The RI Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School is pleased to announce the 2016-2017 Concerto & Aria Competition Winner

On Saturday, February 18, five finalists in the Rhode Island Philharmonic Concerto & Aria Competition performed at the Carter Center for Music Education & Performance. Rhode Island Philharmonic Music Director Larry Rachleff and Director and Artistic Administrator David Gasper served as adjudicators. Finalists were selected from an initial round of applicants who submitted recorded performances. Participants included current students from the Rhode Island Philharmonic Music School performing.

troy-feng-blog-smallerWinner: Troy Feng, piano

Shostakovich’s Concerto No. 2 in F Major, movement I., Allegro

Troy Feng began playing piano at the age of six and for the past six years has studied with Dr. Irina Tchantceva at the RI Philharmonic Music School. Troy is an active performer and has participated in numerous concerts, recitals, and masterclasses, including a 2014 benefit performance for the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School alongside famed French pianist Jean-Philippe Collard. In 2015, he performed Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition with the Rhode Island Youth Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Alexey Shabalin at The VETS in Providence.

Troy has won the Jury’s Discretionary Award (2012), Best Overall Performer (2014), and Third Prize (2016) at the Piano Extravaganza! held at the University of Rhode Island. As a co-winner of the 2014-2015 Rhode Island Philharmonic Concerto & Aria Competition, he performed Chopin’s Grand Polonaise Brillante, Op.22 with the Rhode Island Youth Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Alexey Shabalin at Sapinsley Hall at Rhode Island College.

Troy Feng is a sophomore at The Wheeler School in Providence and has many hobbies and activities which he enjoys in his spare time. He is a member of The Wheeler swimming and tennis varsity teams.

Troy will perform the first movement from Shostakovich’s Concerto No.2 in F Major with the Rhode Island Philharmonic Youth Symphony Orchestra. Alexey Shabalin will conduct the 2pm May 6th RIPYO concert.  The concert will be held at The VETS, Providence. Tickets are available in advance through the Music School and at The VETS on the day of the concert.

Ticket prices are $11/adult, $6/ students & senior citizens.

Artist Change Notice: Lang Lang Forced To Cancel Gala Performance • Pianist Robert Levin to Perform Mozart Piano Concerto in C minor

March 3, 2017, Providence RI – Pianist Lang Lang has contracted the flu and is forced to cancel his scheduled performance with the RI Philharmonic Orchestra this Sunday. Instead, pianist Robert Levin will join the Orchestra to perform Mozart’s 24th Piano Concerto in C minor.   The Orchestra will also play Beethoven’s 5th Symphony, as planned.

“We are disappointed that Lang Lang is ill and unable to join us,” remarked Music Director Larry Rachleff. “Happily, our good friend Bob Levin was able to delay his departure for performances in Europe.”

Levin is widely regarded as one of the foremost interpreters of Mozart, and it is fortunate that he can join the Orchestra on such short notice.   It allows the Orchestra to keep the repertoire unchanged.

This event is the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra & Music School’s biggest fundraiser.  One-hundred percent of the profits go to support the Philharmonic’s extensive education and community engagement programs that serve approximately 25,000 children and youth each year.

Current ticket holders are being notified of the artist change by email. Patrons with questions can contact the RI Philharmonic Box Office at OR 401.248.7000.

Revised concert listing:

RI Philharmonic Orchestra 2017 Gala
Sunday, March 5, 5pm
The VETS, Providence

Larry Rachleff, conductor
Robert Levin, piano

MOZART Piano Concerto No.24
BEETHOVEN Symphony No.5

Order Tickets: • 401.248.7000

About Robert Levin

Pianist and conductor Robert Levin’s engagements include the orchestras of Atlanta, Berlin, Birmingham, Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Los Angeles, Montreal, Utah and Vienna. Renowned for his improvised embellishments and cadenzas in Classical period repertoire, Robert Levin is a passionate advocate of new music, having commissioned and premiered a large number of works. A renowned chamber musician and a noted theorist and musicologist, his completions of Mozart fragments are published, recorded and performed throughout the world.


About the Orchestra

2016-2017 is the Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra’s 72nd season and Music Director Larry Rachleff’s 21st with the Orchestra. The season’s eight-concert Saturday TACO Classical Series features world-renowned guest artists. The four-concert Friday AMICA Rush Hour Series offers an earlier start time and shorter program with full performances of select repertoire from Saturday.

RI Philharmonic Presents “All-Brahms” on March 18

The Rhode Island Philharmonic Orchestra and Music Director Larry Rachleff welcome another favorite, acclaimed violinist Augustin Hadelich, for a return engagement at The VETS, Avenue of the Arts, Providence. The Orchestra will perform Brahms’ lyrical Symphony No.2 and then be joined by Mr. Hadelich in Brahms’ Violin Concerto. The concert is Saturday, March 18 at 8:00pm with an Open Rehearsal on Friday, March 17 at 5:30pm.



About Augustin Hadelich
Grammy Award-winner Augustin Hadelich has established himself as one of the great violinists of his generation. He has performed with every major orchestra in the U.S., and an ever-growing number of major orchestras in the UK, Europe and the Far East, collaborating with such renowned conductors as Roberto Abbado, Thomas Adès, Marin Alsop, Alan Gilbert, Sir Neville Marriner, Jaap van Zweden and others. His chamber music partners have included Jeremy Denk, Alban Gerhardt, Richard Goode, Midori, Mitsuko Uchida, Joyce Yang and members of the Guarneri and Juilliard quartets. He is consistently cited for his phenomenal technique, poetic sensitivity and gorgeous tone. Born in Italy, the son of German parents, Hadelich is an American citizen. He plays the 1723 “Ex-Kiesewetter” Stradivari violin.


At a glance

TACO Classical Concert
Saturday, March 18 at 8:00 pm

Larry Rachleff, conductor
Augustin Hadelich, violin

BRAHMS Symphony No.2
RI Philharmonic Orchestra

BRAHMS Violin Concerto
RI Philharmonic Orchestra
Augustin Hadelich, violin 

Open Rehearsal
Friday, March 17 at 5:30 pm


About the concert: stories behind the music

Symphony No.2 in D major, op.73
Johannes Brahms (1833 – 1897)

Sure of success:  Creating two works in the same genre simultaneously was not uncommon for composers of the Classic-Romantic era – as Brahms did with his First and Second symphonies – and often the nature of the two contrasted sharply. Writers have characterized Brahms’ First as “tragic” and have given the idyllic Second the “Pastoral” nickname. Brahms knew from the start that the Second was destined for success. Brahms completed the symphony during the summer of 1877 in the bucolic setting of Pörtschach by the Wörthersee.

Viennese waltz?  The Viennese at once took the work to their hearts, perhaps due to the waltz-like first movement. The moderate tempo and gentle grace of the movement suggest, however, more the ballet stage than the ballroom. A delicate balance between the general feeling of lightness and the uncommon heaviness of the brass section results from the unusual use of three trombones and tuba.

Violin Concerto in D major, op.77
Johannes Brahms

Violin vs. orchestra?  Mixed reviews greeted Brahms’ Violin Concerto at its 1879 premiere. Conductor Hans von Bülow stated that the concerto was written “against the violin.” Violin prodigy Bronislav Hubermann later countered with the remark that it is a concerto “for violin against orchestra — and the violin wins.”

Copying Beethoven:  Brahms had modeled much in his concerto on that of his idol, Beethoven. In its day, Beethoven’s Violin Concerto had also been accused of unwarranted difficulties, and early audiences often missed its profound content. As analyst John Horton has put it: “That Brahms should have ventured upon a Violin Concerto in D with the sound of Beethoven’s…in his ears was in itself an act of faith and courage; that he should have produced one…worthy to stand beside it, is one of the triumphs of Brahms’ genius.”

Eugene Nadeau, Season Ticket Holder for 71 Years!

gene-nadeau-blog-photoSince the RI Philharmonic Orchestra was founded in 1945, there have been two constants: a) wonderful classical music played by world-class musicians, and b) Gene Nadeau standing in the balcony applauding and shouting, “Bravo!” to the Orchestra.

As a young boy, Gene fell in love with classical music and opera after tuning it in on his radio. At 14, he attended his first RI Philharmonic concert and was completely hooked. From Francis Madeira’s first  to Larry Rachleff’s latest, he’s been a season ticket holder every year.

“I believe that the Philharmonic is something truly special in our community and for all of Rhode Island. I just think that it is beautiful when you see and hear the Orchestra today. Larry, the musicians and everyone here at RIPO&MS have built something that we can respect, be proud of and enjoy. Attendance is up and exciting stuff is happening here.”

Not only has he attended nearly every concert for 71 years, but Gene makes it a point to introduce others to the RI Philharmonic by talking to young people about the Orchestra and Music School. If you know him or have met him, he has probably invited you to join him at a concert. As Rhode Island’s oldest elected official (Warwick Public Schools Board) and “pushing 85,” Gene feels strongly that the love of music needs to be nurtured and cultivated from a young age.

So, next time you are at a RI Philharmonic Orchestra concert and you hear someone shouting, “Bravo!” to the Orchestra, turn toward the balcony and give Gene Nadeau a wave.


Congratulations to Symphonic Winds and Wind Ensemble!

We would like to congratulate Symphonic Winds and Wind Ensemble, our two youth wind groups for their fantastic concert on January 24th. We would also like to thank Mr. Aaron Bush, Wind Ensemble conductor, and Dr. David Neves, Symphonic Winds conductor, for their hard work and preparation of our youth groups. We still have some openings in our youth wind ensembles for the remainder of the 2016-2017 season!

You can also see these groups perform on May 21 at Rhode Island College at their end of the year recital. Please contact Chelsea Anderson, Youth Ensembles Manager at or 401.248.7038 for more information.