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Musical Diversity Lost and Rediscovered

Hannah Harnest and Friends

Hannah Harnest and Friends, © courtesy of the artists

16.11.2018 - Article

Join us for our last concert of the year: Hannah Harnest and friends will take you on a musical journey through Schoenberg’s wonderful music on December 4th at the German House.

The German Consulate General Presents:

The German-American concert pianist Hannah Harnest, fellow at Bard College, will curate a varied concert that will take you on a voyage of Arnold Schoenberg’s early works, which were deeply influenced by the buzzing ‘turn-of-the-century’ cabarets of Berlin, and the beauty of late romantic German poetry. The founder of a revolutionary new system of music, Schoenberg later emigrated to America, where he critically influenced the music scene. He had been mentor to so many young and aspiring composers, who were destined to define the new avant-garde of European classical music, but whose lives were threatened by the advent of National Socialism. In light of this year’s 80th anniversary of the Kristallnacht pogrom in Germany and the recent terror events in Pittsburgh, it is important to prevent the suppression of diversity, which can be expressed so powerfullythrough music.

Hannah Harnest, together with emerging artists Lotte Betts-Dean, Eric Silberger, and Julian Schwarz, will present Schoenberg’s Brettl Lieder, which he composed in 1901 before joining the ‘Buntes Theater’ in Berlin, as well as his hauntingly beautiful tone poem ‘Verklärte Nacht’ of 1899, which was transcribed for piano trio by his star student Eduard Steuermann. Steuermann had been one of Schoenberg’s most favorite interpreters of the composer’s own works and later on joined the keyboard faculty at the Juilliard School of Music in New York.

Australian mezzo soprano Lotte Betts-Dean has made a name for herself in the championing of modern, and especially in the premiering of highly complex contemporary repertoire. She has been lauded for her “impressive control, an irrepressible sense of drama and extraordinary self-assurance” by Flora Wilson in The Guardian.

American virtuoso violinist Eric Silberger is a prize winner of the XIV International Tchaikovsky Competition. His performances have been described as “spine-tingling...astonishing” (The Guardian), “dazzling virtuoso playing” (The Washington Post), and as “impeccable level of playing, a wonderful musician” (Heather Kurzbauer, The Strad).

American cellist Julian Schwarz has been praised for his powerful tone, effortless virtuosity, and extraordinary large color palate, which are hallmarks of his style. As an ardent supporter of new music, he has given premieres of newly written cello concertos and has recorded them for Naxos.

German-American pianist Hannah Harnest is an extremely versatile artist, who was educated at the Conservatoire supérieur de Paris and the Royal Academy of Music in London, but who also trained as a journalist at Columbia University New York. She has played as a soloist with orchestra in Germany, Italy and Hungary, and has appeared as chamber musician in the Philharmonic Hall in Munich and Wigmore Hall in London, amongst others. Her wide interests have led her to present original concert programs.

Location and time:
German Consulate General
871 United Nations Plaza
New York, NY 10017
Tuesday, December 4, 2018 at 6:00 PM

Admission is free, but an RSVP is required at: Hannah Harnest


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