Our Academy for the Study and Performance of Classical Concerti is multi-dimensional.  We are about knowledge and the enthusiasm for learning. The success of our program each year results from our unique format of combining information about the classical style (through private lessons and master classes) with your understanding and experiencing the 18th century context (in lectures and cultural excursions), with application and development (in live rehearsals with orchestra), and a process of refinement and communication of imagination (in public festival concerts with orchestra).

There are three ways to participate:

  • Soloist - Single Concerto Movement

  • Soloist - Complete Concerto

  • Auditor

Private Lessons

All performers will receive two lessons with a Vienna-trained professor prior to their first rehearsal with the chamber orchestra.  The lessons will focus on two broad objectives:

 

The Viennese classical tradition of piano performance:

    

Understanding how touch and awareness of character and color bring these theatrically-inspired concerti to life.

 

Preparing for your rehearsals with chamber orchestra:

 

Lessons will focus on your participation in the lively dialogue and conversation between the piano and individual instruments of the chamber orchestra, and how to create a touch and sound that matches their colors.

Master Class

The purpose of the Masterclass is to supplement the private lessons by demonstrating through multiple examples how to effectively integrate the role of the soloist into the classical concerto.

 

Each participant will have a chance to perform sections of his/her concerto that demonstrates the most musical possibilities of this interaction.  Emphasis as always will be on the awareness of the theatrical role played by the soloist.  The different types of interaction will be discussed, and the most effective use of touch, balance, pedal, etc., will be recommended to maximize the result.

 

The class is structured as a learning experience, not a formal performance, and will invite group response and discussion.

Lecture

“Papageno at the Piano: those Mini-Operas Mozart called Piano Concerti”

 

The lecture goes to the very heart of playing classical concerti: the un-deniable fact that Mozart’s transformed the piano concerto from a rather superficial form of entertainment and technical display into a major art form through his personal passion for opera and for instrumental music. 

 

He introduced a number of devices straight from the theatrical stage which had never existed in concerti before, and imported into his concerti the most important element of all from his operatic experience, the colorful characters of the Italian comic opera.  Hence the title, Papageno, the “birdman” from his opera the Magic Flute.

 

Numerous excerpts will be played that show that Mozart actually quoted melodies from his operas in his piano concerti.  Knowing those words and context of those arias is like having a private lesson from Mozart himself...the interpretation is coming straight from the source!  Pretty amazing stuff!

Rehearsals

Your rehearsals with the Slovak State Opera Chamber Orchestra represent the culmination of the private lessons and master class preparations.  This is the moment when you can put into practice the new understanding of the classical style you’ve gained, and most importantly how your role as a soloist fits into the dramatic framework of your concerto.  Here you will actually hear how a real oboe or clarinet or flute intermingle your lines, how your touch becomes less percussive when you converse with the strings, or adds a brilliant edge to your sound when challenging the trumpets. 

 

Each soloist receives two rehearsals with the orchestra plus dress rehearsal under faculty guidance to maximize the learning experience. Complete concerti receive an hour rehearsal time and single movements proportionally less.  

 

Orchestra musicians from this part of the world know well the classical style... probably something in the drinking water... so the entire emphasis at rehearsal is on your personal learning experience.

 

Let the excitement begin!