Works of Clara & Robert Schumann featuring Violinists Robert & Sheila Hanford
For this next concert in our ongoing RAVE Performance Series, MO faculty member Sheila Hanford and her husband Robert have organized a special, intimate concert featuring works by one of the most notable and dynamic artistic couples of the 19th Century: Clara and Robert Schumann.
Robert and Sheila Hanford, violins
In addition to Sheila's work as a member of the MO faculty, she has performed with Chicagos Lyric Opera, Music of the Baroque, Chicago Philharmonic, Elgin Symphony and the Rembrandt Chamber Players. Sheila has also performed with the Milwaukee Symphony, the Minnesota Orchestra and the Minnesota Opera. She holds a Bachelors of Music in Violin Performance from Northwestern University.
In addition to serving on the faculty of Northwestern University's Bienen School of Music, Robert Hanford is concertmaster of the Lyric Opera of Chicago and a member of the Rembrandt Chamber Players. He has also served as concertmaster of the Music of the Baroque, the Chicago Philharmonic, and Ars Viva. Previously, Robert was the associate principal second violinist of the Minnesota Orchestra, a member of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and a member of Chicago's Grant Park Symphony. He has appeared as soloist on numerous occasions with the Minnesota Orchestra, the Milwaukee Symphony and many other Midwestern orchestras.
Kip Riecken, viola
Originally from Orlando, Florida, Kip Riecken is Principal Viola of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and is Substitute Viola for the the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He performed with the CSOs MusicNOW division, Fifth House Ensemble, for the soundtrack for the Spike Lee film Chiraq and had the honor of working with Riccardo Muti, Semyon Bychkov, Manfred Honeck, Sir Andrew Davis, and Yo-Yo Ma.
Sonia Mantell, cello
Sonia Mantell, a recent Masters degree graduate from the DePaul School of Music, is an avid orchestral and chamber musician. She attended New England Conservatory for her undergraduate degree and has been a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Festival for the past two years. From 2014-2016, Sonia was appointed co-principal cellist during her two-year tenure with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and also won a position on the sublist of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 2016. She is currently freelancing and auditioning for orchestras all over the world (most recently was a finalist for the principal cello position of the Iceland Orchestra) and is excited to return to Tanglewood for a third summer.
Rick Ferguson, piano
A native of Gadsden, Alabama, Mr. Ferguson holds a Bachelor of Music Degree from Birmingham-Southern College and later earned a Master of Music Degree from the University of Houston where he studied with world-renowned concert artist Abbey Simon. His studies have also taken him to the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA and Northwestern University, where he undertook post-graduate study. A two-time winner of the Alys R. Stephens Piano Competition, winner of an Obelisk Award for excellence in the performing arts and the inaugural winner of the Brazos Valley Young Artists Competition, Mr. Ferguson has a wide range of musical interests, from the standard repertoire to new music. Mr. Ferguson has taught on the faculties of the Houston Conservatory of Music and the Musikschule Kassel in Kassel, Germany. In 2000, he co-founded and is now the artistic director of The Musical Offering, a non-profit community music school in Evanston. He is also on the faculty of the Chicago Academy for the Arts.
Three Romances for Violin and Piano, Op. 22 -- Clara Schumann
Selected Songs -- Clara Schumann (special guest Victoria Holland, soprano)
Quintet for Piano and Strings, Op. 44 in E-Flat Major -- Robert Schumann
A ground-breaking pianist, Clara was also an accomplished composer whose music is still not heard often enough. Her Three Romances for Violin and Piano are particularly effective character pieces of an intimate nature. And Clara's love of poetry is displayed in her songwriting skills.
Robert's Quintet for Piano and Strings remains one of the perennial favorites in this genre, for good reason. This particular work is a wonderful example of the intersection between Robert's gifts as a composer and writer/critic about music. The result is a work that evinces the heart of 19th-Century Romanticism through the exploration of poetic expression and instrumental virtuosity.
A wonderful program for lovers of poetry, vocal and instrumental, and all things romantic.
The Musical Offering (View)
743 Custer Avenue
Evanston, IL 60202
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