Leonard BernsteinSonata for Clarinet and Piano
Carl Maria von WeberGrand Duo Concertant for Clarinet and Piano, Op. 48
Johannes BrahmsSonata in E-flat Major for Clarinet and Piano, Op. 120, no. 2
Paul SchoenfeldSonatina for Klezmer Clarinet and Piano
Clarinetist Narek Arutyunian is an artist who “reaches passionate depths with seemingly effortless technical prowess and beguiling sensitivity” (The Washington Post). As soloist with orchestra, his performances include Copland’s Clarinet Concerto with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Alice Tully Hall, Artie Shaw’s Concerto for Clarinet with The Boston Pops, Mozart’s Concerto with Oregon’s Newport Symphony and New York’s St. Thomas Orchestra, appearances with Prague Radio Symphony, the Kaliningrad Philharmonic, the Moscow Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra and the Moscow State Symphony Orchestra, and a recording of Weber’s Concertino with the New Russia State Symphony Orchestra.
Born in Armenia, Mr. Arutyunian’s family moved to Moscow when he was three. As a teenager, he won First Prizes in the International Young Musicians Competition in Prague and the Musical Youth of the Planet Competition in Moscow. He graduated from the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory as a student of Evgeny Petrov, received a Bachelor’s degree from The Juilliard School, where he worked with Charles Neidich, and continued his studies with Mr. Neidich at the Manhattan School of Music on a Leon Russianoff Memorial Scholarship, where he received a Master’s Degree in 2018.
Mr. Arutyunian has performed extensively in Australia, Asia, and in Europe, including at the Musée du Louvre in Paris and the Palazzo del Principe in Genoa. Festival appearances include return engagements at the Marlboro Music Festival and at Juilliard’s ChamberFest, where he performed Osvaldo Golijov’s The Dreams and Prayer, the New York Festival of Song, and the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival in Washington, Krzyzowa Music Festival in Poland, Germany’s Usedomer Musikfestival, Musica Viva’s Huntington Estate and Sydney festivals in Australia, and Young Concert Artists Festivals in Tokyo and Beijing. In addition to solo recitals, he consistently receives acclaim for his educational outreach programs in New York City public schools and around the country.
Mr. Arutyunian was scheduled to appear in March 2020 when COVID intervened, and in place of that concert he created a video that we streamed the following June. This afternoon is his first appearance on our stage.
American pianist Steven Beck is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where his teachers were Seymour Lipkin, Peter Serkin, and Bruce Brubaker. He made his debut with the National Symphony Orchestra, and has toured Japan as soloist with the New York Symphonic Ensemble. Other orchestras with which he has appeared include the New Juilliard Ensemble (under David Robertson), Sequitur, the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players, and the Virginia Symphony.
Mr. Beck has performed as soloist and chamber musician at the Kennedy Center, Alice Tully Hall, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Merkin Hall, Miller Theater, and Steinway Hall, as well as on the New York Philharmonic Ensembles Series and WNYC. Summer appearances have been at the Aspen Music Festival, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, the Greenwich Music Festival, the Woodstock Mozart Festival, and the Wellesley Composers’ Conference. He is an Artist Presenter and regular performer at Bargemusic (where he recently performed all of the Beethoven piano sonatas), performs frequently as a musician with the Mark Morris Dance Group, and has performed with the New York City Ballet.
Composers Mr. Beck has worked with include Elliott Carter, Henri Dutilleux, George Perle, and Charles Wuorinen, and he has appeared with ensembles such as Speculum Musicae, the Da Capo Chamber Players, the Manhattan String Quartet, the Pacifica String Quartet, The Metropolis Ensemble, New York Philomusica, the New York New Music Ensemble, Mosaic, the Lyric Chamber Music Society, the Omega Ensemble, Ensemble Sospeso, the Orchestra of the S.E.M. Ensemble, Counterinduction, the American Contemporary Music Ensemble, the East Coast Composers’ Ensemble, the Fountain Ensemble, Friends and Enemies of New Music, Lost Dog, and Antisocial Music. He is a member of the new music ensemble Future In Reverse (FIRE) as well as the notorious Knights of the Many-Sided Table. His recordings are on the Albany, Bridge, Monument, Mulatta, and Annemarie Classics labels.
This afternoon’s concert marks the first time Mr. Beck has performed in our concerts.