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Soprano Kathrin Danzmayr joins Breckenridge Music Festival Orchestra for concert

Erica Marciniec
Special to the Daily
Bavarian soprano Kathrin Danzmayr joins the Breckenridge Music Festival Orchestra for a series of love songs by Schubert and Berg on Saturday, July 18. The concert will be a family affair, since her husband, David Danzmayr, is the Festival Orchestra’s new conductor and artistic adviser.
Sebastian Adami / Special to the Daily |

If you go

What: Brahms’ First Symphony, part of the Breckenridge Music Festival Orchestra series

When: 7:30-9:30 p.m. Saturday, July 18

Where: Riverwalk Center, 150 W. Adams Ave., Breckenridge

Cost: Tickets range from $7 to $40, depending on seating

More information: Call the Riverwalk box office at (970) 547-3100, or visit http://www.breckenridgemusicfestival.com

The Breckenridge Music Festival Orchestra takes the stage on Saturday, July 18, with fiery new conductor David Danzmayr at its helm for the second concert in its 2015 summer series. The Austrian-born maestro, who also serves as the festival’s artistic adviser, is considered a rising star in the classical music world. He has served as conductor for both the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the Illinois Philharmonic and was chosen last year to lead the five-week summer festival in Breckenridge.

The orchestra presents love songs by Franz Schubert and Alban Berg, featuring the vocal stylings of Danzmayr’s wife, acclaimed Bavarian soprano Kathrin Danzmayr, for the first half of Saturday’s concert. Danzmayr received her training in Salzburg, Austria, and has performed widely in Europe. She is the lead singer of the Universal Records-produced band iMozart, whose debut album topped the Austrian album charts.

“We couldn’t resist the opportunity to bring Kathrin to the stage with David, since the whole family will be visiting, including the couple’s two children,” said BMF executive director Marcia Kaufmann. “Performances by the husband-and-wife team have been well-received by audiences elsewhere, and we thought this would be a great way to introduce them to our community.”

The evening opens with Schubert’s Rosamunde Overture, D. 644. This interesting piece was originally commissioned for a terrible stage work by Baroness Helmina von Chezy in 19th century Vienna, explains classical music historian Kenneth C. Viant. The disastrous production ran only two nights, and Schubert’s score was packed away, not to be found and performed again for 43 years.

“The music lives on because the quality of the composition was as great as the playwright was bad,” Kaufmann said. Other Schubert pieces on the program include “Gretchen am Spinnrade” and “Du bist die Ruh,” followed by a selection of three songs by Berg.

In the second half, the orchestra delivers a performance of Johannes Brahms’ First Symphony, a composition he labored intermittently for 20 years to complete, Viant said. Brahms measured himself against the immensely prolific and talented Ludwig van Beethoven, “a giant” who clearly intimidated him. Brahms was in fact so self-critical that he went through his stack of compositions and burned any that didn’t meet his standards. It was not until his early 40s that he was confident enough to unveil his first symphony to the public.

The piece requires a larger orchestra, so this concert features an enhanced string section to create a fuller sound.

“It’s a fabulous piece to be able to bring to our audiences,” Kaufmann said, and “an enjoyable step away from our regular programming.”

Danzmayr will conduct just a handful of concerts in the first half of the festival; the remaining programs feature artistic partners selected by the maestro.

So if you want to see the famous conductor in action, there’s no time like the present.

Erica Marciniec is a paid writer with the Breckenridge Music Festival.


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