THURSDAY, MARCH 5, 2015, 8PM Pre-concert lecture by Ben Salisbury, 7pm Segerstrom center for the Arts renée and Henry Segerstrom concert Hall
STATE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OF MÉXICO ENRIQUE BÁTIZ, CONDUCTOR IRINA CHISTIAKOVA, PIANO ALFONSO MORENO, GUITAR
Russian Easter Festival Overture, Op. 36
Nikolai RIMSKY-KORSAKOV (1844-1908)
Manuel PONCE (1882-1948)
Allegro non troppo Andante espressivo Vivo - INTERMISSION Concierto del Sur
Manuel PONCE (1882-1948)
Allegro moderato Andante Allegro moderato e festivo
Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor
Alexander BORODIN (1833-1887)
Tour DirecTion Andrew Grossman columbia Artists Management LLc | new York, nY www.cami.com
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RIMSKY-KORSAKOV: RuSSIAn EAStER FEStIVAL OVERtuRE early in 1888, rimsky-Korsakov began to sketch a short work for orchestra that he called La Grand Pâque russe: “The Great russian easter.” it was to be a musical evocation of easter, the most joyous of christian holidays, as it was celebrated in russia, and rimsky built the music on liturgical chants and melodies from the orthodox church. But he identified another element with such celebrations—a strong streak of the pagan—and he described his intentions: “This legendary and heathen side of the holiday, this transition from the gloomy and mysterious evening of Passion Saturday to the unbridled pagan-religious merry-making on the morning of easter Sunday, is what i was eager to reproduce in my overture.” The result, which he completed during the summer of 1888 as he was finishing the orchestration of Scheherezade, is the piece we know today as the Russian Easter Festival Overture. From the obikhod, a collection of canticles of the orthodox church, rimsky drew the themes of “Let God Arise!,” “An Angel Wailed,” “christ is risen,” and others. But his own work does not “develop” those themes in the traditional sense so much as it constantly repeats them, and the music takes its variety (and its progress) from the reappearance of these themes at different speeds and in different instrumental colors and moods. The result has been called a “mosaic,” but it is a mosaic assembled of the most brilliant bits of color. rimsky writes for large orchestra, but he then uses it with discrimination—the music alternates delicate instrumental cadenzas with the most rousing tutti passages as the old liturgical chants roar out with an unexpected power. The result is an orchestral showpiece that may have its roots in liturgical music but which approaches the pagan in its sensual energy. rimsky, who said that a full of appreciation of this music demanded that a hearer have attended a russian easter service “in a cathedral thronged with people from every walk of life,” prefaced the score with quotations from Psalms and Mark. He dedicated the music to the memory of his friends Mussorgsky
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POncE: PIAnO cOncERtO Manuel Ponce may be remembered primarily as the composer of estrellita, but his talents ran deep through a very wide range: across the span of his career Ponce was a pianist, organist, teacher, critic, editor, conductor, and administrator. Ponce showed unusual musical talent as a boy, but his early training was modest: he learned to play the piano from his older sister, and he did not go to Mexico city for formal conservatory training until he was 18. Ponce developed into a first-rate pianist, however, and in 1904 he left for europe (pausing to give a piano recital in St. Louis on the way) and remained there for five years, teaching and performing. in 1909 the composer returned to Mexico to become the piano instructor at the Mexico city conservatory. The following year Ponce composed his Piano concerto, and he was the soloist at its premiere in Mexico city on July 7, 1912. He was then 29 years old. Much of Ponce’s music springs from the music of Mexico and Spain: he used elements of native, popular, and folk music in his own songs, and some of his works—such as the Concierto del Sur, written for Andres Segovia and heard later on this program–are based on the music of a specific region. Ponce’s Piano concerto, however, is entirely free of such “national” influences. This is a big, old-fashioned virtuoso concerto— anyone hearing it without knowing its composer might well guess that it had been written in europe at the end of the nineteenth century. it is also quite a compact concerto: its three movements, played without pause, span only about twenty minutes. The Allegro non troppo opens with a brief but impassioned orchestral introduction. The piano makes its own dramatic entrance, and despite some lyric secondary material, the movement drives to a great climax, then subsides to flow directly into the Andante espressivo. Longest of the movements, this opens with an impassioned statement by the strings. The pianist takes this up, and the music builds to a long cadenza. Meditative at first, this cadenza grows turbulent as it proceeds and drives to a great climax full of hammered octaves. Pizzicato rumblings open the concluding (and very brief) Vivo, a virtuoso finale that keeps the spotlight firmly on the soloist. Ponce’s Piano concerto may not have the distinctive profile of his later music, nor is there anything distinctly Mexican about its material. But it is an attractive and pleasing work, and it gives us some sense of how fabulously talented—as both composer and pianist—its young creator was. POncE: cOncIERtO DEL SuR Manuel Ponce composed orchestral music, chamber works, piano music, and a number of songs, but he also wrote a significant amount for the guitar, encouraged in this by his life-
long friendship with Spanish guitarist Andres Segovia. As early as Ponce’s long stay in Paris in 1925-33, Segovia had suggested that he write a guitar concerto, but the composer did not get around to writing it until 1941, when he was almost 60. composer and guitarist worked closely together on the concerto, and it was Segovia who gave the first performance of the concierto del Sur in Montevideo, uruguay, on october 4, 1942. Ponce was the first Mexican composer invited to tour South America, and this concert was part of that tour. The title translates “concerto of the South,” and that points to the inspiration for this music. All the thematic material in the concerto is original with Ponce, but he acknowledged the influence of Andalusian music in the outer movements and of Arab music in the middle movement, so the “south” of the title refers to the south of Spain. Ponce scored the concerto for a chamber orchestra consisting of solo woodwinds, one horn, timpani, and strings, and then he shrewdly avoided balance problems by having the solo guitar and orchestra take turns with the material. The opening Allegro moderato is an extended sonata-form movement, stretching out to over twelve minutes. it is characterized by a great deal of energy, graceful exchanges between soloist and orchestra, and a wealth of thematic ideas. Ponce offers his soloist an unusually long cadenza just before the close.
about the program
and Borodin, both of whom had died unexpectedly in the years just before its composition.
The Moorish influence is strong in southern Spain, and this makes itself felt in the Andante, where the solo guitar has a number of exchanges with the solo winds. There is an exotic flavor to this movement, easy to sense but difficult to describe; Ponce rounds off the concerto with a vigorous finale, full of energy and high spirits. BORODIn: POLOVtSIAn DAncES FROM Prince igor Borodin was a member of The Five, the group of russian nationalist composers that included rimsky-Korsakov, cui, Balakirev, and Mussorgsky. But Borodin was a composer only in his spare time, for by profession he was a chemistry professor and research scientist at the Academy of Medicine and Surgery in St. Petersburg. So great were his professional demands that Borodin could find time to compose only when on vacation or when ill. Knowing of these demands, his friends would jokingly wish him ill health when they parted—it was their way of wishing that he could find more time to compose. one of the consequences of the demands on his time was that Borodin left several works incomplete when he suddenly died in 1887 at age 53. Among these was the one that would have been his masterpiece, the opera Prince Igor, based on the story of Prince igor of novgorod, a russian christian who in 1185 led an expedition against an invasion by the nomadic Polovetsians. Borodin worked inter3
about the program
mittently on Prince igor from 1869 until his death, but even in those eighteen years he was unable to complete the opera, which was finished by rimsky-Korsakov and Glazunov, who worked from the composer’s sketches. Although Prince igor is rarely staged, some of the music from the opera has become famous on its own. The Polovtsian Dances were written at an early stage in the composition of the opera—in 1875—and first performed in March 1879; they had become popular while Borodin was still laboring on the rest of the opera. The Dances form the Finale of Act ii of the opera. Prince igor and his son have been captured by the leader of the Polovtsians, the mighty Khan Kontchak, who tries to cheer up his prisoners by offering them gifts, women from his harem, or even release if Prince igor will promise to lay down his arms. When these offers are refused, Kontchak orders a brilliant entertainment for Prince igor, whom he greatly respects. Slaves enter to a brief Andantino, and the first dance quickly begins. The women slaves sing of the beauty of their homeland in music that is familiar to millions from the operetta Kismet, where it became the song Stranger in Paradise. This is followed by a savage dance for the men, given out first by a swirling solo clarinet. The timpani leads to the general dance: themes from the earlier dances are reprised as all sing of their devotion to their leader, the music gradually mounts in excitement, and the curtain to the second act comes down as slaves and dancers shout out “Hail Khan Kontchak!” While the Polovtsian Dances are accompanied by chorus in Borodin’s opera, it has become customary to play them as a purely orchestral work in which the choral part is duplicated by the orchestra. The Dances are heard in their orchestral version at this concert. - Program notes by eric Bromberger StAtE SYMPHOnY ORcHEStRA OF MéxIcO on August 27, 1971, at the initiative of Maestro enrique Bátiz and the State Government of México, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México was founded by that entity, which aims to promote music as a means of union and identification among Mexicans. Based in the city of Toluca, the orchestra was characterized from the outset by its efforts to bring its message to all corners of the republic. over 40 years of existence, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México has appeared in concert with a large number of guest conductors and soloists from among the finest of the planet. The foreign conductors who have led to the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México include Leon Barzin, Kurt Woess, Jose iturbi, Piero Gamba, and Joel Levi. According to the aim of promoting new creations and to make known to the public some works that have not yet
StAtE SYMPHOnY ORcHEStRA OF MéxIcO
come to regular repertory concerts, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México premiered Pictures at an Exhibition by Mussorgsky in orchestrating Gortchakoff; concerto piano, in Memoriam and the suite of Loris Tjeknavorian Ararat; The meeting of the new Spain of italian Ferrero and reflections of a Poet (Tribute to nezahualcoyotl), newly commissioned work by Mexican composer revueltas roman. in the discography of the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México, recordings devoted to the overtures of Verdi and rossini deserve special mention, to the music of Mexico and Spain, with outstanding composers Joaquin rodrigo and isaac Albeniz but above all, the comprehensive series of Beethoven symphonies, Schumann, Brahms and Tchaikovsky. Both the orchestra and its artistic director have received the Annual Award Mexican union of Theatre and Music, awarded for the 25 years of existence, and for the promotion of musical activities in Mexico. in 1975, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México made its first tour of the united States, where it returned for three consecutive years, performing in major cities. it made its first appearance in 2002 in the prestigious european Festival of Schleswig-Holstein at Germany. in 2003, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México made its second foray into europe, presenting six concerts with great success in Spain, Poland, Germany and France. in 2005, the orchestra traveled to the city of Paris, France, to present two concerts at the Salle Gaveau and Theatre Mogador accompanied by soloists Filomena Moretti, Mark Zeltser and Koh Kameda, with an overwhelming success. in September of 2005, seven concerts were performed on a tour of the People's republic of china in cities such as Shanghai, Beijing, Shenyang and Harbin. in January 2006, the orchestra gave six concerts in Spain, including the international Festival of Seville "entreculturas" in addition to Madrid, Zaragoza and Albacete. in 2008, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México performed the most extensive of its tours, this time in the
u.S. on a tour from coast to coast visiting forty-eight cities to great acclaim with audiences and critics.
ENRIQUE BÁTIZ, MUSIC DIRECTOR AND CHIEF CONDUCTOR At the age of 60, enrique Bátiz is one of the most famous orchestra conductors in Latin America. He is a gifted artist who has won international popularity and fame and whose interpretations produce the deepest and most profound emotion. He was born in Mexico city on May 4, 1942. in 1950 he studied piano with Francisco Agea and in 1960 he continued his studies with György Sándor. That same year he went to Southern Methodist university in Dallas, Texas. in 1962 he studied piano with Adele Marcus in new York at the famous Juilliard School of Music, where he also studied conducting and received his diploma in 1965. in 1964 he made several national tours as a pianist. in 1965 he was a semifinalist in the Marguerite Long international Piano contest in Paris, France. From 1967 to 1970, he specialized in piano with Zbigniew Drzewiecki in Poland. He also had private lessons in orchestral conducting with Stanislaw Wislocki. in 1970, he was finalist in F. Busoni Piano competition in italy. He began a tour of concerts in Poland in 1967 with the Lodz and Szczecin Philharmonics, and presented recitals in Warsaw and Brussels in 1969 with flattering reviews regarding his temperament and virtuosity. in 1968, he participated in the Queen elizabeth international Piano competition in Brussels. upon returning to Mexico in 1969, Maestro Bátiz performed innumerable concerts in the province. His debut as a conductor was in the Palacio de Bellas Artes in 1969, with the Xalapa orchestra. in 1970, he made a series of recordings for the Polish and Salzburg Broadcast companies. He also participated in the famous Frederic chopin international Piano competition of Warsaw. in April of 1971, he was named conductor and Founder of the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México. Maestro Bátiz was the conductor of the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México for 12 years (1971-1983), then of the Mexico city Philharmonic orchestra for 7 years (19831989) and resumed directorship of the oSeM from 1990 to the present. in 1984, he was named guest conductor of the royal Philharmonic orchestra, and as an invited guest conductor, he has led more than 500 symphony orchestras around the world.
The repertory of enrique Bátiz as a conductor ranges from classical to contemporary works. He has been described as an artist who conducts with vehemence and enthusiasm, manifesting a deep understanding unusual even among the finest conductors.
about the artists
in 2010, the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México received an invitation to represent the Spanish-American musical culture in the Festival of Music and Dance in Granada, Spain, celebrating with two concerts at the Palace of charles V, the Bicentennial of independence and the centenary of the Mexican revolution.
His work is represented with a collection of 145 recordings, of which 41 are with the royal Philharmonic, 9 with the London Symphony, 3 with the Philharmonia, 12 with the London Philharmonic orchestra, 2 with the royal Liverpool Philharmonic orchestra, 19 with the Mexico city Philharmonic orchestra, 58 with the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México, and 1 with the Toscana orchestra in Florence, italy, for the British record companies eMi records international, Academy of Sound and Vision, Musical Heritage (u.S.), nAXoS, iMG international Management Group, Pickwick, rPo records and Arts (German).
Throughout his career, he has received important distinctions and awards: La primera Presea Bienal in Art from the State of Mexico confederation of Professionals; The international Gold Mercury award of rome, given for the first time to a Latin American artist; The Jose Marti and the Tlatelolco’s eagle Medal. in 1984, he won First Prize at the British Music Trades Association for his interpretation of French Music with the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México (Debussy “Prelude to the afternoon of a Faun”); the 1986 rio Branco medal, an official grade given by the Brazilian government for the worldwide digital recording of the nine Bachianas Brasileiras by Hector Villa-Lobos; on four occasions (1971, 1981, 1983, and 1996) the annual prize as the most distinguished artist of the year from the Mexican union of Theatrical and Musical broadcasters; his recording of the 3rd Symphony of Saint-Saëns made in 1984, which was considered by the magazines Gramophone and the Penguin Stereo records Guide as the best recorded version of this piece. in 1986 The London Sunday Times named his recording of Petrushka by Stravinsky as the recording of the year. in 1991, he received the Mexican Mozart medal, given by the Domecq cultural institute. in December of 1992, The London cD review Magazine designated the recording he made with the London royal Philharmonic orchestra of the Symphonic Dances and The isle of the Dead by rachmaninoff as one of the best recordings made in 1992. in March of 1995, he won the estado de Mexico Prize, in 1994 in the area of arts, Sor Juana lnes de ia cruz for his contribution to the musical culture of the State of Mexico and recognition he has achieved in the musical world. This is recognized throughout the country and the whole world, therefore, he has been declared "Mexiquense Destacado." enrique Bátiz has recorded the complete nine symphonies by Beethoven, the nine Bachianas Brasileiras by VillaLobos, the complete pieces for orchestra by Joaquin rodrigo, Manuel M. Ponce, and G. Bizet, and eight vol-
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irina has also performed with the following orchestras: Music Aeterna, Musica Viva, Moscow chamber orchestra of P. Slobodkin’s center, Yaroslavl Symphony orchestra, and worked with conductors T. currentzis, A. rudin, M. Annamamedov, V. Valitov, i. Gaisin, J. Wilkinsson. in April 2014, irina played her debut recital in Het concertgebouw in Amsterdam, performing Scriabin, Schubert and Schumann.
umes of Mexican music that have been published with great worldwide acclaim. in 1997, enrique Bátiz made a complete recording of three symphonic cycles with the oSeM; the six symphonies by Piotr lllich Tchaikovsky (twelve sessions in six days in February 1997), and the four symphonies by Johannes Brahms (in only four days), at the centenary of his death and in September of 1998, the four symphonies by r. Schumann, short pieces by P.l. Tchaikovsky: capriccio italien, Francesca da rimini, Polonaise and Waltz of eugene onegin, Marche Slave, Mazzepa overture and Valse Melancholique from Suite no. 3, as well as three short pieces by Joaquin rodrigo: Miedo, canconeta, and Two Berceuses in six days of recording sessions. IRINA CHISTIAKOVA, PIANO irina chistiakova was born in 1990 in Moscow, russia, and, in 1996, was admitted into the piano program at the central music school of the Tchaikovsky Moscow State conservatoire. Three years later, already widely recognized as a child prodigy, irina was performing chopin solo works at the conservatory’s Grand Hall. By the time she turned eleven, she had played at concert halls throughout russia, Germany and France and had won awards both as a soloist and in a duet with her older sister Galina, also an awarded pianist, including a Double Laureate in the russian new names competition. in 2000, irina was the star of the irene Langemann film Russian Children Prodigy and was also featured in Langemann’s follow-up film The Competitors: Russian Children Prodigy 2. She also took part in a concert tour in Germany, marking the premiere of the documentary.
in the 2000’s, she continued to win prestigious piano competitions including the Moscow Schelkunchik (2002), the F. chopin international (2004), the Zagreb 2006 Award, the Giuliano Pecar international (italy, 2007), the Manuel Ponce international (Mexico, 2010), the claudio Arrau international (chile, 2012) and the ettore Pozzoli (italy 2013). in 2009, renowned conductor enrique Bátiz invited her to become a regular guest soloist with the orquesta Sinfónica del estado de México, currently performing de Falla and Ponce works with this ensemble in 23 concerts of their 2015 u.S. tour.
irina is a member of several funds, where she has also been a scholarship recipient: new names, Fund of V. Spivakov, russian Performing Art, french fund, and enfance pour la Vie. irina took part in a cD-recording of these funds, playing different compositions by chopin, rachmaninov and Moshkowsky. She also takes part in a joint cD production performing works by n. Medtner, playing the Minnaciosa Sonata. irina's live performances have been broadcasted over the ArTe, russian culture, and Mexico State radio and Television networks. irina graduated with honors from the Moscow State conservatory in 2013, and when she is not touring and recording, she is doing her postgraduate studies at Moscow State conservatory with professor Mikhail Voskresensky and at the university of Arts in Berlin, Germany with professor Jacques rouvier. ALFONSO MORENO, GUITAR Alfonso Moreno is one of the greatest interpreters known to the world of classical guitar. Moreno takes a symphonic approach to the guitar, using a broad palette of colors, timbres and dynamics, which often give the listener the sense of listening to an entire orchestra. Moreno is well known for his prodigious technique and intense musical interpretations. He has given more than 3,000 concerts throughout europe, America and Asia, transforming audiences with the sweetness, depth and sincerity of his interpretation. Born in Mexico into a family with a strong tradition of art and culture, he began his musical studies at the age of four. He has acquired music degrees in violin, composition, conducting, and guitar. Since 1968, when he won first place in the Paris international Guitar competition, organized by radio and Television of France, his career has taken him to some of the world’s most prestigious concert halls including: the Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow, the Bolshoi Hall of the Philharmonic of St. Petersburg, the Philharmonic of Kiev, carnegie Hall in new York, the Hollywood Bowl, the concert Hall of nagoya, the Yamaha Hall of Tokyo, Wigmore Hall and the royal Festival Hall of London, the Palace of Fine Arts of Brussels, the San Peter Kirche of Zürich, the Principal Temple of Zen in Hiroshima, the Great Theater of okayama, the Theater of the city of Paris, the rampa Theater of Varsovia, the Atatürk Kültür Merkesi and Great Theatre of istanbul. in addition to his solo concerts, Alfonso Moreno has been an
active proponent of the classical guitar in other capacities. He has given master classes and recitals, played in chamber music ensembles, and as a soloist with some of the world’s greatest symphony orchestras. These include the Dallas Symphony orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the national Symphony orchestra of china, the Atlanta Virtuosi, the Soloists of Münich, the Virtuosos of Sophia, the London Symphony orchestra, the royal Philharmonic orchestra, the Wroslaw Symphony orchestra, the radio Symphony in Brussles, the Symphony orchestra of Montevideo, the Philharmonic of Santiago, chile, and the Baltimore Symphony orchestra. in 1995, he became the founder and
His repertoire ranges from ancient music to music by contemporary composers. Many composers have written works specifically for him. These include Peter L. Panin, Francisco González, Armando Lavalle, raúl Ladrón de Guevara, Jean Louis Petit, and Xavier camino. His compact discs have been distributed worldwide by the following companies: eMi capitol in London, Varesse Sarabande in the u.S., Discos Forlane in France and Global entertainment in Mexico. Moreno has transcribed more than 50 works for the guitar. one of the most important transcriptions is the concerto no. 1 in D Major by niccolo Paganini, originally for violin, now part of the guitar virtuoso repertoire. Moreno took this work to concert halls throughout europe, Asia and America on over 50 occasions.
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director of the Guitar orchestra of Xalapa, which has performed more than 250 concerts throughout Mexico, europe, and Asia.
in 1999 Moreno co-founded the Latin American Guitar Quartet along with guitarrists eugenia rodriguez (chile), Marcela Sfriso and Walter ujaldon (Argentina), which made its debut at the international Guitar Festival in Turkey, as soloists with the istambul Philharmonic, under ionescu Galati.
Direct from Mexico City
STATE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OF MÉXICO Enrique Bátiz, Music Director and Chief Conductor FIRST VIOLIN Félix Parra Aguilera Nana Spartak Qizi Babayeva Spartak Babayev Illya Fedotov Luis Antonio Vital Catherine Julia Barrow Josiane Marie Blanche Roy José Urbán Díaz de León Nune Tshavrshyan Carlos Enrique Castejón Guadalupe López Juan Pablo Vital SECOND VIOLIN Luis Manuel García Carmen Celina Loa Luis Alberto Palomino José Luis Ramírez Víctor Palomino Oscar Estuardo Díaz Alvaro Wenceslao Cubides Alba María Cabrera Jaime Cházaro Aarón Ricardo Acevedo José Angel Contreras Rodolfo Galván
VIOLA Chingiz Mamedov Marcelino Pedro Urbán Augusto José Carrión Byron Díaz Armen Aghabekyan Jaime Magdaleno Cervantes Diego José Hernández Luis César Mendoza Mario Rodríguez CELLO Sona Poshotian - Kamila María Pietrzyk Sara Angélica Murcio Iván Chernishov Luis Enrique Vital Jairo Saquicoray Irina Yeganyan Marek Grzegorz Wierzbicki BASS Marcos Antonio Avendaño Dwight Lloyd Bryan Vladimir Ochivalov Jesús Escudero Castillo Boris Vladyshevski
FLUTE Sabina Jeanne Laurain Huh Gyu Young Jaime Segura
TRUMPET John Robert Urness Brian Eric Prunetta Ramón Meza Bustamante
OBOE Peter Ferris Ana Caroline Foshee Aarón Reyes
TROMBONE Ramón Meza Suárez Raúl Quezada Campos José Tonatiuh Rodríguez Balderas
CLARINET Thomas Jones Lorenzo Meza Baltazar Chavarría BASSOON Virya María Quesada Sebastian Chaves Nylsa Evelia Avalos HORN Paul Franklin Miller Michael William Mc Girr Sara Ruth Hogan Clive James Whatley Oxford Adolpus Kitchengs
TUBA Anastacio Meza Suárez TIMBALES Sergio Diego de la T. Quesada PERCUSSION Manuel García Fajardo José Luis Barquera José Celestino Osorio HARP Christian Joannes Topp CONDUCTOR Enrique Bátiz SOLOISTS Alfonso Moreno Irina Chistiakova