CD RELEASE PARTY
April 27, 2019
Award-winning classical vocalist
Jacob Nakhman saxophone
Dimitry Olevsky violin
Corey England guitar
Shushan Hakobyan piano
and Master of Ceremony
7:30 pm Arrivals and reception
8:30 pm Concert
10 -11 pm Meet the Artists
5481 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90029
Free parking at 1110 N. Western
(around the corner from the venue)
$35 in advance /$40 at the door
VIP PASS for two: $130
The program includes a selection from the album Midnight Affairs and solo performances by all guest musicians.
CDs and other merchandise are available before and after the concert.
All online ticket purchases will have guaranteed assigned seating.
Door ticket seating is on a first come first serve basis.
ABOUT VERONICA BELL
MIDNIGHT AFFAIRS album press release
Award-winning vocalist Veronica Bell challenges traditions
in her new classical crossover album Midnight Affairs
“ I know it’s crazy to put the Tchaikovsky’s aria and Gardel’s tango practically next to each other but... I believe that music is a reflection of our souls where everything is mixed together; why should a record be any different?”
Operatically trained, Russian-American soprano Veronica Bell is not afraid of raising a few eyebrows. She proudly wears the title Antichrist of Opera given to her for recording Va Pensiero chorus from Verdi’s Nabucco as a solo piece accompanied by ... yes, a metal band. In her new album, she takes full advantage of the wide-open field of classical crossover genre. Not only she transforms solo arias into duets and trios and instrumental music into vocal; she also combines separately written pieces into one and re-works orchestrations to fit her vision. She has a full three-octave range and a big personality, and she is not afraid to use either. Everything she creates exudes passion, and it’s contagious and convincing.
One might argue that classical music is already intelligent and sophisticated enough to be left “as is”. True! But in this case, changes made to original scores give each piece even more powerful individual standing. The flamenco intro in Bizet’s Seguidilla, masterfully improvised by guitarist Corey England, puts us right on the streets of Seville where fiery gypsy Carmen once lived, loved and died. The added voices in the famous Flower duet meander and echo around the original two-part harmony while transforming the atmosphere into the mystical world of fairytales. The soulful sound of violin in Piazzolla’s Oblivion, performed by Dimitry Olevsky, in a duet with voice, creates a breathtaking intensity and profound sadness. In this piece, Veronica steps out of the spotlight giving violin the lead and using her own voice to create the supporting harmony. Je Crois Entendre Encore also known as Romance from Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers here is combined with a lullaby Close Your Eyes by Argentinian composer Osvaldo Golijov. It starts acapella and later transforms into a heartbreakingly gorgeous melancholic duet. Not to be overlooked is the opening of the album, The Music of the Night from Phantom of the Opera. Taken a bit slower than usual, with the first verse sung an octave lower, in the range hardly imaginable for a soprano, it intensifies and expands from measure to measure, getting more and more explosive toward the end when it comes to a final top note that rings fragilely in the air before fading out.
But the final piece of the album, Your Love from the 1968 Eurowestern Once Upon a Time in the West is truly the crown jewel of the album. Typically it is expected to have some up-tempo music conclude the CD selection. Here it is the opposite: the album ends on a soft note offering an alternative refuge – dream-like and poetic.
Other music on the album includes larger than life Passione by an Italian composer Ernesto Tagliaferri, a delicate Russian art song The Statue of Kings’ Village, a tragic and profound Ave Maria by (or attributed to) Giulio Caccini, an intimately entrancing Estrellita by Manuel Ponce with violin solo once again beautifully played by Dimitry Olevsky and stylishly interpreted by pianist Shushan Hakobyan, and a rarely performed in it’s original vocal version Gardel’s tango Por Una Cabeza where the orchestral score is supported with the lush improve by Hollywood’s beloved pianist and celebrity accompanist Greg Schreiner.
The album is full of musical conflicts and contrasts that the audience and critics alike might embrace or reject. Nonetheless, performed in best classical tradition with technical and musical excellence, it certainly deserves our close attention. Midnight Affairs by Veronica Bell stands on its own among other examples of classical crossover genre and raises the bar for those who follow.
“Your album made me cry! I found it hard to choose my favorite song.... the new places you traveled to musically, worked to perfection. I was so moved, I had to play it over and over again and didn't want to say goodbye to this musical journey”
- Jelsa Palao (singer, Grammy Nominee)
“Your album is of exquisite beauty. Your voice awakens pure emotions and transports to spaces of beauty and passion.”
- Paulino Garcia (Official Sponsor)
“Veronica Bell delivers like no other. She understands us and expands us into the sweet slowing music while the sun sets. She can be your sunrise, too.”
– JJ Hollingsworth (Composer, album Music Director)
ABOUT GUEST ARTISTS
Jacob Nakhman, saxophonist-extraordinaire is a graduate of Belarus Conservatory; he moved to the US in 1992. As a musician, Jacob has a classical background that he is able to put to great use to differentiate himself from the general crowd of performers in his field.
A musician of an astounding versatility, Jacob plays sax tenor, sax alto, sax soprano, clarinet, and piano. He is also a well-known composer for sax and other instruments. The album of his original compositions titled Clouds became one of the first Smooth Jazz recordings in former USSR. Jacob successfully combines his love for jazz and classical music in many of his performances. The audiences everywhere receive his arrangements of well known classical tunes such as Bach’s Air on the G String, Chopin’s Prelude in E minor, Liszt’s Liebe Straum, Schubert’s Ave Maria, and many others with much excitement and appreciation.
Other compositions that Jacob frequently includes into his programs are themes from his favorite movies such as Once Upon a Time in America, The Godfather, Last Tango in Paris, The Thomas Crown Affair and of course his own arrangement of songs from the repertoire of everybody’s beloved performers such as Celine Dion, Elton John, Elvis Presley, Santana, Andrea Bocelli, Tony Bennet, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole.
To find out more about Jacob Nakhman, please visit his website at www.jacobnakhman.com
Dimitry Olevsky graduated with a Doctorate of Musical Arts from UC Santa Barbara with a full scholarship, under the tutelage of the renowned violinist Yuval Yaron. During his doctoral studies, he held the principal position of the Young Artists Quartet in residence as well as the concertmaster of the UCSB Symphony, with which he had the privilege to perform as the concerto competition winner. Dimitry earned his Master of Music degree from the prestigious Manhattan School of Music under the guidance of Grigory Kalinovsky.
Dimitry was awarded a full scholarship for the duration of his Bachelor studies with professor Linda Rose at California State University, Long Beach, during which he was a concerto competition winner, a scholarship winner, and the concertmaster of the university symphony orchestra.
Currently, Dimitry maintains a full-time touring and teaching schedule. His performance collaborations consist of solo, chamber and orchestral music. He has performed in the United States, Russia, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Spain, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Poland, Italy, England, Wales, and Scotland.
Dimitry performs with the top orchestras of Los Angeles and has collaborated with conductors such as Kurt Masur, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Kent Nagano, Keneth Keisler, Pinchas Zukerman, and John Williams.
In 2012 Dr. Olevsky published a dissertation in the field of sports psychology for peak performance titled “The Study of Success in Music: Applying Methods Developed by Sports Psychology towards Achieving Peak Performance”
Dimitry plays a Riccardo Antoniazzi, 1889 violin.
Corey England is one of the fastest-rising stars in the nylon-string guitar world having performed both classical and flamenco guitar extensively in concert with the world's finest performers. His schedule has included classical and flamenco guitar performances in festivals and on television and radio in the United States, Brazil, Chile, Italy, France, Morocco, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Yemen and has performed on numerous occasions at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, in Washington D.C. His duo "Douze Cordes," with guitarist Michael Bard has performed in the Middle East, North Africa, Italy and Chile on three tours as Cultural Ambassadors of the U.S. Department of State performing for royalty and dignitaries, in festivals, and on television and radio.
In 2006 he was appointed Assistant Professor in the area of Guitar Performance, (Classical, Flamenco, Jazz) at California State University, Fresno. His guitar method book co-authored with Juan Serrano entitled "The Flamenco/Classical Guitar Tradition" was released worldwide on Mel Bay Publications in 2008. His duo CD with Alan Durst is available worldwide on Centaur Records. Corey's solo CDs are available on cdbaby.com.
Corey made his debut at the Kennedy Center on April 17th, 2000 with saxophonist Davey Yarborough. Following this performance, he was invited to give his Kennedy Center solo concert on October 18th, 2000. On Dec. 8th, 2002 his duo Douze Cordes made its Kennedy Center debut on Kennedy Center Honors Night at the Millennium Stage Concert Series in the Theater Lab, where Billy Taylor's Jazz at the Kennedy Center has frequently hosted some of the greatest names in jazz.
Corey England received his Ph.D. from Arizona State University and currently holds a position of Professor of Music at Fresno State University.
Shushana Hakobyan received both Masters and Doctorate degrees in music at the Komitas State Conservatory in Armenia. She was one of the leading soloists of the Armenian State Philharmonic and a founding member of the SHELL Armenian State Philharmonic Trio. She has given recitals in the US, Canada, Austria, France, Italy, Lebanon, Russia, and Ukraine. Shushan is a recipient of multiple international music awards. Since 2014 she has collaborated with violinist and composer, Ruben Aghiyan, forming the group,
Unison Duet with whom she has played numerous concerts in the USA and abroad. Since 2016 the duo has given charitable concert tours in Armenia to help families in need. In 2018 opened a violin class in the village Achajur for their program, “Keep Armenian Borders Spiritually Strong,” helping talented kids in the borders of Armenia to get music education. All proceeds from their CD Fantasy go to this cause. Shushan is also a successful and inspiring piano instructor with more than 13 years of teaching experience. She is a sought out soloist and a collaborative artist in Southern California.