Schubert, Barbara

Concerts, concerts, concerts!  Happily, my 2010-2011 season was filled with rich opportunities to work with talented and dedicated musicians, and to conduct a wide array of substantive repertoire.  Here at U. Chicago our University Symphony concerts included Dvorak’s The Noonday Witch; Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto and Vaughan Williams’ A London Symphony; excerpts from Shostakovich’s late film scores (The Gadfly, Hamlet, and King Lear), as well as his Violin Concerto No. 1; Mysakovsky’s Symphony No. 22 in B minor; Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms; Gershwin’s An American in Paris and a concert version of Porgy and Bess; plus Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier Suite within a program of opera excerpts and choruses by Weber, Wagner, Puccini, and Verdi.  With my DuPage Symphony Orchestra, which performs in a beautiful new concert hall in suburban Naperville, I conducted an equally challenging and equally varied season, featuring Berlioz’s Symphonie fantastique; Ravel’s Daphnis et Chloé; Prokofiev’s Alexander Nevsky cantata and Romeo and Juliet suites; Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances from West Side Story; and Stravinsky’s Le Sacre du Printemps, along with Rachmaninoff’s Second Piano Concerto.  With the Park Ridge Fine Arts Symphony, a professional ensemble that performs only in the summer, I conducted such major works as the Dvorak Eighth and Brahms Fourth Symphonies, as well as such “lighter classics” as The Moldau and Capriccio Italien – plus, of course, the customary patriotic program for the July 4 holiday and a special Broadway concert including both vocal and instrumental excerpts from Bernstein’s West Side Story. Although I now measure my conducting career in decades rather than years, I still consider it a tremendous privilege – as well as a tremendous joy – to be able to study, rehearse, and perform so much great orchestral literature, and to share my love of music with enthusiastic audiences in Chicago and the suburbs!

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