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Orpheus Chamber Orchestra will pay tribute to pianist, fellow Grammy Award-winner, and long-time collaborator Richard Goode in a concerto program 8 p.m. Friday at the Williams Center for the Arts.

Tickets can be obtained by calling the box office at (610) 330-5009.

Goode honors his long association with Orpheus by joining the “conductorless” orchestra for two concertos that have become artistic trademarks in his esteemed career: Mozart’s E-flat Major Concerto, K. 271 and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in C minor. J.C. Bach’s Sinfonia in B-flat Major, Op. 18, No. 2, and Cerubini’s Overture to Faniska complete the program, which also will be performed next week at Carnegie Hall.

The public is invited to attend an open rehearsal from 6-7 p.m. Friday at the Williams Center.

Four of Goode’s recordings of Mozart concerti with Orpheus have been received with wide critical acclaim, with many “Best of the Year” nominations and awards, including a Grammy nomination. Gramophone magazine wrote of the first, “This is one of the most delightful recordings of Mozart piano concertos I’ve heard,” and then selected it as Record of the Month.

Goode has been hailed for performances of tremendous emotional power, depth, and expressiveness, and has been acknowledged worldwide as one of today’s leading interpreters of the music of Beethoven. In regular performances with the major orchestras, recitals in the world’s music capitals, and acclaimed Nonesuch recordings, he has won a large and devoted following.

In an extensive profile in The New Yorker, David Blum writes, “What one remembers most from Goode’s playing is not its beauty — exceptional as it is — but his way of coming to grips with the composer’s central thought, so that a work tends to make sense beyond one’s previous perception of itThe spontaneous formulating process of the creator [becomes] tangible in the concert hall.”

According to The New York Times, “It is virtually impossible to walk away from one of Mr. Goode’s recitals without the sense of having gained some new insight, subtly or otherwise, into the works he played or about pianism itself.”

Goode has won many prizes, including the Young Concert Artists Award, First Prize in the Clara Haskil Competition, the Avery Fisher Prize, and a Grammy Award with clarinetist Richard Stoltzman. His remarkable interpretations of Beethoven came to national attention when he played all five concerti with the Baltimore Symphony under David Zinman, and when he performed the complete cycle of sonatas at New York’s 92nd Street Y and Kansas City’s Folly Theater. For The New York Times, the cycle was among the season’s most important and memorable events. Subsequent performances around the country were similarly triumphant.

The pianist has made more than two dozen recordings, including the complete Beethoven piano sonatas, the complete partitas by J.S. Bach, and chamber and solo works of Brahms, Schubert, Schumann, Chopin, and George Perle. Goode is the first American-born pianist to have recorded the complete Beethoven sonatas, which were nominated for a 1994 Grammy Award. His recordings of the cycle have been hailed as among the finest interpretations of these works and have become a favorite of classical album buyers around the world.

Goode’s first, long-awaited Chopin recording was chosen Best of the Month by Stereo Review and described as “absolutely magicalglorious playing.” A recent release of Bach partitas Nos. 1, 3 and 6 received the same enthusiastic reception as his earlier disc of the other three partitas.

Over the last few seasons, Goode has appeared with many of the world’s greatest orchestras, including Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Deutsches Symphonie Orchester, and BBC Symphony at the London Proms. He has also appeared with Orchestre de Paris and Ivan Fischer, and toured with Fischer and his Budapest Festival Orchestra, as well as making his Musikverein debut with the Vienna Symphony. He has been heard throughout Germany in sold-out concerts with Academy of St. Martin in the Fields under Sir Neville Marriner.

As a recitalist, Goode has become a favorite throughout Europe as well as the United States, including regular appearances in Paris, London, Amsterdam, Vienna, and the leading cities of Germany and Italy. In Berlin, Die Welt says Goode “is able to play Beethoven like nobody else.” A recent recital inspired one critic to write, “You’d swear the composer himself was at the keyboard, expressing musical thoughts that had just come into his head.”

Recognized internationally as one of the world’s great chamber orchestras, Orpheus is celebrating its 33rd season. Williams Center audiences enjoy Orpheus’ final polishing of its award-winning recording projects, major international tours, and numerous Carnegie Hall programs. Its Lafayette series has included many guest appearances by musicians later showcased by Orpheus at Carnegie Hall, from countertenor Andreas Scholl and bassist Edgar Meyer to saxophonist Branford Marsalis and violinist Gil Shaham. Local audiences have been treated to musicians unlikely to be heard in other roles: pianists Jeffrey Kahane, Andre Watts, Cecile Licad, and Olli Mustonen; violinists Shaham and Elmar Oliveira; vocalists Scholl, Nathalie Stutzman, Milagro Vargas, and Carmen Pelton; and bassist Meyer.

Orpheus also has received numerous distinctions and awards, including a 2001 Grammy Award for Shadow Dances: Stravinsky Miniatures, three 1999 Grammy Awards for its jazz-inspired Ravel and Gershwin collaboration with Herbie Hancock, the 1998 Grammy nomination for its recording of Mozart piano concertos with Goode, and the 1998 “Ensemble of the Year” award by Musical America.

Orpheus was founded in 1972 by cellist Julian Fifer and a group of fellow musicians who aspired to perform chamber orchestral repertory as chamber music through their own close collaborative efforts, and without a conductor. Orpheus developed its approach to the study and performance of this repertory by bringing to the orchestral setting the chamber music principles of personal involvement and mutual respect. Orpheus is a self-governing organization, making the repertory and interpretive decisions ordinarily assumed by a conductor. Holt/NY Times Books published a book about Orpheus and its management model, Leadership Ensemble: Lessons in Collaborative Management from the World’s Only Conductorless Orchestra, written by former Orpheus executive director Harvey Seifter and business writer Peter Economy.

Members of Orpheus have received recognition for solo, chamber music, and orchestral performances. Of the 18 string and 10 wind players who comprise the basic membership of Orpheus, many also hold teaching positions at prominent conservatories and universities in the New York and New England areas, including Juilliard, Manhattan School of Music, New England Conservatory, Montclair State University, Mannes College of Music, and Columbia and Yale Universities.

The Orpheus recording legacy consists of nearly 70 albums. Included in the catalogue of over 50 recordings for Deutsche Grammophon are Baroque masterworks of Handel, Corelli, and Vivaldi, Haydn symphonies, Mozart symphonies and serenades, the complete Mozart wind concerti with Orpheus members as soloists, Romantic works by Dvorák, Grieg, and Tchaikovsky, and a number of 20th-century classics by Bartók, Prokofiev, Fauré, Ravel, Schoenberg, Ives, Copland and Stravinsky. Recent collaborations include a recording of English and American folk songs with countertenor Andreas Scholl (Decca); Creation, a jazz-inspired CD of classics from 1920s Paris with saxophonist Branford Marsalis (SONY Classical); and a critically acclaimed series of recordings of Mozart piano concertos with Richard Goode (Nonesuch).

The nationally recognized Performance Series at Lafayette attracts more than 10,000 people each season. It has been cited for performing excellence by the National Endowment for the Arts, National Dance Project, Chamber Music America, Lila Wallace Reader’s Digest Fund, Pennsylvania Arts and Humanities Councils, and Association of Performing Arts Presenters.

The 2005–2006 Performance Series is supported in part by gifts from Friends of the Williams Center for the Arts; by provisions of the Alan and Wendy Pesky Artist-in-Residence Program, the James Bradley Fund, and the Ed Brunswick Jazz Fund; and by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour, the Dexter and Dorothy Baker Foundation, and New England Foundation for the Arts.

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