7th annual Telluride Musicfest celebrates Mendelssohn and Glass

7th annual Telluride Musicfest celebrates Mendelssohn and Glass

[click “Play” to hear Maria Bachman on the concert series]

Telluride 2009 5
The seven year itch may ring true for marriages, but fans of the Telluride Musicfest have grown more ardent over the years – and with good reason. The heavy breathing always begins when the Hungarian beauty picks up her 18th century instrument, a Niccolo Gagliano violin, and starts fiddling: The ensuing pyrotechnics mesmerize.

She is Maria Bachman, artistic director of the Telluride Musicfest and a member of the Trio Solisti, recently described by The New Yorker as “the most exciting piano trio in America.” The musical materiality between her and her colleagues,  Alexis Pia Gerlach on cello and Jon Klibonoff on piano, is the reason: their complicity is perfect and other-worldly. They play as one.

The Trio Solisti is featured when seventh season opens with a concert on June 24 celebrating Felix Mendelssohn, whose 200 birthday fell on February 3.

Mendelssohn, the child prodigy, was extravagantly praised by Goethe, who claimed the composer’s burgeoning genius eclipsed that of the young Mozart.

Mendelssohn, the man, was reviled by Robert Wagner in part on ethnic grounds  because Mendelssohn was born a Jew. He converted to Christianity as a boy and considered himself a devout Lutheran. Wagner also claimed Mendelssohn was way too uptight: his music lacked the unbridled emotion essential to high German art.

Over-the-top opinions aside, the facts are that about a third of the composer’s music is unpublished and unperformed. But the Violin Sonata  in D Minor, with its elaborate chord progressions,  is one of the workhorses.

For performance and ticket information see the Musicfest website.

To learn more about Mendelssohn and the concert series, press the “play” button to hear Maria’s podcast .

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