Harp Professor Yolanda Kondonassis nominated for 2020 Grammy Award
December 7, 2019
Yolanda Kondonassis has been nominated for a 2020 GRAMMY® Award in the Best Classical Instrumental Solo category for her world premiere recording of Jennifer Higdon’s Harp Concerto with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra led by Music Director Ward Stare. This work appears on the album American Rapture. Higdon’s Harp Concerto is also nominated for Best Contemporary Classical Composition. The Harp Concerto is a consortium commission from six American orchestras: The Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra, Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra, Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra, Lansing Symphony Orchestra, and Oklahoma City Philharmonic. Kondonassis performed the work with all six of the commissioning orchestras during the 2018-19 concert season. A second weekend of concerts with the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra kicked off the season in September 2018, which was recorded live for the album. In January 2020, Kondonassis is slated to perform the concerto with the Wichita Symphony Orchestra.
Yolanda Kondonassis' Harp Concerto Premiere Garners Praise
October 25, 2019
Harp professor Yolanda Kondonassis continues to receive rave reviews for her 2019 world premiere recording that appears on the Azica label album, American Rapture. This visceral, live-recording release features her performance of Jennifer Higdon's Harp Concerto, a work Kondonassis commissioned in partnership with numerous orchestras across the country, including the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra featured on this recording. Harp Column magazine writes, "This is unexpected in a harp concerto and presents Ms. Kondonassis with the opportunity to totally live in her virtuosic self without compromise." TheArtsDesk.com echoes praise published by numerous writers, "It's an immediately engaging piece, Higdon's transparent scoring allowing Kondonassis to shine: the rapid fingerwork in the second and fourth sections wonderfully secure. Though, for all the fireworks, the concerto's heart is its slow movement, the solo harp accompanied by a succession of solo instruments. There's nimble support from Ward Stare’s Rochester Philharmonic, dazzlingly secure in a live recording."
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