Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival already gearing up for ’09 |

Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival already gearing up for ’09

Daily Staff Report
Vail CO, Colorado
Special to the DailyEugenia Zukerman, artistic director for Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, interviews renowned violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg this past summer in Vail. The interview is part of a new series, EZ Listening: Eugenia Zukerman interviews world-class artists, which launches Monday on Bravo's Web site at

VAIL, Colorado ” The Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival has announced its schedule for the 2009 season. The ’09 season will feature the Columbus Jazz Orchestra, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, New Mexico Symphony Orchestra Chorus, the National Repertory Orchestra, The Philadelphia Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, and 50 internationally renowned soloists and chamber musicians.

The 22nd season takes place June 26 to Aug. 4, 2009, with performances scheduled throughout the entire Eagle Valley.

While 2009 may seem far away, Bravo! is keeping its audience close with the launch of EZ Listening: Eugenia Zukerman interviews world-class musicians. The in-depth interview series covers topics ranging from musical interpretation and artistic challenges, to travel nightmares and personal concerns.

Zukerman, Bravo’s artistic director, visualized the project after realizing that many artists have remarkable stories to tell. It’s a chance for the artists to share their intimate thoughts and feelings with the audience, Zukerman said.

The interviews were conducted in local settings and produced by local video production company Creative Mountain Images. Zukerman used her 25 years of experience working at CBS TV News’ Sunday Morning to interview the artists.

“Each of the six artists I spoke with were candid, revealing, funny, fascinating and surprising,” Zukerman said. “I think viewers will come away from these interviews feeling they’ve listened and seen unique portraits of the artists.”

The installment series launches Monday on Bravo’s Web site ( with a full-length interview of Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, world-renowned violinist who brought audiences to their feet this past summer during her performance of Astor Piazzola’s tango-inspired “Four Seasons of Buenos Aires” with The Philadelphia Orchestra.

“Nadja has the ability to fling herself into the music with passion and control at the same time,” Zukerman said. “She plays as if she’s on fire.”

During Nadja’s interview she spoke at great length about her hard work, which enables her to step on stage and play high-energy pieces, Zukerman said.

Bravo! will introduce a new, full-length interview every month on their Web site with the last installment scheduled for March 2009 ” the same month tickets go on sale for the 2009 season. The goal, according to Director of Public Relations and Marketing Rachel Packer, is to increase Web traffic in slow months and keep people excited about the Festival on a year-round basis.

Other interviews in the installment series include Jennifer Koh, violin; Jean-Yves Thibaudet, piano; Andrea Marcovicci, actress/vocalist; Bramwell Tovey, conductor; and Yefim Bronfman, piano.

“The interviews showcase some of our finest guest soloists and conductors, giving people a glimpse of their life in a 20-minute piece,” Packer said. “My hope is that the series will remind viewers of past festivals and encourage people to start planning for future festivals.”

Bravo’s 2008 festival ended less than a month ago. Performances by The Rochester Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra and the New York Philharmonic garnered much applause and acclaim. Each orchestra performed six concerts at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater to nearly sold-out crowds.

Bravo! had a record attendance number in 2008, with more than 61,000 attendees at concerts held throughout the Eagle Valley.

Celebrated artists such as Lang Lang, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg complemented the festival with guest appearances. The successful world premiere of Green Sneakers by the festival’s 2008 composer in residence, Ricky Ian Gordon, introduced audience members to an intimate and unique multimedia musical presentation.

“It’s amazing to think that just less than a month after Lang Lang wowed the audience with his piano concerto, he was performing at the opening ceremony in Beijing,” Packer said. “2009 will bring the same caliber of musicians to the stage.”

In addition to orchestral and chamber performances, the Music Matters educational programs reached new heights with the introduction of the Very Young Composers Project, created and directed by John Deak of the New York Philharmonic. The project introduces children and teachers to the art of music composition. Eight students from Eagle County composed new works that were performed at two library concerts before an audience of almost 200 listeners.

Other free youth programs in the community included the popular Instrument Petting Zoo, Live @ The Library performances, Free Family Concert and the Instrument Petting Bank.

Also continued in 2008 was the Young Artist Program, where the festival hosts aspiring young ensembles to study and perform with some of the world’s finest chamber musicians. The Olympus String Quartet from the Curtis Institute of Music and the Hudson River Brass from the SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music performed 15 concerts throughout the community.

Educational programming continues with the winter residency, when the festival will host a graduate student ensemble from the University of Colorado that will spend time performing in local schools.

Next year marks the return of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra residency, last performing in Vail during the 2006 season. The orchestra will perform six different programs at the Gerald. R. Ford Amphitheater, beginning on July 1 and continuing throughout the first week in July.

Executive Director John Giovando said that with the return of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, 2009 will be one of the best seasons yet.

“Relish the artistic excellence of the festival and its many musicians in the reserved seating sections or relax on the lawn with friends, family, a picnic basket and wine at the Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater,” Giovando said.

For additional information, visit or call 877-812-5700.

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