The Basically Beethoven Festival was Fine Arts Chamber Players’ inaugural concert series. Since 1981, the Festival has provided North Texas with free chamber music concerts during the month of July, a traditionally slow time for arts events in Dallas. The Festival features professional musicians from local ensembles performing a diverse range of music.
Every program includes a Rising Star Recital at 2:30 pm and a Feature Performance at 3 pm.
Rising Star Recitals present local, gifted young musicians, many of whom are winners of area music contest and concerto competitions, and Feature Performances showcase professional musicians from across the Metroplex. Admission is free and performances fulfill FACP’s commitment to produce classical music concerts with no barriers to attendance. Performances are easily accessible by public transit and are attended both by longtime arts patrons and area residents who are new to classical music. Families with children are welcome.
July 9: Dances & Romances
Rising Stars: Just completing eighth grade, Marlon Florez, cello, has soloed under the baton of Gustavo Dudamel in Venezuela with El Sistema de Orquestas. Regina Lin, piano, won first place at the Texas Music Teachers Association convention. She has soloed with the Round Rock Symphony Orchestra and has performed in China.
Feature Performance: Chloe Trevor, violin, and Jonathan Tsay, piano, play Johannes Brahms, Ludwig van Beethoven, and more. Ms. Trevor has performed with orchestras across the world (and boasts over 100,000 followers on Instagram). Mr. Tsay is a founder of ensemble75, a local chamber music project, and has performed as a soloist in the U.S., Canada, and Taiwan.
July 16: A Spirited Afternoon
Rising Stars: Yong Ha Jung, viola, has won many awards including Grand Prize of the Schmidbauer Competition, the 2017 Lewisville Lake Symphony Competition, and the 2017 Collin County Young Artist Competition, which have led to multiple orchestral engagements. Patrick Magee, piano, is set to attend Harvard University in the fall. A Grand Prize winner of the 2016 Collin County Young Artist Competition, he has also soloed with the Plano Symphony Orchestra.
Feature Performance: A string sextet presents Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s exuberant Souvenir de Florence. Sean Riley, violin, alumnus of the Juilliard school and former faculty of the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in London; Grace Kang Wollett, violin, alumna of Juilliard and member of the Dallas Opera orchestra; Rachel Li McDonald, viola, alumna of Juilliard, maintains an active private studio in Plano; Imelda Tecson, viola, Associate Principal viola of the Dallas Chamber Symphony; Jonah Kim, cello, two-time Grammy winner and faculty at Interlochen School of the Arts Summer Festival; Joseph Kuipers, cello, founding member of Marinus Ensemble; and Alex McDonald, piano, Basically Beethoven Festival Director, Juilliard alumnus, and competitor in 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition.
July 23: Stephen Nielson and Friends
Rising Stars: Daniel Che, piano, recent Grand Prize winner of the Fort Worth Symphony Young Artist Competition, will solo with the FWSO in 2017-2018. Alice Zhang, piano, is a frequent prize winner in regional and state piano competitions.
Feature Performance: Steinway Artist Stephen Nielson, piano, is joined by Dallas Symphony Orchestra member Motoi Takeda, violin, and Caroline Nielson, mezzo soprano, in works by Beethoven, Francis Poulenc, Amy Beach, and two of Mr. Nielson’s own arrangements. Ms. Nielson is a recent graduate of the Eastman School of Music, and has performed nationally on PBS.
July 30: Americana!
Rising Stars: Subin Cho and Hannah Kim, flutists, and Lizhen Wu, piano, is pursuing a doctorate at the University of North Texas.
Feature Performance: A chamber arrangement of Aaron Copland’s masterpiece Appalachian Spring, played by an ensemble including Dallas and Ft. Worth Symphony members, and Jennifer Higdon’s Piano Trio close the Festival. The musicians are Lucas Aleman, violin (DSO); Mariana Cottier-Bucco, violin (DSO); Shu Lee, violin (DSO); Grace Kang Wollett, violin (Dallas Opera); Christine Hwang, viola (DSO); Rachel Li McDonald, viola; Lesley Cleary, cello (FWSO); Craig Leffer, cello (faculty, UT Arlington); William Clay, bass (FWSO); Margaret Shin Fischer, flute; Jonathan Jones, clarinet (Dallas Chamber Symphony, Las Colinas Symphony); Peter Unterstein, bassoon (FWSO); Buddy Bray, piano, (FWSO); and Daniel Black, conductor (FWSO).