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Hot News September 2018











29 - 30 September - 1 October 2018


University of Auckland (New Zealand) Clarinet Weekend - VIP Marie Ross, Director, featuring Senior VIP Franklin Cohen


Auckland, New Zealand








29 September 2018


WA Concert Series 1st Concert Celebrating American Composers John Harbison and Joan Tower - VIPs Charles Neidich and Ayako Oshima, Directors


New York City USA


Charles Neidich announcement of the WA Birthday Concert honoring John Harbison and Joan Tower



“A word to the wise music lover: Run, don’t walk, to this series” Frank Daykin from New York Concert Review

WA Concert Series is happy to announce its third season led under the artistic vision and direction of Charles Neidich and his wife and fellow clarinetist/chef extraordinaire Ayako Oshima. This season will include seven concerts with a mission to present composers old and new, well known and unknown who must not be forgotten. 

The first concert of this season will be on September 29, 2018 at the Tenri Cultural institute of New York at 7:30PM. 

A Birthday Celebration for John Harbison and Joan Tower including the New York premiere of Harbison’s The 9 Rasas for viola, clarinet, and piano.


On the Program:


Franz Krommer, from 13 Trios op.47 for 2 clarinets and viola

Joan Tower,  Wings

John Harbison, The 9 Rasas (New York Premiere)

Joan Tower, Fantasy

John Harbison, Minuet (for Joan Tower)

Jean Françaix, Trio for viola, clarinet and piano


Artists: Charles Neidich, Ayako Oshima, clarinet; Sally Chisholm, viola; and Mohamed Shams, piano













27 - 29 September 2018


ClariMania 2018 - VIP Jan Jakub Bokun, Director


Wroklaw, Poland










23 - 28 September 2018


2nd International Festival de Clarinette


Monterrey, Mexico



23 September 2018


Legend Senior VIP Stanley Drucker of the New York Philharmonic  and Jamie Bernstein featured on CBS Sunday Morning on the occasion of coverage of Leonard Bernstein's 100th anniversary of his birth

CBS Sunday Morning Broadcast on Bernstein




  23 September 2018


CASS Single Reed Day


Nottingham, United Kingdom




23 September 2018


Austin Peay University Clarinet Day with VIP and Solo Clarinetist in the Los Angeles Philharmonic Boris Allakhverdyan


Clarksville, Tennessee -USA




 22 September 2018


Memorial Concert Honoring VIP and Music Dean Dr Randall Paul at Wright State University


Dayton, Ohio USA


Wright State University Memorial Service for Dr Randall Paul




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 21 September 2018


VIP Shirley Brill Performs Francaix Clarinet Concerto with the Thessaloniki State Symphony Orchestra/Zoi Tsokanou


 Thessaloniki. Greece






 21 September 2018


VIP Alexander Fiterstein Performs Nielsen Clarinet Concerto Op 57 with Peabody Institute Symphony Orchestra


Baltimore, Maryland USA







19 September 2018


Bence Szepesi, noted Hungarian Clarinetist in Recital at Carnegie Weill Recital Hall


New York City USA


                   Bence Szepesi may not be a name known to many New York musicians, but that could change quite easily, if Wednesday night’s debut recital is any gauge. He is an extremely gifted clarinetist, for starters, and his program – works of Leo Weiner, Brahms, Bernstein, and Rossini – was quite appealing. Beyond that, as the evening progressed, he displayed an ability to connect to his audience in a way that will serve him well wherever he goes.

                  For the record, the above summary is not clairvoyance; Mr. Szepesi has already achieved considerable recognition in his native Hungary and throughout Europe, as his biographical notes outlined briefly. A graduate with distinction from the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest, he counts among his honors Hungary’s Artisjus Award and now teaches at the University of Miskolc. He has lectured and performed widely as soloist and as principal clarinetist of the Dohnanyi Symphony Orchestra, and he directs the Budapest Saxophone Quartet, which he founded in 1995. For more information one can visit his website:

                The presenter for this occasion was an organization called AGP, headed by Hungarian pianist Adam Gyorgy, whose charisma and elegance are becoming increasingly known as he appears internationally. Mr. Gyorgy spoke eloquently at the opening of the evening to the sold-out house, as did a dignitary from the Hungarian consulate, together creating an air of excitement and anticipation. It was good to have such an opening introduction, as Mr. Szepesi’s own entrance struck one initially as almost self-effacing. No one could guess, as he walked onstage with pianist Zhao Yangmingtian, what impressive playing lay ahead, though it only took one piece to find out.

               The program opened with the famous showpiece for clarinet and piano, Peregi Verbunk, Op. 40, by Leo Weiner. Its subtitle “Recruiting Dance” proved apt, as it effectively rallied the listeners measure by measure. By the end, the audience was fully “on board” musically. Weiner created a work here not unlike what one would expect if Franz Liszt had written his Hungarian Rhapsodies for clarinet – opening after a flourish with a soulful folk-like melody in minor mode, it becomes more rousing and elaborate bit by bit. Mr. Szepesi met all of its challenges with a superb sense of line in the long-breathed phrases and astonishing ease in the fleet passagework. Especially in the extended solo cadenza, he proved himself to be a master of his instrument. He was attentive to matters of tone in every register – and in a very wide dynamic range. Mr. Yangmingtian collaborated ably, lending judicious support throughout and with precise “punctuation” for the improvisatory clarinet acrobatics – no mean feat!

               Moving on to the ballast of the program, the musicians took on the Brahms Sonata for Clarinet and Piano in E-flat (Op. 120 No. 2). A magnificent autumnal work, both in spirit and in terms of chronology, it was written only a few years before the composer’s death for his clarinet “muse” Richard Mühlfeld. Mr. Szepesi had just the right warmth of sound for this piece, and again an exquisite sense of line. This listener felt that the overall performance would have benefitted from both performers taking more time to create a mellower, more spacious feeling, but that may be hard to achieve unless a duo performs together regularly. This evening showed some signs of being an ad hoc collaboration.

              On the subject of time, many performers now try to accommodate the dreaded (computer-induced?) attention-deficit audience. The printed program even announced the concert’s total duration (an increasing trend), as “55 minutes, no intermission” – a short evening, indeed! This reviewer is usually grateful for such thoughtfulness regarding time, but one hopes that such consideration is not invading performers’ thinking to the detriment of full surrender to the musical experience. Late Brahms sometimes needs simply to take the listener by the hand, unapologetically, to a different musical era which knows no subways or rush-hours.

              On the subject of haste, there appeared also to have been some hasty ensemble preparation. Though Mr. Szepesi led with beautifully seamless fluid lines, the piano and clarinet parts just missed melding in tempo and conception. The second movement in particular had an unsettled feeling. Granted, it is “appassionato,” but it is passion of a mature nature, pensive and searching enough to set off the “creamy center” in B major, music of profound nobility.

              Taking more time might have encouraged more attention to blending of timbres too. The pianist, described by Mr. Gyorgy as being also a soloist who will debut in that capacity next season, sounded just a tad too soloistic at times. The steeliness of sound which might have been perfect in a work of Liszt or Prokofiev tended to overwhelm the chamber collaboration, and the piano lid being all the way up may not have helped (though this reviewer usually likes it up as long as the approach is tempered accordingly).

              Where the duo worked perfectly together was in the final work of the printed program, Leonard Bernstein’s Sonata for Clarinet and Piano. Here was music delivered with unified conception, spirit, and polish, and the slight edge in the piano sound was an asset. The piece itself, composed when Bernstein was in his early twenties, was a joy to hear – and just when one wondered what room there may be for more in this year of Bernstein’s centennial, the duo proved that what is good cannot wear out its welcome. They played with spirit, energy, and brilliance.

              Mr. Yangmingtian shone in the rapid rhythmic dancelike sections and was beautifully flexible throughout. Mr. Szepesi projected an enormous range of sounds from the faintest tones to clarion brightness and piercing brashness where called for. The synchronization was terrific. The excited audience clapped in rhythm to request an encore, and Rossini’s Introduction, Theme and Variations, which had been listed in the original publicity for the concert but omitted from the printed program, was reinstated.

              To say that the Rossini piece was brilliant would be an understatement. The pyrotechnics from the clarinet were simply breathtaking. Lightning fast passagework and quicksilver dynamic changes were all within seemingly easy grasp, and a dazzling finish led to still more thunderous ovations.

              Just as all appeared to be coming to a lengthy parade of flowers, and your reviewer and others in the audience had already dashed out, a house intercom audible in the elevator could be heard relaying, “last piece,” – so despite having finally reached the lobby, this reviewer ran back up to catch the final moments of a second encore. A klezmer-esque showstopper, unleashing the folkdance spirit in performers and audience alike, was closing the evening on yet another high. The audience was ecstatic and will surely return for more.




18 September 2018


Karel Dohnel performs Mozart Clarinet Concerto K622 with the Essener Philharmoniker


Krakau, Poland








16 September 2018


University of Colorado Clarinet Day  -  Dr Daniel Silver, Director   


Boulder, Colorado USA







9 September 2018


VIP Nicola Jeurgensen, Solo Klarinettist in the WDR Radio Sinfonie Orchester Koln, retires after 17 years and becomes Professor at the Folkwang Academy of Music


Essen, Germany


                   German clarinettist Nicola Jürgensen studied with Hans Deinzer and Sabine Meyer. From an early date her success in national and international music competitions brought her name to the attention of a wider audience.
Among her awards are the Mozart Prize awarded by the Wiesbaden Mozart Society and the German Music Competition Soloists`Prize in 1999. Three years later she was awarded a scholarship by German Radio, including concerts at the Bremen Music Festival.

                  Nicola Jürgensen has been principal clarinet with the Western German Radio Symphony Orchestra (WDR) in Cologne since 2001, successfully combining her orchestral duties with her career as a soloist.
As the latter she has appeared with the German Symphony Orchestra of Berlin (DSO), the Beethoven Orchestra Bonn, the German Chamber Philharmonic of Bremen, the Hamburg Symphony Orchestra, the Radio Orchestras of Berlin and Leipzig (MDR) and the State Theatre orchestras of Braunschweig, Freiburg, Kassel, Rostock and Saarbrücken.

                 She also performed as a soloist with the Chamber Orchestras of Poland, Basel and Vienna as well as the Ensemble Resonanz in Hamburg, the Munich Chamber Orchestra (MKO) and Chamber Orchestra Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach in Berlin.
Among the conductors with whom she has worked are Stefan Blunier, Roy Goodman, Hartmut Haenchen, Christopher Hogwood, Carlos Kalmar, Fabio Luisi, Andrea Marcon, Peter Rundel and Peter Ruzicka.

               Nicola Jürgensen is also very fond of performing chamber music.
On invitation of the Artemis Quartet, she has played Karl Amadeus Hartmann`s Chamber Concerto for clarinet and string quartet.
Other musicians whom she has appeared with in recitals include the Minguet Quartet and the Trio Jean Paul.

              In 2008 she played the part of „Eva“ in a production of Karlheinz Stockhausens`s opera „Michael`s Journey Around The Earth“ by Carlus Padrissa and La Fura dels Baus.
The production was seen at Vienna Festival, the Venice Biennale, the Warsaw Autumn Festival, the Festival d`Automne Paris and elsewhere.
Among other international festivals Nicola Jürgensen has appeared in are the Rheingau Music Festival and the chamber music festivals of Risör (Norway) and Lockenhaus (Austria).

              A high point of the season 2011/12 was the performance of Johann Wilhelm Wilms` long-lost clarinet concerto with the WDR Symphony Orchestra and Reinhard Goebel.

              On her debut CD „Dans La Nuit“ released with ORFEO in april 2012, she is presenting self-arranged french chamber music and songs together with her long-term pianist Matthias Kirschnereit.

              In 2013 she performed as a soloist with the Konzerthausorchester Berlin as well as bringing Giya Kantcheli`s „Night Prayers“ on stage with the WDR Symphony Orchestra.
The season also included her debuts at Lincoln Center Festival New York, Wuhan Festival (China) and Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, New Zealand.

              2014 and 2015 brought her to Bangkok, where together with collaborators from Thailand and the German  Goethe Institute, Nicola Jürgensen established the „German Masters Music Festival“, a series of concerts and masterclasses.

             She also returned to Wuhan Festival, China, performing both Mozart and Weber concertos with the Wuhan Philharmonic Orchestra.

             Nicola Jürgensen has given numerous international masterclasses.




26 August to 2 September 2018


4th Edition of the Jacques Lancelot International Clarinet Competition - Final Competition takes place Rouen, France from the 17th of October until the 24th of October 2019


Yokosuka, Japan




 1 September 2018


VIP Wenzel Maria Fuchs marks 25th Year as Solo Klarinettist in the Berliner Philharmoniker, successor to Senior VIP Karl Leister


Berlin, Germany


                      Wenzel Fuchs, the near legendary Solo Klarinettist in the Berliner Philharmoniker, marks this day 25 years in this coveted position, elected by vote by fellow members of the Orchestra in 1993.  A full biography is below:


                    “What makes working with the Berliner Philharmoniker so unique? Communication, joy in playing, comradeship and quality.”

                      Wenzel Fuchs comes from a region where traditional wind music is highly valued. The Innsbruck native, scion of a musical family, was already playing the clarinet as a child in various wind ensembles. After first studying in Kitzbühel and Innsbruck, he went to the Vienna Musikhochschule, where he had the opportunity of playing as a substitute with the Wiener Philharmoniker. He began his professional career as principal clarinettist of the Vienna Volksoper, then moving to the Austrian Radio (ORF) Symphony Orchestra and in 1993 to the Berliner Philharmoniker.

                     In addition to his work in the orchestra, Fuchs is active as a soloist and chamber player in, among other groups, the Philharmonic Wind Ensemble, Philharmonic Wind Soloists, Philharmonic Octet and the Philharmonic Friends of Vienna-Berlin. He also teaches in the Berliner Philharmoniker’s Orchestra Academy, held a professorship at the Hochschule für Musik "Hanns Eisler" Berlin (from autumn 2008 to summer 2012), a visiting professorship at Geidai University in Tokio, Japan (since 2012) and an honorary professorship at the Shanghai Conservatory, and he gives master classes all over the world. Since October 2015 he is professor at the Mozarteum Salzburg. Wenzel Fuchs enjoys skiing and likes most of all to spend his free time with his family.


Prize of the Austrian Ministry for Science and Art, several prizes in the German national youth competition “Jugend musiziert”

Two Video playbacks including Interview and Digital Concert Hall Trailer of Concert:


 Berliner Philharmoniker Mozart Concerto Interview

Berliner Philharmoniker Mozart Concerto Preview

Mozart Concerto 2nd movement



From VIP Stefan Dohr - Principal Horn:


             On September 1, 1993, the five us on the left all had our first day of work as members of the Berlin Philharmonic. The one on the right had the same starting date too, just an amazing 15 years earlier.

25 years on, and there's not a single day when I don't feel absolutely privileged to be a part of this band. A concert at the BBC Proms - one of the best audiences in the world, no doubt - was the perfect way to celebrate!


1 September 2018


VIP Karel Dohnal Performing Mozart Clarinet Concerto K622 with Essener Philharmoniker and conductor Friedrich Haider at Zollverein


Essen, Germany -