Amanda Forsyth and Pinchas Zukerman will be back on the Southam Hall stage Nov.
5 and 6. Jean Levac / Ottawa Citizen
He s baaack. It was just last June that Pinchas Zukerman was conducting his final concert as music director of the National Arts Centre Orchestra. And now he ll play two concerts with Amanda Forsyth and the NACO on Nov.
5 and 6 and in 2017 he will lead budding musicians as the artistic director of the NAC s Young Artists program. He will also become conductor emeritus of NACO, both appointments taking effect in September 2016.
Pinchas Zukerman has a gift for teaching and inspiring young musicians. During his 16 year tenure as Music Director at the NAC, he not only founded the Summer Music Institute but he also pioneered distance learning by using broadband technology.
He is also an internationally renowned performer and conductor and this appointment will mean a continued presence on our stages, said Christopher Deacon, NACO s managing director, said in a news release.
Being an emeritus conductor acknowledges the role Zukerman played in developing NACO into a excellent ensemble. But it is in the education of young musicians that the maestro has a large part of his heart. In a recent phone interview from Boston, Zukerman says he wants to begin a process of real commitment to music education at the NAC. Everywhere Zukerman works, he says, he tries to include an educational component. He is doing just that with orchestras in Australia and Germany this musical season.
In Adelaide, where I have a commitment to the orchestra, I will also be teaching some master classes where I am hoping to help the community bring up the standard of teaching and help the young kids.
It s shortlived, but it will put a seed in the place. He is planting the same sort of seed at the Manhattan School of Music in New York, where he has taught for many years, and in other centres. He says he was recently in Brazil, where they taught classes and auditioned some students for the SMI in Ottawa. Two will be coming, including one young man from the favellas (slums) of Rio de Janeiro. The young man chose the violin instead of the life that saw his brother killed in the street, Zukerman says.
He says he believes he has a long-term commitment from the NAC for the SMI to make this into a real, formal institute over time, which is what I have wanted from the start 15 years ago. It started with six open rehearsals for 20 young people.
What I am hoping to get is a real institute that is national and international, that houses 30 to 50 young people who form the essentials of an orchestra. It will have a diploma that they get after a two-year program. This new SMI will need a building, he says, and he seems determined to get one. Ideally, it would be in a complex that includes a concert hall and recital hall and a residence. But that is for someone else to build.
Zukerman does enjoy working with young people. But it s not what I do, it s what they do. Talent is one of the great virtues of humankind. It is the nurturing of society. A talent will show you a new way of doing something. And that s what I look for, I look for that talent to show me a new way. And believe it or not, I learn from them a lot.
Zukerman founded the SMI in 1999 and many of the younger members of NACO were students in this program. The SMI has three parts: the Young Artists Program, a Conductors Program and a Composers Program. There are more than 1,000 alumni.
The young people who have been through the SMI are amazing. They are teachers, they are players, they run orchestras. There are hundreds and hundreds of people. At the NAC and elsewhere, Zukerman has been an innovator.
He has helped build up distance learning initiatives at the NAC including broadband master classes that teach students as far away as China, from the Hexagon Studio at the NAC1. He has also used technology for educational ConneXXions events while on tours. Zukerman has been busy with performances around the world since he left Ottawa last June. But one upcoming show has him excited. He and Forsyth will join players from the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, another of his employers, for a fundraising concert in the throne room of Buckingham Palace in London.
I m so looking forward to playing at Buck Palace.
But before that, on Nov.
5 and 6, Zukerman and Forsyth will conduct and play a cluster of music from the Baroque2 era. The concert will be recorded something that has been made possible by Harvey and Louise Glatt. This will be the second recording the Glatts have helped. The first was recorded last season and featured Romantic-era repertoire. The music to be performed next week includes:
Handel s Entrance of the Queen of Sheba from the oratario Solomon;
The Double Concerto in C Minor by J.S.
Bach for solo oboe and solo violin, pairing violinist Pinchas Zukerman with the NACO s principal oboe Charles Hamann;
Telemann s Concerto in G Major for Viola; featuring Zukerman on viola;
Tartini s Pastorale, set for solo violin and strings by Respighi;
Vivaldi s double concerto for violin and cello.
A Baroque Treasury
The National Arts Centre Orchestra
With Pinchas Zukerman and Amanda Forsyth
5 and 6 at 8 p.m.
Where: Southam Hall