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Orpheus and Janine Jansen at The Met Museum's Great Hall
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Orpheus and Janine Jansen at The Met Museum's Great Hall

- Classical and Cultural Connections

Orpheus Chamber Orchestra
(Orpheus Website)
490 Riverside Drive, NY, NY 10027

Janine Jansen, Violin

At The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Jennifer Wada: Communications, Met Museum Concerts
Alan J. Benson: Orpheus Marketing
Press: Cohn Dutcher Associates

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
September 18, 2006

(See Orpheus Historical Notes).


Concerto Grosso No. 8 in A Minor, Opus 3, RV 522
Allegro, Larghetto e spiritoso, Allegro

Concerto in E Major for Violin, BWV 11042
Allegro, Adagio e sempre piano, Allegro assai

Janine Jansen, Violin

Concerto in D Minor for Two Violins, BWV 1043
Vivace, Largo ma non tanto, Allegro

Janine Jansen, Violin
Eriko Sato, Violin

“Summer” from The Four Seasons
Concerto in G Minor, Opus 8, No 2, RV 315
Allegro non molto-Allegro, Adagio-Presto-Adagio, Presto

Janine Jansen, Violin

Janine Jansen, featured violinist, of Holland, “studied with Coosje Wijzenbeek, at the Conservatory of Utrecht with Philipp Hirshhorn, and following her graduation (cum laude) with Boris Belkin. In September 2003 she received the Dutch Music Prize from the Ministry of Culture – the highest distinction an artist can receive in The Netherlands – after a performance of Prokofiev’s second violin concerto with the Rotterdam Philharmonic conducted by Valery Gergiev. She received the Edison Classic Public Award in 2004 for her debut album on Decca, and again in 2005 for her Vivaldi recording.”

”The outstanding instrument being used by Janine Jansen is the violin by Antonio Stradivari, Cremona, 1727, ‘Barrere’ on extended loan from the Elise Mathilde Fund through intermediation of The Stradivari Society(r) of Chicago. The Stradivari Society(r) is a unique organization that supports artists of exceptional talent and ability to find the most suitable instruments for them.” (Janine Jansen Website Biography).

The Great Hall at The Metropolitan Museum of Art is the space at the top of the outdoor steps, the entrance hallway, and tonight it was a grand concert hall. The Met Museum is closed on Mondays, so the museum was dark, except for the press reception space on another floor. In any circumstance, the Met is a dramatic backdrop for music, for political gatherings (such as the Borough President’s inauguration event this past year), for films, for lectures, for dining, for VIP tours, and, of course, for paintings, drawings, sculpture, pottery, religious artifacts, fine silver, fine glassware, fashion and costumes, education classrooms, bookshops, gift shops, and antique architecture, hieroglyphics, clocks, furniture, jewelry, and much more.

Tonight, the glamorous and magnetic violinist, Janine Jansen, joined Orpheus, a chamber orchestra, for a concert of Vivaldi and Bach. Tonight’s opening work, with, as always, no Orpheus conductor, but rather a series of seat changes by lead musicians, was Vivaldi’s Concerto Grosso No. 8 in A Minor. With no hesitation, Orpheus dove into the majesty and momentum of the Allegro, before creating pathos and poignancy in the second movement. The final Allegro built once again, in tempo and textured harmonies, with the featured soloists blending nicely, while adding overriding power to the performance.

When the stunning and striking figure of Janine Jansen appeared onstage, in glistening, strapless white, it was obvious that this would be an electric event. As it turned out, Ms. Jansen neither stole the spotlight nor overwhelmed the orchestra, but she did create quite a sensation. The Bach Concerto for E Major for Violin produced energetic and repetitive ripples of melody in the Allegro, with echoing themes. The harpsichord tonight added a layer of classicism and class. After a pause, the second movement was mournful and melancholy with balletic beauty. The sound was seamless, interspersed with Ms. Jansen’s virtuosic bow. The Allegro assai proceeded effortlessly, with Ms. Jansen’s driven chords and confident charisma.

For Bach’s Concerto in D Minor for Two Violins, Ms. Jansen was featured with Eriko Sato, an Orpheus violinist, and they joined equal forces in highlighting this signature work. New York City Ballet includes, in its Balanchine repertoire, the 1948 Concerto Barocco, with its sumptuous Largo second movement. Tonight, the concert performance of this Concerto was vibrant and eloquent. However, it was the Vivaldi “Summer” from The Four Seasons, so familiar and so wrought with musical frenzy, that mesmerized the audience, in this intermission-free series of Concerti.

Janine Jansen finally let loose in the entirety of this electric work, the Season of thunder and lightning, passion and pizzazz. Ms. Jansen added edge onto drama, daring onto energy. Vivaldi never sounded so vivacious. During Ms. Jansen’s solos, the orchestra was reverent and generous, allowing her to glow. In fact, as the natural light dimmed through the high windows, Ms. Jansen took on a luminescent luster against the shining, marble columns. In response to the orchestra’s respect, Ms. Jansen drew out of it a fierce and fiery sound. Excellent chemistry abounded. The thunderous passages took on a wild primitive motif, with stark contrasts in volume and edge. This was truly a virtuoso performance. Kudos to Janine Jansen, and kudos to Orpheus.

Janine Jansen

Janine Jansen

Photo courtesy of Ken Nahoum

Jennifer Wada, Met Museum Communications, and Guest, Press Reception
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Lois Cohn, Cohn Dutcher Associates, Press Reception
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Met Museum Press Reception
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Alan Benson, Orpheus Marketing Manager, and Howli Ledbetter, Cohn Dutcher Associates, Press Reception
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Met Museum: Press Reception
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Dan Dutcher, Cohn Dutcher Associates, Press Reception
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at