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Beethoven’s ‘Missa’ as it should be heard

  • Jun 30, 2013

By Marilyn Farwell From The Register-Guard June 30, 2013 It is fitting that in his last year as artistic director of the Oregon Bach Festival conductor Helmuth Rilling chose to bookend the festival with the two greatest Masses in the Western canon, Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Missa Solemnis” and J.S. Bach’s “B minor Mass.” On Friday evening at the Hult Center, Rilling was greeted with a standing ovation even before he conducted a dramatic and affecting “Missa Solemnis.” As one of Beethoven’s last compositions, the “Missa” is traditional and innovative as well as majestic and intimate. Some have called it a...

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Happy Anniversaries in OBF's second week

  • Jun 30, 2013

In concerts July 1-3, the Oregon Bach Festival celebrates a remarkable concurrence of master composer anniversaries. Audiences will hear music from Richard Wagner, Benjamin Britten, Giuseppe Verdi, Witold Lutoslawski, Paul Hindemith, and Francis Poulenc across three concerts with outstanding guest artists. The Anniversary Soiree on Monday, July 1 in Beall Hall salutes four 20th century master composers with art songs performed by vocal and instrumental soloists, all accompanied by three outstanding pianists with a backdrop of visual projections illustrating the music’s themes. On Wednesday July 3, husband and wife duo pianists Ya-Fei Chuang and Robert Levin return to Beall Hall. Their...

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Wildish Companies awarded OBF’s Silver Baton

  • Jun 28, 2013

EUGENE—On the eve of the Oregon Bach Festival’s 2013 opening, Jim Wildish and the Wildish Companies, Eugene-based construction firms, were recognized for longtime support with the Festival’s Silver Baton Award. The Silver Baton is presented to corporations whose cumulative support of the OBF exceeds $100,000. John Evans, OBF President and Executive Director, presented the award to Jim and Yvonne Wildish as part of the Festival’s June 27 fundraising gala. “In supporting the Festival for nearly 25 years, the Wildish family has done more than achieve the level for our Silver Baton Award,” said Evans. “The company is an important part...

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SFYCA's Armstrong receives Saltzman Award

  • Jun 28, 2013

EUGENE—On the eve of the Oregon Bach Festival’s 2013 opening, choir conductor Anton Armstrong was awarded the Saltzman Award, the Festival’s highest honor. Director of the Festival’s Stangeland Family Youth Choral Academy (SFYCA) since its inception in 1998, Armstrong has directed nearly 900 young singers over the program’s sixteen years. His reputation as a teacher and mentor has enabled the academy to grow into a national program with participants from across Oregon and, in 2013, eleven other states. “Education has always been the heartbeat of the Festival,” said Royce Saltzman, the Festival’s founding executive director and namesake of the award, who...

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PBO, Huggett, Halls, and a four-city, all-Bach tour

  • Jun 17, 2013

This July, the Oregon Bach Festival takes Bach on the road as the Portland Baroque Orchestra performs four of the composer's most well-known instrumental works on tour to Portland, Corvallis, Florence, and Eugene. Suite no. 3, with its famous Air, will dazzle listeners with its courtly charm and dance rhythms. The Concerto for Three Violins beguiles with its breathless pacing and brilliantly imagined writing. The Trio Sonata from the Musical Offering is sure to delight, while Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 is a dizzying display of virtuosity. PBO specializes in performing baroque and classical music on original instruments or replicas from...

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OBF Kids: Strings, puppets, and voices

  • Jun 17, 2013

Each year, the Oregon Bach Festival invites families to bring their children to experience the joys of music together.  For 2013, OBF presents Around the World with Radim Zenkl on Saturday, June 29, and Pinocchio on Saturday, July 13. Both events take place at Soreng Theater in Eugene's Hult Center. Tickets cost $5, and can be purchased online here or at the door. The OBF Kids series is sponsored by SELCO Community Credit Union. Around the World with Radim Zenkl The first concert features Czech multi-instrumentalist Radim Zenkl. Join Radim on an adventure across six continents as he showcases his world...

Tour Europe with Czech Mates Zenkl and Chern

  • Jun 17, 2013

Czech virtuosos Radim Zenkl and Leo Chern will be teaming up on June 29 at Hult Center's Soreng Theater for an evening of European folk music spiced with a healthy kick of inviting joy and humor. Zenkl and Chern were both born in the Czech Republic city of Ostrava, but didn't meet until they arrived in the United States. Zenkl studied classical piano, singing, and guitar, before eventually triumphing as a U.S. champion mandolinist. He rounds off his multi-instrumentalist title by playing a wide range of flutes from around the world. Chern performed with multiple elite Czech classical groups before founding the folk...