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American Classics program features world premiere

GT. BARRINGTON, MA – On Saturday evening, March 15 at 8 p.m., MusicWorks in the Berkshires and the South Berkshire Concert Series at Simon’s Rock will  present “American Classics,” featuring chamber works of pivotal American composers of the twentieth century and recent compositions by their students.  The program will conclude with the world premiere of David Post’s Quintet for Piano and String Quartet dedicated to pianist Simone Dinnerstein and the Hawthorne String Quartet. Participating in the pre-concert panel discussion at 6:30 p.m., will be composers Daron Hagen and David Post, Flautist Fenwick Smith, MusicWorks director Mark Ludwig, and Simon’s Rock College Professor Laurence Wallach.

The concert will take place in the McConnell Theater at the Daniel Arts Center, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 84 Alford Rd., Great Barrington. MusicWorks in the Berkshires, Inc. is a not-for-profit, music performance and music education organization founded in 1985 by Boston Symphony Violist Mark Ludwig.  Its mission is to present outstanding chamber music from every period, including contemporary composers, and to provide music education, awareness and appreciation.  

Featured performers at the March 15 concert will be pianists Simone Dinnerstein and Virginia Eskin; Fenwick Smith, Flute; and the Hawthorne String Quartet. The program will include Copland: Duo for Flute and Piano, Lukas Foss: Rondo Fantasy, Walter Piston: Quintet for Flute and String Quartet, Ned Rorem: Three Barcarolles, Daron Hagen: Piano Variations  and David Post: Quintet for Piano and Strings. 

Pianist Simone Dinnerstein will be making her Berkshire debut.  Ms. Dinnerstein has fast been gaining international attention as a commanding and charismatic artist, and as one of the most compelling women pianists performing today. Since being featured by The New York Times as an artist “poised for a breakthrough,” Ms. Dinnerstein has performed to a sold-out audience at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, debuted with the American Symphony Orchestra under Leon Botstein, and signed a recording contract with Telarc International, which released her much-anticipated recording of Bach’s Goldberg Variations worldwide in August of 2007. The CD earned the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Classical Chart in its first week of sales and has remained highly ranked since then. It was called “precisely the kind of playing that the early 21st century most needs, infused as it is with a deep and pervasive sense of beauty and tenderness of heart which is often profoundly affecting,” by Piano Magazine.

The concert begins at 8 p.m. and is part of the South Berkshire Concert Series. The pre-concert panel discussion begins at 6:30 p.m. Tickets for the concert are $25, $20 for seniors (over age 62), all students and youth are admitted free.  For further information on this concert contact the MusicWorks information line at 413-698-2002, Simon's Rock at (413) 528-7212 or visit the South Berkshire Concert Series website.