The first concert of the 2012-2013 season of the Prince George's Philharmonic is set to take place Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 8:00 pm at The Bowie Center for the Performing Arts, Bowie Maryland. Click here for directions.
The program features violinist Maria Ioudenitch, a 2012 Johansen International Competition Winner, in a performance of Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto. The concert opens with Richard Wagner's Prelude to Die Meistersinger. These first two works will be led by our Music Director, Charles Ellis. Shawn Storer, our Associate Conductor, will lead the second half of the concert with one of Tchaikovsky's perennial favorites, his Symphony No. 4.
Saturday, October 13, 2012 - 8:00pm
Bowie Center for the Performing Arts, Bowie, MD
Charles Ellis and Shawn Storer, conductors
Maria Ioudenitch, violin, Johansen International Competition Winner
Wagner Prelude to Die Meistersinger
Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E Minor, Op. 64
Tchaikovsky Symphony No. 4 in F Minor, Op. 36
by Susan Pearl
QN: Thank you so much, Maria, for taking the time to talk to us today. We are very much looking forward to performing the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with you at our October concert. Could we start with a little about your training so far and your plans for the future?
MI: I began playing the violin when I was three years old, and am now studying with Professor Ben Sayevich at the International Center for Music at Park University (Missouri). I still have two more years of high school, and I then hope to concentrate on violin performance studies with a solo career as my goal.
QN: You come from a very distinguished musical family - your father won a gold medal at the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2001, and both of your parents are greatly involved not only in piano performance, but in musical education.
MI: Yes, they are very busy people, and have recently spent time in China where my father was performing and giving master classes, and my mother was teaching. I owe them so much! When I was three years old they gave me a violin - a tiny 1/16 size instrument! Most of my family members were and are pianists, but my grandfather was a violinist - I guess it seemed right that I should take up the violin.
QN: We understand that you began this year to enter performance competitions, and that you took first prize in the Kansas City Symphony Young Artist Competition, with the result that you played the Khachaturian concerto with the Kansas City Orchestra. Congratulations! And of course it is your success at this spring's Johansen International Competition that brings you to solo with the Prince George's Philharmonic. Can you tell us a little about the experience of participating in these competitions?
MI: Yes, taking part in these competitions is quite wonderful, and it's a special learning experience for a young performer. The Young Artists Competition was wonderful for several reasons. It was a blind competition, which means that the judges were separated from the competitors, and did not know who the performers were. I found that this relieved the pressure - I could forget about the judges and truly play for the joy and the beauty of the music.
QN: And we are so pleased that because of your success at the Johansen, you will be playing the wonderful Mendelssohn concerto with our Philharmonic. So let us finish our conversation by talking about this wonderful concerto, and some of your feelings about it.
MI: I think that the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto is one of the most beautifully pure pieces of music ever written. In some ways it is not quite as complex as the Beethoven or the Brahms concerto, but it has such beauty in its purity. The first movement is very lively, but the progress is so fluid into the second movement, which seems so deceptively simple. And then, again, it so perfectly plunges right into the very festive third movement finale. I've been working on this beautiful concerto for about three months, and I love