Juilliard Chamber Orchestra Performs Joan Tower's "Purple Rhapsody" and Works by Bizet and Grieg on Saturday, November 9 at 8 PM in Alice Tully Hall


Juilliard Violist Jocelin Pan is Soloist in Joan Tower's "Purple Rhapsody"

Start Date

Friday, October 25, 2013

Press Release Images

Juilliard Chamber Orchestra (Photo by Richard Termine)
Juilliard Chamber Orchestra (Photo by Richard Termine)
Jocelyn Pan (Photo by Arthur Moeller)
Jocelyn Pan (Photo by Arthur Moeller)
Joan Tower (Photo by Bernie Mindich)
Joan Tower (Photo by Bernie Mindich)


The Juilliard Chamber Orchestra, Juilliard’s conductor-less ensemble coached by New York Philharmonic cellist, Juilliard adjunct faculty member and alumnus, Eric Bartlett, performs works by Bizet, Grieg, and Joan Tower on Saturday, November 9 at 8 PM in Alice Tully Hall. The program features Grieg’s Holberg Suite; Joan Tower’s Purple Rhapsody (2005) with Juilliard violist Jocelin Pan and Bizet’s Symphony No. 1 in C Major.

Tickets at $20 are available online at www.juilliard.edu/fallorch, by calling CenterCharge at (212) 721-6500, or at the Alice Tully Hall Box Office. $10 tickets for seniors and students are available only at the Alice Tully Hall Box Office. For further information, call (212) 769-7406 or go to www.juilliard.edu/fallorch.

Edvard Grieg’s Holberg Suite was composed in 1884 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Ludvig Holberg, a Danish-Norwegian playwright. The Suite was originally composed for piano, but Grieg later arranged it for strings. The five movements of the work, which are based on 18th-century dance forms, are Praeludium, Sarabande, Gavotte, Air, and Rigaudon.

Joan Tower’s Purple Rhapsody (2005) was commissioned by the Omaha Symphony with the Buffalo Philharmonic, Virginia Symphony, Kansas City Symphony, ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, Peninsula Music Festival Orchestra, and the Chautauqua Symphony Orchestra with a grant from the Serge Koussevitzky Music Foundation in the Library of Congress. The work is dedicated to violist Paul Neubauer, a member of Juilliard’s faculty.

About composing Purple Rhapsody, Joan Tower writes: “The sound of the viola has always reminded me of the color purple – a deep kind of luscious purple. In fact, the first solo viola piece I wrote for Paul Neubauer is called Wild Purple (where the’wild’ refers to the high energy and virtuosity of that work). In the concerto, I try to make the solo viola ‘sing’ – trying to take advantage on occasion (not always) of the viola’s inherent melodic abilities. This is not an easy task since the viola is one of the tougher instruments to pit against an orchestra. In fact, for my orchestration of this work, I left out several instruments (horns and oboes) to thin out the background to allow the viola to come forward (even in the strong passages) with a little more ‘leverage.’ I am hoping that at the climaxes of some of these ‘rhapsodic’ and energetic lines, the orchestra does not overwhelm the viola.” The 18-minute work is in one movement.  

Joan Tower’s works have been commissioned by major ensembles, soloists, and  orchestras including the Emerson, Tokyo, and Muir quartets; soloists Evelyn Glennie, Carol Wincenc, David Shifrin, and John Browning; and the orchestras of Chicago, New York, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, and Washington, D.C., among others. Joan Tower was the first composer chosen for a Ford Made in America consortium commission of sixty-five orchestras. Leonard Slatkin and the Nashville Symphony recorded Made in America in 2008 (along with Tambor and Concerto for Orchestra). The album collected three Grammy® Awards: Best Classical Contemporary Composition, Best Classical Album, and Best Orchestral Performance. In 1990, she became the first woman to win the prestigious Grawemeyer Award for Silver Ladders, a piece she wrote for the St. Louis Symphony where she was composer-in-residence from 1985-88. Other residencies with orchestras include a 10-year residency with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s (1997-2007) and the Pittsburgh Symphony (2010-11). She is in residence as the Albany Symphony’s Mentor Composer partner in the 2013-14 season.

Georges Bizet was born to musical parents and showed his musical talent at an early age. He was admitted to the Paris Conservatoire at the age of nine and wrote his first symphony, the Symphony No. 1 in C Major, at age seventeen when he was studying with Charles Gounod. It was never published in Bizet’s lifetime, and no one knew of its existence until 1933, when it was discovered in the Conservatoire’s archives by musicologist Jean Chantavoine. The work had its premiere in Basel, Switzerland in 1933, conducted by Felix Weingartner. Symphony in C is written in four movements.

About Eric Bartlett

Juilliard Chamber Orchestra Lead Coach Eric Bartlett has been a member of the renowned conductor-less Orpheus Chamber Orchestra since 1983, and the New York Philharmonic since 1997. These two professional experiences combine to give him a unique insight into what young musicians need in order to prepare for a successful and rewarding orchestral career.

Before joining the New York Philharmonic Mr. Bartlett had already established himself as an artist of formidable talent and artistic integrity. In addition to Orpheus, he served as principal cellist of Lincoln Center’s Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra and was a member and guest principal of the American Ballet Theatre Orchestra. Mr. Bartlett appeared frequently as a member soloist with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and is featured on several of their Deutsche Grammophon recordings. In addition to Orpheus, his solo appearances include the Cabrillo Festival, the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, the Anchorage Symphony, the Hartford Chamber Orchestra, the Aspen and Juilliard Orchestras and the New York Philharmonic's Horizons '84 series. Mr. Bartlett is the recipient of a Solo Recitalist's Award from the National Endowment for the Arts and a special performance award as a finalist of the 1987 New England Conservatory / Piatigorsky Award. Recent solo appearances include the Cabrillo Music Festival, and the Brattleboro Music Center in Vermont.

Dedicated to contemporary music, Mr. Bartlett has participated in more than 90 premieres and has commissioned new works for the cello. In 1986, he gave the Warsaw premiere of Elliott Carter's Sonata for Cello and Piano. He has recorded the cello music of Larry Bell on a CD entitled River of Ponds for North-South Records, and will soon release a CD of commissioned works by American composers on the Albany label. Mr. Bartlett teaches Orchestral Performance classes at Juilliard.

About Jocelin Pan

Violist Jocelin Pan is currently pursuing her master of music degree at Juilliard, studying with Heidi Castleman and Robert Vernon. A proponent of new music, Ms. Pan performs regularly with the New Juilliard Ensemble and AXIOM. In September 2012, she gave the U.S. premiere of Andrew Ford's Viola Concerto “The Uniquiet Grave" with "ravishing strength" (ConcertoNet) and "played the solo part with great sensitivity to texture" (The New York Times). She has collaborated with many living composers on their chamber works including Mohammed Fairouz, Nina C. Young, Steven Mackey, Conrad Winslow, Yehudi Wyner, and Samuel Zyman, among others.

Most recently, Ms. Pan was a New Fromm Player at the Tanglewood Music Center, a group of TMC alumni who have distinguished themselves in the performance of new music. She spent her time in the Berkshires almost exclusively focusing on this literature, performing works by TMC composition fellows in addition to other works for the Festival of Contemporary Music. In April 2014, Ms. Pan will join other members of the New Fromm Players as the quartet-in-residence for Bright Sheng’s The Intimacy of Creativity at the University of Hong Kong. She has attended several music festivals including the Tanglewood Music Center, Spoleto Festival USA, Perlman Music Program Summer School, New York String Orchestra Seminar, ENCORE School for Strings, and International Academy of Music (Italy). In addition to performing, Ms. Pan enjoys teaching for the Music Advancement Program (MAP) at Juilliard and the Morse Teaching Fellowship at P.S. 11 in New York City. At Juilliard, she holds the Irene Diamond Graduate Fellowship, Karen Tuttle Memorial Scholarship, and the Martha Dwight Douglas Memorial Scholarship.  Ms. Pan plays on a viola made by Joseph Grubaugh and Sigrun Seifert, on generous loan from the Virtu Foundation.

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Saturday, November 9, 8 PM, Alice Tully Hall

Juilliard Chamber Orchestra

Jocelin Pan, viola

EDVARD GRIEG Holberg Suite

JOAN TOWER Purple Rhapsody (2005)

GEORGES BIZET Symphony No. 1 in C Major


Tickets at $20 are available online at www.juilliard.edu/fallorch, by calling CenterCharge at (212) 721-6500, or at the Alice Tully Hall Box Office. $10 tickets for seniors and students are available only at the Alice Tully Hall Box Office. For further information, call (212) 769-7406 or go to events.juilliard.edu.