THE NEW SCHOOL: A UNIVERSITY
 

Don't miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience Mozart's music as it was heard in his time—by one of the leading artists of our time.  Celebrating the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth, The New School presents internationally renowned musician Vladimir Feltsman in a series of intimate performances of Mozart's piano sonatas, as well as a selection of other important Mozart works for solo piano, on a magnificent replica of a fortepiano by Mozart's favorite piano maker.

Concert Schedule
Tickets
About the Concert Series
About Vladimir Feltsman
About the Fortepiano
About Mannes College The New School for Music
About The New School

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Concert Schedule

Thursday, September 28, 7:30 p.m.
Tishman Auditorium, The New School, 66 West 12th Street
Sonata in C Major  KV 279
Sonata in F Major KV 280
Sonata in E-flat Major KV 282
Sonata in B-flat Major KV 281
Sonata in G Major KV 283

Saturday, September 30, 7:30 p.m.
Mannes Concert Hall, 150 West 85th Street
Sonata in D Major KV 284
Sonata in C Major KV 309
Sonata in D Major KV 311
Sonata in A Minor KV 310

Tuesday, October 3, 7:30 p.m.
Mannes Concert Hall, 150 West 85th Street
Sonata in C Major KV 330
Rondo in A Minor KV 511
Sonata in F Major KV 332
Sonata in B-flat Major KV 333
Sonata in A Major KV 331

Tuesday, October 10, 7:30 p.m.
Mannes Concert Hall, 150 West 85th Street
Sonata in F Major KV 533
Sonata in C Major KV 545
Fantasia in C Minor KV 475
Sonata in C Minor KV 457

Thursday, October 12, 7:30 p.m.
Tishman Auditorium, The New School, 66 West 12th Street
Fantasia in D Minor KV 385
Rondo in D Major KV 485
Sonata in B flat Major KV 570
Adagio in B Minor KV 540
Sonata in D Major KV 576
 

Tickets

$25 per concert; $100 for all five concerts; $10 per concert for students and seniors; free for holders of current New School ID cards

Tickets for performances at both venues will be available starting Sept. 5 by phone (212) 229-5488 or in person at The New School Box Office, 66 W. 12th St.  Tickets for Mannes concerts will also be available at the door starting at 6:30 p.m. on performance evenings.
 

About the Concert Series

"This series will provide a rare opportunity to hear Mozart masterpieces performed by a world-class musician on a replica of a fortepiano by Anton Walter, Mozart's favorite piano maker," said Joel Lester, Dean of Mannes. "Every day, students at Mannes gain a deep knowledge of music and its structures from faculty members such as Feltsman, who are masters of their art. Now, the listening public can join in the discovery of new insights into Mozart's piano music from one of the world's most instinctive and consistently interesting musicians."

Vladimir Feltsman, a longtime faculty member at Mannes, has established himself as a versatile and probing musician with a repertoire encompassing music from the baroque to the 20th century. The New School concert series came about after Feltsman expressed his desire to present concerts of Mozart solo piano works in the spirit of Mozart's time, when the typical venue for a solo piano recital was a living room, rather than a large concert hall. That's when New School trustee Julien Studley, a friend and neighbor of Feltsman's for the past 20 years, stepped in.

"Vladimir played the fortepiano for my wife and me one evening after dinner," said Mr. Studley, who is a sponsor of the series. "It was astonishing to hear Mozart's music on an authentic instrument. When he told me about his search for just the right intimate venue, I immediately thought of Mannes and Tishman Auditorium."  Tishman Auditorium seats 500, while the Mannes Concert Hall seats approximately 200.

For piano lovers, the pieces may be quite familiar; however, Feltsman expects that the sound of a fortepiano will be a shock for the audience. "The sound is very soft, but the human ear is a miracle, and it makes an adjustment," says Feltsman. "I think listeners will discover something that has been hidden from them--something that's not better or worse than what they're used to hearing, but something fresh and different."

Feltsman had his fortepiano built by Paul McNaulty, an American living in Prague, who is one of today's foremost period instrument makers. The instrument, which took more than a year to build, is a copy of a fortepiano by Anton Walter, a leading piano maker of the late 18th century and a favorite of Mozart.

One of the most imaginative musicians of our time, Feltsman has had to make major adjustments in his pianistic style to master the fortepiano. The keys of a fortepiano are smaller and shallower than those of a modern piano and are played essentially with the fingers alone, rather than with the weight of the arms and torso as with a modern piano. The fortepiano therefore has a very light action and, in Feltsman's words, "switching to a modern piano after an hour on the fortepiano can feel like weightlifting." In addition, the fortepiano's two pedals are operated by the knee rather than the foot. The instrument is highly sensitive to changes in weather and must be tuned every day. All this results in an instrument that Feltsman describes as "moody."

Asked what has motivated his pursuit of this temperamental instrument, Feltsman responded that he is learning things about Mozart that he wouldn't know if he didn't play fortepiano. "The fortepiano automatically limits your options," he said. "It forces you to look deeper and more carefully at classical style and makes you aware of what was and wasn't possible in Mozart's time. This is going to change how I play Mozart on a modern piano. Beethoven is cast in iron and steel; Mozart is more airy, constantly moving and taking new shapes. It's simple, but this simplicity is of the highest order."
 

About Vladimir Feltsman

Born in Moscow in 1952, Mr. Feltsman debuted with the Moscow Philharmonic at age 11. In 1969, he entered the Moscow Tchaikovsky State Conservatory of Music to study piano under the guidance of Professor Jacob Flier. He also studied conducting at both the Moscow and the Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) Conservatories. In 1971, Mr. Feltsman won the Grand Prix at the Marguerite Long International Piano Competition in Paris; this was followed by intensive concert tours throughout Europe, Japan, and the former Soviet Union.

In 1979, because of his growing discontent with the official Soviet ideology and rigid governmental control of the arts, Mr. Feltsman made clear his intention to emigrate from the Soviet Union by applying for an exit visa. He was immediately banned from performing in public. After eight years of struggle and virtual artistic exile, he was finally granted permission to leave the Soviet Union. Upon his arrival in the United States in 1987, Mr. Feltsman was warmly greeted at the White House, where he performed his very first concert in North America. That same year, his debut at Carnegie Hall immediately established him as a major pianist on the American scene. Today, he is a regular guest soloist with every leading orchestra in the United States and appears in the most prestigious concert series and music festivals all over the world.

For more information on Vladimir Feltsman, visit www.feltsman.com.
 

About the Fortepiano

The fortepiano used at The New School's presentation of Vladimimr Feltsman's Mozart sonata concerts is owned by Mr. Feltsman and was made for him by Paul McNulty, one of today's most highly respected piano builders.

The instrument was modeled after the instruments of Anton Walter (1752-1826) and is the result of Mr. McNulty's long research into the original instruments, particularly one ca.1792 Walter instrument which builder had on restoration in his workshop.

Anton Walter, who had the title of "Chamber Organ Builder and Instrument Maker" in Vienna, is considered to be the most famous fortepiano maker of his time.  His improvement of the so-called "Viennese pianoforte action" became a standard for many years.  He built about 700 instruments, which were praised for their quality by both Beethoven and Mozart, who purchased a Walter instrument around 1782.

According to Mozart's son Carl: "Most remarkable is the wing-shaped Pianoforte for which my father had a special preference to such a degree that he not only wanted to have it in his study all the time, but exclusively used this and no other instrument in all his concerts, regardless of whether they took place in court, in the palaces of noblemen or in theatres or other public places."

Anton Walter was born near Stuttgart and became active in Vienna in 1778.  After his stepson joined the company in 1800, and the firm name was changed from "Anton Walter" to "Anton Walter and Son," the keyboard compass increased, but the basic construction and sound of the instruments stayed the same

The fortepiano features moderator and sustaining knee levers, the equivalent of pedals on the modern piano. The moderator inserts a piece of cloth between the hammer and the strings, thereby softening and mellowing the sound. The sustaining knee lever is the equivalent to the damper (right) pedal on the modern piano.
 

About Mannes College The New School for Music

Now celebrating its 90th anniversary year, Mannes College The New School for
Music is one of the world's leading conservatories. Mannes nurtures
tomorrow's musical leaders in an intimate, supportive community true to the
values of classical music. Its eminent faculty and comprehensive curriculum
teach musical artistry and impart deep knowledge of music and its
structures. Mannes College's connection to The New School and its location
in New York City*just minutes from many of the world's great concert halls
and museums*offer a unique setting for musicians to grow into great artists.
From its establishment in 1916, the artistic ideals of David and Clara
Mannes, the college's founders, have sustained a vibrant international
community of musicians whose diversity stretches across races, cultures, and
ethnicities.

For more information about Mannes, please visit www.mannes.newschool.edu.
 

About The New School

The New School is a leading New York university composed of eight schools bound by a common, unusual intent: to prepare and inspire its 9,300 undergraduate and graduate students to bring actual, positive change to the world. From its Greenwich Village campus and its Upper West Side Mannes location, The New School launches economists and actors, fashion designers and urban planners, dancers and anthropologists, orchestra conductors, filmmakers, political scientists, organizational experts, jazz musicians, scholars, psychologists, historians, journalists, and above all, world citizens--individuals whose ideas and innovations forge new paths of progress in the arts, design, humanities, public policy, and the social sciences. In addition to offering 70 graduate and undergraduate degrees, the university offers certificate programs and hundreds of continuing education courses to 25,000 adult learners every year.

For more information about The New School, visit www.newschool.edu.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
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