The sensational pianist and Gramophone’s 2016 Artist of the Year Daniil Trifonov makes his Vail debut! Trifonov is "without question the most astounding young pianist of our age" (London Times), and we are thrilled to present him performing Chopin’s rich and inventive Piano Concerto No. 1. The second half of the program will feature the originally programmed Schumann’s masterfully transcendent Symphony No. 2
Please Note: This program was updated as of July 17. The original soloist for July 22 and July 23, violinist Leonidas Kavakos, has cancelled both of his Bravo! Vail performances due to a family emergency.
“Without question the most astounding young pianist of our age."
— The London Times
“He is, no other word, a phenomenon.”
— The Guardian
"Trifonov delivered a performance of sometimes unsettling intensity – one that didn’t so much grab your attention as dared you to look away. His technical abilities were spellbinding – exquisitely weighted chords, beautifully graded runs, harmonies hammered out with percussive brilliance.”
— The Telegraph
“We can’t actually know what Liszt sounded like, but we do know he was a virtuoso, and he mesmerized his listeners, and people found something distinctive and other-worldly and spiritual about him. All those things hold true of Trifonov, as well, though they add up to a pretty pale description of playing that can only be described as a visceral experience. … His recital [...] was a knockout.”
— Washington Post
“Daniil Trifonov is a superpianist, one of those rare performers for whom no technical hurdle is too difficult, and who can tease captivating music out of the densest jumble of notes.”
— Musical Toronto
NEW YORK PHILHARMONIC: CONDUCTED BY ALAN GILBERT
DANIIL TRIFONOV, SOLOIST
CHOPIN: Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor
SCHUMANN: Symphony No. 2
Chopin: Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor
Piano Concerto No. 1 in E minor, Op. 11 (1830)
Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849)
Frédéric Chopin was twenty and in love when he wrote his First Piano Concerto in 1830. The object of his affection was a comely young singer, one Constantia Gladowska, whom Casimir Wierzynski in his biography of the composer described: “She had been studying voice at the Warsaw Conservatory and was considered one of the school’s best pupils. She was also said to be one of the prettiest. The young lady, conscious of her charms, was also distinguished by ambition and diligence in her studies. She dreamed of becoming an opera singer....” Constantia was pleasant to Chopin and they became friends, but he was never convinced that she fully returned his affection. She took part in his farewell concert in Warsaw on October 11th, at which he premiered his First Piano Concerto, and they kept up a correspondence for a while after leaving the school. Her marriage to a Warsaw merchant in 1832 caused him intense but impermanent grief, which soon evaporated in the glittering social whirl of Paris, his new home. The Concerto opens with a long orchestral introduction that presents the melodramatic main theme and a grandly arched second subject. The piano enters for the reprise of the themes to complete the exposition. The development is largely occupied with the main theme. The recapitulation commences with the orchestra alone while the pianist returns only with the second theme. Of the Romanze, Chopin wrote, “[It is] of a romantic, calm and partly melancholy character. It is intended to convey the impression one receives when the eye rests on a beloved landscape that calls up in one’s soul beautiful memories, for instance, of a fine moonlit spring night.” The rondo-finale partakes of the jubilant character of a native Polish dance, the Krakowiak, with the returning theme separated by several glittering, tuneful episodes.
Symphony No. 2 in C major, Op. 61 (1845-1846)
ROBERT SCHUMANN (1810-1856)
The years 1845 and 1846 were difficult ones for Schumann. In 1844, he had gone on a concert tour of Russia with his wife, Clara, one of the greatest pianists of the era, and he was frustrated and humiliated at being recognized only as the husband of the featured performer and not in his own right as a distinguished composer and critic. The couple’s return to Leipzig found Robert nervous, depressed and suffering from occasional lapses of memory. He had a complete breakdown soon after, and his doctor advised the Schumanns to return to the quieter atmosphere of Dresden, where Robert had known happy times earlier in his life. They moved in October 1844, and Schumann recovered enough to completely sketch the Second Symphony in December of the following year. He began the orchestration in February, but many times found it impossible to work and could not finish the score until October.
Clara noted that her husband went night after night without sleep, arising in tears in the morning. His doctor described further symptoms: “So soon as he busied himself with intellectual matters, he was seized with fits of trembling, fatigue, coldness of the feet, and a state of mental distress culminating in a strange terror of death, which manifested itself in the fear inspired in him by heights, by rooms on an upper story, by all metal objects, even keys, and by medicines, and the fear of being poisoned.” Schumann complained of ringing in his ears, and it was at times even painful for him to hear music. He was almost frantic for fear of losing his mind. His physical symptoms, he was convinced, were a direct result of his mental afflictions. He was wrong.
In those pre-antibiotic times, a common treatment for syphilis was a small dose of liquid mercury. The mercury relieved the external signs of the disease— but at the cost of poisoning the patient (victim?). Schumann, many years before his devoted marriage to Clara, had both the infection and the treatment. The problems he lamented—ringing ears, cold extremities, depression, sleeplessness, nerve damage—were the result of the mercury poisoning. Sensitive as he was, Schumann first imagined and then was truly afflicted with his other symptoms until he became ill in both mind and body. Seen against this background of pathetic suffering, Schumann’s Second Symphony emerges as a miracle of the human spirit over the most trying circumstances.
The Symphony’s sonata-form first movement is prefaced by a slow introduction that presents a majestic, fanfare-like theme in the brass and a sinuous, legato melody in the strings. (The brass theme recurs as a motto during the course of the work.) The tempo quickens to begin the exposition, with the main theme heard in jagged, dotted rhythms. The second theme continues the mood of the main theme to complete the short exposition. The lengthy development section is mostly based on the second theme. After the recapitulation returns the exposition’s themes, the fanfare-motto is heard briefly to conclude the movement. The scherzo has two trios: the first dominated by triplet rhythms in the woodwinds, the second by a legato chorale for strings. The horns and trumpets intone the motto theme at the end of the movement. The third movement is constructed around a nostalgic melody first presented by the violins; a brief, pedantic contrapuntal exercise acts as a middle section. The brilliant finale is in sonata form, with a second theme derived from the opening notes of the melody of the preceding Adagio. The majestic coda begins with a soft restatement of the motto theme by trumpets and trombone, and gradually blossoms into a heroic hymn of victory.
ALAN GILBERT, conductor
Alan Gilbert is the music director for the New York Philharmonic.
DANIIL TRIFONOV, Piano
Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov has made a spectacular ascent in the world of classical music and is "without question the most astounding young pianist of our age" (London Times).
ALAN GILBERT, conductor
New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert began his tenure in September 2009. He simultaneously maintains a major international presence, making guest appearances with orchestras including the Berlin Philharmonic, Leipzig Gewandhaus, Royal Concertgebouw, London Symphony, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Boston Symphony, Munich Philharmonic, Dresden Staatskapelle, and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France. Gilbert is Conductor Laureate of the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic and former Principal Guest Conductor of the NDR Symphony Orchestra Hamburg. He has led productions for the Metropolitan Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Zurich Opera, Royal Swedish Opera, and Santa Fe Opera, where he served as the first appointed Music Director.
In seven years at the New York Philharmonic, Gilbert has succeeded in transforming the 175-year-old institution into a leader on the cultural landscape. He has led staged productions of Ligeti's Le Grand Macabre, Janácek's Cunning Little Vixen, Stravinsky's Petrushka, and Honegger's Joan of Arc at the Stake to great acclaim, and encouraged the development of two series devoted to contemporary music: CONTACT!, introduced in 2009, and the NY PHIL BIENNIAL, an exploration of today's music by a wide range of contemporary and modern composers, which was inaugurated in 2014 and returned in 2016.
Gilbert is Director of Conducting and Orchestral Studies and holds the William Schuman Chair in Musical Studies at the Juilliard School. He made his Metropolitan Opera debut in 2008 conducting John Adams's Doctor Atomic, the DVD of which received a Grammy Award. He was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in 2014, honored with the Foreign Policy Association Medal and named an Officier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government in 2015, and nominated for Emmy Awards for Outstanding Music Direction of two New York Philharmonic productions: Sweeney Todd and a 100th-birthday gala tribute to Frank Sinatra, broadcast on PBS's Live from Lincoln Center in 2015 and 2016, respectively.
Photo: David Finlayson
DANIIL TRIFONOV, Piano
Russian pianist Daniil Trifonov launched his career by winning First Prize at both the Tchaikovsky and Rubinstein Competitions in 2011 at the age of 20. The 2016–17 season saw the release of Transcendental, a double album that represents Mr. Trifonov’s third title as an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist and marks the first time that Liszt’s complete concert études were recorded for the label. The winner of Gramophone’s 2016 Artist of the Year award, he played Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto under Riccardo Muti in the gala finale of the Chicago Symphony’s 125th anniversary celebrations and, having scored his second Grammy nomination with Rachmaninoff Variations, performed Rachmaninoff for his Berlin Philharmonic debut at the orchestra’s New Year’s Eve concerts, aired live in cinemas throughout Europe. He also made debuts with the Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras, returned to the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, and headlined the Munich Philharmonic’s “Rachmaninoff Cycle” tour with Valery Gergiev. He played with the New York Philharmonic, The Cleveland and Philadelphia Orchestras, and Dresden Staatskapelle at home and at the Salzburg Easter Festival and BBC Proms. Other collaborations included Zurich’s Tonhalle, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Mahler Chamber, Houston Symphony, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, and La Scala orchestras. Also a composer, Mr. Trifonov reprised his own concerto in Kansas City. He made recital debuts at London’s Barbican and Melbourne’s Recital Centre; appeared in Berlin, Vienna, Florence, Madrid, Oslo, and Moscow; and returned to Philadelphia, Baltimore, and New York’s Carnegie Hall. This summer he returns to the Tanglewood, Verbier, Baden-Baden, and Salzburg festivals. Mr. Trifonov began his musical training at age five, and attended Moscow’s Gnessin School of Music and the Cleveland Institute of Music. Other honors include Third Prize in Warsaw’s Chopin Competition, First Prize in Tel Aviv’s Rubinstein Competition, both First Prize and Grand Prix in Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Competition, and the Franco Abbiati Prize for Best Instrumental Soloist. Daniil Trifonov made his New York Philharmonic debut in September–October 2012 performing Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3, led by Music Director Alan Gilbert; most recently, in November 2016, he performed Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25, led by Vladimir Jurowski. He joined the Board of the New York Philharmonic in 2015.
Photo: Dario Acosta
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Where are the orchestra concert performances held?
Bravo! Vail orchestral concerts take place at Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater (GRFA) located at 530 S. Frontage Rd E Vail, CO 81657
What time do performances begin?
Concerts start promptly at 6:00PM (except for the movie screening which starts at 7:30PM). The GRFA lobby opens 90 minutes prior and gates open 60 minutes prior to performances. Give yourself plenty of time to park and get into the venue. Latecomers will be escorted by ushers at an appropriate interval.
Where do I park?
FREE concert parking is available at the Vail Parking Structure (241 South Frontage Road East, Vail) and the Lionshead Parking Structure (395 South Frontage Road West, Vail). A Town of Vail Special Event express bus provides continuous service from both parking structures to the GRFA before and after concerts. Limited $10 parking is available at Ford Park by the Tennis Center (500 South Frontage Rd). Additional $10 parking is available at the Vail Athletic/Soccer Field lot.
WALKING DIRECTIONS FROM THE VAIL VILLAGE PARKING STRUCTURE:
Via Gore Creek Trail: 15-minute scenic walk
1. Exit the parking garage by following the Pedestrian Exit signs towards “Vail Village” / “Golden Peak”
2. Turn left out of the parking garage onto East Meadow Drive and head east
3. At the end of the road turn right on Vail Valley Drive and cross the road
4. Turn left on the walking path before the bridge, following the street signs towards "Ford Park"
5. Continuing east, follow the walking path along Gore Creek until reaching the GRFA
Via Frontage Road: 15-minute walk
1. From the top level of the parking garage, exit onto the South Frontage Road
2. Turn right and follow the sidewalk east along the south side of the frontage road
3. Cross East Meadow Drive and continue east along the sidewalk
4. Turn right after passing The Wren at Vail on the right
5. Continue down the path down to the GRFA
How long do concerts last?
Concerts generally last 2 hours including intermission. Please call the box office 877.812.5700 for exact running times.
How do I buy tickets?
Tickets, passes, and gift certificates may be ordered in the following ways:
1. Online: bravovail.org
2. By phone: 877.812.5700
3. In person: Bravo! Vail 2271 N Frontage Rd W Suite C, Vail, CO 81657
Bravo! Vail accepts American Express, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover credit cards, cash, and checks. There is a $2 fee per ticket. Tickets are delivered by mail or email,or may be picked up at the Box Office.
What are the Box Office hours?
Bravo! Vail Box Office hours are Monday-Friday from 9AM to 4PM. During the Festival, hours include Saturday & Sunday from 10AM to 4PM. The Bravo! Vail Box Office can be reached at 877.812.5700.
The Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater box office is open from 11AM until concert start time (5PM on days with no concerts) during the Festival. Tickets for upcoming performances may be purchased on-site at the GRFA before concerts and during intermission.
Where is the Will Call window?
Will Call tickets may be picked up at the Box Office located to the right of the main GRFA entrance lobby. The Box Office is open 11AM to concert start time during the Festival.
Does Bravo! Vail offer group pricing?
Discounts for groups of 15 or more are available for select concerts. Please call 970.827.4316 for more information.
What if I buy tickets and cannot attend?
Tickets are non-refundable. You may exchange your tickets ($7 fee per ticket) by calling the Box Office at 877.812.5700 up to 2 days before the concert. You may release your tickets or leave them for a friend at Will Call by calling the Box Office.
What if I misplace or forget to bring my tickets?
There is no charge to reprint tickets. Please call 877.812.5700 before 3PM on the day of the performance or allow extra time to request new tickets at the Will Call window.
Where are seating options for people with disabilities?
Per the American Disability Act (ADA), the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater is accessible to individuals with disabilities. ADA seating is available in Section 1 Row L and Section 4 Row O in all reserved seating zones and prices (Premium Aisle, Premium, Reserved, and Saver). A limited number of ADA General Admission Lawn seats are available for sale behind Section 2. You must have a designated ADA lawn seat ticket to sit in this area. By purchasing an ADA seat, you are stating that you require an ADA seat. If purchased fraudulently, you may be subject to relocation. If you need assistance purchasing ADA seating, please call the Box Office at 877.812.5700.
What if it rains?
Concerts take place rain or shine. The GRFA is an open-air venue. Refunds are not given due to weather unless a concert is canceled in its entirety with no performance rescheduled.
What should I wear?
There is no dress code for concerts. Please be prepared for rain and cooler temperatures.
What should I bring to the concert?
If you will be on the lawn, a blanket, sunglasses, and a hat are recommended. If rain is predicted, please bring appropriate rain gear. Food, commercially sealed non-alcoholic beverages, low-profile lawn chairs, and umbrellas are permitted at concerts. All backpacks, bags, purses, picnic baskets, and coolers will be checked upon entry.
The following articles are not allowed at the venue: cameras, audio/video recording devices, standard-height lawn chairs, baby strollers, alcoholic beverages, firearms, pets, smoking, skateboards, bicycles, scooters, and skates.
What food and beverages are available for purchase at the GRFA?
Concessions are offered for purchase inside the venue. Menu items include snacks, burgers, sandwiches, and salads. A full bar is also available. All major credit cards and cash are accepted for payment. If you have a pavilion seat, please eat prior to the concert or at intermission.
Are lawn chairs available to rent?
Low-profile lawn chairs are available at the GRFA to rent for $10. You may also rent a lawn chair with your lawn ticket purchase online or by calling the Bravo! Vail Box Office at 877.812.5700. To reserve a lawn chair in advance, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
What are some general rules of concert etiquette?
Please allow time for parking and seating. Concert attendees must silence all mobile devices prior to performances to not disrupt musicians and other patrons. Please limit conversations and other noisy activities during the performance. In the pavilion seating, we recommend eating prior to the concert or at intermission. Parental supervision is required for all children attending Bravo! Vail concerts.
What else should I know?
Vail’s high elevation requires adequate hydration and sun protection. Visitors from lower elevations may experience altitude sickness.
What if I lose something at the concert?
Check with the GRFA box office for lost items at intermission or call 970.748.8497.
What if I still have questions?
Please contact the Box Office at 877.812.5700 Mon–Fri 9AM–4PM (and Sat–Sun 10AM-4PM during the Festival).