Sunday, November 20, 2011

Vermont Public Radio: 'Maestro James DePreist is 75' Nov. 21; Conducts Juilliard Orchestra, Carnegie Hall, Dec. 5

[James DePreist; Bravura, Delos 3070 (1992)]

Maestro James Anderson DePreist was born November 21, 1936 in Philadelphia, nephew of the famed contralto Marian Anderson. DePreist led major orchestras in Europe, North America and Japan in an enduring and active career. He dramatically raised the profile of the Oregon Symphony, with which he recorded Bravura, in more than 20 years of association with the orchestra, making it a regional powerhouse among orchestras. Maestro DePreist received the National Medal of Arts in 2005, among numerous honors. A polio survivor who has also undergone a kidney transplant, Maestro DePreist now conducts from a motorized wheelchair which can elevate him to a height appropriate for conducting.

James DePreist directed Orchestral and Conducting Studies at the Julliard School from 2004 to May 2011. He then assumed the positions of Principal Conductor and Director Emeritus, while continuing his work as a guest conductor with several orchestras, including the Pasadena Symphony, which he has assisted as an Artistic Advisor. On October 30, 2011 AfriClassical posted: “Juilliard: James DePreist Conducts Juilliard Orchestra at Carnegie Hall Dec. 5, 8 PM.”

To celebrate the 75th birthday of James Anderson DePreist, Vermont Public Radio program host Walter Parker has chosen an album which has been rated as a “Recording of Distinction” by Ovation, while Audio has written of DePreist's “incandescent performance” on the CD. Don Juan played an important part in the success of its composer, Richard Strauss. While the works of Ottorino Respighi on the disc are familiar, the Concerto for Orchestra of Witold Lutoslawski is a rare treat:

Vermont Public Radio
Monday 11/21 9 a.m.
By Walter Parker
“Conductor James DePreist is 75 today. We'll hear him conduct Don Juan of Richard Strauss.”

Recording of Distinction, Ovation

James DePreist, conductor
Oregon Symphony

"James DePreist's incandescent performance and John Eargle's spectacular engineering blaze new trails." Audio

"OTTORINO RESPIGHI: Feste Romane / Roman Festivals / Romanische Feste / Fetes romains [25:42]
Giubileo / The Jubilee / Das Jubilaeum; Le Jubile
Ottobrata / The October Festival / Le Festival d'Octobre
La Befana; The Epiphany / Die "Befana" / L'epiphanie

"RICHARD STRAUSS Don Juan (16:43)

"WITOLD LUTOSLAWSKI Concerto for Orchestra [27:43]
Intrada (6:24)
Capriccio notturno e Arioso (5:54)
Passacaglia, Toccata e Corale (15:15)

Total Playing Time: 70:24"

Oregon Symphony
Don Juan is the third of Richard Strauss' symphonic tone poems, and at its premiere, it confirmed Strauss as the preeminent composer of his generation. Strauss's matchless orchestrations are showcased throughout this bold, provocative work, and his challenging brass parts are especially noteworthy.”

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