Tanglewood schedule Week 3, July 20-26, 2012
Tanglewood schedule Week 3, July 20-26, 2012 is highlighted by two BSO programs that recall historic moments in Tanglewood history: the July 21 All-Wagner program replicates the notorious rained-out from the first season in 1937; the July 25 All-Mozart program repeats a popular model from Tanglewood’s early seasons.
The BSO plays music by one of Tanglewood’s most important alumni on Friday, July 20, when National Symphony Orchestra Music Director Christoph Eschenbach, whose Tanglewood history dates back to a 1969 appearance as piano soloist, and young violinist Dan Zhu join the orchestra for Leonard Bernstein’s Serenade (after Plato’s “Symposium”) for violin and orchestra, a seldom-heard work representing some of the legendary conductor-composer’s most intriguing music. This performance of Bernstein’s Serenade recalls Midori’s historic 1986 performance of the same work, when at age 14 she shocked and inspired audience, orchestra, and conductor as she continued playing with great poise after breaking not one, but two strings during her performance, each time having to trade violins with a member of the BSO’s violin section and having to make immediate adjustments going from a three quarter size instrument to full-size instrument with each trade. As on that 1986 concert, concluding the program is Tchaikovsky’s cherished Symphony No. 6, Pathétique.
The following night marks the season’s second recreation of a seminal concert in Tanglewood’s history. At the all-Wagner concert that opened the 1937 festival’s second weekend, rain and thunder twice interrupted the Rienzi Overture and necessitated the omission altogether of the Forest Murmurs from Siegfried, music too delicate to be heard through the downpour. At the intermission, Miss Gertrude Robinson Smith, one of the festival’s founders, made an appeal to raise funds for a permanent structure, and soon thereafter, plans were underway for a “music pavilion.” On Saturday, July 21, conductor and Wagner specialist Asher Fisch makes his BSO and Tanglewood debuts conducting the BSO in the very same all-Wagner program-which also includes the Prelude and Love-death from Tristan und Isolde, the Ride of the Valkyries from Die Walküre, and the Prelude to Parsifal, this time sheltered by the Koussevitzky Music Shed.
In another nod to history on Sunday, July 22, the BSO presents an all-Mozart program-a popular model in the early years of the festival-led by Kurt Masur (a Tanglewood guest more than 25 times) and featuring pianist Gerhard Oppitz in the Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K.491. Also on the program are the Symphony No. 36, Linz, and one of Mozart’s most enduringly popular works, Eine kleine Nachtmusik.
Mr. Oppitz completes his remarkable four-recital transversal of Brahms’s complete works for solo piano in Ozawa Hall on Wednesday, July 25, and Thursday, July 26. The highlights of the July 25 performance include the Six Piano Pieces, Op. 118, and the Variations on a Theme by Paganini, Op. 35, Books 1 and 2. The July 26 recital features the Sonata No. 2 in F-sharp minor, Op. 2, the Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Handel, Op. 24, and more.