Julius Drake is to feature in a series of concerts in New York over the coming months. He will be performing with acclaimed singers at the 92nd Street Y in a series that celebrates Beethoven in the 250th anniversary of the composers birth, Beethoven and the Song Cycle. Of all Beethoven’s extraordinary achievements the birth of the song cycle, with his masterpiece ‘An die ferne Geliebte’ in 1816, is often overlooked. Drake has curated five recitals in a survey of the genre that place Beethoven’s ground breaking work alongside song cycles by five of his greatest successors.
The artists taking part are all starring lights in the world of opera and song from Europe and America. They include the German tenor, Christoph Prégardien, the British mezzo, Alice Coote and baritone Roderick Williams, the American mezzo-soprano Sarah Cooke, soprano Amanda Majeski and bass Eric Owens, and the Canadian bass-baritone Philippe Sly.
The first concert is on October 22 with Drake’s long-time collaborator Christoph Prégardien. Appropriately the programme will be Beethoven and Schubert as Prégardien and Drake have recently been awarded the German Critics Award for their disc of Schubert songs, Poetisches Tagebuch.
On January 22 the charismatic British baritone Roderick Williams will join Drake for a programme of Beethoven and Brahms, including the majestic song cycle, Die Schöne Magelone which will be performed with narrator and a unique audio visual backdrop.
On February 13 the much loved American mezzo Sasha Cooke will explore Beethoven and Schumann, featuring what is perhaps Schumann’s most popular song cycle of all, Frauenliebe und Leben.
Five days later on February 19 two brilliant young singer stars, the American Amanda Majeski and Canadian Philippe Sly, will join Drake for a performance of Hugo Wolf’s ethernally fresh Italienisches Liederbuch.
The final concert in this distinguished series is on March 18 and pairs the superb British mezzo Alice Coote with the great American bass Eric Owens in a programme of Beethoven and Mahler, including the magical song collection, Des Knaben Wunderhorn.