Curtis on Tour in Europe
An all-star, all-alumni ensemble—Josef Špaček, Timotheos Petrin, and George Xiaoyuan Fu— represents Curtis on Tour at top venues across Europe. The tour begins with a celebratory return to the Nights of Classical Music at the Gennadius Library festival in Athens, where Curtis has performed annually for over five years.
Josef Špaček has emerged as one of the leading violinists of his generation. He appears with orchestras across Europe and Asia, including Orchestre de Paris; Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin; Scottish Chamber Orchestra; Tonhalle Orchester Zürich; the Helsinki, Netherlands, Rotterdam, and Czech philharmonic orchestras; the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra; and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, among many others. He collaborates with eminent conductors such as Jakub Hrůša, Semyon Bychkov, Manfred Honeck, Valery Gergiev, Thomas Adès, Krzysztof Urbański, James Gaffigan, James Conlon, David Zinman, and Lio Kuokman.
He equally enjoys giving recitals and playing chamber music and is a regular guest at festivals and in concert halls throughout Europe—among others at the Rudolfinum in Prague, Wiener Konzerthaus, the Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ in Amsterdam, Kronberg Academy, the Evian Musical Encounters Festival, KaposFest, and Schloß Elmau—Asia and the U.S.—among others at the Kennedy Center, 92nd Street Y, and the La Jolla Music Society, ChamberFest Cleveland, and the Nevada Chamber Music festivals.
In 2015 Supraphon released a highly praised recording of the violin concertos of Dvořák and Janáček, coupled with the Fantasy of Suk. Other recordings to date are a recital disc with works for violin and piano by Smetana, Janáček, and Prokofiev with pianist Miroslav Sekera (Supraphon); an album of works by H.W. Ernst (Naxos); and an early CD with the complete Sonatas for Solo Violin by Eugène Ysaÿe.
Mr. Špaček studied at the Juilliard School, the Curtis Institute of Music, and the Prague Conservatory. He was a laureate of the International Queen Elisabeth Competition, and won top prizes at the Michael Hill International Violin Competition, the Carl Nielsen International Violin Competition, and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions.
Through the end of the 2019–20 season, he served as concertmaster and associate artist with the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, the youngest in its history.
Mr. Špaček performs on the ca. 1732 “LeBrun; Bouthillard” Guarneri del Gesù violin, generously on loan from Ingles & Hayday.
Greek cellist Timotheos Petrin is quickly garnering a reputation for his distinctive voice. He gained international recognition as a top prizewinner at the prestigious International Paulo Cello Competition in Finland.
In 2016 Mr. Petrin made his U.S. solo debut with the Kansas City Symphony, under the direction of Robert Spano. He has also appeared as a soloist with the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra and Susanna Malkki on Shostakovich’s second cello concerto; the Tapiola Sinfonietta; the Israel Camerata; NEC Philharmonia; and the Athens, Thessaloniki State, and Lahti symphony orchestras.
An avid chamber musician, Mr. Petrin often collaborates with important musical figures such as Noah-Bendix Balgley, Jonathan Biss, Roberto Díaz, Miriam Fried, Alexey Goribol, Yura Lee, Meng-Chieh Liu, Plamena Mangova, Ignat Solzhenitsyn, and Miri Yampolsky. He has participated in the Marlboro Music Festival, Chamberfest Cleveland, Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute, Caramoor’s Evnin Rising Stars, the Moritzburg Festival, and the Dimitria Festival.
In addition to his concert appearances, Mr. Petrin is an advocate for charity and philanthropic causes. In Spring 2016, in collaboration with the non-profit organization Podari.Life and Russian actress Chulpan Khamatova, he appeared in performances aiming to raise funds for children diagnosed with oncological and hematology diseases.
Born in Thessaloniki, Greece into a family of musicians, Mr. Petrin studied with Dimitris Patras at the Thessaloniki State Conservatory, with Carter Brey and Peter Wiley at the Curtis Institute of Music, and Laurence Lesser at New England Conservatory.
Described by the Boston Music Intelligencer as a “heroic piano soloist” with “stunning virtuosity,” Chinese-American pianist George Xiaoyuan Fu is establishing an international reputation as a captivating performer with distinctive intelligence and sensitivity.
Mr. Fu has performed as a piano soloist with orchestras such as the National Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, North Carolina Symphony, Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, and the Curtis Symphony Orchestra; and has collaborated with conductors such as Michael Tilson Thomas, Stefan Asbury, Kensho Watanabe, Vinay Parameswaran, and Jonathan Berman. He has appeared at international venues such as the Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Kings Place, and Seiji Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood; while his live performances and interviews have been featured on several public television and radio broadcasts around the world, such as In Tune on BBC Radio 3, Performance Today on National Public Radio, and On Stage at Curtis on WHYY-TV in Philadelphia.
Passionate about the creation of new work, Mr. Fu is an active composer and performer of contemporary music, having collaborated with composers Krzysztof Penderecki, Harrison Birtwistle, George Lewis, Unsuk Chin, Tansy Davies, Phil Cashian, Matthew Aucoin, and Freya Waley-Cohen. Interested in collaborative work, he is a conductor, an active chamber musician with duo partners and ensembles around the world, and collaborator with artists of many disciplines.
After receiving a bachelor’s degree in economics from Harvard University, Mr. Fu studied at the Curtis Institute of Music under Jonathan Biss and Meng-Chieh Liu and at the Royal Academy of Music under Christopher Elton and Joanna MacGregor. He has also worked with Pierre-Laurent Aimard, specifically on the music of Messiaen and Debussy. Mr. Fu currently teaches at the Royal Academy of Music. He receives career support from the Kirckman Concert Society, the City Music Foundation, and the Keyboard Charitable Trust.
|Trio in D major, Op. 70, No. 1 (“Ghost”)
|Trio in E minor, Op. 90 (“Dumky”)
Additional programs in Athens; view detailed event page below for more information.
Athens, Greece: Nights of Classical Music at the Gennadius Library
Tuesday, September 21–Friday, September 24 at the Gennadius Library, Cotsen Hall
These concerts will be live-streamed at 1:30 p.m. ET at ascsa.edu.gr/events/livestream.
Presented by the Schwarz Foundation in collaboration with the American School of Classical Studies at Athens
Sunday, September 26 at 8 p.m. at Konzerthaus Berlin, Kleiner Saal
Presented in collaboration with Young Euro Classic
Tuesday, September 28 at 7:30 p.m. at Hôtel de Talleyrand
Presented by The Arts Arena