zuill_bailey_20120730_1383609914The Brevard Philharmonic opens its 38th season with a concert of Russian Treasures offering works by Tchaikovsky and Prokofiev. Featured will be one of the premier cellists in the world, Zuill Bailey. On Sunday, September 21 at 3pm, the musician the Washington Post calls, “A master performer” and the Cape(town) Times calls a “rockstar” will take the stage at Brevard College’s Porter Center.

The concert opens with the Philharmonic playing the joyful and extroverted Symphonic No. 2, Opus 17 in C Minor (“Little Russian”) by Pyotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky. The piece was inspired by the peasant songs the composer heard while vacationing at his sister’s country home in the area called “Little Russia.”  In the summer of 1872 when this piece was written, Tchaikovsky told his brother, “I think this is my best work yet in terms of polished form.”

The guest artist joins the orchestra  for Sergei Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante, Opus 125.  Prokofiev struggled with this piece until the then 20 year old cellist, Mstislav Rostropovich, stepped in to insure that the work would contain ample display opportunities for the solo cellist.  Full of Russian passion, counterpoint and difficulty, this piece showcases beautifully the mastery and artistry of Zuill Bailey.

A consummate concerto soloist, Zuill Bailey has secured his place as one of the most sought after and active cellists today. Critics attribute this to his rare combination of artistry, technical wizardry and engaging personality.  Bailey has appeared with the symphonic orchestras of Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, and Toronto, to name a few, as well as having played with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra during its 50th anniversary tour of Russia.

An exclusive recording artist on the Telarc label, his celebrated “Bach Cello Suites” and recently released “Britten Cello Symphony/Sonata” CD’S both immediately soared to number one on the classical Billboard Magazine charts.

A graduate of the Peabody Conservatory and the Juilliard School, Zuill Bailey was named the 2014 Johns Hopkins University Distinguished Alumni, and was awarded the Classical Recording Foundation award for 2006 and 2007 for his “Beethoven’s Complete Works for Cello and Piano.”

Bailey’s accomplishments and high profile have led him in the direction of television where he has made appearances on the HBO series “OZ,”  and NBC’s “Homicide”; however, he has no aspirations as an actor and divides his time when not touring between the positions of Artistic Director of El Paso Pro-Musica (Texas), the Sitka Summer Music Festival and Series (Alaska), the Northwest Bach Festival (Washington),  guest Artistic Director of the Mesa Arts Center (Arizona) and Professor of Cello at the University of Texas, El Paso.

He has been heard on NPR’s “Morning Edition,” “Tiny Desk Concert,” “Performance Today,” “Saint Paul Sunday,” BBC’s “In Tune,”  XM Radio’s “Live from Studio 11,”  and Sirius Satellite Radio’s “Virtuoso Voices.”

Critics have called him “flawless,”  “intense,”  “in a league of his own” and “one of the greatest cellists of all time.”

Zuill Bailey performs on a 1693 Matteo Gofriller Cello, formerly owned by Mischa Schneider of  the Budapest String Quartet.

The Brevard Philharmonic is comprised of regional and local musicians, presenting six concerts annually at the Porter Center for the Performing Arts under the distinguished baton of Maestro Donald Portnoy, its artistic director and conductor.

This concert is sponsored by Dr. and Mrs. James Robertson.

Tickets are on sale now. $30 plus tax for adults. $5 for students. To purchase tickets, please visit www.brevardphilharmonic.com      or call (828) 884-4221.