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Spotlight on Takezawa in Prokofiev Violin Concerto

2005-11-14

Hong Kong, 14 November 2005 – The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HKPO) will collaborate with world-renowned Japanese violinist Kyoko Takezawa on 25 and 26 November. Takezawa will star as the violin solo in Prokofiev’s sublime Violin Concerto No.2. Russian maestro Alexander Lazarev will also lead the orchestra in Borodin’s Symphony No.2 and works by Liadov and Rimsky-Korsakov. The concerts are supported by Japan Airlines and the Hong Kong Japanese Club.

“Japan was one of the first Asian countries to take Western classical music to its heart, and in the last 50 years has produced some of the world’s finest classical musicians, bringing a uniquely Japanese sensibility to the art form. The Hong Kong Philharmonic is honoured to present world-renowned Japanese violinist Kyoko Takezawa in concert with us as part of the year-long ‘Japan – Hong Kong Year 2005’ celebrations,” says Timothy Calnin, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra.

Kyoko Takezawa has established herself as one of today’s foremost violinists with her musical sensitivity, flawless technique and remarkable beauty of tone. The “operatic diva of the violin” regularly performs with such prominent ensembles as the Boston, Chicago, and London symphonies with such conductors as Seiji Ozawa, Michael Tilson Thomas and Wolfgang Sawallisch. As co-director of the Suntory Festival Soloists of Suntory Hall in Tokyo, she has collaborated with Yo-Yo Ma, Joseph Suk, the late Isaac Stern and many other distinguished artists. Recently, she has performed at the first Taipei International Chamber Music Festival with Lin Cho-Liang. She uses the Antonio Stradivarius “Camposelice” (1710).

One of Russia’s foremost conductors, Alexander Lazarev has been the Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Bolshoi Theatre from 1987 to 1995. His leadership marked the company’s tours to prestigious destinations such as La Scala and the Metropolitan Opera. The filming and recording of several of its most successful productions received critical acclaim. Lazarev has been Principal Conductor of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra since 1997, and a regular guest with the Philharmonia Orchestra and the St. Petersburg Philharmonic. Lazarev won first prize and gold medal in the coveted Karajan Competition in Berlin in the 70s.

Sergei Prokofiev, who studied with such great masters as Liadov and Rimsky-Korsakov before leaving his homeland for many years, composed his Second Violin Concerto on his return to Russia in 1935. In its poetic slow movement, he created one of the most sublime arias for violin and orchestra, reminiscent of his most beloved work – Romeo and Juliet. A generation before, Borodin's lyrical and tuneful Second Symphony was a labour of love, carefully crafted over several years between major operas like Prince Igor.

Mastery: Takezawa Meets Lazarev
25 & 26/11/2005 (Fri & Sat) 8pm
Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall
HK $400, $300, $200, $100
Tickets available at URBTIX now
Reservation 2734 9009/ 2111 5999
Enquiry: 2721 2030/ www.hkpo.com

Programme:

Rimsky-Korsakov Russian Easter Overture
Prokofiev Violin Concerto No.2
Liadov Nenie
Borodin Symphony No 2

Alexander Lazarev conductor
Kyoko Takezawa violin