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Alain Barker
Jacobs School of Music

Linda Cajigas
Jacobs School of Music

Last modified: Friday, June 26, 2009

IU Summer Symphonic Series includes world-renowned conductors, distinguished Jacobs faculty, guests

Jorja Fleezanis in first Bloomington performance since being appointed to faculty

June 26, 2009

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- With four of the country's top conductors on the podium and a number of nationally renowned instrumentalists in their midst, the IU Summer Music Festival Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra once again bring world-class music to the Midwest in a series of five upcoming concerts in Bloomington.

David Robertson

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David Robertson, Mario Venzago and Giancarlo Guerrero will conduct the 2009 Festival Orchestra, which is composed of Jacobs School of Music students, faculty and invited guests and is considered one of the finest ensembles of its kind. Cliff Colnot will return to Bloomington to conduct two concerts by the student summer Symphony Orchestra.

On July 2, Robertson will conduct the Festival Orchestra series kickoff, featuring Rachmaninoff's Isle of the Dead, Tchaikovsky's Francesca da Rimini and Nielsen's Symphony No. 4. Director of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, he is highly acclaimed worldwide for his impeccable musicianship, exhilarating presence and innovative programming.

Jorja Fleezanis

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In her first Bloomington performance since her appointment to the Jacobs School faculty, Jorja Fleezanis, concertmaster of the Minnesota Orchestra, will serve as concertmaster for the opening concert. She will join the faculty full time this fall.

"This week with the Festival Orchestra finally throws the door wide open for my new life as a mentor and teacher of 'the orchestra' -- it's many challenges, it's monumental repertoire and what it asks of each of us on that stage to reach the highest artistic communion with great art," said Fleezanis. "I can't wait!"

Swiss conductor Venzago has served as music director of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra since 2002, following several prestigious music directorships in Europe. He will lead the orchestra on July 23 in Mussorgsky's Night on Bald Mountain, Strauss's Til Eulenspiegel, Debussy's La Mer and Ravel's La Valse.

Timothy Lees, concertmaster of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, will serve as concertmaster for the second concert in the series.

Costa Rican conductor and new music champion Guerrero will direct the final Festival Orchestra performance of the season on Aug. 6, featuring Symphony No. 6 by Sibelius and Symphonie Fantastique by Berlioz. Guerrero was recently appointed music director of the Nashville Symphony, following a seven-year tenure as music director of Oregon's Eugene Symphony.

Giancarlo Guerrero

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Jacobs faculty member Alexander Kerr will assume concertmaster duties for the final Festival Orchestra concert. Kerr was concertmaster of both the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and Amsterdam's Concertgebouw and is now principal guest concertmaster of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra.

Other Jacobs faculty members include Thomas Robertello and Kathryn Lukas sharing principal flute; Howard Klug, principal clarinet; Carl Lenthe, principal trombone; M. Dee Stewart, bass trombone; Dan Perantoni, tuba; and John Tafoya and Kevin Bobo, percussion.

Edmund Cord, John Rommel and Joey Tartell will take turns in the principal trumpet position, while Jeff Nelsen will fill the principal horn slot in the second and third concerts.

One of the most acclaimed orchestral bassoonists in North America, Kathleen McLean will serve as principal bassoon in the third concert. She will join the Jacobs faculty roster as associate professor in fall 2009.

The closing Festival Orchestra performance will also include principal cellist Eric Kim. Kim is principal cello of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and will begin his Jacobs School faculty role this fall.

Conductor Colnot, principal conductor of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's contemporary MusicNOW series and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, will return to lead the Symphony Orchestra on July 14 and Aug. 11, in works by Ravel and Tchaikovsky, and Schubert and Hindemith, respectively.

Each of the symphonic events will take place at 8 p.m. in the Musical Arts Center. The three performances by the Festival Orchestra cost $15 each for the general public and $8 for students. The two Symphony Orchestra performances are free.

Tickets are available at the MAC Box Office (information: 812-855-7433), online at or through Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000. The box office is located on Jordan Avenue between Third and Seventh Streets, and is open Monday through Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.