Christian Vásquez and Pacho Flores are working together again, this time with the Bogota Philharmonic Orchestra, on November 8 and 9 at the Auditorio León de Greiff. The program includes the following works: Gershwin: Cuban Overture; Márquez: Concierto de Otoño; Villalobos: Aria de la Bachiana nº 5; Flores: Morocota; Piazzolla: Invierno Porteño (from Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas); and Ginastera: Suite from ballet Estancia.
Christian Vásquez and Pacho Flores have known each other since their infancy, when they were together at EL SISTEMA in Venezuela. After developing an international career and being both based in Europe, they have had the chance to collaborate on different occasions with orchestras such as the Philharmonic of Turku in Finland, the Stavanger Symphony in Norway or the Het Gelders Orkest in the Netherlands, in addition to Pacho Flores’ record debut for Deutshe Grammophon with CANTAR, which they recorded with the Funkhausorchester in Berlin in 2013.
If Christian Vásquez and Pacho Flores recorded what was Pacho’s first record for the yellow label, this program includes two works, Aria de la Bachiana nº 5 by Villalobos and Invierno Porteño by Piazzolla, which are part of CANTOS Y REVUELTAS, his fourth record for the German label that will be launched very soon. This new album was conducted by Manuel Hernández-Silva with the participation of Venezuelan cuatro player Leo Rondón and the Royal Galician Philharmonia. In between these two were published the albums ENTROPÍA, in 2017, with guitarist Jesús ‘Pingüino’ González, and FRACTALES, in 2018, with the Arctic Philharmonic and Christian Lindberg. This program also includes Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño, which is part of a large and ambitious project of shared commissions for new trumpet concerts that Pacho himself is promoting and that includes composers such as Roberto Sierra, Paquito D’Rivera, Efraín Oscher, Christian Lindberg and Daniel Freiberg. The main target of this project is to expand and improve the repertoire for solo trumpet with orchestra.
Pacho Flores debuts with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Strasbourg next Friday, September the 27th, at the KKL of Lucerne, with the Concerto for trumpet and orchestra by Henri Tomasi, conducted by Kirill Karabits. Pacho has just arrived from Cracow, where he played works by Lindberg, Piazzolla and Arturo Márquez with the Beethoven Academy Orchestra conducted by Lee Reynolds; and after Lucerne Pacho is going to Fort Worth, Texas, to participate in the Latin American Music Festival, organised by the Texas Christian University, where Pacho will teach, play recitals, chamber music and concert con orchestra .
Pacho Flores is a first-prize winner of the Maurice André International Competition, the world’s most important trumpet contest, as well as the first prize at the International Competition Philip Jones and First Prize at the International Competition Citta di Porcia. Recently he was awarded with the Gold Medal by the Global Music Awards for ENTROPÍA, his last recording for Deutsche Grammophon with guitar player Jesús ‘Pingüino’ González. A product of the ground-breaking ‘El Sistema’, he is becoming increasingly recognized for his outstanding performing and recording activity that spans the solo, chamber, and orchestral media. Equally at home in the classical and folk styles, Pacho captivates audiences with his energetic delivery and colourful tone.
D. Freiberg, A. Márquez, P. D’Rivera, P. Flores and C. M. Prieto during the recording of Mestizo for Deutsche Grammophon
His solo performances include appearances with orchestras such as Turku Philharmonic, Arctic Philharmonic, Norrköping Symphony, Norddeutschen Philharmonie Rostock, Salzburger Philharmoniker, Kiev Philharmonic, St. Petersburg Camerata, Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, NHK Symphony, Tokyo Symphony, Osaka Philharmonic, Kymi Sinfonietta, Het Gelders Orchestra, Tucson Symphony, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, , Orquesta de RTVE, Hyogo PAC Orchestra, Sinfónica Nacional de México, Sinfónica Nacional de Puerto Rico, Filarmónica de Málaga, Sinfónica de Baleares, Real Filharmonía de Galicia, Sinfónica de Bilbao, Sinfónica de Tenerife, Stavanger Orchestra, Filarmónica de Gran Canaria, Orquesta del Teatro Colón de Buenos Aires, Oviedo Filarmonía or Simón Bolívar Orchestra of Venezuela. In recital, he has performed in venues such as the New York Carnegie Hall, the Paris Salle Pleyel and the Tokyo Opera City. Next engagements include the, Strasbourg Philharmonic Orchestra, Basel Symphonieorchester, Orchestre National de Lille, Sinfónica de Navarra, San Diego Symphony, National Orchestra of the Polish Radio, Sinfónica do Estado de São Paulo or Swedish Chamber Orchestra.
Pacho Flores and Paquito D’Rivera recording D’Rivera’s Concerto Venezolano
A founding member of the Venezuelan Simón Bolívar Brass Quintet, he has toured with the quintet extensively in Europe, South America, the United States, and Japan. An experienced orchestral musician, Mr. Flores has played first trumpet in the Simón Bolívar Orchestra of Venezuela, the Saito Kinen Orchestra, and the Miami Symphony, under the direction of Claudio Abbado, Sir Simon Rattle, Seiji Ozawa, Giusseppe Sinopoli, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, and Gustavo Dudamel, among others. A founding director of the Latin American Trumpet Academy in Caracas, he mentors a promising generation of budding musicians and is a frequent guest at conservatories in Finland, Spain, France, Japan, and Latin America, as permanent jury member in prestigious international competitions. Pacho Flores is an avid champion of new music and is bringing about important innovations to trumpet performance and fabrication. His repertoire includes commissions and premieres of works by composers such as Roger Boutry, Efraín Oscher, Giancarlo Castro, Santiago Báez, Juan Carlos Nuñez, Sergio Bernal, Arturo Márquez, Roberto Sierra or Paquito D’Rivera. His first album La trompeta Venezolana has been released by the label GUATACA Producciones.
A Stomvi artist, he performs with instruments tailored specially for him by this prestigious firm and actively participates in the development and innovation of their instruments. Pacho Flores is a Deutsche Grammophon exclusive artist with already three recordings, Cantar, with Konzerthaus Orchester Berlin and Christian Vásquez; Entropía, Gold Medal of the Global Music Awards 2017 and Melómano de Oro; and Fractales, with the Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra and Christian Lindberg, Gold Medal of the Global Music Awards 2019. Next releases are Cantos y Revueltas, with the Real Filharmonía de Galicia and Manuel Hernández-Silva, and Mestizo, with the Sinfónica de Minería and Carlos MIguel Prieto.
Ira Levin has been named as the new ‘Maestro Titular’ (Music Director) of the Teatro Municipal in Rio de Janeiro, effective immediately. This happens after a hugely successful production of Gounod’s Faust and concerts with tenors Vittorio Grigolo and Michael Fabiano. The TMRJ is the largest opera house in Brazil and the second largest in South America after the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, where Levin was the principal guest conductor from 2011 to 2015. He was also the artistic and music director of the Teatro Municipal in Sao Paulo from 2002 to 2005 and the National Theater of Brazil from 2007 to 2009, making him the only foreigner to have had leading positions in most of the leading opera houses in South America. He will conduct at least three opera productions and several concerts each year in Rio.
Ira Levin had major conducting positions in Bremen, Kassel and the Deutsche Oper am Rhein and guest conducted in several houses including Leipzig, Dresden, Frankfurt, Hannover, Linz, Geneva, Oslo, Cape Town and New York City Opera. Ira Levin has conducted over 90 operas and his concert activity has been equally intense, encompassing a huge repertoire, and he has several CDs to his credit with the London Symphony, Scottish National Orchestra and other orchestras.
Ira Levin is also still active as a concert pianist and has published several piano transcriptions as well as seven large orchestrations. His first Naxos CD, to be released in the Fall of 2019 will be of works by Max Reger and includes his orchestration of the monumental Bach Variations opus 81, originally for piano.
Ira Levin is also still active as a concert pianist and has published several piano transcriptions as well as seven large orchestrations. His first Naxos CD, to be released in the Fall of 2019, will be of works by Max Reger and includes his orchestration of the monumental Bach Variations opus 81, originally for piano. He lives in Berlin and Rio de Janeiro. He lives in Berlin and Rio de Janeiro. For more information about Ira Levin seewww.iralevin.net.
Pacho Flores will play four trumpet concertos in the same concert.
Pacho Flores will premiere the Concierto Venezolano, by Paquito D’Rivera, with the Minería Symphony Orchestra and Carlos Miguel Prieto at the Palacio de Bellas Artes de México DF on September 1. This concert is the result of a commission shared between four orchestras that already has its first two premieres scheduled, because after Mexico it will be released in the US by the San Diego Symphony Orchestra with Rafael Payare. This commission is part of the large project of shared commissions that Pacho Flores is carrying on prominent composers such as Paquito D’Rivera, Arturo Márquez, Roberto Sierra, Efraín Oscher, Christian Lindberg and Daniel Freiberg.
But the concert is not only news for the premiere of the Concierto Venezolano by Paquito D’Rivera as Pacho Flores will also play four trumpet concertos in the same session. The program begins with Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño, the first of the shared commission project concerts, which was recently premiered in Europe by the Oviedo Filarmonía and Lucas Macías, in the fourth commissioned orchestras engagement, and begin its public performance tour, precisely in Mexico with Carlos Miguel Prieto, the maestro who premiered it with the National Symphony exactly one year ago.
Paquito D’Rivera and Pacho Flores at the Stomvi factory working on the Concierto Venezolano
After Danzón nº 2 by Márquez, Pacho returns to the scene to play the premiere of the night, the Concierto Venezolano by Paquito D’Rivera. After the break he will play Crónicas Latinoamericanas, by Daniel Freiberg, which premiered last January with the Het Gelders Orchestra and Christian Vásquez and after the Huapango de Moncayo, Pacho will return to the stage to deliver the fourth concert of the night, the Concierto Mestizo by Efraín Oscher, that he has already played over 30 times throughout the world.
It is a physical feat of more than an hour of solo trumpet music that will shortly be released in a new Pacho Flores album for Deutsche Grammophon, his exclusive label, also accompanied the Minería Symphony Orchestra and Carlos Miguel Prieto; but beyond an athletic demonstration, it is an important step forward in Pacho’s effort to expand the repertoire of solo trumpet and orchestra. The shared commission project includes new milestones such as premieres of Efraín Oscher’s Danzas Latinoamericanas by the Galician Royal Philharmonic and Manuel Hernández-Silva in November; and Salseando, Roberto Sierra’s new trumpet concerto, with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Domingo Hindoyan in January 2020. After the concert, Pacho, Prieto and Minería Orchestra will record these concertos for Deutsche Grammophon.
Hernández-Silva has recently achieved a great success at Teatro Colón after conducting two programs with the Buenos Aires Philharmonic Orchestra. Several reviews from Argentine and international media such as Clarín, Olyrix or De Paraíso para Usted highlight his detailed knowledge of the scores, technique, musicality, attention to detail and ability to accompany the soloists and get the best out of this prestigious ensemble. Here you can read some excerpts.
The orchestra accompanied the pianist perfectly, under the masterful conducting of Hernández Silva. In the second of the three movements (Allegro scherzando), Filjak’s scherzo was masterful, with a depth and sound balance between orchestra and soloist as had not been heard at Teatro Colón for a while.
For the second part of the concert, Manuel Hernández Silva chose Dvorák’s Symphony No. 8 in G major, a piece within the usual repertoire of the Philharmonic, that has performed it on countless occasions. However, few performances have achieved the level of perfection and luminosity as last night’s under Hernández-Silva, which excelled for its outstanding interpretative quality and pure sound.
When there is rehearsal, discipline and effort, the Philharmonic shows its quality, sounding like a European orchestra. Manuel Hernández-Silva was an additional ingredient, contributing with his personality and talent to bring brightness and luminosity on a night worthy of the Colón. An authentic revelation on the stage of our biggest coliseum.
The five pieces in Ma Mère l’Oye offer in their symphonic version a delicate, smooth and quilted panorama of this French garden, which promised to be rich in colors and nuances, and that the Buenos Aires orchestra managed to transmit under the beats of the sometimes magic baton of Hernández-Silva, who was very inspired and precise in his direction. The management of volumes and tempi is particularly careful (III, Laideronnette), with Manuel Hernández-Silva remaining very attentive to the execution of his gestural, flexible and precise indications. The fade-in of the harp, the triangle and then the violins in Les Entretiens de la Belle et de la Bête (IV) is a good example of coordination to create this impression of wonder that is the aesthetic link of Ma Mère l’Oye and finds in Le Jardin féérique (V) an enchanting conclusion.
Au Cimetière (V) gives us the opportunity to see text and melody intermingling in a piece that evokes a song “on the wings of music”, while the iridescent nuances of the orchestra, under the instructions on its conductor, manage effects that echo those of the verses.
The second part of the concert opens to this French garden a new horizon from across the Rhine: the performance of Schumann’s Symphony No. 2 further reinforces the already existing impression. The Buenos Aires Philharmonic Orchestra follows Manuel Hernández-Silva’s requests exactly, earning them all a big applause.
Conducted by Venezuelan Manuel Hernández-Silva, the orchestra excelled itself with works by Ravel, Schumann and Berlioz.
The conductor was also a success. Venezuelan Manuel Hernández-Silva replaced French Lionel Bringuier, absent for health reasons. Hernández-Silva was born in Caracas, graduated in Vienna and is currently principal conductor of the Malaga and Navarra orchestras. In Ravel’s suite and Berlioz’s songs he managed the orchestra to sound expressive and detailed even in the most surprising pianissimos. The ravelian goldsmithing counted in addition on impeccable soloist interventions, especially Pablo Saraví in the brief but significant violin solo at the end of the fourth movement, Les entretiens de la Belle et de la Bête.
And another success was the soloist Berlioz songs, the Irish mezzosoprano Tara Erraught, of beautiful timbre, fair intonation and an expresiveness at the same time nuanced and reserved. Hernández-Silva maintained a seamless balance between orchestra and soloist.
If conductor Hernández-Silva had been extremely reserved in the first two pieces of the program, in Schumann he reached peaks of great emotional intensity, without neglecting the continuity of form and details at the same time. The great performance of the soloists, especially the oboe, the clarinet and the bassoon, must also be here underlined.