Grand Teton Music Festival
Stepping Out
Jackson Hole News
Wednesday, August 5, 1998 ñ 7
Music Review
Halim returns, Judd debuts at Festival
Rachmaninov, Rossini, Vaughan Williams make up orchestra program.
By Richard Abendrot

Charismatic pianist Eduardus Halim returns to Walk Hall Friday and Saturday, while British-born conductor James Judd makes his festival debut.

Judd will lead the orchestra in Ralph Vaughan Williams' Symphony No. 5, a first for the Grand Teton Music Festival, along with the overture to Rossini's opera, An Italian in Algiers. Halim will join him for Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 1.

Halim, returning to the Tetons after missing the 1997 festival, has spent the last year traveling and performing around the globe.

"I've enjoyed it quite a bit," Halim said in a telephone interview from Vancouver, where he was in the middle of a two-week engagement. "The venues are wonderful, and the places are always exciting."

Born in China of Indonesian parents, Halim was first brought to the festival six years ago by music director Ling Tung.

The Rachmaninov concerto he will perform is actually the second iteration of the Russian-born virtuoso's composition. Originally composing the piece in 1891, when he was just 18 years old, Rachmaninov revised it in 1917, the year he left Russia to move to the U.S.

"The first version was much more complicated," Halim said. The second one is better, more direct, less clutteredÖto me, it is very special," possessing a "youthful beauty" evocative of a time and place — late Tzarist Russia — long lost in history.

Halim also will perform at tonight's "Great Performances" concert, playing solo piano works by the Spanish composer Enrique Granados.

Halim — and most of the festival audience — will be introduced to guest conductor James Judd this week. Judd, music director of the Florida Philharmonic since 19887, is said by observers on the classical music scene to have created one of the country's rising orchestral success stories with his vision and exciting leadership. A graduate of London's Trinity College of Music, Judd came to international attention as the assistant conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra, a post he accepted at the invitation of Lorin Maazel. He also has led the Berlin and Israel philharmonics and has made guest appearances with the Vienna Symphony, Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig, the Prague Symphony an the NHK Symphony of Tokyo. He continues to be a hit in his homeland, where he led the London Symphony, the Halle Orchestra, the London Pihlharmonic and the Royal Scottish and English Chamber orchestras. He regularly conducts productions at the Glyndebourne Opera Festival, the English National Opera and the Florida Grand Opera.

Ticket-holders can arrive at the hall early for a free pre-concert talk by musicologist Mary Ann Feldman, who frequently contributes program notes throughout the festival season. The talk starts at 7:15 p.m. on the deck at the Clocktower Building, near the Walk Hall.

Other performances scheduled this week include Debussy's Sonata for cello and piano and Shostakovich's Trio for piano, violin and cello. They will be performed tonight. On Tuesday, Walk Hall regular Judith Lynn Stillman shows up for the first of several concerts during the festival's final two weeks. She will perform Mendelssohn's Trio for piano, violin and cello with orchestra concertmaster Robert Davidovici and cellist Kim Scholes. Also on Tuesday's program is the Wyoming premier of "Ice Floe," a work for solo bassoon played by Charles Ullery.

For more details and ticket information, call the festival ticket office at 733-1128.