In This Issue:

Julia Bullock, Anthony Roth Costanzo
and Cécile McLorin Salvant
Highlight a Weill Song Summer

L to R: Cécile McLorin Salvant, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Julia Bullock

Kurt Weill’s songs are making an especially robust appearance on this summer’s festival stages. At the Festival de Paris, the venerable King’s Singers included Weill songs among a set of close-harmony arrangements of “pop, jazz, folk and spiritual songs that span the globe”; trailblazing saxophonist Jess Gillam and her ensemble appeared at Augsburg’s Mozart Fest with a set including arrangements of Weill along with Björk, Philip Glass, and Astor Piazzolla; presented by the Oregon Bach Festival, pianist Lara Downes conceived a program titled “Variations on a Dream” that “explored the intersections and crossroads in American music,” including songs by Weill.

Especially exciting have been two events that serve as bookends to the summer season. In early July, Julia Bullock continued her interpretive exploration of Weill songs with a recital at Festival d’Aix-en-Provence. Her Weill set comprised “Lost in the Stars,” “Denn wie man sich bettet, so liegt man,” “Wie lange noch?,” and “The Princess of Pure Delight.” See here for a video of Bullock performing “Wie lange noch?” on an NPR Tiny Desk Concert. Later in August, Anthony Roth Costanzo and Cécile McLorin Salvant share a program, presented by the La Jolla Music Society, on which they will both perform a number of Weill works. See here for Salvant’s version of “The World is Mean” (First Threepenny Finale), a cut from her recent release Ghost Song.

Jonathon Heyward,
Past Julius Rudel / Kurt Weill Conducting Fellow,
Named Music Director of Baltimore Symphony Orchestra

Jonathon Heyward. Photo: Laura Thiesbrummel

In 2016, the Kurt Weill Foundation was pleased to award a Julius Rudel / Kurt Weill Conducting Fellowship to a promising young conductor named Jonathon Heyward. Six years later, it has become clear just how much promise lay in store. In July, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra announced the appointment of the twenty-nine-year-old Heyward as its music director.

Heyward’s Rudel / Weill fellowship centered on a production of Lost in the Stars presented by the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra in January 2017. Music Director Jeffrey Kahane’s longstanding and close association with Kurt Weill’s music made him an ideal mentor for the occasion of this project.

Opera Ballet Vlaanderen Production of
Weill’s Der Silbersee Honored as “Best Coproduction” 

Olim (Benny Claessens) and Severin (Daniel Arnaldos). Photo: Annemie Augustijns

In June, the French Syndicate of Reviewers awarded the prize for “best European coproduction” to the production of Weill’s Der Silbersee premiered by Opera Ballet Vlaanderen in 2021. Coproduced by Opéra national de Lorraine in Nancy, where it will appear during the 2023/24 season, this Silbersee, seen through the eyes of imaginative director Ersan Mondtag, displays an unusual perspective on the piece. The award notice celebrated not just the production but also the “rediscovery” of Der Silbersee itself, describing the work as “exuberant” and “inventive.”

KWF Celebrates Strong Pool
of Mid-Year Grant Projects

Nina Kurzeja’s production of Zaubernacht in rehearsal, to be presented by Baerum Kulturhus
with support from the Kurt Weill Foundation’s Grant Program. Photo: Peter Pöschl

The Kurt Weill Foundation is pleased to announce the results of the mid-year 2022 cycle of its Grant Program. An impressive collection of applicant projects includes: a nine-city tour of Lady in the Dark in the Netherlands and beyond; the North American premiere by John DeMain and Madison Opera of the fifteen-player version of The Seven Deadly Sins, prepared by HK Gruber and Christian Muthspiel; and the first performance of Down in the Valley with orchestra in New York City since Symphony Space presented it as part of “Wall-to-Wall Weill” during the composer’s centenary year in 2000. See the full list.

The Foundation’s Grant Program awards financial support to individuals and not-for-profit organizations for projects related to Weill, Lenya, or Marc Blitzstein. Learn more.

A Banner Year for Recordings
of Weill’s Symphony No.2

This is turning out to be a banner year for recordings of Weill’s concert works. Lahav Shani’s impressive new interpretation of Symphony No. 2 (Fantaisie symphonique) with the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra is already becoming a landmark in the work’s recorded history. Now, only a few months later, the SOMM label has released a disc presenting recordings of both the symphony and Weill’s Concerto for Violin and Wind Orchestra. Jac van Steen conducts the Ulster Orchestra, with Tamás Kocsis the concerto soloist.

Selected Upcoming Events

Stay tuned in September for a full preview of what promises to be an especially exciting 2022/23 season for Kurt Weill’s work. In the meantime, a few dates in the coming weeks…

18 August – Weill Songs
La Jolla Music Society (Eric Jacobsen, conductor; Cécile McLorin Salvant and Anthony Roth Costanzo, vocals; Sullivan Fortner, piano).

1 September – Die Dreigroschenoper
Theatro São Pedro (Alexandre Dal Farra, director; Ira Levin, conductor). Also 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 10 September.

9 September – Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny
Opera Ballet Vlaanderen (Ivo Van Hove, director; Alejo Perez, conductor). Performances through November 2022.

11 September – Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny
Theater Bonn (Volker Loesch, director; Dirk Kaftan, conductor). Performances through January 2023.

16 September – Weill Songs
New Century Chamber Orchestra (Daniel Hope, music director; Thomas Hampson and Horst Maria Merz, vocals). Also 17, 18 September.

23 September – Zaubernacht *
Baerum Kulturhus (Nina Kurzeja, choreographer).

* KWF Grant Program Recipient

View the Full Events Calendar

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