Renowned Conductor Enrique Bátiz Award Winning Piano Soloist Irina Chistiakova Lehman Center for the Performing Arts celebrates Valentine’s Day with a performance direct from Mexico City of the ORQUESTA SINFÓNICA del ESTADO de MÉXICO with renowned Conductor and Musical Director Enrique Bátiz and rising-star pianist Irina Chistiakova on Saturday, February 14th, 2015 at 8pm.
The Symphony Orchestra of the State of Mexico was founded in 1971 at the initiative of Maestro Enrique Bátiz and the Government of the State of Mexico to promote music as a means of union and identification among Mexicans. A cultural gem based in the city of Toluca, the orchestra is a source of pride and joy to Mexican-Americans and Mexiquenses and tours extensively throughout Mexico and the world with concerts that feature a wide range of traditional Mexican and Spanish music as well as classics by Verdi and Beethoven. The program for February 14 will include “Three Spanish Dances” (Enrique Granados), “Noches en los Jardines de España” (Manuel de Falla) and “Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68” (Johannes Brahms). Led by acclaimed conductor and musical director Enrique Bátiz, the performance will feature rising star piano soloist Irina Chistiakova.
ENRIQUE BÁTIZ, Music Director, Chief Conductor and Artistic Director, is one of the most famous conductors in Latin America and has been honored repeatedly with the Annual Mexican Union of Theatre and Music Award. Born in Mexico City in 1942 of Polish and Mexican descent, Bátiz began playing and studying piano at age 8. After attending Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, he moved to New York to study piano and conducting at the Julliard School of Music, graduating in 1965. He started touring extensively as a pianist in 1964 in the United States and from 1965-1971 throughout Europe both as a soloist and in performances with major orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic, the London Philharmonic and the London Symphony. In 1971, Maestro Bátiz founded the Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de México and was its conductor and musical director for 12 years (1971-1983) before moving to the Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra for seven years (1983-1989). In 1990, he returned to the Orquesta Sinfónica, where he continues to the present. In addition, Maestro Bátiz has been a guest conductor of over 500 symphony orchestras worldwide and with a repertory that ranges from classical to contemporary works. He has been described as an artist who conducts with vehemence and enthusiasm.
IRINA CHISTIAKOVA was born in 1990 in Moscow, Russia, and in 1996 was admitted into the piano program at the Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatoire for Music. Three years later, the child prodigy was performing Chopin as a soloist at the conservatory’s Grand Hall. By the time she turned eleven, she had played concert halls throughout Russia, Germany and France and had won awards as both a soloist and in a duet with her older sister Galina, also a talented pianist, including a Double Laureate in the Russian “New Names” Competition. In 2000 Irina was the star of the Irene Langemann film “Russlands Wunderkinder” and was also featured in Langemann’s follow-up film “The Competitors: Russian Children Prodigy 2.” In the 2000’s she continued to win prestigious Russian and European piano competitions including the Moscow Schelkunchik (2002), the F. Chopin International (2004), the Zagreb 2006 Award, the Giuliano Pecar International (Italy, 2007), the Ettore Pozzoli (Italy 2013) and the Manuel Ponce International in Toluca, Mexico (2010) where she also won the gold medal. In 2009 Enrique Bátiz invited her to become a regular guest soloist with the Orquesta Sinfónica del Estado de México. Irina graduated with honors from the Moscow State Conservatoire in 2013 and when she is not touring and recording, she is doing her postgraduate studies there and at the University of Arts in Berlin, Germany.
A private pre-concert reception will be held in the lobby of the Concert Hall from 6:30pm to 7:30pm to honor Mr. Jaime Lucero for his outstanding contribution to the Mexican Studies Institute based at Lehman College. The mission of the Jaime Lucero Mexican Studies Institute at CUNY is to promote enrollment, retention and graduation of Mexican and Mexican-American students; to foster research with and about Mexico and Mexicans in the United States; and to collaborate with community-based organizations to support and empower the Mexican immigrant community in the New York area.
Lehman Center for the Performing Arts is on the campus of Lehman College/CUNY at 250 Bedford Park Boulevard West, Bronx, NY 10468. Tickets for the ORQUESTA SINFÓNICA del ESTADO de MÉXICO on Saturday, February 14th, 2015 at 8pm are $35, $30 and $25, with a special $10 ticket price for children 12 and under, and can be purchased by calling the Lehman Center box office at 718-960-8833 (Monday through Thursday, 10am–5pm, and beginning at 12 noon on the day of the concert), or through online access at www.LehmanCenter.org. Lehman Center is accessible by #4 or D train to Bedford Park Blvd. and is off the Saw Mill River Parkway and the Major Deegan Expressway. Low-cost on-site parking available for $5.
Lehman Center for the Performing Arts, Inc. is supported, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council. The 2014-2015 season is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and through corporations, foundations and private donations.