VIVALDI and BUGS BUNNY – This Week At The San Francisco Symphony

Violinist and Concertmaster Alexander Barantschik
plays on the 1742 Guarnerius del Gesù
Conductor George Daugherty and SFS salute Bugs Bunny On Broadway

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By Seán Martinfield
Sentinel Editor and Publisher
Photo by Lynn Imanaka

Thursday evening, July 16th, San Francisco Symphony Concertmaster Alexander Barantschik leads my classic Vivaldi, offering a unique opportunity to hear the distinguished violinist put his singular stamp on Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons. The Symphony complements the firecracker virtuosity of this ubiquitous Baroque classic with the timeless elegance of Mozart and Tchaikovsky.

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ANTONIO VIVALDI and ALEXANDER BARANTSCHIK

Since joining the SFS, Mr. Barantschik has performed often as soloist with the Orchestra. He conducted concerts here in 2005 and, most recently, this past February. As Leader of the London Symphony Orchestra, he toured Europe, Japan, and the US and served as concertmaster in numerous concerts with Sir Colin Davis. He was also concertmaster for acclaimed cycles of Mahler, Stravinsky, and Debussy with Michael Tilson Thomas, as well as major symphonic cycles with Mstislav Rostropovich and Bernard Haitink, and he served as concertmaster for Pierre Boulez’s year-long, three-continent 75th Birthday Celebration.

Through an arrangement with the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Mr. Barantschik has the exclusive use of the 1742 Guarnerius del Gesù violin once owned by the virtuoso Ferdinand David, who played it in the world premiere of the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in 1845. It was also the favorite instrument of the legendary Jascha Heifetz, who acquired it in 1922 and who bequeathed it to the Fine Arts Museums, with the stipulation that it be played only by artists worthy of the instrument and its legacy.

Arrive one hour prior to start times for pre-concert entertainment in the lobby, specialty drinks, and desserts.

Meet Barbara Quick for an exclusive signing of her book, Vivaldi’s Virgins, immediately following the concert at the Symphony Store in the lobby.

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The Guarnerius del Gesù, 1742 — Vivaldi’s Virgins, by Barbara Quick

Next evening, Friday, July 17th, a Davies Symphony Hall favorite, Bugs Bunny On Broadway returns as part of Summer and the Symphony.  Classic Warner Brothers Looney Tunes starring Bugs Bunny and his friends will be projected on a giant screen with the San Francisco Symphony playing the original Carl Stalling cartoon scores live.  The concert was created by and will be conducted by George Daugherty, who has been a frequent guest conductor of the SFS over the past 11 years.  This will be the final San Francisco Symphony performance of the original “Bugs Bunny On Broadway” concert. Among the featured selections are: This Is A Life?, What’s Up Doc, The Rabbit of Seville, Long-Haired Hare, What’s Opera Doc?, and more.

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CHUCK JONES, Animator and Director & GEORGE DAUGHERTY, Conductor. Photo, Don Kelsey

A director/producer/conductor, George Daugherty is known as one of the music world’s most diverse artists. In addition to his 25-year conducting career which has included appearances with the world’s leading orchestras, ballet companies, opera houses, and concert artists, Daugherty is also an Emmy Award winning / five-time Emmy nominated creator whose professional profile includes major credits as a director, writer, and producer for television, film, innovative and unique concerts, and the live theater. He has conducted on every continent of the world, but is perhaps best known for the creation of his cult hit film-and-live orchestra concert Bugs Bunny On Broadway which has played to almost two million audience members worldwide, celebrating the classic era of Warner Bros. animation and their inspired Carl Stalling orchestra scores.

As a director, writer, and producer of music-based television programs, George Daugherty and producing partner David Wong have created several major productions for the ABC Television Network project, including a prime time animation-and-live action production of Sergei Prokofiev’s Peter and The Wolf, which he created, co-wrote, conducted, and directed, and for which he won a Prime Time Emmy Award, as well as a Writer’s Guild Award Nomination, and numerous others.

Daugherty and Wong also collaborated with The Joy Luck Club author Amy Tan on a television adaptation of her celebrated children’s book The Chinese Siamese Cat. The Emmy Award winning series debuted on PBS in the fall of 2001 as a daily-animated children’s television series, propelled by PBS’ unprecedented advance order for 80 segments. Daugherty executive produced, and also wrote a large number of the animated tales. The series won an Emmy.

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Conductors Bugs Bunny and George Daugherty

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Seán Martinfield
Sentinel Editor and Publisher
Seán Martinfield, who also serves as Fine Arts Critic, is a native San Franciscan. He is a Theatre Arts Graduate from San Francisco State University, a professional singer, and well-known private vocal coach to Bay Area actors and singers of all ages and persuasions. His clients have appeared in Broadway National Tours including Wicked, Aïda, Miss Saigon, Rent, Bye Bye Birdie, in theatres and cabarets throughout the Bay Area, and are regularly featured in major City events including Diva Fest, Gay Pride, and Halloween In The Castro. As an Internet consultant in vocal development and audition preparation he has published thousands of responses to those seeking his advice concerning singing techniques, professional and academic auditions, and careers in the Performing Arts. Mr. Martinfield’s Broadway clients have all profited from his vocal methodology, “The Belter’s Method”, which is being prepared for publication. If you want answers about your vocal technique, post him a question on AllExperts.com. If you would like to build up your vocal performance chops and participate in the Bay Area’s rich theatrical scene, e-mail him at: sean.martinfield@comcast.net.

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