The IBLA Foundation Presents:
Dr. Salvatore Moltisanti, President
226 East 2nd Street, Loft 1B
New York, New York
International Jury Chairman: Maestro Marcello Abbado
Executive Director: Mr. Michael Yasenak
Leticia Moreno on Violin
Igor Levit on Piano
Weill Recital Hall
(Carnegie Hall Website)
Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
December 7, 2008
”The IBLA Foundation in New York City organizes an annual music competition for pianists, singers, instrumentalists and composers which takes place during the last week of June and the first week of July in Ragusa Ibla, Italy. Winners are presented in such venues as Lincoln Center Alice Tully Hall and Carnegie Hall in New York, the Tokyo Opera City Hall, the Tchaikovsky Bolshoi Hall in Moscow as well as other prestigious venues in Canada, Europe, Russia and the USA.” (IBLA Website Notes)
Ludwig van Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 9 in A major, Op. 47 – A Kreutzer (1803): Adagio sostenuto – Presto – Adagio, Andante con variazioni, Presto
Manuel de Falla: Suite Populaire Espagnole (1914), arr. Pavel Kochansky: El Paño Moruno, Nana, Canción, Polo, Asturiana, Jota
César Franck: Sonata for violin and piano in A major (1886): Allegretto ben moderato, Allegro, Recitativo-Fantasia: Ben moderato, Allegretto poco mosso
Pablo de Sarasate: Fantasie sur des motifs de l’Opéra Carmen, Op. 24 (1833)
Leticia Moreno appears internationally in orchestral concerts and solo violin recitals, and, in 2009-2010, she will appear in the Hollywood Bowl, courtesy of Plácido Domingo. She has recorded extensively and plays a 1762 Nicola Gagliano violin. Igor Levit also appears internationally, records widely, has received awards for his performances, is supported by Foundations, and plays a Steinway-D grand piano. These two young artists have a promising career ahead of them, with much recognition and achievement.
Ms. Moreno and Mr. Levit opened with Beethoven’s Kreutzer Sonata, and the first movement was presented with urgency, passion, and racing crescendos of notes. This soulful movement set the tone for the second, the “Andante”, with playful violin rhythms and phrases, that ended with Ms. Moreno’s elongated tonality and near silent bow. The “Presto” movement had each musician chasing the notes of the other, with a rapidly racing tempo. The de Falla Suite Populaire Espagnole showcases the violin, with piano mainly as accompaniment. The heart-rending theme of the soulful “Asturiana” is offset by gypsy, folk, and flamenco dance rhythms. Mr. Levit treated the audience to an extra work, a piano elegy from Busoni’s opera, Turandot. Mr. Levit explained that this selection was derived from an elegy to the sleeping, relaxed segment in Turandot, and Mr. Levit showed mastery of the drama of this renowned opera. With the IBLA members and guests in attendance tonight, this addition of an operatic elegy was well conceived.
The César Franck Sonata for violin and piano brought out both musicians after the intermission again, and this has always been one of my favorite Sonatas. It is searing in sound, between a somber opening and repetitive first movement finale. In the “Allegro” movement the piano enters with fiery fury, passing the emotion to the violin, and repetitive phrases echo with gripping restructurings of the theme. The third movement provides for a violin solo of sensuality and sadness. But, in the finale, the themes of the third and then first movements repeat with immediacy and freshness, in a more rapturous and resolute ambiance. Both Ms. Moreno and Mr. Levit displayed a maturity and professionalism, as they blazed through this Sonata with confidence and class. The Pablo de Sarasate Fantasie evoked themes of the opera, Carmen, showcasing Ms. Moreno once again, in imagery of dancing dervish, swirling exoticism, and the soul of Spain.
It was apparent throughout the evening, while Dr. Moltisanti generously introduced each work and also introduced the musicians, that the audience was in high spirits and enthralled with the concert. Kudos to the IBLA Foundation, and kudos to Leticia Moreno and Igor Levit.
Leticia Moreno and Igor Levitt
Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall
Courtesy of Roberta E. Zlokower