Daniel Hope and Sebastian Knauer

Violin and Piano

April 14, 2019, 4 pm

Music Room

After formative years at the Menuhin School and the Royal Academy of Music in London, Daniel Hope became the youngest ever member of the Beaux Arts Trio, playing in its last six seasons. He has commissioned works and collaborated with composers including Schnittke, Maxwell Davies, and Turnage. His recordings include celebrated versions of the violin concertos of Mendelssohn, Berg, and Britten, as well as music by composers imprisoned by the Nazis in Terezin. Hope’s Phillips Music recital ends with the Sonata for Violin and Piano by William Walton, originally composed for Menuhin. 

Program:

GEORGE ENESCU (1881-1955)
Impromptu concertant for violin and piano (1903)

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH (1685-1750)
Sonata for violin and keyboard No. 4 in C minor, BWV 1017 (1718-1722)

FELIX MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847)
Violin Sonata in F Major (1838)

INTERMISSION

BÉLA BARTÓK (1881-1945)
Romanian Folk Dances, Sz. 56 (1915)

MAURICE RAVEL (1875-1937)
Kaddish, for violin and piano (from Two Hebrew Melodies) (1914)

WILLIAM WALTON (1902-1983)
Sonata for Violin and Piano (1947)

The violinist Daniel Hope has toured the world as a virtuoso soloist for 25 years and is celebrated for his musical versatility as well as his dedication to humanitarian causes. Winner of the 2015 European Cultural Prize for Music, whose previous recipients include Daniel Barenboim, Plácido Domingo, and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Daniel Hope appears as soloist with the world’s major orchestras and conductors, also directing many ensembles from the violin. Since the start of the 2016/2017 season, Daniel Hope has been Music Director of the Zurich Chamber Orchestra—an orchestra with whom he is closely associated since his early childhood.

In March 2017, he released his latest album For Seasons. It is Hope’s very personal homage to the seasons featuring 12 single works—exclusively dedicated to each month of the year—and the Four Seasons by Antonio Vivaldi, accompanied by the Zurich Chamber Orchestra. This album was awarded the 2017 ECHO Klassik prize. Hope has been an exclusive Deutsche Grammophon artist since 2007. In 2017, the documentary film Daniel Hope—The Sound of Life was screened in European Movie Theatres.

Hope was raised in London and studied the violin with Zakhar Bron. The youngest ever member of the Beaux Arts Trio during its final six seasons, today Daniel Hope performs at all the world’s greatest halls and festivals: from Carnegie Hall to the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, from Salzburg to Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (where he was Artistic Director from 2009-2013), and from Aspen to the BBC Proms and Tanglewood. He has worked with conductors including Kurt Masur, Kent Nagano, and Christian Thielemann, as well as with the world’s greatest symphony orchestras including Boston, Chicago, Berlin, Paris, London, Los Angeles, and Tokyo. Devoted to contemporary music, Hope has commissioned over 30 works, enjoying close contact with composers such as Alfred Schnittke, Toru Takemitsu, Harrison Birtwistle, Sofia Gubaidulina, György Kurtág, Peter Maxwell-Davies, and Mark-Anthony Turnage.

Hope is one of the world’s most prolific classical recording artists, with over 25 albums to his name. His recordings have won the Deutsche Schallplattenpreis, the Diapason d’Or of the Year, the Edison Classical Award, the Prix Caecilia, the ECHO-Klassik Award, and numerous Grammy nominations. His album of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto and Octet with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe was named one of the best of the year by The New York Times. His recording of Alban Berg’s Concerto was voted Gramophone Magazine’s “top choice of all available recordings.” His recording of Max Richter’s Vivaldi Recomposed, which reached No. 1 in over 22 countries is, with 160,000 copies sold, one of the most successful classical recordings in recent times.

Hope has penned four bestselling books published in Germany by the Rowohlt publishing company. He contributes regularly to the Wall Street Journal and has written scripts for collaborative performances with the actors Klaus Maria Brandauer, Sebastian Koch, and Mia Farrow. In Germany he also presents a weekly radio show for the WDR3 Channel and curates, since the 2016/2017 season his own series Hope@9pm, a music and discussion event with well-known guests from culture and politics at the Konzerthaus Berlin.

Since 2004 Hope has been Associate Artistic Director of the Savannah Music Festival. From September 2017, he will begin a new role as “Artistic Partner” of the New Century Chamber Orchestra in San Francisco, directing the Ensemble from the violin. Hope plays the 1742 “ex-Lipiński” Guarneri del Gesù, placed generously at his disposal by an anonymous family from Germany.

Sebastian Knauer was born in 1971 in Hamburg, Germany, and began playing the piano at the age of four. His teachers included Gernot Kahl, Karl-Heinz Kämmerling, Philippe Entremont, Andràs Schiff, Christoph Eschenbach, and Alexis Weissenberg.

A prize-winner at numerous competitions, he gave his concerto debut at the age of 13, performing Haydn’s D Major Piano Concerto in the Hamburg Musikhalle. Shortly afterwards followed his international debut as part of the “European Concert” series for RAI in Venice. Subsequent tours have taken him all over Europe, the US, South America, and Asia. He has performed in major concert halls such as the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Berlin, Cologne and Munich Philharmonie, Alte Oper Frankfurt, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Vienna Musikvereinssaal and Konzerthaus, Barbican and Wigmore Hall London, Opéra Comique and Théatre Champs Elysées Paris, KKL Luzern, Tonhalle Zurich, Auditori Barcelona, Sala Verdi Milan, La Fenice Venice, Warsaw Philharmonic Hall, Lincoln Center and Metropolitan Museum of Arts New York, Herbst Theatre San Francisco, Kravis Center Palm Beach, Téatro Municipal in Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, Toppan Hall Tokyo, Oriental Concert Hall Shanghai, Performing Arts Center Hong Kong and Forbidden Concert Hall Beijing.

The conductors with whom Knauer has worked include Gerd Albrecht, Vladimir Fedosseyew, Fabio Luisi, Neeme Järvi, Sir Roger Norrington, Philippe Entremont, Eiji Oue, Jaap van Zweden, Thomas Hengelbrock, Pablo Gonzales, Francois Xavier Roth, John Axelrod, and Ingo Metzmacher. Together with Entremont , he regularly performs repertoire for two pianos, as was the case in Tel Aviv, where they played the Double Concertos of Mozart and Mendelssohn with the Israel Chamber Orchestra. Other major orchestras with whom Knauer has played are the Staatskapelle Dresden, Bamberg Symphony, NDR – Symphony and Radio Philharmonic, Hamburg Philharmonic and Symphony, SWF Baden Baden, Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie, Concerto Cologne, the Vienna, Netherlands, Basel, Milan and Cologne Chamber, Radio Kamer Filharmonie Holland Camerata Salzburg, Luzern Symphony, Sinfonia Varsovia, Warsaw Philharmonic, Orchèstre Les Siècles, Real Filharmonia de Galicia, Chamber Orchestra of Europe, London Mozart Players, New York City Opera, Palm Beach Symphony, Qatar Philharmonic, and Shanghai Philharmonic.

Between 1999 and 2002 he was performing and directing all 27 Mozart Piano Concertos with the Hamburg Philharmonic. Knauer is a regular guest at Festival such as Rheingau, Schleswig Holstein, Klavierfestival Ruhr, Mecklenburg, Baden Baden, Bonn Beethovenfest, Bremen Musikfest, Bad Kissingen, Vienna, John Adams Festival of the BBC Symphony London, Bath, Colmar, Festival Berlioz, Dubrovnik, Menuhin Festival Gstaad, Vevey/Montreux, Byblos Festival Lebanon, Emilia Romagna Festival Italy, Lincoln Center Festival, Ravinia, Interlochen, Savannah, El Paso Pro Musica , Santo Domingo, and at the Shanghai Arts Festival. In Summer 2004 he gave his debut at the Salzburger Festspiele. In October 2002 he performed for the 42nd President of the United States, Bill Clinton in Berlin.

A dedicated chamber-musician, Knauer now tours extensively with his Duo Partner Daniel Hope. Other artists with whom he worked together include Hermann Prey, Olaf Bär, Alban Gerhardt, Aron Quartet Vienna, Philharmonia Quartet Berlin (Berlin Philharmonic), John Neumeier, the Hamburg Ballet, and the actor Klaus Maria Brandauer.

He recorded for Berlin Classics, Deutsche Grammophon, Glissando, Naxos, and Warner Classics with works of Beethoven, Mozart, Haydn, Schubert, Chopin, Barber, Bernstein, Copland, and Gershwin. The album East meets West which he recorded together with Daniel Hope won the German ECHO and was nominated for a Grammy.

His album with Sir Roger Norrington and the Camerata Salzburg was celebrated as one of the best Mozart recordings ever, for his album with works of Franz Schubert Gramophone Magazine titled their review with the words: “Poise and discipline from a pianist we must hear more from.” His new Pure Mendelssohn was the Gramophone Editor’s choice in March 2009.

Yehudi Menuhin was my primary violin teacher, and even after his passing in 1999 has remained an inspiring presence in my life; this program consists of music dear to his heart.  The opening piece, George Enescu’s Impromptu concertant, reflects the fact that Menuhin studied with Enescu from the age of 11, a mentorship that led to the two becoming lifelong friends (“Enescu will always be my guiding light as a man, as a musician”). Menuhin and Glenn Gould famously recorded J.S. Bach’s Violin Sonata No. 4 in C Minor, BWV 1017.  Menuhin also had great affection for the next piece on the program, Mendelssohn’s Sonata in F Major, which he instrumental in publishing for the first time in 1953.

Bartók’s Romanian Folk Dances acknowledge Menuhin’s devotion to the Hungarian composer (Menuhin commissioned the Sonata for Solo Violin from Bartók).  Ravel’s “Kaddisch” was a piece Menuhin recorded at age 20, and is the final work he heard me play just days before his death.  Finally, the Walton Violin Sonata was commissioned by Menuhin in the late 1940s. All in all, this program is intended to evoke Menuhin’s warm, curious, and very generous spirit.

-Daniel Hope