- Diamonstein-Spielvogel Lecture Series
- Sydney J. Freedberg Lecture on Italian Art
- Elson Lecture Series
- A. W. Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts
- Wyeth Foundation for American Art Programs
- Conversations with Artists
- Collecting of African American Art
- Conversations with Collectors
- Foundation for Art and Preservation in Embassies (FAPE)
- Rajiv Vaidya Memorial Lecture
- Reflections on the Collection: The Edmond J. Safra Visiting Professors at the National Gallery of Art
- John Wilmerding Symposium on American Art
- Celebrating the East Building: 20th-Century Art
- Celebrating the Old Master Collections of the National Gallery of Art
- Teaching Critical Thinking through Art
Program: To Travel Is to Live
Trio con Brio Copenhagen performs Three Songs from the Hjertets Melodier (Edvard Grieg), Piano Trio in F Major, op. 42 (Niels W. Gade), Piano Trio no. 2 in C Minor, op. 66 (Felix Mendelssohn), and Piano Trio in A Minor, op. 50 (Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky). Trio con Brio Copenhagen is considered one of the finest piano trios performing today. Founded in Vienna in 1999, the trio is now based in Copenhagen and tours extensively worldwide. They have gained a reputation for their fresh and contemporary approach to the core repertoire of piano trios. This concert was recorded at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, February 18, 2018.
Program: Solstice: Darkness Is Your Candle
In this program you will hear East of the River perform “Groong” (Komitas Vardapet), “Achot Ktana” (Moroccan), “Lama bada” (Andalusian), “Adío Querida” (Sephardic), Sandansko Horo (Bulgarian), Solstice (Shane Shanahan), Petrone (English), Makedonsko Sedenka (Macedonian), Belasicko Horo (Bulgarian), Bučimiš (Bulgarian), “Slide Dance” (Ara Dinkjian), and “Hija Mia” (Sephardic Song). East of the River was founded by internationally renowned recorder players Nina Stern and Daphna Mor. The project explores gems of the European classical repertory together with haunting melodies and virtuosic dances of traditions to the East, arranged and interpreted by musicians whose backgrounds include classical, jazz, and world music. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Saturday, December 21, 2019.
Program: Si Otsedoha (We’re Still Here)
This program features the Cherokee Chamber Singers performing Si Otsedoha (We’re Still Here) (William Brittelle), “Amazing Grace” (Traditional), and “Shoshone Love Song” (“The Heart’s Friend”) (Traditional Native American) with Winston-Salem Symphony musicians and soprano Jodi Burns. Telling the remarkable story of the Eastern Band of Cherokee through powerful vocals that express the tribe’s unique and vibrant history, the chamber singers are from Cherokee High School in Cherokee, North Carolina. Their director is Michael Yannette. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, November 24, 2019.
Program: An American View: Whitman and the American Pre-Raphaelites. This program was in honor of the exhibition The American Pre-Raphaelites: Radical Realists and featured music by Tom Benjamin, William Grant Still, and André Previn. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, May 5, 2019.
Program: An Ancient Walkabout
This program, featuring music by J. S. Bach, Gabriela Lena Frank, Henry Purcell, Benjamin Britten, highlighted the chaconne, a musical form which originated in Latin America in the late sixteenth century and has inspired composers ever since. Starting off the program is likely the most well-known chaconne in classical music, the last movement from the Second Violin Partita by Johann Sebastian Bach. The concert concludes with Brittan’s 20th-century Chacony. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, April 14, 2019.
Program: Absolute Art and Jazz between the Wars
This program explored the seemingly opposite ideals of absolute art and popular music which found expression in the work of artists and composers in the aftermath of World War I. The works performed include Anton Webern’s Quartet, op. 22, Erwin Schulhoff’s Hot-Sonate., and Bela Bartok’s Contrasts. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, March 3, 2019
Program: The Keyboard Re-imagined
So Percussion performs works originally composed for keyboard instruments including selections from Elliot Cole’s Postludes for Bowed Vibraphone; Vijay Iyer’s Torque; Jason Treuting’s Nine Numbers 4; and Caroline Shaw’s Taxidermy. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, February 10, 2019.
Program: Sung and Unsung: Weill and Poulenc
This program was a rare performance of two composers, Kurt Weill and Francis Poulenc, known primarily for song juxtaposed in both vocal and instrumental repertoire. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, December 23, 2018.
Program: Lessons of Darkness
This program, featuring music by Ravel, Satie, Lili Boulanger, James Reese Europe, and Ralph Vaughan Williams, commemorated the 100th anniversary of Armistice Day and presented works of composers affected by the war. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, November 11, 2018.
Program: Funeral Music for a Prince and a Queen
This program featured funeral music by Heinrich Schütz, Henry Purcell, and Thomas Morley composed for princes and queens. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, October 21, 2018.
This performance celebrated the exhibition Water, Wind, and Waves: Marine Paintings from the Dutch Golden Age at the National Gallery of Art and featured historic songs of the seas. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, September 30, 2018.
Program: Music by Trumbore and Saint-Saëns
Inscape Chamber Orchestra performs Dale Trumbore's All the Folded Wings and Camille Saint-Saëns's Carnival of the Animals, with new verses by poet Marc Bamuthi Joseph, in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, April 22, 2018. Inscape Chamber Orchestra was founded in 2004 by its artistic director Richard Scerbo and has established itself as one of the premier performing ensembles in the Washington, DC, region and beyond.
Program: Music by Debussy
Pianist Benedetto Lupo performs Claude Debussy's Images oubliées and both the Images première and the deuxième série, in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, March 25, 2018. The concert celebrated the 100th anniversary of the composer’s death.
In this program you will hear the Janoska Ensemble perform “Die Fledermaus Overture a la Janoska” (Overture of the operetta Die Fledermaus); “Those Were the Days” (Dorogoi dlinnoju, Le temps des fleurs, Den langen Weg entlang) (Johann Strauss II/Boris Fomin); “Love’s Sorrow” (Fritz Kreisler/ Sergei Rachmaninoff); “Musette pour Fritz” (Homage for Fritz Kreisler) (František Janoska); “Thais Meditation” (Meditation from the opera Thaïs) (Jules Massenet); Carmen Fantasie (Georges Bizet/ Franz Waxman); “Adios Nonino” (Astor Piazzolla); “Melodie for Melody” (Roman Janoska); “Rumba for Amadeus” (Piano Concerto no. 20 in D minor, KV466, Allegro, Main Theme) (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart/František Janoska); “Tarantella vs. Niška Banja” (Introduction et Tarantella, op. 43 / Niška Banja) (Pablo de Sarasate/Serbian Traditional); and “Paganinoska” (Caprice no. 24) (Niccolo Paganini).
The four musicians of the Janoska Ensemble are brothers Ondrej, Roman, and František Janoska and their brother-in-law Julius Darvas. Their vision for the modern interpretation of works—the Janoska Style—is both virtuosic and profoundly personal. United by family ties and always rooted in classical music, their repertoire ranges from popular classics to their own compositions and unique arrangements of jazz, pop, and world music. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, March 11, 2018.
Cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan and pianist Noreen Cassidy-Polera perform Johannes Brahms's Cello Sonata in F Major, op. 99, Sulkhan Fyodorovich Tsintsadze's Five Pieces on Folk Themes for Cello and Piano, and Niccolò Paganini's Variations on a Theme of Rossini, in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, February 25, 2018. Hakhnazaryan was born in Yerevan, Armenia, into a family of musicians and was mentored by the late Mstislav Rostropovich. Cassidy-Polera is one of the most highly regarded and diverse chamber artists performing today. Her career has taken her to major music centers in the United States, Europe, and Asia, with recent performances at Carnegie Hall, Jordan Hall in Boston, and the Kennedy Center.
In this program, you will hear the Dalí Quartet perform String Quartet no. 3 in E-flat Major (Juan Crisóstomo de Arriaga), String Quartet no. 1, op. 20 (Alberto Ginastera), Four for Tango (Astor Piazzolla), La oración del torero, op. 34 (Joaquín Turina), Puente Trans-Arábico (Ricardo Lorenz), Camerata en Guaguancó (Guido López-Gavilán), Rico Melao: Preludio, Danzón y Cha-cha-chá * (Jorge Mazón).
The Dalí Quartet brings its signature mix of Latin American, classical, and romantic repertoire to stages and audiences of all kinds. The musicians’ passionate energy is poured into everything they do, generating critical and audience acclaim. Their tours include appearances at distinguished chamber music and cultural centers in the United States, Canada, and South America.
This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, October 15, 2017.
Program: The Three Cs: Cage, Cowell, Crumb—Pioneers of the Avant-Garde Piano
In this program you will hear the Singaporean pianist Margaret Leng Tan perform The Perilous Night (John Cage), The Tides of Manaunaun (Henry Cowell), Aeolian Harp (Henry Cowell), The Banshee (Henry Cowell), Advertisement (Henry Cowell), and Metamorphoses, Book I (George Crumb). Acclaimed by the New Yorker as a diva in the art of playing the piano, Tan herself is a major force in the American avant-garde who embraces theater, choreography, and performance in her work. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, May 7, 2017.
Program: Music by Josquin des Prez and his contemporaries.
The National Gallery of Art presented the vocal ensemble Cappella Pratensis on Sunday, March 12, 2017, in a performance commemorating the 500th anniversary of Hieronymus Bosch’s death. Cappella Pratensis is directed by Stratton Bull, who has championed the music of Josquin des Prez and the polyphonists of the 15th and 16th centuries. Based in the Dutch city of ’s-Hertogenbosch in the Duchy of Brabant, the group focuses on historically informed performance practice infused with artistic insight.
Program: Music by Brouwer and Ginastera. Cuarteto Latinoamericano performs Leo Brouwer’s Third String Quartet and Alberto Ginastera’s Second String Quartet in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, January 29, 2017. Founded in Mexico in 1982, Cuarteto Latinoamericano is one of the world’s renowned string quartets. A leading proponent of Latin American music, the quartet has a discography of more than 80 recordings, including the complete string quartet cycles of Alberto Ginastera and Heitor Villa-Lobos.
Program: Music by Mendelssohn and Shostakovich
The Grammy Award–winning Parker Quartet performs Felix Mendelssohn's String Quartet no. 1 in E-flat Major, op. 12, and Dmitri Shostakovich's String Quartet in F Major, op. 73, in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, March 26, 2017. Founded in Boston in 2002, the Parker Quartet includes Daniel Chong and Ken Hamao on violins, Jessica Bodner on viola, and Kee-Hyun Kim on cello. In addition to serving as the quartet-in-residence at Harvard University, the group has appeared throughout the world at prestigious venues, including Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, and the Kennedy Center.
Program: Music by Bingen, Sanlikol, and Beethoven
A Far Cry performs Hildegard von Bingen's ignis spiritus paracliti, Mehmet Ali Sanlikol's Vecd, and the third movement of Ludwig van Beethoven's String Quartet no. 15, op. 132, in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, November 20, 2016. Founded in 2007 by seventeen young professional musicians, A Far Cry has developed an innovative process where decisions are made collectively and leadership rotates among the “Criers.” For each piece, the members elect a group of principals, and these musicians guide the rehearsal process and shape the interpretation. Each program includes multiple works led by different musicians, adding tremendous musical variety to the concerts.
In this program you will hear Spanish guitarist Pablo Sáinz Villegas perform songs in the joropo and samba styles, including “Five Preludes” (by Heitor Villa-Lobos), “Passeio no Rio” (by Luiz Bonfá), “Alma llanera” (by Pedro Elías Gutiérrez), “Tango en Skaï” (by Roland Dyens), “Un sueño en la Floresta” (by Agustín Barrios Mangoré), selections from West Side Story (by Leonard Bernstein), and “Seis por Derecho” (by Antonio Lauro). Critics have hailed Sáinz Villegas as one of the world’s leading classical guitarists and as a natural ambassador of Spanish culture. Since his auspicious debut with the New York Philharmonic under Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Sáinz Villegas has performed in more than 40 countries. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, September 18, 2016.
In this program you will hear the U.S. Army Chorus and Brass Quintet perform Fanfare for a Festival (Ron Nelson), “O Jesu Christ Meins Lebens Licht” (Johann Sebastian Bach), “Ain’t-a That Good News” (William Dawson), “Now Look Away” (Norman Merrifield), “Keep in the Middle of the Road” (Marshall Bartholomew), “Soon-Ah Will Be Done” (William Dawson), selections from the Marriage of Figaro (Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart), “Simple Gifts” (Aaron Copland), “Buccinate in neomenia tuba” (Giovanni Gabrieli), “My Spirit Be Joyful” (Johann Sebastian Bach), Second Prelude (George Gershwin), “Blue Bells of Scotland” (Arthur Pryor), “Ubi Caritas” (Ola Gjeilo), “Lux Arumque” (Eric Whitacre), “Mansions of the Lord” (Nick Glennie-Smith and Randall Wallace), “Battle Hymn of the Republic” (Julia Ward Howe), and “God Bless America” (Irving Berlin).
The U.S. Army Brass Quintet has gained a reputation as one of the most highly respected and sought after groups of its kind. The ensemble has appeared before audiences and dignitaries in 48 states and 14 foreign countries. An element of the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” in Washington, DC, the U.S. Army Brass Quintet has performed at the White House, presidential inaugurations, and official state ceremonies in the nation’s capital. The chorus has participated in the presidential library dedication ceremonies for Gerald R. Ford, Ronald W. Reagan, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush, and performed in memorial ceremonies honoring significant events in our country’s history including at the Korean War Veterans Memorial, the National World War II Memorial, and the Pentagon 9/11 Memorial. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, March 20, 2016.
In this program, you will hear the Fisk Jubilee Singers perform “Way Over in Egypt Land” (arr. John W. Work III), “Run Mourner, Run” (arr. John W. Work III), “Old Time Religion” (arr. Moses Hogan), “There Is a Balm in Gilead” (arr. William L. Dawson), “Poor Man Laz’rus” (arr. Jester Hairston), “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” (arr. Paul T. Kwami), “Daniel! Daniel! Servant of the Lord” (arr. Undine S. Moore), “Mr. Banjo” (arr. Moses Hogan), “Let the Church Roll On” (arr. John W. Work III), “Jubilee! Jubilee!” (arr. John W. Work III), “My Lord Is So High” (arr. Noah F. Ryder), “There’s a Meeting Here Tonight” (arr. R. Nathaniel Dett), “Do Lord Remember Me” (arr. John W. Work III), “Rise, Shine for Thy Light Is A-Comin’” (arr. John W. Work III), and “There’s a Great Camp Meeting” (arr. John W. Work III). The Fisk Jubilee Singers are vocal artists and students at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, who sing and travel worldwide. The original Jubilee Singers introduced “slave songs” to the world in 1871 and were instrumental in preserving this unique American musical tradition known today as Negro spirituals. The group broke racial barriers in the United States and abroad in the late nineteenth century and entertained kings and queens in Europe. At the same time, they raised money in support of their beloved university. This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, January 17, 2016.
Program: Viajes Latinos (Latin voyages)
In this program you will hear the Sphinx Virtuosi and the Catalyst Quartet perform Libertango (Astor Piazzolla), Metro Chabacano (Javier Álvarez Fuentes), Prélude Ibérique (César Espejo), Bachianas Brasileiras, Aria no. 5 (Heitor Villa-Lobos), La Muerte del Ángel (Astor Piazzolla), Last Round (Osvaldo Golijov), and Finale Furioso from Concerto per Corde, op. 33 (Alberto Ginastera). The Sphinx Virtuosi, led by the Catalyst Quartet, is one of the nation’s most dynamic professional chamber orchestras. Eighteen of the nation’s top Black and Latinx classical soloists—all alumni of the internationally renowned Sphinx Competition—come together each fall to reach new audiences as cultural ambassadors. The New York Times raved about this unique ensemble’s debut at Carnegie Hall in December 2004. Describing the performance as “first-rate in every way,” Allan Kozinn noted that “the ensemble produced a more beautiful, precise, and carefully shaped sound than some fully professional orchestras that come through Carnegie Hall in the course of the year.” This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Saturday, October 8, 2016.
Starting in the late 1950s, with my work on a sound/music score for a production of King Lear, I became infatuated with the notion of composing music as a studio art. I was convinced that an imminent technology explosion would offer, for the first time in history, an alternative to the centuries-old, three-person model of the solitary composer, alone at a desk writing music with pen and paper, the performer reading and performing the music on an instrument, and the audience listening to that music in an auditorium. This was the dream that prompted Ramon Sender and me to search for someone to create an electronic music easel; that someone became Don Buchla, resulting in the design and building of the first “Buchla Box,” the first analog synthesizer. I began my life’s work of creating a new music in a technologically impacted world; a world yet to come. The dream was realized in a series of works starting with Silver Apples of the Moon and ending with A Sky of Cloudless Sulphur; my version of a new “chamber music,” music created specifically for the turntable and intended to be heard in the privacy of one’s home. I also worked on studio art’s anti-matter twin — public performance music that depended on spontaneity; the performance would somehow invoke the techniques and aesthetics of musical studio art. I went through numerous approaches, and, as technology became more sophisticated, I ended up with an approach that finally feels right. For each season of performances, I create a new hybrid Ableton-Buchla “instrument” loaded with prepared samples from all my previous works and performances, as well as new materials developed specifically for the new season; this allows me to transform the samples while performing brand new sound gestures, creating a new and ongoing palette for performances; The work always has the same title, From Silver Apples of the Moon to A Sky of Cloudless Sulphur. In this version I have created new material especially for the three instrumentalists from the National Gallery of Art New Music Ensemble.
-Program Notes by Morton Subotnick
A discussion of Intermedia work, in particular Roger Reynolds’s FLiGHT Project and the video “operas” of the late Robert Ashley. Participants include Tom Hamilton, a collaborator of Ashley’s, and Ross Karre, percussionist and Intermedia artist for performances of various works by Reynolds. Moderated by Roger Reynolds, Pulitzer prize-winning American composer and University Professor, University of California, San Diego. To inaugurate the 66th American Music Festival: Personal Visions on March 8, 2015, at the National Gallery of Art, guest festival director Roger Reynolds joined Tom Hamilton and Ross Karre to discuss artistic collaboration in the creation of multimedia experiences. Samuel Taylor Coleridge famously wrote about “the suspension of disbelief”—of giving oneself over to a constructed illusion. This discussion considers the ways contributors work together to reach an optimal balance among media in creating such experiences. Hamilton talks about altering vocal quality and assembling electronic aspects of the late American composer Robert Ashley’s idiosyncratic “operas.” Karre describes collaborating as projection designer for Reynolds’s works, including the image and light projections for the FLiGHT Project portion of the JACK Quartet concert held later that day.
Program: Adío España: Romances, Villancicos, and Improvisations of Spain, circa 1500
Founded in 1980 to perform the instrumental music of Shakespeare’s time, the Baltimore Consort has explored early English, Scottish, and French popular music, focusing on the relationship between folk and art song and dance. Its members’ interest in early music of English and Scottish heritage has also led the group to delve into the rich trove of traditional music preserved in North America.
In this program, you will hear the Baltimore Consort perform Morena me llaman (Anonymous Sephardic), Avrix me galanica (Anonymous Sephardic), ¿Qu’es de ti, desconsolado? (Juan del Encina), Levanta, Pascual (Juan del Encina), Recercada La Spagna (Diego Ortiz), Danza Alta (Francisco de la Torre), Ora baila tú (Anonymous), Calabaça, No sé, buen amor (Anonymous), Tu madre cuando te parió (Anonymous Sephardic), Yo me soy la morenica(Anonymous), Tiento (Alonso Mudarra), Triste ‘stava el rey David (Alonso Mudarra), Ríu, ríu, chiu (Anonymous), Una sañosa porfía (Juan del Encina), La mañana de Sant Juan (Diego Pisador), Tres Morillas (Anonymous), Morenica, dame un beso (Miguel de Fuenllana), Di, perra mora (Pedro Guerrero), Sagaleja del Casar (Anonymous), Cucú, Cucú, Cucucú (Juan del Encina), Quinta pars (sobre Ruggiero) (Diego Ortiz), Recercada primera (sobre el passamezzo antiguo) (Diego Ortiz), Recercada segunda (sobre el passamezzo moderno) (Diego Ortiz), Ay, triste que vengo (Juan del Encina), Oy comamos y bebamos (Juan del Encina).
This concert was held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, December 14, 2014.
Jenny Lin, pianist, and Roger Reynolds, University Professor, University of California, San Diego. For this multimedia creation conceived for the National Gallery of Art on the occasion of the John Cage Centennial Festival Washington, DC, Roger Reynolds discusses American poet John Cage as a composer, writer, philosopher, visual artist, and performer. Recorded on September 9, 2012, the presentation offers a personalized perspective on (and around) Cage and his work. Passages recorded from a 1985 conversation between Cage and Reynolds are included, as well as some of the signature one-minute Indeterminacy stories as recorded by Cage. The live and recorded readings interpenetrate each other and coexist with projected images and videos. Guest pianist Jenny Lin performs Cage's Seasons (excerpts), Quest, and ONE, which intermingle and overlap with other elements in the presentation.
Program: Music by Johann Sebastian Bach and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. National Gallery of Art resident ensembles play the music of Johann Sebastian Bach and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in a concert dedicated to the memory of Milton M. Gottesman. The string quartet performs Mozart's Quartet in C Major, K. 465 ("Dissonant"), the wind quintet plays Johann Sebastian Bach's Fugue in G Minor, BWV 593 ("Little"), and the piano trio presents two movements from Mozart's Piano Trio in B-flat Major, K. 502.
Program: Music by Steve Antosca and Judith Shatin. Music composed and arranged by Steve Antosca and Judith Shatin for performance in the West Building Rotunda on the occasion of the National Gallery of Art's 70th anniversary. Selections include the world premiere performances of Antosca's Echoic Landscape and Shatin's Sic transit, both composed in 2011, as well as Antosca's in every way I remember you, featuring saxophonist Noah Getz.
Program: Music by Bach, Takemitsu, and Tadić
The Cavatina Duo performs Johann Sebastian Bach’s Sonata for Flute and Basso Continuo in E Major, BWV 1035; Tōru Takemitsu’s Toward the Sea; and Miroslav Tadić’s Four Macedonian Pieces, in this concert held at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, February 12, 2012. The artists are guitarist Denis Azabagic and flutist Eugenia Moliner. The duo has captivated audiences with performances in many venues, including Ravinia in Chicago, the Da Camera Society in Los Angeles, the Aix-en-Provence Festival in France, and the National Concert Hall of Taipei.
Program: Music by Gershwin, Milhaud, Porter, Stravinsky, and other composers. To honor From Impressionism to Modernism: The Chester Dale Collection, violinist Bruno Nasta and pianist Danielle Hahn called upon clarinetist David Neithamer, bassist Jonathan Nazdin, and pianist Ronald Chiles to join them for performances of works that music historians now recognize as belonging to the "modern" period in music. The ensemble played a suite for violin, clarinet, and piano by Darius Milhaud; Stravinsky's famous Soldier's Tale; and a medley of songs by Gershwin and other Broadway composers, noting that Gershwin and Chester Dale knew each other personally.
Program: Music by Praetorius and arrangements of traditional carols. Founded in 1990, Ensemble Galilei has made a name for itself through innovative chamber music concerts that incorporate images and words as well as music. Taking a cue from programs that the ensemble presented with curators at the National Geographic Society and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Gallery music department head Stephen Ackert combined the ensemble's holiday repertoire with images of paintings from the Gallery's permanent collection, which have in past years been featured on Christmas stamps issued by the Unites States Postal Service.
Program: St. John Passion by Johann Sebastian Bach. The Stanford University Chamber Chorale and Chatham Baroque. Picking up on a theme of the National Gallery exhibition The Sacred Made Real, which featured sculptures depicting the crucifixion of Jesus and the sufferings of Mary and the saints, the conductor of the Stanford University Chamber Chorale, Stephen Sano, led his group in singing selections from J. S. Bach's Saint John Passion for a concert at the Gallery in March 2010, while the exhibition was on view. Visitors reported being similarly moved by both the music and the art, though the art reflected religious life in 16th-century Spain and the music reflected religious life in 18th-century Germany.
Program: Music for solo piano by Brubeck, Chopin, Copland, Gershwin, and Previn. Pianist Dan Franklin Smith performs music from the great romantic tradition in the form of nine short pieces by Frédéric Chopin, music inspired by Chopin by American composers Gershwin and Copland, and music inspired by jazz by Dave Brubeck and André Previn. Based in New York City, Smith heads an international festival in Germany called "Elysium: Between Two Continents."
Program: Music by Caldara, Gabrielli, Legrenzi, Vivaldi, and other Venetian composers. During the run of the exhibition Venice: Canaletto and His Rivals, the National Gallery presented four concerts of Italian music from the time of Canaletto (1697–1768), coinciding with the end of the baroque era in music. Venice was abounding with musical as well as artistic talent at this time, as attested by the large number of composers and the high quality of the music featured in these concerts.
Program: Music for Advent and Christmas by Bach, Buxtehude, and Praetorius. German-speaking Europe in the 18th century was replete with small duchies and kingdoms, each of which maintained resident musical ensembles with great pride and fostered outstanding composers. The National Gallery's resident vocal ensemble and chamber players present music that would have been heard around Christmastime in the baroque era in Leipzig, Lueneburg, and Wolfenbuettel, Germany—the homes, respectively, of Johann Sebastian Bach, Dietrich Buxtehude, and Michael Praetorius.
Joel Fan performs tango for piano: Vem cá, branquinha (Ernesto Nazareth), Chôros no. 5 (Heitor Villa-Lobos), Troubled Water (Margaret Bonds), La nuit du destin (Dia Succari), Sonata no. 31 in A-flat Major, op. 110 (Ludwig van Beethoven), Sonata no. 5, op. 53 (Aleksandr Scriabin), Three Piano Pieces op. 11 (Arnold Schönberg), and Piano Sonata no. 2 in B-flat Minor, op. 35 (Frédéric Chopin). Joel Fan is an acclaimed pianist who combines virtuosity with a gift for lyricism. He began his performing career with the New York Philharmonic and has since appeared in recital and with orchestras throughout the world. This concert was recorded at the National Gallery of Art on Sunday, June 5, 2011.
Program: Music by Arcadelt, Cara, Donato, Tromboncino, and others. The National Gallery of Art Chamber Players searched its repertoire for Italian 16th-century compositions that represent in music the mannerism that manifests itself in the art of Giuseppe Arcimboldo, which was showcased at the Gallery in the exhibition Arcimboldo, 1526–1593: Nature and Fantasy. The podcast includes music by Arcadelt, Cara, Donato, Tromboncino, and other composers. Their work, like that of Arcimboldo, is marked by ambiguity, virtuosity, and elegance.
Program: Music for piano quartet by Mahler and Fauré. The Fauré Piano Quartet plays Gustav Mahler's Piano Quartet in A Minor and Gabriel Fauré's Piano Quartet no. 1 in C Minor, op. 15, which they performed at the National Gallery of Art on October 27, 2010. Almost all of the great 19th-century composers tried their hand at writing chamber music for piano quartet, which consists of violin, viola, and cello, in addition to the piano. One of the outstanding ensembles that keep this repertoire alive in the present day is the Fauré Piano Quartet, named after the composer of one of the best piano quartets in the repertoire.
Program: Music by Han Kun Sha, Sicong Ma, and Franz Schubert. Chinese violinist Dan Zhu and Israeli pianist Renana Gutman play in concert at the Gallery, performing works for violin and piano by Chinese composers Han Kun Sha and Sicong Ma, as well as Franz Schubert's Fantasia for Violin and Piano in C Major. Zhu appeared recently at the Fontainebleau and Casals music festivals; he is one of a number of performers who have played at the Gallery and gone on to find success on the international concert stage.
Program: Music for barytons by Beethoven and Haydn. The renowned Lithuanian cellist David Geringas performs on the baryton, an 18th-century derivative of the cello, with fellow cellists Jens Peter Maintz and Hartmut Rohde. The baryton, which enjoyed considerable popularity in its day, was a favorite of Haydn's patron Prince Nicolaus Esterházy, and the composer wrote a large body of baryton trios for the prince to play in ensemble with other musicians from his court orchestra.
Program: Music by Godefroid, Piazzolla, and other composers. Flutist Karen Johnson and harpist Astrid Walschot-Stapp are heard together in concert at the National Gallery, playing Etude de concert by Félix Godefroid, Café 1930 by Astor Piazzolla, and music by other composers in a program that was recorded at the Gallery in January 2010.
Program: Claudio Monteverdi: Vespers of the Blessed Virgin (1610). Washington's National Gallery of Art Vocal Ensemble, New York's early music ensemble ARTEK, and Philadelphia's period-instrument wind band Piffaro join forces to perform Claudio Monteverdi's Vespers of the Blessed Virgin in honor of the 400th anniversary of its composition in 1610. The concert was one of a series titled "1610, 1710, 1810, 1910, 2010."
Program: Music by Laszlo Weiner and Ernst von Dohnányi. The dramatic story of Jewish life in the 20th century has given rise to a large body of music, including some outstanding chamber music. The Poulenc Trio, augmented by violinists Sally McClain and Anton Lande, violist Nicholas Citro, cellist Steven Honigberg, and clarinetist Rié Suszuki, play music by Jakoulov, Klein, Prokofiev, and Schulhoff that they performed in concert at the National Gallery on December 5, 2010.
Program: Music by Laszlo Weiner and Ernst von Dohnányi. The National Gallery of Art Piano Trio joins forces with Hungarian violinist Vilmos Szabadi and violist Szilvia Kovács to perform music by Laszlo Weiner and Ernst von Dohnányi. The concert was a part of Extremely Hungary, a festival of art exhibitions, films, and concerts staged in New York City and Washington in 2009.
Program: Music by Grieg, Saeverud, and other composers. Trumpeter Tine Thing Helseth and pianist Steffen Horn play a concert at the National Gallery of Art as part of the annual Norwegian Christmas Festival at Union Station in Washington, DC. In addition to transcriptions of familiar works by Frédéric Chopin and Edvard Grieg, the duo plays original works for trumpet and piano by Georges Enescu, Maurice Ravel, and Harald Saeverud.
Program: Norwegian vocal music. Nordic Voices is a six-voice a capella ensemble from Norway, considered one of the leading international vocal ensembles of its type. The group specializes in vocal music of contemporary Norwegian composers, including settings of Latin texts, traditional Norwegian texts, and contemporary arrangements of folk songs. For its Gallery concert on October 10, 2010, Nordic Voices sang music by Kvaerno, Kverndokk, Ødegaard, and Thoresen.
Program: Music by Glass and Szymanski. The Del Sol String quartet plays music by Philip Glass and Pawel Szymanski in honor of the exhibition The Robert and Jane Meyerhoff Collection: Selected Works. Two-time winner of the Chamber Music America/ASCAP First Prize for Adventurous Programming, the San Francisco-based Del Sol String Quartet has received enthusiastic response from critics and audiences for its lively interpretation of new music. Their concert at the National Gallery was presented in celebration of the Meyerhoff Collection and late twentieth-century American masters.
Program: Music by Hassler, Isaac, Senfl, and other German Renaissance composers. Amarcord, one of Germany's outstanding male vocal ensembles, sings a special program of Renaissance music to complement the works by German and Netherlandish Renaissance masters in the Gallery's collection. The internationally acclaimed five-voice male ensemble draws from its repertoire of music by Hans Leo Hassler, Heinrich Isaac, Ludwig Senfl, and other Renaissance composers.
Program: Music composed by Ludwig van Beethoven in the year 1810. National Gallery of Art resident ensembles perform music of Ludwig van Beethoven that was written exactly 200 years ago. The National Gallery of Art String Quartet plays the Quartet no. 10 in E-flat Major ("Harp"); the National Gallery of Art Wind Quintet plays an arrangement of the Sextet, op. 71; and the National Gallery of Art Piano Trio plays the Piano Trio in B-flat Major, op. 97.
Program: Music by Flagello and Ruggles. Pianist Peter Vinograde plays American music from the 1950s and 1960s in honor of the exhibition Looking In: Robert Frank's "The Americans."
Program: Music by Dvorak, Mozart, and Villa-Lobos. The Ritz Chamber Players, the only all-African American professional chamber music ensemble, play masterworks of 18th-, 19th-, and 20th-century chamber music in concert at the National Gallery of Art. Members of the ensemble performing in this podcast are Kelly Hall-Tompkins, violin, Amadi Azikiwe, viola, Tahira Whittington, cello, Judy Dines, flute, and Terrence Wilson, piano.
Program: Music by de Wert, Hacquart, Sweelinck, and other 17th-century composers performed by the National Gallery of Art Vocal Arts Ensemble and Chamber Players. The National Gallery of Art Vocal Arts Ensemble and Chamber Players perform 17th-century Dutch music in honor of the exhibition Jan Lievens: A Dutch Master Rediscovered.
Program: Music by Couperin, Rameau, and other 16th-, 17th-, and 18th-century French composers. The National Gallery of Art Vocal Ensemble and the early music ensembles Masques, Pro Musica Rara, and Zephyrus play music from concerts presented at the Gallery in honor of Renaissance to Revolution: French Drawings from the National Gallery of Art, 1500–1800.
Program: Music by Brahms and Schubert. The National Gallery of Art String Quartet performs a Brahms piano quintet with renowned pianist Menahem Pressler and a quartet by Franz Schubert. The ensemble consists of violinists Claudia Chudacoff and Teri Lazar, violist Osman Kivrak, and cellist Diana Fish.
Program: Music by Stephen Hough. This piece of music, composed by Stephen Hough for the exhibition The Sacred Made Real: Spanish Painting and Sculpture, 1600–1700, is based on the 1605 Requiem by the great Spanish composer Tomás Luís de Victoria. Stephen Hough recast and reworked this requiem, reimagining its six voices for a string sextet. He selected five sections to make five movements: the fourth movement (Versa est) is a simple transcription with nothing altered; the first movement (Tadeat animum) takes the four-part original and floats it around the six instruments in antiphonal waves; the second movement (Kyrie eleison) keeps all the notes the same but changes their register–removing the linear mosaic of the vocal lines and making them soar and plunge in jagged, overlapping intervals. The third (Graduale) movement is more radically altered. The final, longest movement (Libera me) reproduces the polyphonic sections fairly faithfully, but takes the original plainsong interludes as if themes for variations in various modern styles.
Program: Music from the 19th century that explores "The Darker Side of Light." The National Gallery of Art Wind Quintet performs a concert in honor of The Darker Side of Light: Arts of Privacy, 1850–1900. The ensemble consists of flutist Sara Nichols, oboist Ronald Sipes, clarinetist Christopher Hite, bassoonist Danny Phipps, and French horn player Theodore Peters.
Contemporary arrangements of 18th- and 19th-century American choral music, sung by the Central Bucks County (Pennsylvania) High School West Choir, the Eighteenth Street Singers (Washington, DC), and ProMusica of Columbia Union College (Takoma Park, Maryland). Choral music has been an important part of music at the National Gallery ever since the very first concert at the Gallery in December 1942, sung by the United States Navy Music School Chorus. In April 2009, the Gallery celebrated the reopening of the American Galleries in the West Building with a three-day festival of American choral music presented by six outstanding choirs. Listen to the some of the music sung by three of those choirs.
Program: Felix Mendelssohn's Ein Sommernachtstraum (A Midsummer Night's Dream), op. 61, arranged by Ulf-Guido Schäfer; György Ligeti's Six Bagatelles; Samuel Barber's Summer Music, op. 31 (1956); Astor Piazzolla's Suite, arranged by Ulf-Guido Schäfer; Scott Joplin's Ragtimes, arranged by Ulf-Guido Schäfer. Formed in 1986, the Ma'alot Wind Quintet has won prizes in major international festivals and established a reputation as a leading proponent of new music. In addition to works written especially the ensemble, the group also performs arrangements by quintet members Ulf-Guido Schäfer (clarinet) and Volker Grewel (horn). The other members of the quintet are Stephanie Winker (flute), Christian Wetzel (oboe), and Volker Tessmann (bassoon). This performance took place on January 11, 2009, and was the inaugural concert of Mendelssohn on the Mall, a festival presented jointly by the Library of Congress, the National Academy of Sciences, and the National Gallery of Art.
Program: Music from the 16th and 17th centuries that explores the theme of travel. National Gallery of Art Chamber Players perform a concert in honor of Fabulous Journeys and Faraway Places: Travels on Paper, 1450–1700. On this occasion, the ensemble includes tenor Wolodymyr Smishkewych, recorder virtuoso Kathryn Montoya, harpist Keith Collins, dulcian player Anna Marsh, viola da gambist Loren Ludwig, and harpsichordist Stephen Ackert.
Program: Songs by William Grant Still for soprano and piano. Listen to music by William Grant Still, known as the dean of African American composers, and one of the country's most celebrated figures in music. A prolific composer, Still wrote more than 150 works, including symphonies, ballets, operas, chamber pieces, and vocal works. The concert features performances by Celeste Headlee, W. G. Still's granddaughter, and Danielle DeSwert.
Program: Maurice Ravel's Piano Trio in A Minor. The National Gallery of Art Piano Trio, the resident trio at the National Gallery, features violinist Luke Wedge and cellist Ben Wensel, both of whom have performed as members of the National Gallery Orchestra. The third member of the trio, pianist Danielle DeSwert Hahn, is also the Gallery's music program specialist. Listen to the four movements of Maurice Ravel's Piano Trio in A Minor, from a performance in the West Garden Court of the National Gallery on February 24, 2008.
Leon Major, professor of music, University of Maryland. The world of music merges with the visual arts in Later the Same Evening: an opera inspired by five paintings of Edward Hopper. The performance is a joint project of the National Gallery of Art, the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, and the University of Maryland School of Music. Music professor Leon Major, talks about the opera and artist Edward Hopper with Tempchin.
Program: Locus iste (Bruckner), Prevent us, O Lord in all our doings (Byrd), Ave maris stella (Grieg), Psalm 121, Above all praise and majesty (Mendelssohn). One of the most renowned choirs in the world, the Choir of St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, presented a brief concert at the National Gallery of Art on October 25, 2007, in honor of the centenary of the birth of Paul Mellon (1907–1999), founding benefactor of the Gallery and an ardent Anglophile. In his memoir, Reflections in a Silver Spoon, Mellon suggested that his love of Great Britain was foreshadowed during his first visit with his parents, when he was baptized in St. George's Chapel on December 22, 1907. The performance took place in the Gallery's East Garden Court.
"Out my one window," an aria from Later the Same Evening: an opera inspired by five paintings of Edward Hopper,commissioned to coincide with the Edward Hopper exhibition at the Gallery. The opera was performed this fall at The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland in College Park, MD, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. "Out my one window," music by John Musto and lyrics by Mark Campbell, is used by kind permission of Peermusic Classical, New York.