If you've never heard Benjamin Britten's "Young Apollo," now's your chance. Pianist Jeremy Denk comes to the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County with The Academy of St Martin In The Fields chamber orchestra and, in addition to Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 12 and symphonies by CPE Bach and Haydn, an Albinoni concerto, there's the Britten work. The concert is Saturday, Feb. 23, at 8 p.m. inside the Arsht Center's Knight Concert Hall.
It’s a rare occasion. "Young Apollo," the title refers to a line in Keats’s unfinished poem "Hyperion": ‘He stands before us—the new dazzling Sun-god, quivering with radiant vitality,’ was premiered by Britten in Toronto in 1939, and taken out of the canon afterwards, only being published after his death.
Then, there's Denk's interpretation of the Mozart work. Twin Cities Pioneer Press critic Ron Hubbard, when the pianist performed in Minneapolis says, that his rendering makes “appreciating Mozart’s mastery all the more.”
The program beings with Concerto No. 5 by Tomaso Albinoni. This was one of a set concertos he composed for two oboes and the first of its kind to be published. It was also the very first piece the Academy of St Martin in the Fields performed in its historic church in London’s Trafalgar Square in November 1959.
The Academy of St Martin in the Fields is one of the world's greatest chamber orchestras, renowned for fresh, brilliant interpretations of classical music. Formed by Sir Neville Marriner in 1958 from a group of leading London musicians, the Academy gave its first performance in its namesake church in November 1959. Through unrivalled live performances and a vast recording output – highlights of which include the 1969 best-seller Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and the soundtrack to the Oscar-winning film "Amadeus" – the Academy quickly gained an enviable international reputation for its distinctive, polished and refined sound. Today the Academy is led by Music Director and virtuoso violinist Joshua Bell, retaining the collegiate spirit and flexibility of the original small, conductor-less ensemble which has become an Academy hallmark. Under Bell’s direction, and with the support of Leader/Director Tomo Keller and Principal Guest Conductor Murray Perahia, the Academy continues to push the boundaries of play-directed performance to new heights.
Denk is one of America’s foremost pianists. Winner of a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship and the Avery Fisher Prize, Denk was recently elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Denk appears frequently at Carnegie Hall, and has performed with the Chicago Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and Cleveland Orchestra, and at London’s Royal Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms. He has been heralded by the New York Times as “a pianist you want to hear no matter what he performs, in whatever combination – both for his penetrating intellectual engagement with the music and the generosity of his playing.”
A free pre-concert lecture will be held in the Arsht Center’s Peacock Foundation Education Center (inside the Knight Concert Hall) at 7 p.m. prior to the concert.
Tickets range from $50-$135* and can be purchased by phone at (305) 949-6722, online at www.arshtcenter.org or in person at the Adrienne Arsht Center Box Office, located at 1300 Biscayne Blvd.