Kirk Muspratt, Artistic Director & Conductor
Featuring Guest Violinist Esme Arias-Kim

17-year-old violinist Esme Arias-Kim, winner of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Competition, returns to join Maestro Kirk Muspratt and New Philharmonic for Tchaikovsky’s only violin concerto. The program also features a performance of Beethoven’s high-spirited and rhythmic Symphony No. 7, Op. 92 recognized as one of Beethoven’s best works.

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Join COD Music professor Steve Pierson for a pre-concert lecture one hour prior to each concert. Mr. Pierson will lead a discussion providing insight on selections featured in the concert.

Following each performance, audience members will have the opportunity to join Maestro Muspratt in the lobby for a “Cookies with Kirk.”

Performance Program

New Philharmonic caught up with Esme to discuss the importance of these pieces and why this is a concert you don’t want to miss:

Q: Tchaikovsky’s only violin concerto is a piece every violinist aspires to play, why is that so and what does it meant to you to perform this work?

I think many violinists grow up hearing this concerto from a young age, and as one goes through life, the piece can take on new meanings, but the same initial desire to play the music never leaves. For me, Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto reminds me of what draws me to music in the first place, which is simply the love for creating and commuting with people in a way that is both honest and instinctual. To perform this work for the very first time with an orchestra feels like a part of my younger self is being deeply fulfilled.

Q: You rehearsed the Tchaikovsky violin concerto with Maestro Itzhak Perlman in anticipation of these concerts. Did he have any words of wisdom on how best to tackle such a challenging piece?

Mr. Perlman encouraged me many times to tell a story and to think long and hard about what I was trying to say with my music. Just this very idea alone has sparked so many new discoveries in Tchaikovsky’s music for me. There are times where the music sounds longing and reminiscent, and other times where the excitement seems to pour out of the music gracefully and spontaneously. It is learning how to create an interpretation that is both my own and also what I think will bring the music to life that I find very challenging — but equally rewarding. 

Q: If someone hasn’t gotten tickets yet, why do you think they should come?

The music on this concert is music that no matter how many times you hear the piece, you feel as though it could be your very first time listening. They are works that hold an inward beauty and thoughtfulness just as much as they brim with joy and vibrancy. 


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