Brevard Music Center Announces The 2011 Season Line-Up

Brevard Music Center Announces The 2011 Season Line-Up

The Brevard Music Center (BMC),  a summer festival and institute, will open its 75th anniversary season on Friday, June 24 on its campus in Brevard, North Carolina. The gala opening night concert features BMC’s Principal Guest Conductor JoAnn Falletta and the Brevard Music Center Orchestra performing Elgar’s Enigma Variations and the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto. Soloist in the Tchaikovsky will be the American violinist Robert McDuffie, who is an alumnus of the Music Center.

The June 24 concert is the first of 80 performances to be presented in the 2011 season, including 18 different orchestra programs, five opera productions, wind ensemble, chamber music, new music, recitals, and more. The season closes on Sunday afternoon, August 7, with BMC Artistic Director Keith Lockhart conducting the Brevard Music Center Orchestra in Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9, “From the New World,” plus two works for cello and orchestra, Haydn’s Concerto in C and Tchaikovsky’s “Rococo” Variations. Soloist will be the renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, who will be making his third appearance at Brevard. The “Rococo” Variations is the work Mr. Ma performed in 1979 during his first appearance. In 2008, Mr. Ma appeared on Keith Lockhart’s inaugural concert as Artistic Director.


Orchestra forms the heart of Brevard’s festival, and a cast of renowned conductors, both American and international, will lead three different orchestras through some of the most important and best-loved music in the repertoire. In addition to Mr. Lockhart (who will conduct five concerts during the season) and Ms. Falletta (who conducts programs on June 24 and 26), other conductors appearing this season include the legendary Swiss conductor Matthias Bamert, Grant Llewellyn (Music Director of the North Carolina Symphony) from Wales, Thomas Wilkins (Omaha Symphony and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra), Lucas Richman (the orchestras of Bangor and Knoxville), and Ken Lam (BMC Resident Conductor).

Orchestral repertoire includes two Mahler symphonies (nos. 1 and 3), three symphonies by Dvorak (nos. 7, 8, and 9), Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony, Mozart’s Symphony No. 39, Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring and Firebird Suite, Elgar’s Enigma Variations, Copland’s Appalachian Spring, Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances, and Richard Strauss’s Till Eulenspiegel. In addition to Yo-Yo Ma and Robert McDuffie, a number of guest artists will appear this season, including the revered pianist Peter Serkin (making his third Brevard appearance) performing the Bartok Third Piano Concerto; Italian pianist
Fabio Bidini performing Rachmaninoff’s beloved Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini; and the young pianist Joyce Yang performing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

A notable performance occurs on July 22 when Keith Lockhart leads the Brevard Music Center Orchestra and Canadian mezzo-soprano Susan Platts in a performance of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 3. This marks a Brevard premiere for the Symphony, which is rarely played because of its huge performance requirements, including a women’s chorus, a children’s chorus, eight French horns, and a vast array of wind, brass, and percussion instruments.

All of the orchestra programs occur in BMC’s open-sided Whittington-Pfohl Auditorium, which creates a special “open air” experience for listeners without giving up the impact of a concert hall.


Opera has been a major part of the Brevard Music Center for more than 40 years, and in the 75th anniversary season Brevard’s Janiec Opera Company moves across town to the Porter Center at Brevard College. “The Porter Center is a jewel of a facility,” says BMC Dean and Artistic Administrator Bruce Murray. “It provides superb acoustics, state-of-the-art capabilities for stage lighting and other effects, and all the audience amenities you could want. Most importantly, for the first time it allows our singers to perform without amplification, so that listeners can experience voices in their pure form.”

Three mainstage opera productions will be presented in the Scott Concert Hall at the Porter Center: Verdi’s La Traviata, Humperdinck’s Hansel und Gretel, and Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’amore (“The Elixir of Love”). Two more titles, the Brecht/Weill Threepenny Opera and Handel’s Alcina will be presented in the smaller, intimate Morrison Playhouse at Porter. Each title will receive three performances and will feature at least one matinee.


Chamber music and recitals play a significant role at the Brevard Music Center. Fourteen chamber music concerts will be presented in the Scott Concert Hall at the Porter Center and in Searcy Hall on the Music Center campus. Concerts include the Vega String Quartet performing music of Haydn, Beethoven, and Bartok; a Steinway Gala celebrating BMC’s partnership with Steinway Pianos, hosted by noted American pianist Norman Krieger and featuring music of Liszt (2011 is the Liszt bicentennial year); a song recital by mezzo Susan Platts; a performance of all three Brahms violin sonatas by BMC Concertmaster William Preucil; and “Brevard Plays Bach,” an evening of J.S. Bach’s instrumental and vocal music.


A special fundraising concert on August 1 will feature Michael Feinstein, renowned singer and authority on the American popular song. He appears with a big band in his celebrated show “The Sinatra Project,” in which he performs a full evening of songs associated with Frank Sinatra.

The annual Pendergrast Family Patriotic Pops concert is a beloved Brevard tradition, and it goes off at 2:00 PM on July 3. This year BMC’s Transylvania Symphonic Band is joined by the Brevard Community Band, and there will be the customary marches, patriotic songs, costumes, refreshments, and the 1812 Overture complete with live cannon. Maestro Kraig Alan Williams will be on the podium.


In its 75th anniversary season, the Brevard Music Center offers more than thirty free events to the community. These include three concerts by the Transylvania Symphonic Band; four recitals and opera scenes programs from the High School Voice program; six student piano recitals; four new music concerts; nine student chamber concerts and recitals; and more.


Ticket holders are entitled to attend pre-performance lectures, given one hour before each orchestra concert and each opera performance during the season.


Tickets are available beginning May 2 by phone, mail, walk-up, and online at The box office is located in the foyer of Whittington-Pfohl Auditorium on the Brevard Music Center campus. The box office phone number is (828) 862-2105 or toll-free (888) 384-8682. You can request a brochure by calling (828) 862-2100 or view a performance schedule online at A 75th Anniversary Special package is available that includes two lawn tickets, two picnics, two glasses of wine and two  Brevard Music Center wine glasses for $75.00. This offer is not valid for Variations concerts or the Season Finale. Details can be found on the web or by calling (828) 862-2105.

Patrons who purchase their tickets online will be able to choose to print their tickets at home. During check out, select “Print at Home” as your delivery method. You will receive a confirmation email that will contain your printable tickets. You can print now or later, and always know where your tickets are located. Tickets can also be mailed or held at the box office. The online ticketing system also allows patrons to choose their own seats from the available locations. Parking is free to all events at the Brevard Music Center.


The Brevard Music Center originated in 1936 as a summer music camp at Davidson College. James Christian Pfohl, the Music Center’s founder and first Artistic Director, moved his operation to Queens College in Charlotte for the summer of 1943, then to the current location in 1944. Pfohl added a festival of concerts at the end of the 1946 session. Over time the camp became an institute, and the festival came to run the full length of the summer season.

In 2011 Brevard Music Center will enroll more than 400 students from almost every state, plus students from Europe, Asia, and South America. Sixty-five professional musicians, representing major orchestras and distinguished music schools, comprise the artist faculty. Students, faculty, and staff all reside on the 180-acre wooded campus in western North Carolina. The Brevard Music Center has emerged as one of America’s premier summer training programs for young musicians. This article is from WHKP a local Radio Station