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Videos of the YEAR:

20 Picks from 2020

Yes, it was a Year Like No Other, but through it all, Heifetz was there to share some truly magical music moments!  Now we’ve reviewed the tapes, run the numbers, and had the arguments: From the whopping 207 individual videos and 55 full-length concerts we produced and published in 2020 (garnering a whopping 3.6 million views on our YouTube Channel!), we’ve hand-picked 20 of the most popular, compelling, and memorable moments from the Heifetz stage and screen to share with you. You’ll see fresh productions from our #VirtualHeifetz2020 students, some choice Chock Full O’Bach selections, newly-released archival performances by faculty and alums, and yes, a bit of Beethoven, too.

Select, savor, and share!

A few of our favorite (video) things from 2020: (L-R, clockwise:)  Alum and Artist in Residence Shannon Lee,  faculty wizard Mark Kaplan, Artistic Director Nicholas Kitchen and his Borromeo Quartet mates making some Beethoven, 14-year old Korean “myeongseong” SoHyun Ko, the singularly-focused (but remarkably two-track) Kayleigh Kim; 12-year old HeifetzPEG “veteran” Corina Deng, the soulful 14-year old Israeli cellist Nahar Eliaz, Heifetz on Tour debuter Julia Angelov, the late, great cellist Lynn Harrell, and Heifetz alum and Avery Fisher Prize winner Rachell Ellen Wong.  

No. 20: It Begins With Bach

J.S. Bach: Cello Suite No. 6 in D Major, BWV 1012: I. Prelude

Yeh-Chun Phoebe Lin, viola | Tainan City, Taiwan

Release date: 17 July 2020

We may have had a forward-looking Virtual Institute In 2020, but to pull it off, we bet big on the fundamentals.  That includes Beethoven (more on him later), and starts with Johann Sebastian Bach. Small wonder: “Bach” in German means “brook” or “wellspring,” and the study of Bach’s music is common to every single Heifetz student.

On this notion was built the Chock Full o’Bach concept – a soulful start to every single day of our summer program.  And every Sunday since.  See how beautifully  #Heifetz2020 violist Yeh-Chun (Phoebe) Lin responded to the charge.

No. 19: A Charmin’ Carmen from the Nation’s Capital

Jenő Hubay: Carmen Fantaisie

Ria Honda, violin; Zhenni Li-Cohen, piano | Evermay Concert Series, Washington, DC 

Release date: 6 March 2020

Our best-laid pre-pandemic plans included a return Heifetz on Tour appearance at the magnificent Evermay concert series presented by Ryuji Ueno Foundation.  In advance of the concert scheduled for Friday, March 13th (hmmm…an omen?) we released this tour-de-force performance of one of the no fewer than three separate showpieces tor violin and piano of music from Georges Bizet’s blockbuster opera Carmen.

For our Everrmay concert in 2019,  violinist Ria Honda and pianist Zhenni Li-Cohen performed the least well-known of the trio…this virtuoso version by the Hungarian violinist and composer Jenő Hubay,  

No. 18: A Bouyant Benediction to the Beethoven Year

Beethoven: Piano Trio in B-flat Major, Op. 11: III. Tema con variazoni

Angela Sin Ying Chan, violin; Andres Sanchez, cello, Dina Vainshtein, piano | New England Conservatory, Boston, MA

Release date: 30 December 2020

Not surprisingly, our “20 from 2020” list includes more than a few Beethoven selections. As remarkable as an undertaking it was, the Beethoven Experience represented only part of the music our Heifetz musicians made in 2020 to honor the 250th Anniversary of LvB’s birth…right up until the end of the year!

Our Heifetz 2020 Virtual Holiday Tour troupe ended each one of their December concerts with something of a Beethoven benediction: The rollicking final movement of the Piano Trio in B-flat, Op. 11 “Gassenhauer.”  Performed by our Virtual Heifetz Holiday Tour trio of Angela Sin Ying Chan, violin; Andres Sanchez, cello; and pianist Dina Vainshtein, performing in the teaching studio of our Artistic Director Nicholas Kitchen at the New England Conservatory in Boston!  (You can view their full Virtual Holiday Tour concert for 2020 here.) 

No. 17: A Choice Cut from the PianoPalooza

Darius Milhaud: Scaramouche, Op. 165b: III. Brasileira 

Rohan DeSilva, piano (New York, NY); Beilin Han, piano (Chicago, IL)  

Release date: 9 September 2020

Even in the virtual realm, we made sure to reserve a place in our 49-concert Rubato Virtual Concert Hall season for one of the most-anticipated eventts of a Heifetz Summer: The annual PIanoPalooza,  a showcase for the Institute’s outstanding piano faculty. During the summer virtual Institute, our Heifetz pianists truly were steadfast, unfailingly supportive, and superbly accomplished – both on the piano and computer keyboards, acquiring video and audio production skills along the way.

This excerpt from the 2020 PianoPalooza features our 2020 Piano Coordinator Beilin Han from her perch in Chicago joining Rohan De Silva on a vintage Steinway in New York City to perform the original two-piano version of Brasileira, the lively final movement of French composer Darius Milhaud’s suite Scaramouche.  Enjoy, and catch the entire 2020 PianoPalooza here!

No. 16: Elgar’s Elegant Salute To Love

Edward Elgar: Salut d’Amour, Op. 12

Julia Angelov, violin; Zhenni Li-Cohen, piano | Kreeger Museum of Art, Washington, DC 

Release date: 12 February 2020

Right around Valentine’s day we offered up a Salute to Love – or, in its original title, Liebesgruss – an three-minute charmer written in 1888 by Edward Elgar as an engagement gift to his bride-to-be, the fascinating literary figure Alice Caroline Roberts. The original title was a tribute to the aristocratic Alice’s fluency in German.

Ironically, Elgar sold off what would become one of his most enduring pieces to his German publishing house Schott Music, which quickly figured out that the way to sell this English miniature with a German title was to give it a French name! And so the megahit Salut d’Amour was born. Schott made a fortune, and in those pre-royalty days Elgar was paid the princely sum of two guineas (less than $5) for the composition.

Elgar’s gift of love to the world was played ‘midst the priceless art of the Kreeger Museum in Washington DC by our 2019 Heifetz Holiday Tour artists Julia Angelov, violin, and Zhenni Li-Cohen, piano.

No. 15: A Stirring Sarabande from Savyon, Israel

J.S. Bach: Cello Suite No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1009: IV. Sarabande

Nahar Eliaz, cello (Savyon, Israel)

Release date: 3 August 2020

Our Heifetz Virtual Institute roster for 2020 numbered 100 students from 12 countries across 9 time zones…including the remarkably talented 14-year old cellist Nahar Eliaz, who joined from her home Savyon, Israel to perform a stirring rendition of the Sarabande from Bach’s Cello Suite No. 3. Nahar described the Bach suites as “pure medicine for the soul and mind,” and how this movement in particular gives her “the inspiration to feel, to think, and to believe.”

No. 14: Mozart for Two At the Blackfriars

Mozart: Duo in B-Flat Major for Violin & Viola, K. 424

Rachell Ellen Wong, violin; Andrew Gonzalez, viola | Blackfriars Playhouse, American Shakespeare Center, Staunton, VA

Release date: 15  October 2020

One of the very few in-person collaborations from the Heifetz Institute’s 2020 Virtual Festival of Concerts was this energetic performance of Mozart’s Duo in B-flat major for Violin & Viola, K. 424 by two of the most well-known faces to appear on Heifetz stage over the years – violinist Rachell Ellen Wong and violist Andrew Gonzalez . This dynamic duo performs in the invariably-inspiring setting of the American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars Playhouse in Staunton, VA. You can read the fascinating backstory behind this delightful duo in our Video of the Week feature here.

No. 13: Breaking Barriers with Beethoven

Beethoven: Sonata for Cello and Piano No. 2 in G minor, Op. 5: I. Adagio sostenuto – Allegro

Boubacar Diallo, cello (Rochester, NY); Yoon Lee, piano (New York, NY)

Release date: 8 July 2020

In announcing the launch of the Heifetz Virtual Institute last spring, our Artistic Director Nicholas Kitchen observed, “It would have so easy for Beethoven to be discouraged; he can’t even hear the thing he loves most. But he actually accelerated, he pushed himself even harder, he absolutely redefined what music can do. That’s what we’re going to try to do with the Heifetz Virtual Institute this summer. As Beethoven himself remarked, “The barriers are not erected which can say to aspiring talents and industry, ʻThus far, and no farther.” The barriers ahead are indeed great, but we shall strive to go farther, as Beethoven would insist. Our students, our teachers, our audiences, and you deserve nothing less than our fullest, best, effort. 

Among the very first to make such an effort – an indeed to demonstrate the possibility of making great music along the way – was the tandem of returning student Boubacar Diallo and faculty pianist Yoon Lee, who collaborated to perform in the expansive first movement of Beethoven’s Cello Sonata No. 2 in G minor. During a year in which celebrations of Beethoven’s 250th birthday were set to reverberate through concert halls worldwide (including ours), his determination, spirit, and of course artistry, truly served as a guiding light for our summer program.

No. 12: Ring Goes the Jing!

Paganini, arr. Kreisler: La Campanella

Mark Kaplan, violin; Dina Vainshtein, piano; Jingxuan Zhang, bell | Francis Auditorium, Mary Badlwin University, Staunton, VA 

Release date: 4 September 2020

Mirroring our summertime concert series, Fridays on our Virtual Concert Hall were devoted to Celebrity Series concerts, where we turn the performance spotlight on our world-renowned Heifetz faculty.  In 2020, that was an opportunity to explore the archives of previous Heifetz summers, including this concert from the tail-end of Summer 2019, where we got to hear Mark Kaplan introduce and then perform Fritz Kreisler’s arrangement of the last movement of Niccolo Paganini’s Violin Concerto No. 2 in B minor, Op. 7, subtitled La Campanella, or “The Little Bell.”   Joining Mark for this performance: faculty pianist Dina Vainshtein and our “little bell” player (and page turner) Jingxuan Zhang.

No. 11: A Kreisler Confection

Fritz Kreisler: Caprice Viennois, Op. 2 

Shannon Lee, violin (Cleveland, OH); Jessica X. Osborne, piano (Houston, TX)

Release date: 16 June 2020

Fritz Kreisler’s Caprice Viennois has been described as “just a good three and a half minutes of well-crafted gemütlichkeit with which Kreisler could charm his audiences.”  Maybe so, but no less of a figure than the late Joseph Silverstein, the longtime concertmaster of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, declared that the Caprice Viennois was the hardest of all of Fritz Kreisler’s “bonbons” to play, for the seemingly-effortless music is devilishly difficult to pull off!  As crtiic Blair Johnston notes, “The piece is a caprice in the real sense of the word, shifting musical perspective at a moments notice to afford violinists the opportunity to indulge in some new trick — like the false harmonics and the strangely aristocratic downward glissando of the opening quasi-cadenza passage, or to invite the listeners to join in enjoying a warm melody… all the while bursting forward and holding back, rhapsodically and mock-improvisationally (or, with the liberties that Kreisler himself invariably took with his music, truly improvisationally), with that amazing rhythmic elasticity that Kreisler alone was really able to bring to his music.”

It’s even trickier to pull off when your pianist is 1300 miles away! But Heifetz alum and Artist in Residence Shannon Lee was more than up to the challenge,  Shannon in Cleveland, OH, and Heifetz faculty pianist Jessica X Osborne in Houston, TX made Kreisler’s confection come brilliantly to life..

No. 10: A Tear-Inducing Twelve-Year Old

J.S. Bach: Violin Sonata No. 1 in G minor, BWV 1001: I. Adagio

Corina Deng, violin (Vancouver, BC, Canada) 

Release date: 2 July 2020

At just twelve years old, violinist Corina Deng may have been our youngest #VirtualHeifetz2020 student, but she has already had two summers under her belt as HeifetzPEG student. From her home in Vancouver, Corina shared a powerful performance of the Adagio from Bach’s solo Violin Sonata No.1, which she describes as “full of grief and rich expression,” that nonetheless  “brings a moment of peacefulness.”

No. 9: Trans-Pacific Beethoven, Con Brio! 

Beethoven: Violin Sonata No. 8 in G Major, Op. 30 No. 3: I. Allegro assai

Suet Yin Athen Shiu, violin (Kowloon, Hong Kong); Seonmi Lee, piano (Seoul, South Korea)

Release date: 19 August 2020

Here’s another Beethoven performance rather astounding for its level of coordination and artistry between two remote performers. 17-year-old violinist Suet Yin (Athena) Shiu returned to study with us at the Heifetz Institute from her home in Kowloon, Hong Kong, and collaborated with faculty pianist Seonmi Lee from Seoul, South Korea to perform the opening movement from Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No. 8 in G major, Op. 30, No. 3.

 Consider the challenge in preparing to perform this piece via the virtual collaborative process that was the hallmark of our summer programming. You need not look nor listen any further than the opening passage to appreciate the attention to detail in this collaboration, and as the piece develops, Athena likens the dialogue between the violin and piano to a hide-and-seek game between Tom and Jerry!  There’s more about the origins of this composition in our Video of the Week feature here..

No. 8: Remembering Lynn Harrell 

Brahms: Piano Quartet No. 1 in G minor, Op. 25

Daniel Heifetz, violin; Caterina Longhi, viola; Lynn Harrell, cello; Dina Vainshtein, piano |Blackfriars Playhouse, American Shakespeare Center, Staunton, VA

Release date: 29 April  2020

The passing of the legendary cellist Lynn Harrell in April 2020 led to a fond remembrance by Heifetz Institute Founder Daniel Heifetz to the time when Harrell came to teach and perform at the Institute during its very first summer in Staunton, VA in 2012:

It was both a joy and an honor to know Lynn Harrell as a friend and colleague. He accepted my invitation to join the faculty of the Heifetz International Music Institute immediately and enjoyed both his time with us and the beauty of the city and area of Staunton. He was an inspiration to our students and a wonderful colleague, with a warm ready smile for all the other faculty members. One thing most people did not know was that Lynn analyzed the acoustical aspects of the cello. He realized that the sound dampens when the cello endpin is pressed into the wooden floor or onto a concert cello platform. So he always used a large ceramic tile for his endpin whenever he performed! You can see it in this video.

“It was a privilege to perform the Brahms Piano Quartet with Lynn. The magnitude and depth of his artistry inspired all of us in the ensemble. He was so gentle and respectful in rehearsal towards the young viola student I had invited to join us. Our rehearsals were filled with happy exploration of musical ideas, and he was always eagerly willing to try what any of us proposed.

“There was an unaffected dignity and humility about Lynn, which he brought to his artistry. We have all lost a great friend and an artistic energy that will be sorely missed.”

So, to the Heifetz archives we go, to bring you this performance from the 2012 Heifetz Institute of the Piano Quartet in G minor, Op. 25 by Brahms. Featuring, Daniel Heifetz, violin, Caterina Longhi, viola; Lynn Harrell, cello, and pianist Dina Vainshtein. Captured in performance at the Blackfriars Playhouse of the American Shakespeare Center in Staunton, VA.

No. 7: The Heifetz Band’s Fist-Shaking Schubert 

Schubert: String Quartet in D Minor, D. 804 “Death And the Maiden:”  IV. Presto 

Borromeo String Quartet; Samuel Suggs, double bass; The 2019 Heifetz Band |First Presbyterian Church, Staunton, VA 

Release date: 29 January 2020

We celebrated Franz Schubert’s birthday back at the end of January with the Grand Finale from our 2019 summer, the first under the artistic leadership of NIcholas Kitchen Every year, our Grand Finale performance features the overwhelming sight and sound of The Heifetz Band – our entire student body playing together for the first and only time. For #Heifetz2019, that tradition got both a “bass and Borromeo boost,” as this spine-tingling performance of the last movement of Schubert’s “Death and the Maiden” quartet was led by Nick and his fellow Borromeo Quartet members Kristopher Tong, violin; Mai Motobuchi, viola; Yeesun Kim, cello; and faculty double bass teacher Samuel Suggs. Relive the performance – and  look at the YouTube description to see the complete roster of performers!

No. 6: Kayleigh Kim’s Double Play 

Key: Star-Spangled Banner

Kayleigh Kim, violin I; Kayleigh Kim, violin II | Nationals Park, Washington, DC 

Release date: 20 October 2020

It’s a summertime tradition for us to dispatch a dazzling duo of Heifetz violinists to perform the custom Heifetz arrangement of the “Star-Spangled Banner” before a Washington National home game. We like to think that these stirring performances have had something to do with the team’s good fortunes, advancing to the National League Division Series five times, and winning the World Series in thrilling fashion in 2019.

But when we got the call to step up to the plate this summer, it wasn’t so easy – with our students spread out worldwide for the Virtual Institute and travel restrictions and social distancing in place, there were some real questions as to how to put together a duo on short notice. That’s when returning student Kayleigh Kim of Herndon, VA stepped up to the plate. On short notice and – in baseball pitchers’ parlance, “short rest,” Kayleigh memorized both parts of this knuckle-busting arrangement, and through the wonders of multi-tracking (about which our Heifetz students all learned a thing or two this summer) she hit it out of the park.  Credit the outfield- or in this particular case, the safely-socially-distant-adjacent-parking garage-rooftop-perch – assist to the outstanding Washington Nationals video production team!

 

No. 5: Bach’s Chaconne on a Baroque Violin 

J. S. Bach: Violin Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004: V. Ciaccona 

Rachell Ellen Wong, baroque violin | Blackfriars Playhouse, American Shakespeare Center, Staunton, VA 

Release date:6 June 2020

2020 was a memorable year for Heifetz alum, touring artist, and HeifetzPEG instructor Rachell Ellen Wong, who in March became the first Baroque violinist ever to be awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant, administered by New York’s Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Previous winners include such classical-music household names as violinists Hilary Hahn and Joshua Bell, pianist Yuja Wang, and clarinetist Richard Stoltzman. Fellow Heifetz alum Zlatomir Fung was also named a 2020 Avery Fisher Grant award winner in 2020, Rachell and Zlatomir’s honors now brings the number of Heifetz Institute alums to win Avery Fisher grants to five, joining previous winners Itamar Zorman (2013), Alexi Kenney (2016), and Chad Hoopes (2017). Not to mention Nicholas Kitchen and the Borromeo Quartet, who were named Fisher Grant winners in 2007!

In many respects, this is the most prestigious award a young musician can receive; beyond the $25,000 cash prize, it is the highest seal of approval imaginable from a selection committee that reads like a veritable who’s who of performing-arts professionals in the US – including the leaders of the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Boston Symphony, pianist Emanuel Ax, and cellist Yo-Yo Ma.

We were fortunate enough to welcome Rachel back to Staunton in late May, where Rachell demonstrated her Baroque-violin-prowess with a searing performance of Bach’s epic Chaconne in the eerily empty-but-beautiful Blackfriars Playhouse.

 

 

No. 4: The Borromeo Quartet “At Juliet’s Tomb” 

Beethoven: String Quartet No. 1 in F major, Op. 18 No. 1: II. Adagio

Borromeo Quartet: Nicholas Kitchen & Kristopher Tong, violins; Mai Motobuchi, viola; Yeesun Kim, cello |  Jordan Hall, New England Conservatory, Boston, MA & Blackfriars Playhouse, Staunton, VA 

Release date: 9 October 2020

Arms, take your last embrace! And lips, O you The doors of breath, seal with a righteous kiss –

Shakespeare, Romeo & Juliet (Tomb Scene)

Did you know that Beethoven was a huge fan of Shakespeare? Shakespearean scenes and themes crop up with some regularity in Beethoven’s music. One scholar has identified no fewer than 19 Beethoven works in that category, none more overtly than the aching second movement of the String Quartet No. 1 in F Major, Op. 18, No. 1. “I was thinking about the tomb scene in Romeo and Juliet,” Beethoven told a violinist friend. Indeed, Beethoven scholar Lewis Lockwood summarizes the affettuoso ed appassionato movement at “the two conflicting principles of Romeo’s despair and Juliet’s beauty.”

From the very first episode of The Beethoven Experience with The Borromeo Quartet came this stunning performance of the second movement, marked, Adagio affettuoso ed appassionato. The piece was performed by the Borromeo Quartet both at the one concert in the series we managed to present at the Blackfriars Playhouse here in Staunton, as well as at Jordan Hall at New England Conservatory in Boston, MA on March 8, 2020…the final performance at NEC before being forced to close by the COVID-19 pandemic. View the complete performance from Episode I, including footage from both venues here:

No. 3: Finding the “Softness in the Human Heart” in Bernstein’s Serenade

Leonard Bernstein: Serenade (After Plato’s Symposium): IV. Agathon

Ilya Kaler, violin solo; Heifetz Chamber Orchestra, David Stern, conductor | Francis Auditorium, Mary Baldwin University, Staunton, VA

Release date: 13 April  2020

Besides #Beethoven250, 2020 was also a year for us to observe #Stern100 – the centennial of the birth of the legendary violinist and arts advocate Isaac Stern. As the commemorative website isaacsternlegacy.org notes: “As an instrumentalist, musician, teacher, cultural ambassador, social advocate, and civic leader, [Isaac Stern] left an indelible mark on the musical and cultural landscape around the world, and tirelessly adhered to his belief in young people, and in music as an agent of change and a force for good.”

Among the many notable highlights or Stern’s remarkable career was his giving the premiere of the Serenade (after Plato’s Symposium) for Violin, Strings, Harp, and Percussion by his good friend Leonard Bernstein. The night before the 1954 premiere in Venice, Bernstein wrote to his wife Felicja, “Isaac plays the Serenade like an angel. If it all goes well tomorrow, it should be a knockout.”

The piece itself IS a knockout – especially the fourth movement Agathon, as you’ll see and hear below in the 2018 Francis Auditorium performance featuring violin soloist Ilya Kaler and Isaac’s son David Stern conducting. The “plot line” as it were of  Bernstein’s Serenade does indeed follow Plato’s Symposium: The piece is in in five movements, each bearing the names of the ancient Greek philosophers who are “speaking” in turn: Phaedrus and Pausanias in the first movement; Aristophanes in the second movement; Erixymachus in the third; Agathon in the fourth movement, and finally Socrates and Alciabiades in the raucous final movement.

in this fourth movement. In Plato’s Symposium, Agathon the poet argues that Love is sensitive. “Rather than settle in the hard parts of humans and gods, on the ground or in the skull, Love settles in our minds and characters. Further, Love will only settle in the minds and characters of those with soft natures, and will move on when he finds someone with a tough character.”

For the composer who would produce Maria, Somewhere, and One Hand, One Heart in less than a year’s time, Bernstein was more than up to the task of finding the softness in the human heart, as you’ll hear in this gripping performance.  You can also view the complete performance here.

No. 2: Mozart Made Virtual

Mozart: String Quintet in G minor, K. 515: II. Menuetto: Allegretto – Trio

Chaewon Hannah Kim, violin (Seoul, South Korea);  Hyejin Kim, violin (Seoul, South Korea); Jack Kessler, viola (Miami, FL);  Gene Hotta, viola (Torrance, CA); En-Chun Eugene Lin, cello (Wandan Township, Taiwan).

Release date: 12 August 2020

From the outset of #VirtualHeifetz2020, we were determined to put together performances by chamber ensembles. But we weren’t sure whether the technology, the approach, and the players themselves would be up to the challenge. It was hard enough to put together solo and piano-accompanied works in the online environment!  And a full-scale chamber music performance in the virtual world, however, is several notches up in the degree of difficulty. To be sure, high-level chamber music instruction is a hallmark of the Heifetz Institute. But the acute sensitivity needed to respond to changes in dynamics, tempo, and timbre would push our process to its limits.

During the extraordinary summer of 2020, our students, staff, and faculty more than met the challenge. Students in the Ashkenasi/Kirshbaum Chamber Music Seminar, under Artistic Director Nicholas Kitchen’s leadership, were trained in a systematic method for creating musical collaborations across distances that are artistically meaningful and faithful to our communicative mission.  We call it the checkerboard approach, and below is one of the finest achievements of the year: A 7,000 mile-collaboration, among Seminar violinists Hannah Kim and Hyejin Kim, both in Seoul, South Korea,  cellist En-Chun (Eugene) Lin in Wandan Township, Taiwan, along with with American violists Jack Kessler (Miami, FL) and Gene Hotta (Torrance, CA).

As violist Kessler notes in his introduction to the stormy second movement of Mozart’s masterful String Quintet in G minor, K. 515, “The mircrophone does not lie. Every little detail is picked up, which means that communication and unification are keys to being successful.”  We think Mozart himself would be impressed!

No. 1: SoHyun Ko Blossoms with Beethoven

Beethoven: Romance No. 2 in F Major, Op. 50

SoHyun Ko, violin; Seonmi Lee, piano | Seoul, South Korea

Release date: 8 July 2020

As a precocious 12-year old, her first performance on the Heifetz stage has racked up an astonishing 5.2 million views. Today the now-14-year-old violinst SoHyun Ko continues to win fans over worldwide – especially in her native South Korea. SoHyun’s third summer at Heifetz was distinguished by an ever-growing depth of feeling and artistry to accompany her undeniable technical gifts. Which comes to the for in our final Beethoven selection of the year – the Romance No. 2 in F, played with pianist Seonmi Lee,  who provided indefatigable collaborative support to all our Heifetz students based in South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, China, and even Malaysia!

We’d like to offer our congratulations to all of the artists featured in our “20 Picks from 2020” compilations, and a heartfelt thanks to our stalwart #VirtualHeifetz2020 multimedia team who worked tirelessly around the clock (did we mention the 9 time zones?) to bring these performances to your screen:  Aaron Green, Carlos Castilla, Christopher Kitchen,  Noah Tingen, Ezekiel Yu, Sean Zirpoli, Production Manager Claudia Encinas, and our “main man” – Multimedia Director Matt SorrentinoBravi Tutti, and welcome to 2021!