CULTURE

Leonard Slatkin to stand in for Andrew Davis at Patras

Following canceled performances by two of classical music’s masters – Mstislav Rostropovich, widely regarded as the world’s greatest cellist, and Croatian piano virtuoso Ivo Pogorelic, yet another prominent figure in the field – the conductor Sir Andrew Davis will not make it to Patras to perform as part of the provincial city’s European Cultural Capital events. Davis has been admitted to the hospital to undergo emergency heart surgery, according to an announcement made by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, which Davis was to have conducted in Patras. Even so, the performance will go ahead as scheduled, on August 25 at the Roman Odeon, with another leading conductor, Leonard Slatkin, at the podium as Davis’s replacement. The repertoire remains unchanged. Slatkin canceled a series of scheduled commitments with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra for his impromptu performance in Patras and other European cities with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Slatkin ranks as one of the most prominent conductors today. He succeeded Rostropovich at the helm of the Washington National Symphony Orchestra, where he continues to serve as artistic director, a position Slatkin has held over the past decade. The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, world-renowned both for its recordings and live radio broadcasts of concerts, will perform works by Strauss, Bernstein and Brahms. Besides the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s August 25 performance, the Patras 2006 Cultural Capital agenda includes other classical music highlights. Internationally renowned violinist Anne Sophie Mutter and pianist Lambert Orkis will perform on August 30 at the University of Patras’s Cultural and Conference Center. Mutter and Orkis will perform some of the best known sonatas for violin by Mozart to mark the composer’s 250th birth anniversary. Russian pianist Nikolai Lugansky will perform on September 9 at the Roman Odeon. In addition to frequent collaborations with leading conductors, the 34-year-old musician has also released a series of award-winning recordings.