Sunday, October 17, 2010 'James DePreist Conducts Pasadena Symphony and Anne Akiko Meyers on ex-Napoleon/Molitor Stradivarius Oct. 23'

[James DePreist, Fanfare Magazine, November-December 1995; Anne Akiko Meyers]

October 15th, 2010
“After fierce bidding, Tarisio Auctions sold 'The Molitor' Stradivarius dated 1697, to renowned concert violinist Anne Akiko Meyers for a world-record price of $3,600,000. This price is the highest on record for any musical instrument sold at auction and is well over the pre-sale estimate of $2,000,000-$3,000,000. 'The Molitor' is believed to have been owned by Napoleon Bonaparte and takes its name from former owner Count Gabriel-Jean-Joseph Molitor, a General in Napoleon’s army.” “Ms. Meyers raved about her first experience with the ex-Napoleon/Molitor violin, 'It was love at first sound. Its power, feel, and range of color are extraordinary. I look forward to sharing this sound with the world.'”

Pasadena Star-News
By Robert D. Thomas, Correspondent
“Two-thirds of the program was originally planned by Mester: Brahms' Symphony No. 2 and Samuel Barber's Violin Concerto, with Anne Akiko Meyers as the soloist. DePreist changed the opening work to Rossini's Overture to 'La gazza ladra' ('The Thieving Magpie'). Although the Barber concerto isn't as familiar as those by Beethoven, Brahms or Tchaikovsky, it's a natural selection, given that this year marks the centennial of the composer's birth. Meyers and DePreist have a history with the concerto; DePreist recalls that when he last conducted the piece five years ago, Meyers was the soloist.

“Meyers has played the concerto all over the world, including first performances in Slovenia and England. 'It's a work of absolute beauty that grabs your attention from the very beginning,' she said. 'The second movement is just so passionate and beautiful and the final movement is a real tour-de-force.' These concerts are a homecoming, of sorts, for the 40-year-old Meyers. At the age of 7, when she was living with her parents in Ridgecrest, her mother drove her more than three hours each way to Pasadena so Meyers could study with famed teacher Alice Schoenfeld.”

“'One begins to know the orchestra from one rehearsal to the next,' said DePreist, who is perhaps best known for molding the Eugene Symphony in Oregon into an ensemble of national prominence. 'But, ultimately, what distinguishes any artistic organization is the quality of its performances and that's our goal here.'" [James DePreist (b. 1936) is profiled at and]

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