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Sage stop for rising solo stars; A pair of talented string soloists who've won world fame are to open The Sage Gateshead's new classical series. RICHARD YATES has the details.


TWO rising stars of the classical world will help launch the new season of subscription concerts at The Sage Gateshead next Friday.

Latvian violinist Baiba Skride and cellist Sol Gabetta, from Argentina, will share the Hall One platform with the Northern Sinfonia for a performance of the much-loved Double Concerto by Brahms.

Baiba, born into a musical family in Riga, received her first violin lessons at the age of four and went on to win top trophies in Germany, Romania and Italy, before being awarded first prize at Belgium's prestigious Queen Elisabeth International Competition in 2001.

Baiba - hailed by Classic FM magazine as "a natural musician to the ends of her fingertips" - will perform on the 1725 Wilhelmj Stradivarius loaned to her by the Nippon Music Foundation.

Sol Gabetta, born 28 years ago in Cordoba, Argentina, to French and Russian parents, was only 10 when she won her first music competition, and in 2004 she created an international sensation when, as winner of the Crdit Suisse Young Artist Award, she gave her debut with the Vienna Philharmonic, under the baton of Valery Gergiev at the Lucerne Festival. Since then she has performed with orchestras across the world.

Sol regularly gives concerts with the Basel Chamber Orchestra in Switzerland and often performs as a chamber music partner with Baiba Skride. Her instrument is one of the rare and valuable Guadagnini cellos dating from 1759.

One of Sol's two CDs released last year - featuring works by Shostakovich and performed with the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra under Marc Albrecht - was awarded the coveted French music award Diapason d'Or and received the German Echo Klassik award as Concerto Recording of the Year. Mario Venzago, a favourite with Northern Sinfonia, will be conducting the orchestra at next Friday's concert, starting at 7.30pm. He will open the programme with the Lemminkinen Suite by Sibelius, which includes the serene and hauntingly beautiful Swan of Tuolena, followed by Haydn's celebrated Symphony No.94 - the work nicknamed 'The Surprise' for the sudden crashing chord, which the Austrian composer had included to wake up his over-dined audience at its London premiere back in 1791!

Tickets for the concert are from pounds 7 to pounds 29.50 and can be booked by calling (0191) 443 4661.


AT HELM - Northern Sinfonia favourite conductor Mario Venzago CELLO THERE - concert-goers will be treated to a performance by Sol Gabetta NATURAL MUSICIAN - Latvian violinist Baiba Skride is coming to Sage
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Sep 11, 2009
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