Featuring conductor Rachael Worby, pianist HyeJin Kim, and members of Ballet Hispánico
Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue,” works of Bernstein, Gillespie, Ellington, Paquito D’Rivera, and a world premiere by Jed Feuer
White Plains, N.Y. – Rachael Worby is fearless when it comes to programs with unexpected results. Last season’s collaboration with tap dancer Savion Glover, performing Vivaldi’s Four Seasons broke every imaginable “classical music” barrier and audiences immediately demanded more.
On December 8th Worby returns with the Westchester Philharmonic to fuse jazz and Latin jazz influences on American classical music (and vice versa), highlighted by South Korea’s sensational pianist HyeJin Kim performing Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, and a must-see collaboration with members of Ballet Hispánico performing with the orchestra in works by Paquito D’Rivera and Dizzy Gillespie. A world premiere by composer Jed Feuer connects each of these dots into a brand new musical happening.
General Information and Tickets
Single tickets range from $36 - $98. To purchase tickets, call or visit the Purchase College Performing Arts Center box office at (914) 251-6200. Box office hours are Wednesday through Friday, 12 noon to 6:00 pm, and on the day of the concert.
Mainstage performances take place in The Concert Hall at The Performing Arts Center, Purchase College, 735 Anderson Hill Road, Purchase, New York.
Program, 12/8/19, 3:00 pm
Rachael Worby, conducting
HyeJin Kim, piano
members of Ballet Hispanico
Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue
Works of Bernstein, Ellington, Brubeck, Paquito D'Rivera
A world premiere from Jed Feuer.
About Rachael Worby
Musician. Innovator. Curator. Rachael Worby is an inspirational American conductor renowned for successfully reimagining the traditional concert format as well as dissolving the barriers that exist between performers and audiences. With her passionate, versatile command of musical genres, Rachael creates memorable, one-of-a-kind, live multi-disciplinary events that expand today’s cultural landscape as Artistic Director and Conductor of California’s pioneering MUSE/IQUE, which she founded in 2011.
With MUSE/IQUE, Rachael Worby brings together members from every part of the community, connecting performers from various disciplines with audiences of all ages through curated experiences designed to challenge preconceived notions about the concert-going experience, and “illuminate the world around us.” Enlarging the conversation about community, the organization’s dynamic, inclusive events take place in unexpected, non-traditional venues throughout the Los Angeles area. MUSE/IQUE creates an intimate experience for all with an untraditional policy of in-the-round seating with no intermissions and no backstage areas, strengthening the bond between performers and audiences. Through an expansive, carefully curated outreach program, the organization has developed strong, ongoing immersive relationships with 14 separate nonprofits throughout the region that include season performances.
Rachael Worby has guest conducted throughout Europe, South America, Australia and Asia. Her many honors include serving on the National Council of the Arts for four years as an appointee of President Bill Clinton. She has held multiple posts in the classical music world, including serving as Music Director and Conductor of Wheeling Symphony Orchestra (1986-2003), founding the American Music Festival in Bucharest and Cluj, Romania, and leading the Pasadena Pops from 2000-2010. Earlier posts include Music Director and Conductor of Carnegie Hall’s Young People’s Concerts, stepping into the former post of her idol Bernstein, and Assistant Conductor for Youth Concerts at the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
About HyeJin Kim
Praised by critics for her “passionate…polished and expressive” performances, pianist HyeJin Kim is one of South Korea’s most thrilling young classical stars. Born in Seoul, she began playing piano at age five, and later enrolled at the prestigious Yewon Arts School. She furthered her studies in Germany, earning her master of art in musical art as a “Konzertexamen” (highest distinction) from Berlin’s Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler. She recently received an artist diploma at the Colburn School in its Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Fabio Bidini.
Ms. Kim first attracted international attention at age 17 when, as its youngest participant, she won third prize in Italy’s prestigious Busoni Competition. Andrea Bonatta, the head of the jury, said ‘I am thrilled about her flawless musicality and technique, which promises success as an internationally recognized pianist.’ Since then, Ms. Kim has received numerous awards including prizes at the 2008 Hong Kong International Piano Competition, DAAD Prize, Steinway and Sons Advancement Award Competition, and Toronto International Piano Competition. She has performed and toured with numerous orchestras such as the Russian State Philharmonic, Konzerthaus Orchester, Pacific Symphony Orchestra, Praha Broadcast and Budapest Symphony Orchestras; Bohuslav Martinů, Seoul, Dae-jeon, Pilsen, and Moravian Philharmonic Orchestras; and the State Symphony Orchestra of St. Petersburg, Nürnberger Symphoniker, Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, and Hessischer Rundfunk Sinfonieorchester. She has worked with noted conductors including Eliahu Inbal, Carl St. Clair, Christoph Poppen, Achim Fiedler, Yehuda Gilad, Tomáš Hanus, Shi-yeon Sung, Dae Jin Kim, Jiri Malat, and Andrés Orozco-Estrada.
About Ballet Hispánico & Eduardo Vilaro, Artistic Director
Ballet Hispánico, America's leading Latino dance organization, has been bringing individuals and communities together to celebrate and explore Latino cultures through dance for nearly 50 years. Whether dancing on stage, in school, or in the street, Ballet Hispánico creates a space where few institutions are breaking ground.
The organization’s founder, National Medal of Arts recipient Tina Ramirez, sought to give voice to the Hispanic experience and break through stereotypes. Today, Ballet Hispánico is led by Eduardo Vilaro, an acclaimed choreographer and former member of the Company, whose vision of social equity, cultural identity and quality arts education for all drives its programs.
Ballet Hispánico, a role model in and for the Latino community, is inspiring creativity and social awareness in our neighborhoods and across the country by providing access to arts education.
Eduardo Vilaro joined Ballet Hispánico as Artistic Director in August 2009, becoming only the second person to head the company since it was founded in 1970. In 2015, Mr. Vilaro took on the additional role of Chief Executive Officer of Ballet Hispánico. He has been part of the Ballet Hispánico family since 1985 as a dancer and educator, after which he began a ten-year record of achievement as founder and Artistic Director of Luna Negra Dance Theater in Chicago. Mr. Vilaro has infused Ballet Hispánico’s legacy with a bold and eclectic brand of contemporary dance that reflects America’s changing cultural landscape. Born in Cuba and raised in New York from the age of six, he is a frequent speaker on the merits of cultural diversity and dance education.
Mr. Vilaro’s own choreography is devoted to capturing the spiritual, sensual and historical essence of Latino cultures. He created over 20 ballets for Luna Negra and has received commissions from the Ravinia Festival, the Chicago Sinfonietta, the Grant Park Festival, the Lexington Ballet and the Chicago Symphony. In 2001, he was a recipient of a Ruth Page Award for choreography, and in 2003, he was honored for his choreographic work at Panama’s II International Festival of Ballet. Mr. Vilaro was also inducted into the Bronx Walk of Fame in 2016 and was awarded HOMBRE Magazine’s 2017 Arts & Culture Trailblazer of the Year. In 2019, Mr. Vilaro was the recipient of the West Side Spirit’s WESTY Award, was honored by WNET for his contributions to the arts, and most recently, was the recipient of the James W. Dodge Foreign Language Advocate Award.
About Jed Feuer, composer
Born in Los Angeles, Jed Feuer was moved to New York City at the age of six weeks. Growing up in a musical family, he studied trumpet under Joe Wilder (subsequently with Carmine Caruso). Piano with Joseph Kahn, then Eugene Istomin followed shortly thereafter which led to an immersion in harmony, theory and counterpoint. Although working at piano performance during much of the '70s, due to a lifelong obsession with sculpture, composition was put on hold for a few years. In 1982, his first Off-Broadway musical was produced. Theatre, film and television scores followed. In the mid '90s, with Fugue in b minor for chorus & percussion, his focus turned toward concert music. A 2000 commission resulted in Orchestral Suite (the première of which was performed along with four other Feuer works, at Merkin Concert Hall, NYC, 2003). Today, he continues to write chamber works and his trio for alto sax, cello & trumpet is about to be premièred. In 2005, he founded Bipolar, a jazz quintet. Bipolar's latest album, "Euphrates, Me Jane" received extraordinary reviews. Involved with animal welfare issues since childhood, he writes music for documentaries produced by The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), an organization with which he's been associated for many years. He organized and (with Bipolar) participated in the first annual benefit for the ASPCA at Gotham in New York City on July 27, 2010. Productions of his latest musical, Slaughterhouse-Five, based on the novel, were mounted by the University of Miami in April, 2014 and the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center in June, 2015. In August, 2017, his orchestral piece, "Harambe" was performed by Rachael Worby and MUSE/IQUE in Pasadena, CA. On February 10, 2019 she conducted it with the Westchester Philharmonic.
About the Westchester Philharmonic
Now beginning its 37th season, the Westchester Philharmonic is the oldest, continuously running professional symphony orchestra and largest performing arts organization of any kind in Westchester County. The Philharmonic’s main stage concert series makes its home at the 1,300 seat Concert Hall at the Purchase Performing Arts Center, with outdoor concerts, chamber concerts, children’s programs, and special events throughout the area, attracting savvy music-lovers from Rockland, Bergen, Fairfield, and Putnam counties, New York City, and beyond.
The orchestra was founded in 1983 under the leadership of late Music Director Paul Lustig Dunkel (who became Music Director Emeritus in 2008), and is now led by Executive & Artistic Director Joshua Worby. Renowned artists who have performed with the Phil include Joshua Bell, Julia Bullock, Barbara Cook, Jeremy Denk, Branford Marsalis, Midori, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Kelly O’Hara, Garrick Ohlsson, Itzhak Perlman, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Gil Shaham, Isaac Stern, and André Watts.
Among the many new works commissioned and premiered by the Westchester Philharmonic is Melinda Wagner’s Concerto for Flute, Strings and Percussion, which won the Pulitzer Prize in 1999. Newly commissioned works by award-winning composers Christopher Theofanidis, David Ludwig, and Jed Feuer debuted in 2014, 2016, and 2018, respectively.
The Westchester Philharmonic has a rich history of supporting artists of diverse backgrounds and is setting a new standard for how mid-size regional symphony orchestras can have an impact on the face of classical music. Many of the composers whose works have been commissioned or premiered with the Philharmonic come from diverse backgrounds and/or are women. Over the past ten seasons the Phil has engaged 30 conductors or guest soloists of African-American, Hispanic, and Asian backgrounds. Women conductors and composers have appeared in eight of the last ten seasons.
The orchestra’s award-winning education program reaches thousands of elementary school students each year and culminates in a full orchestra concert. The Phil also partners with local organizations to present free and low-cost chamber concerts, as well as to provide subsidized seating at main stage concerts, welcoming hundreds of area residents each year who might not otherwise have an opportunity to attend.
The orchestra is comprised of the finest professional free-lance musicians from around the greater metropolitan area, who also perform regularly with the New York City Ballet, Orchestra St. Luke’s, Orpheus, Mostly Mozart, and for many Broadway shows. Members of the Phil hold faculty positions at Juilliard, Mannes, Manhattan School of Music, Purchase Conservatory, Vassar and Bard Colleges, and at local public schools.
January 15, 2020, at 12:10 pm, Downtown Music at Grace, White Plains
Liuh-Wen Ting, viola
Barbara Podgurski, piano
Music inspired by Native American culture.
Gilbert Galindo: Sonata for Viola and Piano (written for Ms. Ting)
Gabriela Lena Frank: Sueños de Chambi (from Cinco Danzas de Chambi)
February 9, 2020, at 3:00 pm, Purchase Performing Arts Center
Rachael Worby, conducting
Ray Ushikubo, violin
Bernstein: West Side Story Suite (violin concerto arr. David Newman)
Works of Bernard Harman and John Williams
March 4, 2020, at 12:10 pm, Downtown Music at Grace Church, White Plains
April 19, 2020, at 3:00 pm, Purchase Performing Arts Center
Jayce Ogren, conducting
Ran Dank, piano
Mendelssohn: Hebrides Overture
Copland: Appalachian Spring (complete ballet)
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 4
May 13, 2020, at 12:10 pm, Downtown Music at Grace Church, White Plains