January 2015

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2015 Kurt Weill Festival Celebrates Song

The Kurt Weill Fest Dessau, held annually in Weill’s birthplace, focuses this year on the relationship between music and text with the theme, “From Lied to Song.” The 2015 festival runs from February 17 – March 15 and f​eatures nearly sixty events. Here are some of the highlights:

Johnny Johnson
For the opening gala, Kristjan Järvi conducts the MDR Symphony Orchestra and an international cast in a concert adaptation of Weill and Paul Green’s 1936 Broadway musical about a peace-loving American everyman and his adventures trying to end World War I. February 27. 

“Lights on Broadway”
Lenya Competition winners Alen Hodzovic and Rebecca Jo Loeb team up with Weill expert James Holmes at the piano to perform an evening of Broadway songs by Weill, Bernstein, Sondheim, and more at the Bauhaus Dessau. February 28.

Die Dreigroschenoper
HK Gruber leads the Ensemble Modern in two concert performances of Weill and Brecht’s classic, featuring Simon Bode (Macheath), HK Gruber (Mr. Peachum), Hanna Schwarz (Mrs. Peachum), Ute Gfrerer (Polly), Winnie Böwe (Lucy), Hannes Hellman (Tiger Brown), and Sona MacDonald (Jenny). March 1-2.

Four Walt Whitman Songs
Antony Hermus conducts the Anhaltische Philharmonic Orchestra with soloists and chorus of the Anhaltisches Theater Dessau in a program that features Weill’s four settings of Walt Whitman poems, as well as works by Vaughan Williams, Elgar, and the premiere of a new work by Ed Harsh. March 5.

Royal Palace
The closing concert of the Fest boasts music by Richard Strauss and a concert performance of Weill's early one-act opera, Royal Palace. 15 March.​
US Concert Highlights

Music Director George Manahan conducts the American Composers Orchestra on February 27 at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall in a program that features The Seven Deadly Sins with Shara Worden (My Brightest Diamond) as Anna I and Hudson Shad as the Family.

​On the West Coast, 
Jacaranda Chamber Ensemble performs Weill’s Violin Concerto and Kleine Dreigroschenmusik on February 21 in Santa Monica, CA, featuring Alyssa Park, violin, and Mark Robson, piano. Led by Daniel Alfred Wachs and Mark Alan Hilt, the program, entitled "Electricity," offers a Jazz Age travelogue of works by Weill, Hindemith, Stravinsky, and Milhaud.

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SDCF Kurt Weill Fellow Shaun Patrick Tubbs
​SDC Foundation / Kurt Weill Fellowships

Established in 2013 by the Kurt Weill Foundation for Music and the Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation, the Kurt Weill Fellowship helps nurture early-career directors and choreographers by providing the opportunity to assist or observe a master director or choreographer at work on a production of a theatrical work composed by Weill or Blitzstein -- including musical theater, opera, operetta, and dance works. Fellowships are funded by the Kurt Weill Foundation and offered as part of the SDC Foundation's Observership program.

The first of two Fellowships for 2015-2016 was awarded to Shaun Patrick Stubbs to observe John Fulljames on
Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Directed by Fulljames and conducted by Mark Wigglesworth, the production premieres on March 10 and features a new translation by Jeremy Sams. A second Kurt Weill Fellow will be selected later in the year to observe a 2016 production of Lost in the Stars-- details TBA!

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Jacaranda Chamber Ensemble, "Electricity," Feb. 21
Upcoming Performances - Highlights

Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny                
Staatsoper Berlin, GERMANY
Vincent Boussard, director; Wayne Marshall, conductor.
31 January

 
Street Scene (concert performance)      
Voicebox: Opera in Concert, Toronto, CANADA
Robert Cooper, conductor.
1 February

 
Die Dreigroschenoper  
Saarländisches Staatstheater, Saarbrücken, GERMANY
Dagmar Schlingmann, director; Ulrich Cornelius Maier, conductor.
1, 6 February; in rep through 15 May

 
The Threepenny Opera
A Noise Within, Pasadena, CA, USA
Geoff Elliott, Julia Rodriguez-Elliott, directors
15 February - 9 May


Die Sieben Todsünden
Volkstheater Wien, AUSTRIA
Michael Schottenberg, director; Milan Turkovic, conductor; Maria Bill, Anna I.
18-19 February; through 22 March


Violin Concerto
Kleine Dreigroschenmusik

Jacaranda Chamber Ensemble, Santa Monica, CA, USA
Daniel Alfred Wachs & Mark Alan Hilt, conductors; Alyssa Park, violin.
21 February


The Seven Deadly Sins
American Composers Orchestra, Carnegie Hall, New York, USA
George Manahan, conductor; Shara Worden, Anna I; Hudson Shad, the Family.
27 February

KWF Performance Calendar