River House Concerts

Riverhouse Concerts
Riverhouse Concerts
Riverhouse Concerts
Riverhouse Concerts

Next concert…
Saturday, October 21, 2017   6pm

Riverhouse Concerts
5258 N. Front St
Harrisburg, PA  17110




To Our Wonderful Riverhouse Concert Patrons and Friends,

We are pleased to open sales now to the third program of our 2017-18 Riverhouse Concerts Season, titled “Autumn Colors and Spooky tunes”, scheduled for October 21, 2017 at 6 pm.  As you may imagine, most of the music on this program has to do either with Fall themes or those associated with the more sinister characters of Halloween, such as Goblins, Monsters and Worse,
muahahahahahahaha!!!!
You will also note the concert arrival time has been moved a half hour earlier to 6 pm, due to the waning daylight hours of Fall, and so you may enjoy hors-d’oevres and wine as the sun sets, before the music begins.  This will also be a costume optional event, with the winning couple receiving 2 free tickets to the next concert!  We’ve made it optional, because some might not feel comfortable sitting through the performance in a gorilla outfit, (consider comfort, even if you do dress up!) and because those who do not wear costumes can be enlisted to judge, hopefully!  Again, this is your series, so Gary and I just want you to truly enjoy yourselves as you partake in another “Sound /Experience” at the Riverhouse.  Joining us for the evening will be pianist, Michael Shepard (bio below)!

6:00pm – Welcome, wine and food as the sun sets over the river and mountains
6:40pm – Concert begins with Vivaldi “Autumn”
followed by works of, Saint-Saens, Chopin arranged by Wilhelm,
Bazzini’s fiendish “Round of the Goblins” and “October/November” from Tchaikovsky’s Four Seasons.
Fini Henriques’ fiery and playful “ Devil Dance” conclude the first half.

After a short intermission to stretch and move about, we will continue with

Fanny Mendelssohn’s lovely “Oktober”, from “Das Jahr”.

In the first half of the 20th century, it was commonplace to include concerti, or movements thereof in recital programs .
The practice somehow fell out of favor with musicians, and the more sonata laden programs we see became the norm.
So in the spirit of days bygone, we conclude the concert with
Max Bruch’s beloved and forever popular Concerto no. 1 in G minor,
plus one more well known, spooky surprise!

Immediately after, we will return to visit together at the pavilion, where hot cider awaits in a black cauldron, heated by the flames of the witches’ bonfire……… here , the winners of the best costumes will be announced, before we bid one another farewell and Godspeed, into the dark night….

With all my Love,
Odin Rathnam

The Riverhouse, the site of this concert series, was built in 2014 and is the artistic creation of Gary Lysaght, who designed and built the house with the aid of just a handful of workers.  The imposing facade harmonizes with the adjacent buildings of historic Fort Hunter Park.  Step inside, and you enter a modernistic world of soaring heights, with the broad Susquehanna River providing an ever-changing vista through the structure’s western wall, entirely of glass.  Attracted by the unique beauty of the Riverhouse and its excellent acoustics, violinist Odin Rathnam has chosen the site for a series of intimate concerts.  Odin and Gary welcome you and hope you enjoy these special evenings where music, nature, wine and good food will come together with people in a truly unique musical and sensory experience.

“When Gary first gave me a tour of the residence, I was immediately struck by the open, light feel of the space, the way Nature is drawn in through the floor to ceiling windows overlooking the River, Rockville Bridge and mountains, and the perfect acoustics that the vaulted space and maple floors help to provide”, Rathnam notes.”  I am humbled and fortunate to have been afforded this opportunity to partner with Gary in bringing something new and beautiful to the community that has been such a huge support and factor in my own career and artistic development for 26 years.  We aim to create a series of concerts based on the convergence of sight, sound, taste and the ambiance of this gem of a venue and share that with 60 to 70 guests, four or five times a year.  As Artistic Director, I look forward to bringing many exceptional colleagues and friends together, as we explore and present great works from the chamber music repertoire, pieces off the beaten track, and diverse styles and disciplines.  There will be surprises, all given in the spirit of Art and Love.”

Odin Rathnam
Odin Rathnam

Odin Rathnam

Since his critically acclaimed Lincoln Center debut in 1993, the American violinist Odin Rathnam has established himself as one of the most passionate and versatile artists of his generation. He has received unanimous praise from critics and audiences for his “captivating temperament,” “brilliant technique” and a sound “recalling the legendary violinists of the past”. A veteran performer at many major European and American festivals including the Algarve International Music Festival in Portugal, Denmark’s Tivoli and Vendsyssel Festivals, Deia International Festival in Mallorca, Boswil Festival in Switzerland, Aspen, Caramoor and Endless Mountain Music Festivals, he has also appeared in recital on the Market Square Concerts series, Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall and Carnegie Recital Hall, where he first appeared at the age of 15.

As a soloist, Odin Rathnam has performed with the Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, the Philippine Philharmonic, the Colombian National Symphony, the Harrisburg Symphony, Philadelphia Virtuosi, the Lancaster Symphony, the York Symphony, the EMMF Orchestra, The New Amsterdam Symphony , the San Juan Symphony Orchestra, Randers Chamber Orchestra, among others. During his distinguished career of more than 30 years, he has enjoyed the fortune of collaborating as a guest soloist, concertmaster and leader with many distinguished conductors, including Sergiu Commissiona , Pinchas Zukerman, JoAnnFalletta, Stephen Gunzenhauser, Olivier Ochanine, Lawrence Golan, Arthur Post, Stuart Malina, Daniel Spalding and many more, appearing in the United States, Canada, Europe and the Far East.

Recent performances include concerti of Brahms , Mendelssohn, Korngold, Vivaldi, Piazzolla and Bruch, a performance of Sarasate “ Zigeunerweisen” with the Hershey Symphony at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall as well as recitals in the United States and Portugal. In 2007, he made his Tivoli Festival debut playing Prokofiev Sonata for Two Violins with Nikolai Znaider. The Danish newspaper, Kristelig Dagblad, hailed the “outstanding, full-blooded romantic violin playing by both players.” Four years later, he made his Danish orchestral debut, playing and conducting Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and Piazzolla’s Four Seasons of Buenos Aires, with the Randers Chamber Orchestra.

Upcoming performances include a three concert series in the Mid State of Pennsylvania, presenting the complete Sonatas and Partitas of J.S. Bach, as well as works by Paganini, Ysaye , Kreisler and Piazzola, a regional tour of violin and piano recitals with works by Strauss, Stravinsky, Chausson and Sarasate and orchestral solo appearances featuring works by Bruch, Bach and Sarasate.

Mr. Rathnam ‘s commitment to the development of young talents has led many of his students to be accepted at major conservatories throughout the United States and abroad, several going on to win prizes in national and international competitions, including the Fischoff, Nielsen and Queen Elizabeth competitions. He has served as a performing faculty member at Anker Buch’s Danish Summer School for Strings on the island of Mors, Danish Strings, and the Nordic Music Academy led by Nikolai Znaider . In 2012, Mr. Rathnam accepted an appointment as artistic director of the Academia de Verao in Lagos, Portugal. He then established the Silkeborg Classic Academy, with Danish conductor, Christian Horbov-Meier , which takes place annually in Denmark. In 2013, Mr. Rathnam was invited to give his lecture /masterclass series “ Lost in Translation-Demystifying the Principles of Ivan Galamian in Practical Application” at Juilliard, for the Starling DeLay Symposium, classes he has also presented in Chicago ,Copenhagen, Zambales ( Philippines), Portugal and at the Universities of Penn State, James Madison, New Mexico State University and Fort Lewis College, in Durango, Colorado. In the fall of 2016, Mr. Rathnam accepted a sabbatical post as professor of violin at Penn State University, in State College.

As a chamber musician, Odin Rathnam has collaborated ( violin/viola) with many leading artists of his generation including: violinists Nikolai Znaider, Gil Shaham, Adele Anthony and Kurt Nikkanen; pianists Rohan De Silva, Albert Tiu, Robert Koenig, Christopher Guzman, and Anton Nel; and cellists Matt Haimowitz, Bion Tsang, Sara Sant’Ambrogio, Wendy Warner, and Daniel Gaisford, Concertante ( the critically acclaimed ensemble he founded in 1995), the Rafael Trio, the Ying Quartet , the Sweet Plantain String Quartet, and the Fry Street Quartet.

Mr. Rathnam received his formal training at Juilliard Pre-College and Mannes College of Music with Sally Thomas and Ann Setzer, returning to the Juilliard School as a full scholarship student of Dorothy DeLay and Masao Kawasaki. He studied chamber music with Julius Levine, Felix Galimir, Joel Smirnoff, and Josef Gingold. He also worked closely with the Danish violinist and pedagogue Anker Buch , who is credited by many for bringing Ivan Galamian’s teachings to Denmark.

Mr. Rathnam’s recordings can be found on The Helikon, West Branch and Kleos labels, with works by Mendelssohn, Vivaldi, Strauss and Schoenberg.

Odin Rathnam performs on a late 19th century violin crafted by an unknown master, in the manner of Guarnerius Del Gesu’s middle period.

Michael Sheppard
Michael Sheppard

Michael Sheppard

Known as “a virtuosic soloist possessed of power, sensitivity, earthiness, and humor” (Whitney Smith, Indianapolis Star) with the “power to make an audience sit up and pay attention…thought-provoking for performers and listeners alike” (James Manheim, All Music Guide ), Michael Sheppard trained with the legendary Leon Fleisher at the Peabody Conservatory. He was selected by the American Pianists Association as a Classical Fellow, which designation led to the recording of his Harmonia Mundi CD of 2007. In 2018, another recording will be released by Azica, a Cleveland-based label distributed worldwide by Naxos Records.

He has performed solo recitals and concertos around the world, as well as across the USA, including several solo Weill (Carnegie) Hall recitals and a solo Kennedy Center debut. He gives master classes, teaches regularly and plays with some of the top singers and instrumentalists around; he also coaches singers, instrumentalists, and conductors.

Michael Sheppard today stands at a crossroads, spending large amounts of time writing as well as performing and teaching. He has worked closely with fellow composers John Corigliano, Christopher Theofanidis, Michael Hersch, Robert Sirota and with the late Nicholas Maw, demonstrating a deep love of new music; his eclectic tastes also led him recently to musical-direct performances of Jason Robert Brown’s Broadway show “The Last Five Years”.

Michael Sheppard is a native of Philadelphia and resides in Baltimore, where he works at both the Peabody Conservatory and the Baltimore School for the Arts, sharing his love and understanding of music and the artistic process with future generations.