Art Alert: Kremer to play on Stradivari violin in Egypt

Ahram Online, Tuesday 21 Oct 2014

Kremata Baltica Chamber Orchestra led by soloist Gidon Kremer and his Stradivari violin will perform on 23 October in Alexandria and on 24 October in Cairo

Gidon Kremer
Gidon Kremer (Photo from the Cairo Opera House's promotional material)

Internationally renowned Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer is one of the few owners of historical violins built by 18th century Italian craftsmen, members of the Stradivarius family.

Hailed for their unique sound, today there are several dozens of Stradivari string instruments left, mainly violins, preserved in museum halls or with private musicians or collectors. Each Stradivari has its unique sobriquet and instruments that date to the golden period of craftsmanship (1700-1725) and are sold for millions of dollars.

Performing with the Kremata Baltica Chamber Orchestra, of which Kremer is founder and artistic director, the violinist will play on his priceless instrument, with sobriquet "Baron Feilitzsch; Heermann", which dates back to the 1730s.

The evening will include Antonio Vivaldi's Concerto No. 2 in G minor, vibraphone version, with soloist Andrei Pushkarev.

Kremer will then join the orchestra performing solo violin in Astor Piazzolla's Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas (The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires) and Philip Glass' Violin Concerto No. 2.

Born in 1947, Gidon Kremer is one of the leading violinists of his generation, winner of many prestigious violin competitions, including first prizes in both the Paganini Competition in 1969 and the International Tchaikovsky competition in 1970. He has received several awards and recognitions for his career and contributions to music, with the most recent ones being the Latvian Great Music Award (1995 and 2005), the IMC-UNESCO International Music Prize (2001) and the Rolf Schock Prize (2008).

Kremer has performed in the world's most prestigious halls and cooperated with the best-known conductors and soloists. In 2012, he released the complete recordings of Piazzolla, which were described by Today magazine as "Latin melancholy meets violinist Gidon Kremer’s restless, nervous temperament and wiry tone … wonderfully haunting."

In 1996, he established the Kremata Baltica Chamber Orchestra, comprised of musicians from the Baltic region. The ensemble has been described by a critic from BBC Music Magazine as "marvelous Kremerata Baltica" that responds to the music "with searing commitment [and] the audience remains totally gripped throughout the performance."


Thursday 23 October, 8pm
Alexandria Opera House, (Sayed Darwish Theatre), 22 El-Horreya Rd, El-Raml Station, Alexandria

Friday 24 October, 8pm
Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo

Listen to Kremer playing Vivaldi concerto "Winter" from The Four Seasons, below:

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