductor behind Ruthless Jabiru – London’s only all-Australian orchestra.

Guardian

On the art of variation: why Paganini’s theme is so popular

From Liszt to Lutosłaski, composers have so often turned to Paganini’s Caprice No 24 for inspiration – with satisfying and scintillating results.

Telegraph

Art as science? Computer technology and classical music

The Telegraph considers the merits of using technology in classical music and explains why two “so-so” concerts have stuck firmly in his mind.

Guardian

Hugh Maguire obituary

Violinist and teacher who was leader of the London Symphony and BBC Symphony orchestras has died aged 86.

_68582506_kennethbranagh(macbeth)inmacbethatmanchesterinternationalfestival.photobyjohanpersson.6smlBBC News

(Written on July 8, 2013 )

Every day the WildKat team scan the newspapers and blogs online to bring you a digested list of the day’s classical music news.

The Independent

Street Scene, Young Vic

John Fulljames’s award-winning Opera Group production of ‘Street Scene’ reflects the brilliance and power of Kurt Weill’s ‘American’ style, says Michael Church. Rated 4/5.

The Guardian

War and the pity of war

Stravinsky sneered but the public loved it, and, nearly 50 years on, Britten’s War Requiem has lost none of its power to move us, writes Ian Bostridge

Pierre Boulez: Rebel with a cause

Pierre Boulez’s mission to change classical music has been entirely successful, but not perhaps in the way his younger self had envisaged, writes Tom Service

LPO/Jurowski – review

The real controversy last night was Vladimir Jurowski’s championship of post-Soviet Russian music – and the first half, at least, was wonderful, writes Tim Ashley

Financial Times

Weather strikes a chord with composers

Research shows that weather may have made British composers twice as likely to write music with a climate theme as their counterparts abroad. Pilita Clark reports.

The Arts Desk

Paganini’s Daemon

Christopher Nupen’s film about the first Romantic virtuoso is released on DVD. By Hilary Whitney.

(Written on September 23, 2011 )