Rococo Variations

Friday, September 10, 2021 | Hill Auditorium

Behind the Music

Your Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra triumphantly returns to the stage with an opening night concert of Basulto, Tchaikovsky and Brahms. Alejandro Basulto’s striking tone poem Personas Invisibles kicks off the evening before rising star and winner of the XVI International Tchaikovsky Competition Zlatomir Fung joins as cello soloist for Tchaikovsky’s opulent Rococo Variations. The program concludes with Brahms’s Symphony No. 2, as music director candidate Lina Gonzales-Granados directs the orchestra in this gloriously vernal masterpiece of the late Romantic era.

Program

Alejandro BASULTO Personas Invisibles

TCHAIKOVSKY Rococo Variations

BRAHMS Symphony No.2

Lina Gonzales-Granados, conductor

Zlatomir Fung, cello

Lina Gonzales-Granados, conductor and music director candidate

BIOGRAPHY

Praised for her “attention to orchestral colors” (OperaWire) and ability to create “lightning changes in tempo, meter, and effect” (Boston Musical Intelligencer), Colombian-American Lina Gonzalez-Granados has distinguished herself nationally and internationally as a talented young conductor of symphonic and operatic repertoire. Her spirited interpretations of the orchestral repertoire, as well as her dedication to highlighting new and unknown works by Latin-American composers, has earned her international recognition, most recently as the recipient of the 2021 Sphinx Medal of Excellence, the Third Prize and ECHO Special Award (European Concert Hall Orchestra Association) of La Maestra Competition, and the 2020 and 2021 Solti Foundation US Career Assistance Award. 

Lina was the winner of the Fourth Chicago Symphony Orchestra Sir Georg Solti International Conducting Competition, and became the new Solti Conducting Apprentice under the guidance of Maestro Riccardo Muti, beginning in February 2020 and continuing through June 2022. She has hold positions as Conducting Fellow of the Philadelphia Orchestra and Seattle Symphony. Her 2021-22 season highlights will include debuts with New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, and Dallas Opera. European debuts include appearances with the Gulbenkian Orchestra, Spanish National Orchestra, Barcelona Symphony, Kristiansand Symphony, Tapiola Sinfonietta, Polish National Radio Symphony, Orquesta del Principado de Asturias, and Tenerife Symphony.

Recent appearances include performances with the Philadelphia Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, San Francisco Conservatory Orchestra, Louisiana Philharmonic, Rhode Island Philharmonic, Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia, and Filarmónica de Medellín. She has had the opportunity to work with world-renowned artists such as Yefim Bronfman, Pinchas Zukerman, Giancarlo Guerrero, Zubin Mehta, Marin Alsop and Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

Lina is an active and fervent proponent for the inclusion and development of new works for chamber and large orchestra, especially music from Latin-American composers. She is the Artistic Director of Unitas Ensemble, a chamber orchestra she founded that performs the works of Latinx composers, and provides access to free community performances for underserved communities. Her work with Unitas has earned her numerous community awards, most recently a Spark Boston award from the City of Boston. She has also commissioned multiple World, North-American, and American premieres, as well as the creation and release of the Unitas Ensemble album “Estaciones”, recorded alongside the Latin Grammy-winning Cuarteto Latinoamericano.

Born and raised in Cali, Colombia, Lina made her conducting debut in 2008 with the Youth Orchestra of Bellas Artes in Cali. She holds a Master’s Degree in Conducting with Charles Peltz, a Graduate Diploma in Choral Conducting from New England Conservatory with Erica Washburn, and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Orchestral Conducting from Boston University. Her principal mentors include Marin Alsop, Bernard Haitink, Bramwell Tovey and Yannick Nézet-Séguin.

Zlatomir Fung, cello

BIOGRAPHY

The first American in four decades and youngest musician ever to win First Prize at the International Tchaikovsky Competition Cello Division, Zlatomir Fung is poised to become one of the preeminent cellists of our time. Astounding audiences with his boundless virtuosity and exquisite sensitivity, the 21-year-old has already proven himself to be a star among the next generation of world-class musicians. Fung’s impeccable technique demonstrates a mastery of the canon and exceptional insight into the depths of contemporary repertoire.

In the 2019-2020 season, Fung performs with orchestra and in recital in all corners of North America. He returns to the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, and debuts with Asheville and Aiken Symphony Orchestras, Plymouth Philharmonic, and Symphony Pro Musica in Hudson, Massachusetts. He performs at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall in a joint recital with fellow Tchaikovsky Competition winners in October, following a recital at Friends of Music in Sleepy Hollow, NY. Other recitals include Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York, Wengler Center for the Arts at Pepperdine University in Malibu, Syrinx Concerts in Toronto, The Embassy Series in Washington DC, Salon de Virtuosi and Bulgarian Concert Evenings in New York City, Chamber on the Mountain in Ojai, Evergreen Museum & Library in Baltimore, and Mainly Mozart in Coral Gables. At the Artist Series of Sarasota, Fung will perform the complete works for cello and piano by Beethoven.

As a chamber musician, Fung performs around the world, opening the season with IMS Prussia Cove on Tour to London’s Wigmore Hall, Cornwall, Cambridge, West Sussex, and Somerset. He closes the season at Dresdner Musikfestspiele. New York City chamber music engagements include the Aspect Foundation and Jupiter Chamber Players. During the summer of 2019, Fung performs at Musique de Chambre à Giverny, a chamber music festival in northern France.

Zlatomir Fung started his career with Young Concert Artists. A winner of the 2017 Young Concert Artists International Auditions and the 2017 Astral National Auditions, Fung has taken the top prizes at the 2018 Alice and Eleonore Schoenfeld International String Competition, 2016 George Enescu International Cello Competition, 2015 Johansen International Competition for Young String Players, 2014 Stulberg International String Competition, and 2014 Irving Klein International Competition. He was awarded the 2016 Landgrave von Hesse Prize at the Kronberg Academy Cello Masterclasses and a 2020 Avery Fisher Career Grant.

Of Bulgarian-Chinese heritage, Zlatomir Fung began playing cello at age three and earned fellowships at Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute, Heifetz International Music Institute, MusicAlp, and the Aspen Music Festival and School. A proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship, Fung currently studies at The Juilliard School under the tutelage of Richard Aaron and Timothy Eddy. Fung has been featured on NPR’s Performance Today and has appeared on From the Top six times. Fung plays a W. E. Hill and Sons cello from 1905. In addition to music, he enjoys cinema, reading, and blitz chess.

by the numbers

A2SO staff members

Number of variations Tchaikovsky wrote on the Rococo theme

Musicians in Your A2SO

SEE YOU AT THE SYMPHONY!

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