January 3, 2023
Pasadena, CA – The Pasadena Symphony kicks off the new year with Mendelssohn & Mozart on Saturday, January 21, 2023 at Ambassador Auditorium with both matinee and evening performances at 2:00pm and 8:00pm. Acclaimed conductor Joseph Young, who serves as Music Director of the Berkeley Symphony among other major posts across the US, returns as Artistic Partner to lead the orchestra on an aural journey through the Italian countryside with Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 4 “Italian”.
The highlight of January’s concert will be Mozart’s superb Piano Concerto No. 20, performed by the “electrifying and unforgettable” Vijay Venkatesh, a young pianist “blessed with it all: transcendent technique, unbridled passion, and irresistible charisma. He breathes with an oxygen of imagination” (Washington Post ). The Composer’s Showcase will open the concert with Grammy-nominated composer Anna Clyne’s Sound and Fury. Inspired by Shakespeare’s Macbeth soliloquy and Haydn’s 60th Symphony, this opening piece will leave the audience invigorated by its ferocious string gestures and reflective with its haunting melodies.
The Pasadena Symphony provides a vibrant experience specially designed for the music lover, the social butterfly or a date night out. Guests can arrive early to enjoy the outdoor, tented Symphony Lounge, which opens 2 hours prior to show time. A posh setting along Ambassador Auditorium’s beautiful outdoor plaza, the Symphony Lounge offers sandwiches, salads and desserts by Love Birds, coffee, cocktails and fine wines from The Michero Family, before the concert and during intermission.
All concerts are held at Ambassador Auditorium, 131 South St. John Ave, Pasadena, CA. Subscription packages start at as low as $99, with single tickets starting at $40. Both may be purchased online at www.pasadenasymphony-pops.org or by calling (626) 793-7172.
The Pasadena Public Health Department recommends all guests either be fully vaccinated or obtain a negative COVID-19 test prior to entry to Ambassador Auditorium, but it is not required. Masks are strongly recommended but not required. As conditions in the community evolve, the Pasadena Symphony reserves the right to update policies with a focus on public safety. For the most up to date venue safety protocols, visit pasadenasymphony-pops.org/symphony-covid-safety/.
- What: The Pasadena Symphony presents Mendelssohn & Mozart
Joseph Young, conductor
Vijay Venkatesh, piano
Anna Clyne Sound and Fury
Mozart Piano Concerto No. 20
Mendelssohn Symphony No. 4 “Italian”
- When: Saturday, January 21, 2023 at 2:00pm and 8:00pm
- Where: Ambassador Auditorium | 131 South St. John Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91105
- Cost: Tickets start at $40.00
- Parking: Valet parking is available on St. John Ave for $15. General parking is available in two locations: next to the Auditorium (entrance on St. John Ave) at the covered parking structure for $10 and directly across the street at the Wells Fargo parking structure (entrance on Terrace at Green St). ADA parking is located at the above-ground parking lot adjacent to the Auditorium (entrance on St. John Ave.) for $10. Parking may be pre-purchased or purchased onsite. Parking purchased onsite is cash only.
Praised for his suavely adventurous programing, Joseph Young is increasingly recognized as “one of the most gifted conductors of his generation.” Joseph is Music Director of the Berkeley Symphony, Artistic Director of Ensembles for the Peabody Conservatory, and Resident Conductor of the National Youth Orchestra–USA at Carnegie Hall. In recent years, he has made appearances with the Saint Louis Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Colorado Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Bamberger Symphoniker, New World Symphony Orchestra, Spoleto Festival Orchestra, Orquestra Sinfónica do Porto Casa da Música, and the Orquesta Sinfonica y Coro de RTVE (Madrid); among others in the U.S. and Europe.
In his most recent role Joseph served as the Assistant Conductor of the Atlanta Symphony where he conducted more than 50 concerts per season Mr. Young also served as the Music Director of the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra, where he was the driving force behind the ensemble’s artistic growth. Previous appointments have included Resident Conductor of the Phoenix Symphony, and the League of American Orchestras Conducting Fellow with Buffalo Philharmonic and Baltimore Symphony.
Joseph is a recipient of the 2015 Solti Foundation U.S. Career Assistance Award for young conductors, an award he also won in 2008, and 2014. In 2013, Joseph was a Semi-finalist in the Gustav Mahler International Conducting Competition (Bamberg, Germany). In 2011, he was one out of six conductors featured in the League of American Orchestras’ prestigious Bruno Walter National Conductor Preview.
Joseph completed graduate studies with Gustav Meier and Markand Thakar at the Peabody Conservatory in 2009, earning an artist’s diploma in conducting. He has been mentored by many world-renowned conductors including Jorma Panula, Robert Spano and Marin Alsop whom he continues to maintain a close relationship.
Hailed by the Herald-Tribune for his “dazzling pianism verging on the impossible, effortless technical command and authority with a sense of poetry and refinement that belies his years,” Indian-American pianist Vijay Venkatesh has been recognized on three continents as a pianist with profound musicianship, sparkling pianism and an innate sense of partnership. Vijay, whose playing is described as “fresh and inspired,” (Cincinnati Courier) has rapidly established a major international reputation as top prizewinner in the San Jose, Seattle, Zimmerli, World Piano, and Waring International Piano Competitions. He has also been named a Davidson Fellow Laureate at the Library of Congress, USC Thornton’s Discovery Scholar, Grand Prize Winner of the Los Angeles Music Center’s Spotlight Awards and featured on “What Makes It Great?” with host Robert Kapilow and NPR’s “From the Top.”
Highlights of Mr. Venkatesh’s upcoming season include debuts with the Pasadena Symphony and conductor Joseph Young in Mozart’s Concerto in D Minor, the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra with Eckart Preu, Bangor Symphony with Lucas Richman, and Ashland Symphony with Michael Repper in Clara Schumann’s Concerto in A Minor, the LaGrange Symphony with Richard Prior in Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A Minor, the South Coast Symphony with Barry Silverman in Saint-Saëns’s Carnival of the Animals, and at Le Salon Musiques in Chopin’s Concerto in F Minor. Additionally, he appears this season at the Crystal Theatre, Camerata Musica, DaCamera Society, Irvine Performing Arts Center, L’ermitage Foundation, Muzewest, Ridgecrest Chamber Music Society, South Bay Chamber Music Society, and a debut in Mexico for ProMusica San Miguel de Allende.
An immersive and versatile soloist, Vijay has performed extensively across the United States and Europe as soloist with the symphony orchestras of Seattle, Vienna, Sarasota, Columbus, Redlands, Roanoke, Rio Hondo, Rogue Valley, and the Brevard Music Center. He has collaborated with preeminent conductors Carlos Miguel Prieto, Jeffrey Kahane, Ludovic Morlot, David Lockington, David Stewart Wiley, Roger Kalia, Carolyn Kuan, Toshiyuki Shimada, Ken Lam, and Martin Majkut, among others. Mr. Venkatesh appeared in recent seasons at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall with the Colburn Orchestra, Chicago’s Dame Myra Hess series, and at the Aspen, Brevard, Banff, Newport, Redlands Bowl, Sarasota, and Vienna Music Festivals. As recipient of the inaugural Parnassus Society Prize, he performed in recital at the Soka Performing Arts Center.
An active chamber musician, Vijay has appeared ten times on Le Salon de Musiques at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and tours as the Vieness Piano Duo with his wife and pianist, Eva Schaumkell. Last season, they appeared for the Westcliffe InConcert Series, Trinity Concert Series, Lancaster Performing Arts Center, L’ermitage Foundation, Masters in the Chapel, Opera Steamboat, Second City Chamber Series, Sarasota Artist Series, and the Kultur unter’m Dach series in Germany. As pianist in the Aristeia Trio, gold medalists of the Frances Walton International Chamber Music Competition, they embarked on a 30-concert tour of Washington, appeared twice on KING-FM 89.1 FM, and have been featured at Camerata Musica and the Irvine Performing Arts Center.
Originally from California, Venkatesh is an Artist Diploma candidate at the Colburn School in Los Angeles with Fabio Bidini. He holds degrees from USC Thornton and IU Jacobs School of Music, where he was a recipient of the Barbara and David Jacobs Fellowship under the tutelage of Norman Krieger and André Watts. Venkatesh previously studied with Jeffrey Kahane, Sarkis Baltaian, Menahem Pressler and Murray Perahia.
He has recorded two albums for release on Naxos and Albany Records in the fall of 2022. He is represented by Colburn Artists and is a featured artist on Tonebase.
London-born Anna Clyne is a GRAMMY-nominated composer of acoustic and electro-acoustic music. Described as a “composer of uncommon gifts and unusual methods” in a New York Times profile and as “fearless” by NPR, Clyne is one of the most acclaimed and in-demand composers of her generation, often embarking on collaborations with innovative choreographers, visual artists, filmmakers, and musicians.
Clyne has been commissioned by a wide range of ensembles and institutions, including BBC Radio 3, BBC Scottish Symphony, Britten Sinfonia, Carnegie Hall, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Houston Ballet, London Sinfonietta, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Seattle Symphony, and the Southbank Centre. Her work has been championed by such world-renowned conductors as Pablo Heras-Casado, Riccardo Muti, Leonard Slatkin, André de Ridder, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Osmo Vänskä, and Marin Alsop, who praised Clyne, stating: “Anna Clyne is someone I look to for great music. It’s always emotional and driven by her heart, but skillfully composed.”
From 2010–2015, Clyne served as a Mead Composer-in-Residence for the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Music Director Riccardo Muti lauded Clyne as “an artist who writes from the heart, who defies categorization, and who reaches across all barriers and boundaries. Her compositions are meant to be played by great musicians and heard by enthusiastic audiences no matter what their background.” She has also been in residence with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, L’Orchestre national d’Île-de- France, Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, Berkeley Symphony, and National Sawdust. Clyne serves as the mentor composer for the Orchestra of St Luke’s DeGaetano Composer Institute. She is currently serving a three-year residency as Associate Composer with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, through the 2020-2021 season, including plans for a series of new works commissioned over three years.
Several upcoming projects explore Clyne’s fascination with visual arts, including Color Field for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, inspired by the artwork of Mark Rothko, and Between the Rooms, a film with choreographer Kim Brandstrup and LA Opera. Her elegy Within Her Arms opened the New York Philharmonic’s 2021-2022 season, the orchestra’s first full New York program since the pandemic began. Other recent and upcoming premieres include PIVOT, which opened the 2021 Edinburgh International Festival; A Thousand Mornings for the Fidelio Trio; a saxophone concerto for Jess Gilliam; Strange Loops for the Orchestra of St. Luke’s; Fractured Time for the Kaleidoscope Ensemble; Overflow for wind ensemble, inspired by the poetry of Emily Dickinson, composed for the Scottish Chamber Orchestra; and Woman Holding a Balance, a film collaboration with Orchestra of St. Luke’s and artist Jyll Bradley; and In the Gale for cello and bird song, created with and performed by Yo-Yo Ma.
Clyne composed a trilogy of Beethoven-inspired works that premiered in 2020 for Beethoven’s 250th anniversary: Stride for string orchestra, inspired by Beethoven’s Sonata Pathétique, premiered by the Australian Composers Orchestra; Breathing Statues, premiered by the Calidore String Quartet; and Shorthand for solo cello and string quintet premiered by The Knights at Caramoor and in a version for cello and string orchestra by the Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra.
Other recent premieres include Sound and Fury, first performed by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Pekka Kuusisto in Edinburgh; and her Rumi-inspired cello concerto, DANCE, premiered with Inbal Segev at the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, led by Cristian Măcelaru. DANCE was also recently recorded by Segev and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Marin Alsop, which was released to critical acclaim on AVIE Records and has garnered more than six million plays on Spotify.
Clyne is the recipient of the 2016 Hindemith Prize; a Charles Ives Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; awards from Meet the Composer, the American Music Center, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, and the Jerome Foundation; and prizes from ASCAP and SEAMUS. She was nominated for the 2014 Times Breakthrough Award (UK).
Clyne’s music is represented on AVIE Records, Cantaloupe Music, Cedille, MajorWho Media, New Amsterdam, Resound, Tzadik, and VIA labels. In October 2020, AVIE Records released Clyne’s Mythologies, a portrait album featuring the works Masquerade, This Midnight Hour, The Seamstress, Night Ferry, and rewind, recorded live by the BBC Symphony Orchestra with soloists Jennifer Koh and Irene Buckley and conductors Marin Alsop, Sakari Oramo, Andrew Litton, and André de Ridder. Recent releases include DANCE featuring Inbal Segev, Marin Alsop, and the London Philharmonic; The Violin, an album of her works for multi-tracked violins with animations by artist Josh Dorman; Blue Moth, an album of her instrumental music for ensemble and tape; Night Ferry with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Riccardo Muti; and Prince of Clouds featuring Jennifer Koh and Jaime Laredo with the Curtis Chamber Orchestra on Cedille Records. Prince of Clouds was nominated for a 2015 GRAMMY Award for Best Classical Composition and Night Ferry was nominated the same year for Best Engineered Album (Classical).
Clyne’s music is published exclusively by Boosey Hawkes. www.boosey.com/clyne
Reprinted by kind permission of Boosey & Hawkes.
Formed in 1928, the Pasadena Symphony and POPS is an ensemble of Hollywood’s most talented, sought after musicians. With extensive credits in the film, television, recording and orchestral industry, the artists of Pasadena Symphony and POPS are the most heard in the world.
The Pasadena Symphony and POPS performs in two of the most extraordinary venues in the United States: Ambassador Auditorium, known as the Carnegie Hall of the West, and the luxuriant Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden. The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated entertainer dubbed “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein, leads the POPS as Principal Pops Conductor, succeeding Marvin Hamlisch.
A hallmark of its robust education programs, the Pasadena Symphony Association has served the youth of the region for over five decades through the Pasadena Youth Symphony Orchestras (PYSO) comprised of seven performing ensembles, with over 400 gifted 4th-12th grade students from all over Southern California. The PYSO Symphony has performed at venues across the globe as well as on the television show GLEE.
The PSA provides people from all walks of life with powerful access points to the world of symphonic music.