Presented by the Philadelphia Classical Guitar Society
Sun, November 4, 2018
3:00 PM – 5:00 PM EST
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Settlement Music School
416 Queen Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147
Praised for his “visceral and imaginative performances” by the Washington Post, top prize winning classical guitarist and recording artist Adam Levin has performed on four continents across the globe. Levin has performed extensively across the United States at renowned venues such as Chicago’s Pick Staiger, Nichols, and Mayne Stage concert halls as well as at the prestigious Art Institute of Chicago; Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts, and Jordan Hall; Spivey Hall in Atlanta; repeat appearances at Le Poisson Rouge in New York City; and the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. In Europe, Levin has performed in some of the finest venues across Spain, and in Italy, Germany, and Switzerland. In the 2017-2018 season, Levin makes several debut solo, chamber, and orchestral appearances in China, Finland, and Ireland as well as return appearances in Brazil and Spain. Adam Levin’s live performances have been featured nationally numerous times on NPR’s Performance Today, the nationally syndicated Classical Guitar Alive, and studio performances on top radio stations including WFMT Chicago and WCRB Boston.
In the 2016-2017 season, Levin toured across the US including a sold-out recital featuring commissioned new works for guitar by Spanish composers at the Former Residence of the Spanish Ambassador to the US in Washington, DC, presented by the US Fulbright Alumni Association (with the ambassador in attendance); the Art Institute of Chicago as part of the city’s Latin Music Festival; and a return engagement to New York’s Le Poisson Rouge. Levin also served as artistic director of the second annual University of Rhode Island Guitar Festival and performed chamber music with Duo Sonidos at Charlotte’s Bechtsler Museum and with the Kithara Project Trio at Chatter in Albuquerque, NM, and in Austin, TX. Internationally, Levin performed recitals in numerous venues in Spain, Hungary, and Austria in Europe and a debut tour of Brazil, where he was immediately invited to return for a second tour in 2017-2018. Additionally, Levin’s 2017-2018 season includes international debut tours in China, Finland, and Ireland.
The recipient of numerous top prizes, Adam Levin has been recognized by the Society of American Musicians, the Lake Forest Concerto Competition, Minnesota’s Schubert Competition, Boston GuitarFest, Concurso Internacional de les Corts para Jóvenes Intérpretes in Barcelona, Concurso Internazionale Di Gargnano, and Certamen Internacional Luys Milan de Guitarra in Valencia. For his promotion, interpretation and performance of Spanish music, he was nominated for the 2011 Trujamán Prize, in which only three guitarists worldwide are selected annually.
From 2008-2011, Levin was honored as a Fulbright Scholar as well as grant awards from the Program for Cultural Cooperation Fellowship (promoting cultural understanding between Spain and the United States) and the Kate Neal Kinley Fellowship, to research contemporary Spanish guitar repertoire in Madrid, Spain. His three-year residency resulted in a major collaboration with 30 Spanish composers spanning four generations, who each wrote works commissioned by and dedicated to Levin. In 2012, production began on a four volume encyclopedic recording project with Naxos. The first two recordings in the series, 21st Century Spanish Guitar, Volume 1 and Volume 2 have been released by Naxos to rave reviews from Classical Guitar Magazine, Soundboard, American Record Guide, and featured Recording of the Month and Recording of the Year awards from Music-Web International. In November, 2017, Naxos will release Volume 3 of the series, with six world premieres of solo works dedicated to Levin, including pieces by three of Spain’s most renowned composers, Antón García Abril, Leonardo Balada, and Cristobal Halffter, plus three works by rising composers Eduardo Morales-Caso, Laura Vega, and José Luis Greco.
Levin’s critically acclaimed discography also includes his debut album, In the Beginning [ALR, 2009], Music from Out of Time [La Communidad de Madrid, 2010], and Fuego de la Luna [Verso, 2011], the latter showcasing the complete guitar works of Spanish-Cuban composer Eduardo Morales-Caso, a composer whose music Levin has championed since the launch of his career.
An avid chamber musician, Levin has performed with orchestra, string quartet, and various instrumental and vocal duo combinations. His primary chamber ensemble, Duo Sonidos, has been celebrated for bringing a fresh interpretation of chamber music to wide-ranging audiences across the globe while expanding the repertoire for violin and guitar through new commissions. In 2010, Duo Sonidos was awarded first prize at the Luys Milán International Chamber Music Competition in Valencia, Spain. Their 2010 self-titled debut recording received rave reviews from Classical Guitar Magazine, Soundboard, American Record Guide, and a US Choice award from BBC Music Magazine. The duo will be releasing their follow up recording in 2018 with folk-inspired works by Karol Szymanowski, Lukas Foss, George Gershwin, Erich Korngold, Joaquín Rodrigo, and others.
As an ambassador of the guitar, Mr Levin is dedicated to sharing a comprehensive repertoire in underserved and unconventional spaces. He was director of the Concert for Golf Coast Aid for Hurricane Katrina victims, which raised $10,000. In 2007, he was awarded the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship to conduct 200 hours of innovative community work in Boston public schools, prisons, and rehabilitation centers. Demonstrating his long-term commitment to music advocacy, Levin is a founding member of Kithara Project (www.kitharaproject.org), an organization devoted to promoting the widespread and equitable access to the guitar for youth worldwide.
A native of Chicago’s North Shore, Adam holds bachelor’s degrees from Northwestern University in Music Performance, Psychology, and Pre-Med. Under the tutelage of Eliot Fisk, Levin completed his master’s degree in guitar performance at New England Conservatory in Boston. His esteemed teachers have included Oscar Ghiglia, Gabriel Estarellas, Anne Waller, Mark Maxwell, and Paul Henry. Adam is the director of the annual Boston Young Guitarists’ Workshop (www.ygwboston.org), which will expand to weekends throughout the academic year culminating in the Boston Guitarfest. Levin is a professor of guitar at the University of Rhode Island and also teaches at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. Adam Levin is a D’Addario Artist and performs on a guitar by luthier Stephan Connor.
Kevin Manderville began his classical guitar studies at the age of eighteen with James Chandler. He received the Bachelor of Music degree from Stetson University, where he studied with Stephen Robinson. He also received the Master of Music and Doctor of Music degrees from Florida State University under the tutelage of renowned pedagogue Bruce Holzman. In addition, Mr. Manderville has also studied in masterclasses with some of today’s most prominent guitarists, including Sergio and Odair Assad, Manuel Barrueco, Eliot Fisk, Roland Dyens, and Oscar Ghiglia.
Kevin Manderville has won prizes in several international competitions, including first prize at the Concours International de Guitare de Lachine, second prize at the Rantucci International Guitar Competition and consecutive top prizes at the Columbus Guitar Symposium Competition. In 2006, he was a recipient of the Florida Artist Enhancement Grant.
His performances as a solo recitalist, chamber musician, and former member of the Tantalus Quartet have taken him throughout North America and Europe, including appearances in such major cities as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Montreal, Cologne, New Orleans, Atlanta, Miami, and Orlando. He has also performed at major venues, concert series and festivals including Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, the Guitar Foundation of America International Convention, the Iserlohn International Guitar Symposium, the 2nd Acadia International Guitar Festival, the Hamilton International Guitar Festival, the Columbus State University Guitar Symposium, the New York Guitar Seminar, and the Lachine International Music Festival. Committed to the performance of new music, he has premiered several works including those written for him. His debut CD, titled Through the Centuries, was released in the fall of 2010 on Clear Note.
A dedicated teacher, Dr. Manderville served as a teaching assistant at Florida State University for three years. He has also been on the faculty of Troy University, Thomas University, Tallahassee Community College, Bainbridge College and the Stetson University Community School of Music. While living in New York, he taught at Medgar Evers College, the Amadeus Conservatory of Music, and initiated an after-school guitar program for Manhattan Youth. Kevin Manderville currently resides in Montgomery, AL, where he directs the classical guitar program at Carver Elementary Arts Magnet School and is on the faculty at Huntingdon College.
Jill: Well I know for instance, I interviewed Wu Man when she was here. She had a piece written for her by Lou Harrison who is an American composer and we do play on the station a piece called Yellow River Concerto which is a kind of westernized Chinese version of a rather impressive piano concerto with an impressive pipa part in it and I must say I don’t think any of us knew about the pipa until we started playing that concerto so it’s rather odd to find you, a Philadelphia born musician and accomplished pipa musician.
excerpt from Crossover with Jill Pasternak w/ David Cohen WRTI January 2007
Pipa Master Sun Li had been in America for a few months when I started my study with her. It took a long time to find someone who would teach me. I was walking into a new culture and did not know the pipa was considered a female instrument. At the time the pipa was nonexistent in Philadelphia even in the Chinese community. The request from and American male from Philadelphia traveling to Manhattan on a regular basis wasn’t taken seriously. Master Sun Li (pictured left) needing to create an income base took the chance; I was her first student in America.
At one point the school where she taught was going to be closed for a three week period. We both didn’t want to lose weeks. She invited me to Chinese Queens to continue the instructions in her home.
The period of time my study took place in the aftermath of 9/11. My instructions started in the first week of Manhattan being reopened. The backdrop and smells from ground zero were ever present. Being in a vehicle with one passenger I wasn’t able to drive into Manhattan. Out of the many options I chose to drive to the Highland’s in New Jersey to take the Wall Street Ferry into Manhattan. From there I walked to my lesson in Chinatown or took the Chinese bus when the lessons were in Queens. Travel time was five hours from my front door to the school, going into Queens was an extra thirty minutes (non rush hour).
I had a New York minute to make the next LIRR to get back into Manhattan after one of my lessons in Queens. In my rush I turned a corner to smack right into a women head on. Two strangers bumped into each other and we both apologized. The woman knowing what was in the case I carried asked, “Oh, you play the pipa? In China it’s a female instrument.” She identified herself as a pipa musician and explained that she was coming back from the printer with programs for her upcoming tour of the United States and Canada. She handed me a program; I knew who this woman was, I had one of her CD’s and was using one of the pieces from it to practice against.
She asked to see my pipa, my rush to make the train ended. I pulled my pipa out of the case on the busy Queens avenue and in the process she saw the transcriptions I was using. Seeing that I was learning Chinese notation and real Chinese classical music she affirmed, “Oh, you really are a pipa player! She told me of her recent return from China with a pipa that was made for the tour. Her luthier had extra material and made a duplicate pipa for her to “take back to America for the pipa player she will meet.” My eyes widened with interest as I stroked my chin with thumb and index finger. She continued, “You need a new pipa, this one is for children.” Interesting timing! Both Sun Li and myself were looking for a “real” pipa for me. I had outgrown the beginner pipa I was using in addition to it starting to warp.
The words she spoke of the pipa being a duplicate were true. The only difference was the design of artwork in the headstock. Her’s was custom designed dragon, my soon to be pipa had a lotus flower. The sale took place a week later on a brutally frigid February morning the day before the Chinese New Year. I took it all as a good sign. After the purchase that took place in Queens, I met a friend in Manhattan for lunch before my journey home. Our waitress with a thick Jamaican accent upon seeing my pipa case asked, “Do you play the pipa?” She told us of her study of the Chinese pipa when she was a little girl in Jamaica. My friend shaking his head in disbelief stated that stuff like this only happens to me.
More and more I see male pipa players performing. It was explained to me that traditionally men taught the pipa and for aesthetic reasons women performed in pubic. I am a guest in a culture, I listen, observe and learn.
While composing the composition People of the Rain I realized I needed a different feel than I had from the guitars I’ve been playing on lately. For no particular reason I haven’t played my Menkevich guitar for a few years. The said guitar is very special to me; Carlos Rubio introduced me to Luthier Michael Menkevick. From that introduction came my first custom guitar. My guitar hero also strummed an A chord on it, signed the head stock and heard me play an Allegra while her tour manager danced (turned out the tour manager was a flamenco dancer). On a hunch a few months ago I reopened a guitar case that has been closed. I reintroduced myself, apologized, polished the wood and restrung; the rhythms and melody poured out.
Sat, April 7, 2018
7:30 PM – 9:30 PM EDT
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Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral
23 South 38th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
Legendary guitarist Manuel Barrueco is internationally recognized as one of the most important guitarists of our time. His unique artistry has been continually described as that of a superb instrumentalist and a superior and elegant musician, possessing a seductive sound and uncommon lyrical gifts.
His career has been dedicated to bringing the guitar to the main musical centers of the world such as the Musikverein in Vienna, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Royal Albert Hall in London, Philharmonie in Berlin, Teatro Real in Madrid, and Palau de la Musica in Barcelona. He has completed a dozen tours of Japan and made repeated appearances in Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, China, and Hong Kong, and in Latin America he has performed in Mexico, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Panama and Puerto Rico.
Barrueco’s commitment to contemporary music and to the expansion of the guitar repertoire has led him to collaborations with many distinguished composers such as Steven Stucky, Michael Daugherty, Roberto Sierra, Arvo Pärt, Jonathan Leshnoff, Gabriela Lena Frank, Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky, and Toru Takemitsu.
Manuel Barrueco has appeared on a wide array of television programs including “CBS Sunday Morning”, A&E’s “Breakfast with the Arts”, and “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood” on PBS. He was featured in a Lexus car commercial, and his work in music inspired Michael Lawrence’s biographical documentary: “Manuel Barrueco: A Gift and a Life”.
Barrueco’s recording catalogue includes over a dozen recordings for the EMI label. His recording of Joaquín Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez with conductor and tenor Plácido Domingo and the Philharmonia Orchestra was cited as the best recording of that piece in Classic CD Magazine.
In 2007 Manuel Barrueco received a Grammy nomination for the “Best Instrumental Soloist Performance” for his Solo Piazzolla, which was the first recording to be released on his exclusive Manuel Barrueco Collection on Tonar Music. Tango Sensations and Sounds of the Americas followed in collaboration with the Cuarteto Latinoamericano, the latter received a Latin Grammy Award for “Inca Dances” by Gabriela Lena Frank for “Best Classical Contemporary Composition.” In 2010 he released, Tárrega!, which received a Latin Grammy nomination for “Best Classical Album,” Medea, which includes Barrueco’s arrangement of the ballet by flamenco guitarist/composer Manolo Sanlúcar recorded with the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra and Víctor Pablo Pérez conducting and received a Latin Grammy nomination for “Best Classical Album” as well. His latest release is China West, a recording of guitar trios in collaboration with his protégés, the Beijing Guitar Duo.
Manuel Barrueco began playing the guitar at the age of eight in his native Cuba and he immigrated with his family to the United States in 1967 as political refugees. Later, he completed his advanced studies at the Peabody Conservatory of Music, where he now shares his love for music with a small number of exceptionally gifted young guitarists from all over the word.
William Feasley: guitar
Emily Tsai: oboe
October 15, 2017- 4:00 p.m.
The Presbyterian Church of Toms River
1070 Hooper Ave
Toms River, NJ
Founded in 1991 to investigate the little known wealth of chamber music for oboe and guitar, the D’Amore Duo has toured internationally and domestically to enthusiastic reviews.
The Duo has released three critically-claimed recordings, and performed at such venues as St. Martin in the Fields in London, the Yale Centre for British Art, the National Cathedral, the Arts Centre in Christchurch, New Zealand, the Spanish Institute in New York, the Smithsonian Institution, and live on ABC International Radio out of Sydney, Australia.