Christian Vásquez conducts several concerts with various EL SISTEMA orchestras in Venezuela throughout these months of November and December, before heading to France to act as assistant conductor to Gustavo Dudamel at the Paris National Opera in the rehearsals and performances of Tristán and Isolde by Richard Wagner. During his stay in Venezuela, he will lead the Juan José Landaeta Orchestra (formerly the Teresa Carreño Symphony Orchestra), of which he is Musical Director; of the Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, and of the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra, the main formation and flagship of the System of Children and Youth Orchestras of Venezuela.
The calendar of this extensive presence at the head of the formations of EL SISTEMA begins on November 20 with the Juan José Landaeta Symphony Orchestra, to which he will conduct a program that includes Wolf Totem, Concert for double bass and orchestra by Tan Dun with Edicson Ruiz on double bass and Béla Bartók’s Concerto for Orchestra. On November 26, he will lead the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra with which he will perform Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso by Camille Saint-Saëns with Thibault Vieux on violin and the Concerto for Double Bass and Orchestra by Efraín Oscher, again with Edicson Ruiz on double bass, and the Alpine Symphony by Richard Strauss. On December 3 with the Gaêlica y la Bolívar group, he will conduct an extraordinary concert entitled A Night of Light. On December 7, this time with the Venezuelan Symphony, he will conduct the Overture to The Marriage of Figaro and the Concert in A Major for clarinet and orchestra, both by W. A. Mozart, with clarinetist Andrés Nieves, and Symphony No. 9, New World, obyAntonín Dvořák. And on December 16 he will close this journey again with Bolívar and the participation of the Simón Bolívar National Choir conducting the Te Deum by Hector Berlioz.
Christian Vasquez has been Music Director of the Stavanger Orchestra in Norway, Principal Guest Conductor of the Gävle Symphony in Sweden and the Het Gelders Orkest in the Netherlands and currently holds the title of the Juan José Landaeta Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, heir to the Teresa Carreño Youth Symphony Orchestra. Vásquez comes from conducting the Tongyeong Festival Orchestra at the Isangyun International Cello Competition in South Korea
Marina Heredia will sing at the Pierre Boulez Saal in Berlin next Wednesday, November 23, accompanied by her usual collaborators José Quevedo ‘Bolita’ on guitar and Paquito González on percussion, as special guests of Avi Avital and his Between Worlds Ensemble in a program dedicated to the music of the Iberian Peninsula that includes arrangements of classical compositions by Falla, Albéniz and Granados together with flamenco pieces and other popular music in new arrangements made especially for the occasion.
Mandolinist Avi Avital has long enjoyed crossing musical boundaries. This season, he brings a series of three concerts to the Pierre Boulez Saal that reflect his broad inspiration and interests. Between Worlds is an exploration of different genres, cultures and musical worlds: at the center of the project is the Between Worlds Ensemble, founded by Avital in 2014 and made up of ten classically trained musicians who are equally comfortable in non-classical repertoire. For each of the three concerts, this core group will be joined by various artists or an ensemble representing a specific cultural and geographic region from around the world, in programs that include classical pieces as well as traditional and folk music in newly created arrangements. “The feeling of being at home in places that seem strange and even discovering aspects of yourself is an idea that I find very moving,” says Avital. “That philosophy is at the heart of this project.” To open the cycle, Marina Heredia, one of the most fascinating voices of current flamenco, will become part of the Between Worlds Ensemble, together with José Quevedo “Bolita” and Paquito González in a program dedicated to the music of the Iberian Peninsula.
Marina Heredia has just inaugurated her artistic residence in the season of the Duisburger Philharmoniker with which she sang El Amor Brujo by Falla and as soon as she gets off the plane from Berlin she will join the Radio TV Spanish Orchestra for the rehearsals of El Amor Brujo, which she will sing on December 2 at the Kursaal Theater in Melilla under the direction of conductor Isabel Rubio. This first visit to Duisburg included a concert by her quintet, various educational activities and a round table on flamenco. In a second visit that will take place in June 2023, the world premiere of En Libertad will take place under the direction of Josep Pons, a new work commissioned by the orchestra and composed together by José Quevedo ‘Bolita’ and Joan Albert Amargós, on texts by Quevedo himself, based on an idea by Marina Heredia. As on the first occasion, the concert with the orchestra will be accompanied by a new show by her flamenco company and related activities.
Marina Heredia will be artist-in-residence of the Duisburger Philharmoniker in the 2022/23 symphony season. After a season that saw her debuts with the Orquesta da Casa da Música do Porto or the Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester Berlin, and a summer that took her to the Granada International Music and Dance Festival and to Hamburg as a guest of the Martha Argerich Festival at the Laieszhalle of the Elbphilharmonie, Marina begun this season at the Lausitz Festival in Görlitz, the Seville Biennale or the inaugural concert of the Navarra Symphony Orchestra season, which was also the presentation of maestro Perry So as its new Musica and artistic Director, Marina will visit Duisburg up to four occasions to offer various concerts, both with the orchestra and with his flamenco company.
Marina’s residency begins with the quintessential work for cantaora with symphony orchestra, El Amor Brujo by Manuel de Falla. These concerts will take place at the Mercatorhalle in Duisburg, the orchestra’s usual venue, on November 9 and 10, under the direction of its principal conductor, Axel Kober. Next, on the 12th of that month in the same room, she will offer a flamenco recital with her company in quintet format, accompanied by guitar (José Quevedo ‘Bolita’), percussion (Paquito González) and choir / clapping (Fita Heredia and Anabel Rivera).
The second symphonic date will be at the end of the season and it will be the premiere of En Libertad! a work commissioned by the orchestra, composed jointly by José Quevedo ‘Bolita’ and Joan Albert Amargós, which will be conducted by Josep Pons on June 28 and 29. Quevedo, also the author of the texts, has based himself on the journey of the gypsy people from its original origins in the East to the Iberian Peninsula and, particularly, Andalusia. The residency closes with a new flamenco recital on July 1 whose program is based on the cantaora’s latest album, CAPRICHO, and which will feature the participation of musicians from the Duisburger Philharmoniker as guests along with the company’s musicians.
Perry So returns to the podium of the Navarra Symphony, of which he is the Music and Artistic Director since this season, to conduct a program that includes Bach’s Ricercare a 6, arranged by Anton Webern; Teoton, concerto for sheng and orchestra by Jukka Tiensuu (1948), performed by Wu Wei, the world’s most renowned performer of this Chinese wind instrument, and Beethoven’s Symphony No 3, Op. 55 Eroica.
Perry So was elected principal and artistic director of the Navarra Symphony Orchestra for a period of three years, from this season until the end of the 2024/25 season. Perry So was born in 1982 in Hong Kong, where he received his early musical training in piano, organ, violin, viola, and composition. He received a BA in Comparative Literature from Yale University with a specialization in Central European music and literature of the modernist period, a period in which he founded an academic orchestra and directed the university’s opera company. He studied conducting at the Peabody Institute in Baltimore under the tutelage of Maestro Gustav Meier and in 2008 received the First Prize and the Special Prize at the 5th Edition of the St. Petersburg Prokofiev International Conducting Competition. Following this recognition, he was appointed Assistant Director and then Associate Director of the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Gustavo Dudamel Conducting Fellow at the Los Angeles Philharmonic and artistic collaborator of the Principality of Asturias Symphony Orchestra, and is also a member of the Conducting Department of Orchestra of the Manhattan School of Music.
Present in concert halls on five continents, Perry So has recently made his debut with the San Francisco Symphony, his operatic debut in Europe was at the Royal Danish Opera with The Magic Flute, and his American debut at the Yale Opera with Eugene Onegin. Some notable performances include a tour of Italy with the Nuremberg Symphony, a seven-week tour of South Africa leading three different orchestras in which he conducted Verdi’s Requiem in Cape Town as part of the South African National Arts Festival, or his return to the podium of the San Francisco Symphony. He has had a long-standing collaboration with the Royal Danish Theater and the Royal Danish Orchestra both in the concert hall and in the opera and ballet pit. He has been a frequent guest at Walt Disney Hall and the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles and in 2013 toured the Balkan Peninsula leading the Zagreb Philharmonic in the first series of cultural exchanges established after the breakup of Yugoslavia.
Other debuts in recent years include appearances with the Cleveland and Minnesota Orchestras, the Navarra, Malaga, Tenerife, Nuremberg, Israel, New Zealand, Houston, Detroit, New Jersey and Shanghai Symphony Orchestras, the London Philharmonics, Szezcin, Seoul and China, the Residentie Orkest in The Hague and the Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie in Koblenz. His recording studio work covers a wide cross-section of 20th century British, French and Russian music with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales and the BBC Concert Orchestra, and his album of Barber and Korngold Violin Concertos with Alexander Gilman and the Cape Town Philharmonic he received the Diapason d’Or in January 2012. His wide-ranging musical interests include numerous world premieres on four continents, as well as the reintroduction of Renaissance and Baroque repertoire into symphonic programmes, most notably championing the works of Jean-Philippe Rameau. His work with young musicians has taken him to the Australian Youth Orchestra, the National Youth Orchestra of Canada, the Round Top Festival, the Manhattan School of Music, the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts and the Yale School of Music. . Perry, his wife Anna, and his daughter Caroline divide their time between Boston, Saint Paul, where Anna is a professor of history of science at the University of Minnesota, and Pamplona.
Christian Vásquez made his debut last year 2021 at the Tongyeong International Festival in South Korea conducting two concerts with the Festival Orchestra and two soloists such as Bomsori Kim and Camille Thomas and was immediately invited to conduct the final phase and the winners’ concert of the Tongyeong Isang Yun Cello International Competition on November 5th and 6th. The Isangyun International Competition has been presented by the Tongyeong International Music Foundation since 2003. It is held in memory of Isang Yun (1917-1995), a renowned Korean composer, promoting cultural exchanges between nations through music while that supports young musicians from all over the world. The contest takes place annually in the month of November, alternating the piano, violin and cello disciplines. Isang Yun was born in Tongyeong in 1917, he created bridges between Asian and Western cultures, his style is part of traditional Korean music, and yet, working with the twelve-tone technique and other means of the Western avant-garde, it also has its place in the European tradition.
Upon his return from Korea, Christian Vásquez will travel to Venezuela for a long stay leading the various formations of EL SISTEMA, in which he plays a prominent role as musical director of the Juan José Landaeta Orchestra, formerly the Teresa Carreño Symphony Orchestra. On November 20, Christian Vásquez conducts the Juan José Landaeta with a program that includes: Tan Dun’s Wolf Totem, concerto for double bass and orchestra, with Edicson Ruiz as soloist, and the Concerto for orchestra by Béla Bartók; on November 26 he conducts the Simón Bolívar Symphony with the Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso by Camille Saint-Saëns, with Thibault Vieux on the violin, the Concerto for Double Bass and Orchestra by Efraín Oscher, again with Edicson Ruiz on double bass and the Alpine Symphony by Richard Strauss; on December 3, Christian Vásquez joins the Gaêlica group to present the show Una noche de luz; On December 7, he conducts the Venezuelan Symphony with the overture to The Marriage of Figaro and the Concerto in A Major for clarinet and orchestra by W. A. Mozart, with Andrés Nieves on clarinet and Symphony no. 9, New World, by Antonín Dvořák, to round off his stay again with the Bolívar, on December 16, with Hector Berlioz’s Te Deum.
Immediately afterwards, Christian Vásquez will travel to the Opera National de Paris where he will work as assistant to Gustavo Dudamel in the production of Tristan and Isolde, and where he will return later in April to direct several ballet performances, after passing through Poland, with the Baltic Philharmonic , where he will work with the violinist Robert Lakatoš, and again Venezuela. Before the end of the season he will still go to Colombia to lead the Colombian National Orchestra, with Pacho Flores, and the Medellín Philharmonic, and Switzerland to conduct the Geneva Conservatory Orchestra.
Manuel Hernández-Silva returns to Valencia on November 3 to conduct the fifth subscription concert of the Orquesta de Valencia, with which he made his debut just nine months ago. This concert, which is also part of the II Iturbi Piano Festival, will take place at the Teatro Principal, and brings together soloists Carlos Apellániz, piano; Diego Ares, harpsichord; Claudio Carbó, piano; Maria Linares, piano; Oscar Oliver, piano; Antonio Simón, fortepiano and piano; and Xavier Torres, piano, to tackle a repertoire that includes: Johann Sebastian Bach’s Concerto for four keyboards and orchestra in A minor, BWV 1065; Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Concerto for three pianos and orchestra in F major, KV 242; Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s Concerto for harpsichord, fortepiano and orchestra in E flat major, H 479; Franz Liszt’s Totentanz. Danse Macabre, S 126; and Sergei Prokofiev’s Concerto for piano and orchestra No. 4, in B flat major for the left hand, Op. 53.
Manuel Hernández-Silva closed last season with significant debuts in orchestras such as the Orchestre National de Bordeaux-Aquitaine and the Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo, important premieres such as Stabat Mater by Moreno Buendía, or Salseando, by Roberto Sierra and Concerto Venezolano by Paquito D’ Rivera, both with Pacho Flores as soloist. He also returned to orchestras such as the Gran Canaria Philharmonic, the Buenos Aires Philharmonic or the Colombian National Symphony Orchestra.
At the beginning of this season, Manuel Hernández-Silva keeps the pulse with debuts at the Bogotá Sacred Music Festival or the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra, followed throughout the season with the Tucson Symphony in the USA, the Orchestre National du Pays de la Loire in France, the Arctic Philharmonic in Norway or the Galician Symphony in Spain. He will also return to the Buenos Aires Philharmonic Orchestra, the Chilean National Philharmonic or the Colombian National Philharmonic, in addition to projects with young people, so dear to him, such as the Musikene Orchestra and the Galician Symphony Youth Orchestra.
Pacho Flores makes his debut with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra (New York) under the direction of its Music Director JoAnn Falletta with a program that includes Haydn’s trumpet concerto and Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño. The concerts will take place on October 28 and 29 at the Kleinhans Music Hall in the city of Buffalo. This is the first stop on a brief US tour that will also take him to New Hampshire and California, with Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño as a kind of common thread.
In New Hampshire, he will stop at the Hopkins Center for the Arts of Dartmouth College, in the city of Hanover, to present, together with the Dartmouth College Wind Ensemble, the world premiere of his own work Cantos y Revueltas as well as of the Concierto de Otoño, both in arrangement for symphonic band. The first piece, in which he will be accompanied by Venezuelan cuatro player Héctor Molina, will be conducted by Brian E. Messier, and the second by Luis Manuel Sánchez. The concert will take place on November 1 at the Spaulding Auditorium.
He will then travel to California for his third debut on this tour, this time with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Carlos Miguel Prieto, with which he will again perform Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño at the Davis Symphony Hall on November 5. The Concierto de Otoño, commissioned by the National Orchestra of Mexico, the Tucson Symphony Orchestra, the Hyogo Pac Orchestra of Japan and the Oviedo Filarmonía, is part of Pacho’s latest album for Deutsche Grammophon, ESTIRPE, together with Paquito D’Rivera’s Concerto Venezolano, Concierto Mestizo by Efraín Oscher and Crónicas Latinoamericanas by Daniel Freiberg, in addition to Morocota, a brief Venezuelan waltz by Pacho himself, recorded with Carlos Miguel Prieto and the Orquesta Sinfónica de Minería.
Manuel Hernández-Silva has assembled a team of Spanish-Venezuelan musicians along with Pacho Flores and Jesús ‘Pingüino’ González, for his debut with the Cyprus National Symphony Orchestra. The first part of the concert is dedicated to the traditional repertoire with a Symphony No. 6 by Franz Schubert to give rise in the second to a Latin festival around the trumpet in which a good part of the repertoire is by Pacho Flores himself and includes Heteronimos, a brief concertino for trumpet based on the different voices created by the Portuguese Fernando Pessoa for his literary expression; the Aria-cantinela of the Bachiana Brasileira nº 5 by Villalobos; Revirado, by Piazzolla; and Cantos y Revueltas. Fantasia Concertante for trumpet, Venezuelan Cuatro and strings, again by the trumpeter himself.
Cantos y Revueltas is the first work for orchestra composed by Pacho Flores and was premiered with Manuel Hernández-Silva and the cuatrista Leo Rondón together with the Real Filharmonía de Galicia in January 2018 on a mini-tour through Vigo, Santiago and A Coruña. Those concerts were recorded and gave rise to Pacho’s fourth album for Deutsche Grammophon with the same title as the work. Since then, Cantos y Revueltas has been performed by various orchestras around the world, such as the Murcia Region Symphony, the Miami Bolívar Philharmonic, the Texas Christian University Latin American Festival, the Malaga Philharmonic, the Navarra Symphony, the Jalisco Philharmonic, the Orquesta of Extremadura, Bogotá Philharmonic, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Valencia Orchestra, Castilla y León Symphony, Gran Canaria Philharmonic, Montreal Symphony and Minería Orchestra in Mexico, most of them conducted by Manuel Hernández-Silva but also by Carlos Miguel Prieto, Rafael Payare or Domingo Hindoyan. Heterónimos premiered with the Murcia Region Symphony last April 2022 at the Víctor Villegas Auditorium with Pacho himself conducting.
Jesús González Brito, alias ‘Pingüino’, is a guitarist, cuatro player, double bass player, composer and pedagogue with whom Pacho has collaborated on many occasions including a phonographic record for Deutsche Grammophon, ENTROPÍA, perhaps Pacho’s most intimate and chamber music album to date. date, which brings together a good number of classic songs from Latin American popular music along with new works due to both Pacho and ‘Pingüino’ and which won the gold medal at the Global Music Awards.
Manuel Hernández-Silva conducts the soprano Nadège Meden and the National Symphony Orchestra of Colombia with Symphony No. 3, Op. 36, Symphony of Lamentations, by Henryk Górecki, within the framework of the XI International Festival of Sacred Music of Bogotá, the next September 23 at 7:00 p.m. in the Fabio Lozano Auditorium. This concert marks the beginning of the symphonic season of maestro Hernández-Silva that will take him to new debuts with orchestras such as the Cyprus National Symphony, Tucson Symphony, Arctic Philharmonic, Orchestra National du Pays de la Loire, Galicia Symphony or Prague Philharmonia; and returns to the Valencia Orchestra, the Colombian National Symphony, the Buenos Aires Philharmonic or the Český Krumlov Festival, in the Czech Republic, in addition to having the opportunity to resume educational projects so dear to him as with the Musikene Orchestra and the Young Galician Symphony Orchestra.
Hernández-Silva has been principal conductor of the Córdoba Orchestra, main guest conductor of the Simón Bolívar Orchestra in Caracas, musical director of the Andalusian Youth Orchestra and principal and artistic director of the Malaga Philharmonic and the Navarra Symphony. He has conducted orchestras such as the Wienner Symphoniker, WDR Rundfunkorchester, Rheinische Philharmonie, Orchester National Bordeaux-Aquitaine, São Paulo State Orchestra, Wuppertal Symphony, Israel, Prague Radio, Janacek Philharmonic, Nord Czech Philharmonic, Olomouc Philharmonic, National of Mexico, Chile or Puerto Rico, Philharmonics of Seoul or Buenos Aires, among many others.
In Spain, Hernández-Silva has conducted practically all professional orchestras and at the most important festivals such as the Fortnight of Music, Granada and Úbeda Festivals, as well as at the Cemski-Krumlov Festival in the Czech Republic. As an opera director, he has received great criticism for his work on titles such as Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Cosí fan tutte or Don Giovanni, Beethoven’s Fidelio, and Puccini’s La Boheme, Gianni Schicchi, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, or more recently Manon Lescaut. Hernández-Silva graduated from the Superior Conservatory of Vienna with honors in the chair of professors Reinhard Schwarz and Georg Mark. In the year of his diploma, he won the Forum Jünger Künstler conducting competition organized by the Vienna Chamber Orchestra, conducting this formation at the Konzerthaus in the Austrian capital.
Spanish conductor José Luis Gómez has just renewed his contract with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra until the end of the 2026/27 season. Gómez was appointed musical director in Tucson in 2016 and at this time had a contract in force until 2024, so he still had two years of tenure left, which have been extended another three. José Luis Gómez began his musical career as a violinist, but came to international attention in 2010 after winning the First Prize of the Sir Georg Solti International Conducting Competition in Frankfurt by unanimity of the jury. His performance in the competition earned him immediate appointment as Assistant Conductor of the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, a position created especially for him by Paavo Järvi and the orchestra immediately after the competition’s conclusion. José Luis Gómez was also Principal Conductor of the 1813 Teatro Sociale di Como Orchestra between 2012 and 2015.
Since José Luis Gómez took over in Tucson, there has been a significant increase in the number of subscribers and sponsors. Gómez has worked hard to introduce new outreach activities while continuing to support and develop the orchestra’s existing educational projects. He is also a champion of many lesser-known South American composers, whose works he programs together with other classical authors. Similarly, he has been responsible for commissioning new compositions, such as Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño for trumpet, whose US premiere took place in 2019 with Pacho Flores.
On the American continent, José Luis Gómez maintains a close relationship with the Edmonton Symphony and has worked with orchestras such as the Houston Symphony, the Ottawa National Arts Center Orchestra, the Vancouver, Colorado, Grand Rapids, Winnipeg and Alabama Symphonies, Chamber Orchestra Antonio, Rochester, Louisiana, Pasadena, and Elgin Philharmonics, and made his Carnegie Hall debut with the International Youth Philharmonic. In the south he has worked with the Orquestra Sinfônica Brasileira, Orquesta Filarmónica de Bogotá and the National Orchestra of Peru. He is intensely active in Europe, where he has conducted orchestras such as the RTVE Symphony, Weimar Staatskapelle Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Gran Canaria Philharmonic Orchestra, Hamburg Symphony, Karlsruhe Staatstheater Orchester, Basel Sinfonietta, Orquestra Sinfônica do Porto, Castilla y Leon Symphony, Milan Pomeriggi Musicali, Warsaw Symphony, SWR Radio Sinfonie-Orchester Stuttgart, Tenerife Symphony Orchestra or the Malaga Philharmonic. In 2019 he made a successful debut at the Berlin Komische Oper with Gabriela Montero as soloist. He recently conducted a tour of Belgium with the Flanders Symphony and Johannes Moser as soloist. In the Asia-Pacific area he has led the Macau Orchestra with Nemanja Radulovic, New Zealand Symphony, Australian National Academy of Music, Dunedin Symphony Orchestra, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra and Daegu Symphony Orchestra, among others.
Other notable performances by José Luis Gómez include his debuts with the Moscow State Conservatory, the widely televised New Year’s Eve concert in Sofia and with the Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra at their New Year’s concerts and some upcoming engagements include the National Symphony Orchestra. from Washington DC (Program with Yo Yo Ma and Paquito de Rivera), Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra (With Stephen Hough, piano), or the Pacific, Colorado and Phoenix Symphonies. In the operatic arena, highlights include La Bohème at the Frankfurt Opera and a new production of Rossini’s La Cenerentola at the Stuttgart Opera, La Forza del Destino in Tokyo with the New National Theatre, Don Carlo and Norma at The State Opera in Tbilisi, Georgia, La Traviata in concert version with the Sacramento Philharmonic, or Le Nozze di Figaro and Don Giovanni at the Teatro Sociale di Como, where he also conducted a spectacular production of Cavalleria Rusticana. He has recorded Bela Fleck’s Concerto No. 2 for banjo and orchestra, Juno Concerto, with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra and conducted the Hamburg Symphony and the talented young clarinettist Vladimir Soltan in the release of an album for MGD that collects the concertos for Nielson, Françaix and Debussy clarinet.