Ashland: Friday, Nov. 10 ♦ Medford: Saturday Nov. 11 ♦ Medford: Sunday, Nov. 12
BERLIOZ: Overture to Béatrice et Bénédict
David LUDWIG: Violin Concerto
Co-commissioned by The Rogue Valley Symphony
Bella Hristova, violin
MENDELSSOHN: Symphony No. 5 “Reformation”
Masterworks Series Ashland performances
Sponsored by Robert Pohl
Masterworks Series Medford performances
Sponsored by Anonymous
Soloist sponsored by Lynn Thompson & Leslie Kendall
Acclaimed for her passionate, powerful performances, beautiful sound, and compelling command of her instrument, violinist Bella Hristova is a young musician with a growing international career. The Strad has praised, “Every sound she draws is superb,” and The Washington Post noted that she is “a player of impressive power and control.” Ms. Hristova’s 2016-2017 season features a mix of concerto, recital and chamber music performances, as well as educational outreach activities. Her appearances include concertos with the Westchester Philharmonic, Knoxville and Winnipeg symphonies and continued performances of a concerto written for her by her husband David Ludwig–a work commissioned by a consortium of eight major orchestras across the US.
Ms. Hristova has performed extensively as soloist with orchestra including with Pinchas Zukerman and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Lincoln Center, with the New York String Orchestra under Jaime Laredo at Carnegie Hall, as well as with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Pasadena, Charleston, Asheville, Greenwich, Vermont, Kansas City, Delaware, Columbus symphonies and Orquesta Filarmónica de Boca del Río, Asturias Symphony Orchestra, Centro Nacional de la Música-la Orquesta, Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, Canada’s National Arts Centre Orchestra, and Korea’s Cheongju Symphony Orchestra. She has performed recitals at Merkin Concert Hall, the Kennedy Center, the Isabella Gardner Museum in Boston, the Weis Center for the Performing Arts, the National Museum of Women in the Arts, the Alys Stephens Center for the Performing Arts, Free For All at Town Hall, the Shanghai International Music Festival, and Seoul National University. Her most recent projects include her much-admired recording Bella Unaccompanied (A.W. Tonegold Records) and a commission of Second String Force by iconic American composer Joan Tower.
A sought-after chamber musician, Ms. Hristova performs frequently with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and at many music festivals including the Young Concert Artists Festivals in Tokyo and Beijing, the Musica Viva Festival in Sydney, Australia, the Grand Teton Festival, the Kingston Chamber Music Festival, Lake Tahoe Summerfest, Lake Champlain Music Festival, the Brevard Music Festival, Music@Menlo, Music from Angel Fire, Chamber Music Northwest, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, and the Marlboro Music Festival. She has appeared on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion on National Public Radio.
Bella Hristova is the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, including a 2013 Avery Fisher Career Grant, First Prize in the 2009 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, First Prize in the 2007 Michael Hill International Violin Competition in New Zealand, and Laureate of the 2006 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis. She was awarded YCA’s Helen Armstrong Violin Fellowship, the Mortimer Levitt Career Development Award for Women Artists, and the Gordon and Harriet Greenfield Foundation Artist Management Fellowship of YCA.
As a result of winning the Michael Hill International Violin Competition, Ms. Hristova made a critically acclaimed concert tour of New Zealand, and a similarly acclaimed CD of solo violin works by the Belgian virtuoso Charles de Bériot (Naxos). Music Web International praised her first recording, “…this disc is an absolute winner… …The musical diversity of these pieces is a delight. None of which would count for much if they were not played with the extraordinary virtuosity and musical maturity of Bella Hristova. … Hristova combines jaw-dropping technical prowess with real style.”
Born in Pleven, Bulgaria to Russian and Bulgarian parents, Ms. Hristova began violin studies at the age of six. At twelve, she participated in master classes with Ruggiero Ricci at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. In 2003, she entered the Curtis Institute of Music, where she worked with Ida Kavafian (YCA Alumna) and studied chamber music with Steven Tenenbom. She received her Artist Diploma with Jaime Laredo at Indiana University in 2010. Ms. Hristova plays a 1655 Nicolò Amati violin, once owned by the violinist Louis Krasner.
David Ludwig is “a composer with something urgent to say” (Philadelphia Inquirer). His music has been described as “arresting and dramatically hued” (The New York Times) and “supercharged with electrical energy and raw emotion” (Fanfare). Ludwig has written for many prominent artists, including Jonathan Biss, Jennifer Koh, the Dover and Borromeo quartets, eighth blackbird, ECCO, and orchestras including the Philadelphia, Minnesota, Pittsburgh, and National Symphonies. In 2013 his choral work, “The New Colossus,” was selected to open the private prayer service for President Obama’s second inauguration. In 2012 NPR Music selected him as one of the Top 100 Composers Under Forty in the world.
This season’s highlights include the premiere of a violin concerto written for his wife, acclaimed violinist Bella Hristova; the concerto was commissioned by a consortium of eight orchestras across the United States. Ludwig was also awarded a prestigious Pew Center for Arts and Heritage Performance Grant to support the creation of The Anchoress, a new song cycle for the PRISM Quartet, Piffaro “The Renaissance Band,” and soprano Hyunah Yu. The work will open the 2018 season for the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society.
Other recent commission and performance highlights include Titania’s Dream for the KLR Trio, Swan Song for Benjamin Beilman commissioned by Carnegie Hall, and Pictures from the Floating World commissioned by the Philadelphia Orchestra for bassoonist Daniel Matsukawa and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin. This year will feature the premiere of a new piano concerto written for pianist Anne-Marie McDermott commissioned by the Bravo! Vail music festival in honor of their thirtieth anniversary.
An award-winning film composer, Ludwig scored Michael Almareyda’s adaptation of Shakespeare’s Cymbeline (Lionsgate), produced by Anthony Katagas (Twelve Years a Slave) and starring Ed Harris, Ethan Hawke, Milla Jovovich, and Dakota Johnson. The film was awarded a top spot and premiere at the Venice Film Festival.
Ludwig is the recipient of the First Music Award, a two-time winner of the Independence Foundation Fellowship, and a Theodore Presser Foundation Career Grant, as well as awards from New Music USA, American Composers Forum, American Music Center, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
He has had multiple residencies at the Yaddo and MacDowell artist colonies, the Isabella Gardner Museum and Marlboro Music. After three years as Composer-in-Residence with the Vermont Symphony, he is their permanent New Music advisor. Ludwig has served on the faculty of Yellow Barn and the Ravinia Steans Institute, and is Artistic Director of the Curtis Young Artist Summer Program. He was in residence at the Shanghai International Music Festival in 2012, and is resident composer for the STUDIO2021 Ensemble at Seoul National University.
Born in Bucks County, P.A., Ludwig comes from several generations of eminent musicians including grandfather Rudolf Serkin and great-grandfather Adolf Busch. He holds degrees from Oberlin, The Manhattan School, the Curtis Institute, The Juilliard School, and a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania. Ludwig serves on the composition faculty of Curtis and is the Gie and Lisa Liem Dean of Artistic Programs and Performance and director of the Curtis 20/21 Contemporary Music Ensemble.
David Ludwig Violin Concerto Consortium Commission was supported by New Music USA. To follow the project as it unfolds, visit our project page:
Note: There will be no Masterworks 3 performance in Grants Pass. Saturday and Sunday performances will both be in Medford.
Dates, music, and soloists subject to change without notice.