At the “Pietrasanta in Concert” Festival, the debut for world renowned violinists Salvatore Accardo, Vadim Repin and Nigel Kennedy, who will share the stage with a never ending list of notable soloists and talented musicians including the Argentine pianist Martha Argerich, the queen of the cello Natalia Gutman, bandoneon virtuoso and tango composer Nestor Marconi, bassist Henry Fagone and trumpeter Sergei Nakariakov, not to mention Yuri Bashmet, one of the partners favored by Argerich, viola master and founder of the world's best string orchestra Moscow Soloists, and finally the intrepid Japanese musicians Akane Sakai and Mayu Kishima.
Nine evenings of great music to fill a calendar rich in musical performances and talented artists with the participation of several of the most famous orchestras in the world: the Chamber Orchestra of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, the Basel Chamber Orchestra and the Swiss quintet of Klezmer Kol Simcha. A unique overview of chamber music set in motion by artistic director Michael Guttman – forever in love with this corner of Tuscany - Pietrasanta in Concert is made possible by the Association Musica Viva (Florence) in collaboration with the Department of Culture of Pietrasanta, with organizational support of the Versilia and with the invaluable support of the "Edmond de Rothschild Group" based in Milan and a fundamental presence since the first edition of this festival.
Maestro Michael Guttman, the organizational force of the show, declares "year after year, excitement and anticipation for the coming of this event grows more and more and this year the festival will be crowned by the presence of internationally acclaimed musicians ranging in specialty but united by the excellence of their talent. This year we have chosen to assign the award of the Special Prize for a Young Italian Talent to the great maestro Salvatore Accardo".
To inaugurate the festival, on Friday, July 20th the beloved Argentine pianist Martha Argerich will be performing twice in the same evening alongside gifted musicians Enrico Fagone, one of the best bassists in the world, Sergei Nakariakov and the bold Japanese musicians Akane Sakai on piano and Mayu Kishima on violin to perform a recently discovered and complete Mozart concerto. The musicians of the Chamber Orchestra of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino will accompany the soloists and will be conducted by Michael Guttman. In addition to the Mozart concerto, performances will include works by Bottesini, Shostakovich and Elgar.
On Saturday, July 21st the evocative Cloister of St. Augustine will makes space for the Czar of the violin, Vadim Repin, born in Russia but raised in Belgium by adoption, he has performed with the Berlin Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra and the London Symphony Orchestra and at Pietrasanta he will be accompanied by the Chamber Musicians of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino conducted by Michael Guttman. Repin will give us a unique musical experience: a recital of music by Paganini, Sarasate, Mendelssohn and Mozart in which the chamber orchestra will play the piano part.
Sunday, July 22nd marks the first collaboration with the prestigious Menuhin Festival Gstaad and the Basel Chamber Orchestra’s first performance at Pietrasanta. The queen of the cello Natalia Gutman will perform a concert of Saint Saëns in the Cloister of St. Augustine with the accompaniment of the Basel Chamber Orchestra.
Monday, July 23rd will see the return of the Swiss ensemble Kol Simcha along with the Basel Chamber Orchestra in the Piazza Duomo conducted by Michael Guttman who will also play violin. With their magical mix of passion, virtue and excitement, they have incited audience in the piazzas of Pietrasanta and promise to do so this year with music by Mozart and the traditional Jewish Klezmer.
Tuesday, July 24th the Festival Pietrasanta in Concert will make its way into the Versiliana Park. An outdoor theater performance will feature the debut of star violinist Nigel Kennedy, who will perform pieces by both Bach and Fats Waller, in styles ranging from classical to Afro-American jazz. Kennedy is a musical virtuoso but also a big joker and boasts a unique style. He dons a punk hair style, wears earrings, floral printed scarves and studded jackets. Thanks to his precious Guarnieri he has conquered pop and rock fans alike and has even been compared to Madonna.
On Friday, July 27th, an evening dedicated to music coming from the American continent: In celebration of its successes and its torments, seen through some of its most praised composers who have reinvented a true American language within the realm of classical music. The concert’s feature acts will be baritone Stephen Salters, Eric Himy at the piano, Wendy Sutter and Michael Guttman on violin. The artists will perform music by Bernstein, Gershwin, Glass, Barber, Fosse, Cole Porter, Simon & Garfunkel, and bring to the stage and to Pietrasanta the true Broadway swing and New York energy in a new and innovative classical repertory.
Saturday, July 28th, always in the Cloister of St. Augustine, the debut of Intabolatura I, a concert for piano and violin composed purposely for Pietrasanta in Concert 2012 by Argentinian composer Jorge Bosso. The piece will be performed by Argentine pianist Karin Lechner and by Michael Guttman and accompanied by the Chamber Orchestra del Maggio. Later that evening will see the great bandoneonist Nestel Marconi, known for his tango pieces, return to the festival after his recent success in Argentina.
Sunday, July 29th is a date not to be missed. Salvatore Accardo, one of the living legend musicians of the violin will award the Musica Viva 2012 prize to a Young Italian Talent To Sophie Pacini, winner of the 2012 edition who will perform alongside Accardo and the Chamber Music Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Michael Guttman. Perfmance pieces include one of the most famous concerts by Mozart, the Jeune homme, as well as repertory by Paganini and Piazzolla.
The grand finale of July 30th is reserved for Russian violinist Yuri Bashmet, who will perform with the Soloists of Moscow, an ensemble which he founded. It is perhaps one of the top string orchestras in the world with a repertory ranging from Shostakovich, Cajkowskij and Kancheli. According to the New York Times, he is the greatest living musician in the world. Through his virtuosity, his energy and personality, Yuri Bashmet has given the viola a new prominence in the musical world. Bashmet is considered a true legend.
“There is great enthusiasm and excitement about the show,” declares mayor Domenico Lombardi. “Maestro Guttman brings us amazing live music and special guests every night and this year we are in for a real treat”.
Similarly to last year’s festival, residents of the city of Pietrasanta can receive discounted tickets with the proper identification.
The Pietrastanta Festival in Concert is an initiative brought to you by the Associazione Musica Viva and made possible thanks to the collaboration of the Department of Culture of the City district of Pietrasanta and with the organizational support of the Versiliana Foundation.
The tickets (25-80 Euro) can be purchased by clicking the festival’s web site: www.laversilianafestival.it and on Ticket One: (www.ticketone.it), At the Teatro Comunale of Pietrasanta during the usual working hours and at the ticket office of the Versiliana ( viale Morin, 12 – Marina di Pietrasanta).