Friends of Freiburg Concerts at the Liederkranz (February 23)

Logo of Concerts at the Liederkranz

Logo of Concerts at the Liederkranz, © Friends of Freiburg University

02.02.2023 - Article

Friends of Freiburg are excited to present the inaugural concert of a new series with an evening of chamber music by Johann Sebastian Bach and conversation with artist Alexander Polzin.

Friends of Freiburg is excited to announce our new concert series: Friends of Freiburg Concerts at the Liederkranz

On Thursday, February 23 we will present the inaugural concert with an evening of chamber music by Johann Sebastian Bach.

An evening of music & conversation on Johann Sebastian Bach with special guests Alexander Polzin and Michael Fennelly, moderated by Sarah Stephens.

We are delighted to have two very accomplished artists as our guests. World renowned Berlin-based sculptor & painter Alexander Polzin and New York-based acclaimed conductor and pianist Michael Fennelly will join us in a conversation and performance moderated by Freiburg alumna, Friends of Freiburg board member and opera manager Sarah Stephens.

The enduring qualities of Bach’s music and its influence on contemporary art, music and performances will be explored and discussed, and accompanied by performances of an extraordinary chamber music orchestra.

Please join us to launch this exciting new concert series with these exceptional artists!

Admission: Suggested donation of $35 per person

Wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served.

Alexander Polzin, born in East Berlin in 1973, originally trained as a stonemason. He enjoys an international career as a sculptor, painter, stage designer and opera director. In addition, he develops unique collaborations with writers, composers, musicians, choreographers and scholars from all over the world. Highlights include solo exhibitions at the Vatican Museums, Rome; the Salzburger Festpiele, Salzburg; the Getty Center, Los Angeles; the Galerie Kornfield, Berlin; the San Francisco International Arts Festival; and the Pierre Boulez Saal, Berlin. His musical and stage collaborations have involved the 92nd Street Y New York; the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Düsseldorf; Teatro de Communale, Bologna; Staatsoper Berlin; Teatro Real, Madrid; the Easter Festival, Salzburg; the Grand Théâtre de Genève; and La Monnaie Opera Brussels.

Praised as a pianist with “flair and energy” (The New York Times), Bösendorfer artist Dr. Michael Fennelly gained international attention upon his completion of George Gershwin’s unfinished setting of Rhapsody in Blue for solo piano, orchestra, and symphonic chorus, for which he received a knighthood in Spain. Following the premiere with the National Chorale in Lincoln Center, The Huffington Post exclaimed “[Fennelly’s performance] hit like a lightning bolt which catapulted the audience 2,000 feet in the air, taking them on a rocket-ride around the Chrysler building.” Michael Fennelly has toured extensively on all seven continents, appearing throughout the US and Europe as well as in China, Japan, Siberia, French Polynesia, Bhutan, Dubai, Peru—from Andorra and Antarctica to Zimbabwe and Xinjiang. As a staff pianist for The Juilliard School and the Metropolitan Opera, Michael has collaborated with many of the world’s most celebrated musicians. In recent years, Dr. Michael Fennelly has begun a second career as a conductor, leading Madama Butterfly (Amore Opera), La Traviata (Berkshire MA) and the premieres of Les Trois Mousquetaires (Phoenicia Festival, Woodstock NY), Faustine, Big Jim (Center for Contemporary Opera), and assisted in Japan Society’s Four Nights of Dream in sold out performances in Tokyo. Dr. Fennelly was invited as assistant conductor to many prestigious music festivals (Wolftrap, Castleton, Ashlawn, Bruges) and has led innumerable chamber and operatic concerts from the keyboard.

Sarah Stephens founded International Artists Management in Bremen, Germany in 1996. Her agency specialized in professional personal management and bilingual promotion for international opera singers in Europe and later expanded to include management for conductors, stage directors and other classical musicians. Her artists have performed in theaters throughout Europe. Ms. Stephens was granted the German agency license in 2000 authorizing her to operate as a recognized artists management agency (Künstleragentur) in Germany as well as a second license entitling her agency to engage in business internationally and throughout the European Union. In 2008, she returned to the University of Minnesota to complete her Master’s degree with a bilingual thesis on Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde. She moved to New York City and founded Stephens Nicolson Artists Management. Ms. Stephens studied in Germany and has spent most of her life there, having lived in Freiburg, Hamburg, Berlin, and Bremen. Ms. Stephens attended the University of Vermont, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, and the University of Minnesota.

Location & Time

Thursday, February 23 6:00-9:30pm
Doors open at 6:00pm

Concert begins: 6:30pm

The Liederkranz Club, 6 East 87th Street, New York, NY 10128
For registration please visit alumninorthamericaunifreiburg

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