- Partnership between DSO and The Henry Ford will bring 1703 “Rougemont” Stradivarius to Orchestra Hall
Detroit, (February 11, 2019) – The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) and The Henry Ford have collaborated on a project to bring a rare, historic Stradivarius violin to the stage of one of the world’s most acoustically perfect concert halls.
DSO Associate Concertmaster Kimberly Kaloyanides Kennedy (Schwartz Shapero Family Chair) will play the 1703 “Rougemont” Stradivarius for two performances of Samuel Barber’s Violin Concerto in Orchestra Hall, home of the DSO. The concerts, conducted by DSO Music Director Laureate Leonard Slatkin, are part of the DSO’s three-week American Panorama winter music festival, which celebrates the American symphonic repertoire and features several DSO musicians—including Kennedy—as soloists.
The instrument is one of several rare violins—including another made by Antonio Stradivari—purchased by industrialist Henry Ford in the early 20th century. The violins are in the permanent collection of The Henry Ford in Dearborn, and the loan of the “Rougemont” to the DSO marks a rare occasion during which one of the instruments will be played outside of The Henry Ford’s campus. The orchestra’s history with Henry Ford’s violin collection goes back to the early 1930s when he lent one of the Strads to a soloist, Beatrice Griffin, for her concerts with the DSO at Orchestra Hall.
“We are always thrilled to partner with our friends at The Henry Ford, as we have for more than 25 years on our annual Salute to America concerts at Greenfield Village,” said DSO President and CEO Anne Parsons. “We thank the museum for allowing one of these exceptional instruments to be heard once more in Orchestra Hall during our American Panorama festival, and to reach worldwide audiences through our Live from Orchestra Hall webcasts.”
The loan of the 1703 “Rougemont” Stradivarius is made possible thanks to The Mildred J. and J. Charles Webster Violin Fund, which supports the continued stewardship, conservation and occasional performance of The Henry Ford’s prized violin collection.
“This is a wonderful opportunity, not only to partner with our friends at the DSO, but to bring one of our exquisite violins to life for the community,” said Patricia Mooradian, president & CEO, The Henry Ford. “We are grateful to the Websters for providing the generous support to make this happen and to our friends at the DSO for their ongoing partnership.”
The American Panorama concerts during which Kennedy will play the “Rougemont” violin take place Thursday, February 21 at 7:30 p.m. and Friday, February 22 at 8 p.m. at Orchestra Hall, within Midtown Detroit’s Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center. In addition to Barber’s Violin Concerto, the program includes the world premiere of Kristin Kuster’s Dune Acres, John Cage’s 4’33”, Leonard Bernstein’s Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs with DSO Principal Clarinet Ralph Skiano, and music from West Side Story featuring vocalists Emilie Kouatchou, Jamie Colburn, and Lorna Courtney. Purchase tickets and learn more about the concerts at dso.org/festival.
About The Henry Ford
Located in Dearborn, Michigan, The Henry Ford, a globally-recognized destination, fosters inspiration and learning from hands-on encounters with artifacts that represent the most comprehensive collection anywhere focusing on innovation, ingenuity and resourcefulness in America. Its unique venues include Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, Greenfield Village, Ford Rouge Factory Tour, Benson Ford Research Center and Henry Ford Academy, a public charter high school. Together with its online presence at thehenryford.org, its national television programs, The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation and Did I Mention Invention? and other resources, The Henry Ford helps individuals of all kinds to unlock their potential and help shape a better future. The Henry Ford advanced its role as a catalyst for change in education with the acquisition of The STEMIE Coalition, a growing affiliation of organizations dedicated to fostering innovation, invention and entrepreneurship in students, K-12. With STEMIE, The Henry Ford hosts the National Invention Convention and Entrepreneurship Expo (NICEE) and makes innovation learning curriculum accessible to educators and students worldwide.
About the DSO
The most accessible orchestra on the planet, the acclaimed Detroit Symphony Orchestra is known for trailblazing performances, collaborations with the world’s foremost musical artists, and a deep connection to its city. As a community-supported orchestra, generous giving by individuals and institutions at all levels drives the continued success and growth of the institution. Conductor Leonard Slatkin, who recently concluded an acclaimed decade-long tenure at the helm, now serves as the DSO’s Music Director Laureate, endowed by the Kresge Foundation. Celebrated conductor, arranger, and trumpeter Jeff Tyzik is the orchestra’s Principal Pops Conductor, while the outstanding trumpeter and composer Terence Blanchard holds the Fred A. and Barbara M. Erb Jazz Creative Director Chair. Making its home at historic Orchestra Hall within the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, the DSO offers a performance schedule that features Classical, PNC Pops, Paradise Jazz, and Young People’s Family Concert series. One of America’s most acoustically perfect concert halls, Orchestra Hall will celebrate its centennial in 2019-2020. In addition, the DSO presents the William Davidson Neighborhood Concert Series in seven metro area venues, as well as a robust schedule of eclectic multi-genre performances in its mid-size venue The Cube, constructed and curated with support from Peter D. & Julie F. Cummings. A dedication to broadcast innovation began in 1922, when the DSO became the first orchestra in the world to present a radio broadcast and continues today with the free Live from Orchestra Hall webcast series, which also reaches tens of thousands of children with the Classroom Edition expansion. With growing attendance and unwavering philanthropic support from the people of Detroit, the DSO actively pursues a mission to embrace and inspire individuals, families, and communities through unsurpassed musical experiences.