*Pre-concert talk at 7:30
|Engelbert Humperdinck||Overture to "Hansel and Gretel"|
|Camille Saint-Saëns||Piano Concerto No. 5|
|Misha Galant, piano|
|Anton Arensky||Symphony No. 1|
(Age 62 and Over): $18
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Misha Galant is a junior in the Columbia University and Juilliard School Exchange in New York City, where he is simultaneously studying piano and pursuing degrees in Data Science and Russian Literature. He began piano lessons at the age of six and continued for 12 years with his mother, Olya Katsman. Currently, he studies with Dr. Matti Raekallio at the Juilliard School and with Dr. Yu-Jane Yang at Weber State University. Misha’s musical heritage includes three generations of pianists, including his great-grandmother who was a student of Maria Yudina along with Vladimir Horowitz, and his great-grandfather who studied with Heinrich Neuhaus in Kiev, Ukraine.
His accomplishments include first prizes in the Marylin Mindell Piano Competition, the Ross Mckee Piano Competition, the Pacific Musical Society competition, the San Jose International Piano Competition, and the Henry & Carol Zeiter piano competition at UOP, along with numerous other local competitions. He was the state winner in the 2010 MTAC concerto competition and again in 2015, when he was inducted into the selective Young Artist Guild. Misha has performed with numerous orchestras, including the Santa Rosa Youth Orchestra, the Peninsula Symphony, the Livermore-Amador Symphony, the Oakland East Bay Symphony, the Utah Symphony, and the Rochester Philharmonic. In November 2015, he performed Rachmaninoff’s Third Concerto with the California Youth Symphony and joined that orchestra on a tour of Austria and Italy in the following summer with Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. As a winner of the PianoTexas concerto competition, Misha performed Rachmaninoff’s Third Concerto with the Fort Worth Symphony.
In June 2010, at the age of 12, he gave his first full solo recital in Mountain View and has been performing regularly since then. As a member of the Young Artist Guild, he is in great demand as a recitalist around California.
In the summer of 2015, he was a prizewinner in the first Van Cliburn Junior competition in Fort Worth, Texas, garnering the Best Classical Sonata Performance and Audience prizes. He also won Third and Audience prizes at the Eastman Young Artists International Competition for which he was offered a four-year full tuition scholarship to the Eastman School of Music.
Misha transferred high schools in his junior year, but continued to serve as an accompanist for both of his schools’ choirs. He is also a member of the Music Students’ Service League in Contra Costa County, an outreach program that gives benefit concerts in retirement communities. In his spare time, Misha enjoys swimming, reading, hiking, eating, playing chamber music with his friends, and performing to raise funds for various volunteer organizations.
Misha is indebted to Sharon Mann and Yoshikazu Nagai of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music for their invaluable and inspirational coaching.
For more information regarding Misha’s upcoming concerts, please visit mishagalant.com.
Conductor-Composer Leo Eylar grew up in a musical family. He began studying violin at the age of nine and was accepted into the private studios of both Jascha Heifitz and Ruggiero Ricci. His early teachers included Virginia Baker, Joachim Chassman and Eudice Shapiro. Eylar attended Northwestern University and the University of Southern California, where he received his Bachelor of Music degree Summa cum Laude. His violin teachers included Glenn Dicterow, currently Concertmaster of the New York Philharmonic, and Samuel Magad, Concertmaster of the Chicago Symphony. In 1980 Eylar joined the Seattle Symphony and in 1982 he was awarded an International Rotary Foundation Grant to study conducting at the Hochschule für Musik in Vienna, Austria. After studies there with Otmar Suitner, he returned to the U.S. and completed his Master’s Degree in conducting at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, simultaneously holding the position of Co-Concertmaster of the San Jose Symphony from 1984-89.
Eylar was on the faculty of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music from 1985-88, during which time he conducted a nationally televised performance of “America Sings” with Bobby McFerrin and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music Orchestra. This year marks his retirement as professor and conductor at Sacramento State University, a position he has held for the past 30 years. Since 1990 he has been Conductor and Music Director of the California Youth Symphony. Under his masterful and spirited direction the orchestra soon enhanced its reputation as one of the finest youth orchestras in the world and won first prize in the International Youth and Music Festival in Vienna, Austria, in July 1994. Over the course of his tenure, the orchestra has performed to great critical acclaim across four continents. He has also guest-conducted extensively throughout Europe and Asia, including prestigious music festivals in Japan, Austria, France, and Australia. Eylar has also been a frequent guest conductor of the San Jose Symphony. With a repertoire of over 300 symphonic works conducted, as well as numerous operas, Eylar brings a vast range of expertise and depth to his conducting.
Eylar is also a composer of international stature. His compositions, which blend a rich, coloristic neo-romanticism with elements of jazz and driving Eastern European rhythmic vitality, have been performed in Carnegie Hall, as well as in England, the Netherlands, Japan, Germany, Russia, China, and Austria. His original works have been commissioned by the Dutch contemporary orchestra “De Volharding”, the San Francisco ensemble “Earplay”, and the prestigious German “Ensemble8”, among others. In 1993 The Temptation of St. Anthony for Horn and String Orchestra was performed by the California Youth Symphony, and was acclaimed by the press as a “symphonic gem.” In 1994 the Seattle Symphony, along with well-known trumpeter Jeffrey Silberschlag, recorded Eylar’s Dance Suite for Trumpet and String Orchestra on the Delos label, which received plaudits from the press. Also in 1994 his Variations on a Troubadour Theme for String Orchestra was performed by the San Luis Obispo County Symphony. In 1995 Eylar’s Rhapsody for Orchestra, which was subsequently nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, was performed by the California Youth Symphony and recorded in Japan the following year. In 1997 he conducted the world premiere of his Violin Concerto, An Orpheus Legend, in San Luis Obispo with noted violinist Ralph Morrison as soloist. An Orpheus Legend was featured by CYS during its Spanish Tour in the summer of 1998, and recorded in Spain with violin soloist Kenneth Hsu.
The world premiere of Eylar’s Concerto for Harp and String Orchestra took place in 1998. In 2004 the internationally recognized German string bass virtuoso Christine Hoockt recorded Eylar’s Suite in Three Movements for Bass and Piano as the leading work on her debut CD. Recent commissions have included an octet for the German contemporary group “Ensemble8”, a 14-minute orchestral work titled Tonescapes to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the California Youth Symphony, a Sonata dedicated to well-known German bassoonist Frank Forst and a large-scale percussion duo titled Two Klee Sketches composed for CYS’ own percussion director Artie Storch and CSUS percussion director Daniel Kennedy. Eylar recently premiered a work based on the Orpheus legend scored for large symphonic wind ensemble at the Mondavi Center by the UC Davis Concert Band under the baton of Pete Nowlen.
Eylar’s music is published by the well-known German publishing house, Accolade Musikverlag, in Munich.