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Arts & Culture

Rare Shostakovich Concerts Come To La Jolla SummerFest

A graphic portrait of the composer Dmitri Shostakovich, Aug. 19, 2015.
A graphic portrait of the composer Dmitri Shostakovich, Aug. 19, 2015.
Rare Shostakovich Concerts Come To La Jolla SummerFest
As part of the SummerFest music festival, the La Jolla Music Society is presenting a weekend of chamber music by Russian composer Dimitri Shostakovich.

There’s a rare musical occurrence happening in San Diego this weekend.

The La Jolla Music Society is presenting three concerts of chamber music by the Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich. It’s part of SummerFest, the organization's well-regarded, three-week chamber music festival.

Music Director Cho-Liang Lin, now in his 15th year, curated the concert material highlighting the composer's chamber music for piano and strings.

Lin said such an intensive look at this portion of Shostakovich's work is not just rare for San Diego.

"I think it’s rare for anywhere," Lin said. "I know certain string quartets have given a survey of all 15 of the complete quartets in places like London and New York, but I think to have a comprehensive look at his chamber music is very rare."

Each performance will be followed by a lecture by esteemed musicologist Richard Taruskin, who will discuss Shostakovich’s controversial legacy, life, and career composing music under Stalin and later Soviet regimes.

Shostakovich was primarily known as a symphonist. He worked on string quartets later in life and some argue it was within this format that he found room for experimentation. But he also experimented with chamber music as a young man, composing a piano trio at 17 and the Two Pieces for String Octet at 18, while he was still a conservatory student.

Here's a list of the concerts that begin on Friday:

SHOSTAKOVICH I

Friday, Aug. 21 · 8 p.m. · MCASD Sherwood Auditorium TICKETS: $65 | $45

Two Pieces for String Octet, Op. 11 (1931)

David Chan, Cho-Liang Lin, violins; Paul Neubauer, viola; Clive Greensmith, cello; Borromeo String Quartet

Sonata for Viola and Piano, Op. 147 (1975)

Paul Neubauer, viola; Vladimir Feltsman, piano Concertino for Two Pianos, Op. 94 (1954)

John Novacek, Alan Woo, piano

String Quartet No. 3 in F Major, Op. 73 (1946)

Borromeo String Quartet

Nicholas Kitchen, Kristopher Tong, violins; Mai Motobuchi, viola; Yeesun Kim, cello

PRELUDE 7 p.m.

"Man and Boy, and Master"

SummerFest Scholar-in-Residence Richard Taruskin presents the first of three lectures exploring the arc of Dmitri Shostakovich's life.

SHOSTAKOVICH II

Saturday, Aug. 22 · 8 p.m. · MCASD Sherwood Auditorium TICKETS: $65 | $45

Piano Trio No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 8 (1923)

David Chan, violin; Clive Greensmith, cello; Alan Woo, piano Sonata for Violin and Piano, Op. 134 (1968)

Dmitry Sitkovetsky, violin; John Novacek, piano

String Quartet No. 8 in C Minor, Op. 110 (1960)

Borromeo String Quartet

Nicholas Kitchen, Kristopher Tong, violins; Mai Motobuchi, viola; Yeesun Kim, cello

Seven Verses Alexander Blok, Op. 127 (1967)

Lyubov Petrova, soprano; Dimitri Sitkovetsky, violin; Clive Greensmith, cello; Vladimir Feltsman, piano

PRELUDE 7 p.m.

"Man and Boy, and Master": Prof. Richard Taruskin continues his three-lecture exploration of Dmitri Shostakovich's life and career.

SHOSTAKOVICH III

Sunday, Aug. 23 · 3 p.m. · MCASD Sherwood Auditorium TICKETS: $65 | $45

String Quartet No. 12 in D-flat Major, Op. 133 (1968)

Borromeo String Quartet

Nicholas Kitchen, Kristopher Tong, violins; Mai Motobuchi, viola; Yeesun Kim, cello

Sonata for Cello and Piano in D Minor, Op. 40 (1934)

John Sharp, cello; Vladmir Feltsman, piano

Piano Trio No. 2 in E Minor, Op. 67 (1944)

Vladmir Feltsman, piano; Dmitry Sitkovetsky, violin; John Sharp, cello

PRELUDE 2 p.m.

"Man and Boy, and Master": Prof. Richard Taruskin concludes a three-concert lecture series examining the extraordinary life and remarkable musical achievement of Dmitri Shostakovich.