Juanjo Mena directs works of Arriaga and Schubert, with the Orchestra of the Valencian Community and the soprano Sabina Puértolas solo, this weekend in Valencia and Castelló.
The prestigious Basque director is immersed in the last rehearsals of the program, with which he returns to Les Arts 14 years later. Recognized for his long international career, Juanjo Mena has worked with the most reputable orchestras, including Cleveland, French national, Gewandhaus or the Berlin Philharmonics, London and New York. Les Arts recovers this concert that had to be postponed last season due to the health emergency situation.
The principal conductor of the Cincinnati May Festival was one of the first batons the OCV worked with in its first year of life.. Mena debuted in 2007 with a program under the heading ‘Visions of the 21st century’, with which he introduced composers such as Albéniz into the repertoire of the Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana, Fernández-Arbós, Béla Bartok and César Cano.
For his return, focuses on two important figures of early romanticism: Juan Crisóstomo de Arriaga, still unpublished in the repertoire of the OCV, y Franz Schubert.
Nicknamed the 'Spanish Mozart', Juan Crisóstomo de Arriaga (1806-1826) he was a precocious genius who, despite dying with just 19 years, left an important musical testimony. After the overture of ‘The happy slaves’, Arriaga's lyrical side will focus the first part of the concert, with the dramatic cantata for soprano and orchestra ‘Herminie’ and the aria ‘Hymen! come and dispel a vain fear of ópera Medea ’, performed by the soprano Sabina Puértolas.
As a closing of the evening, Juanjo Mena proposes one of the great works of the symphonic repertoire, the last symphony that Franz Schubert composed, 'The big', nicknamed for its length and majesty, and precursor of the new romantic airs.
Juanjo Mena conducts the Orchestra of the Valencian Community this Saturday, 27 of March, to 19.00 h, in the auditorium of the Palace of Arts. One day later, The OCV will present this same program at the Auditori i Palau de Congressos de Castelló at 19.30 h. For more information, interested parties can consult Arts – A path of emotions e IVC (gva.es).
The Arts is Symphonic
Three of the most outstanding batons on the international scene will close ‘Les Arts és Simfònic’: Antonello Manacorda (28 Y 29 May 2021), Fabio Luisi (19 June 2021) y Daniele Gatti (1 July 2021).
Juanjo Mena is one of the most recognized Spanish conductors on the international circuit. Director principal del Cincinnati May Festival, previously he was Principal Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic, Principal Guest Conductor of the Bergen Philharmonic and the Carlo Felice Theater of Genoa, as well as titular and artistic director of the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra.
Lead prestigious formations, including the Berlin Philharmonics, London, La Scala, Oslo and Rotterdam; the symphony of the Bavarian Radio, Bamberg, Swedish Radio, Danish National and NHK Tokyo, as well as the French National Orchestra, Berlin Konzerthausorchester, Tonhalle de Zurich y the Gewandhaus de Leipzig.
He is also invited by the most important American formations., Like the Baltimore Symphony, Chicago, Cincinnati, Montreal, Pittsburgh y Toronto; the New York and Los Angeles Philharmonics, and the cleveland orchestras, Minnesota, Philadelphia y Washington. Appears regularly in front of the Boston Symphony, both in their concert season and at the Tanglewood festival.
As an opera, addresses titles of the romantic repertoire, como ‘The Flying Dutchman’, ‘Salome’, ‘Elektra’, ‘Ariadne on Naxos’, 'Bluebeard's castle' or 'Erwartung', in addition to productions of ‘Yevgueni Oneguin’ in Genoa, ‘Short life’ in Madrid, 'The Marriage of Figaro' in Lausana or 'Billy Budd' y 'Fidelio' in Bilbao.
National Music Award 2016, Juanjo Mena has recorded the ‘Turangalîla Symphony’ with the Bergen Philharmonic, considered a reference by specialized critics. His records leading the BBC Philharmonic include tributes to Arriaga, Ginastera, Albéniz, Failure, Pierné, Montsalvatge, Weber and Turina. Recent and upcoming engagements include his return to the seasons of the Leipzig Gewandhaus orchestras, Zurich Tonhalle, Bamberg Symphony, NHK Tokyo and Minnesota Orchestra.
Juanjo Mena © Mikel Ponce_LesArts