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Ariel Horowitz, Violin Recital

Thursday, September 8th
7:30 p.m.

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Special Concert Event

“sweetly lyrical” (Washington Post)

Up-and-coming violinist Ariel Horowitz, a 19 year-old DC native and currently a student of Itzhak Perlman at the Juilliard School, will be joined by pianist Nicola Eimer and violist Lauren Siess. The program will include the DC Premiere of a new work for Violin and Viola by local composer Joel Phillip Friedman. Rescheduled from the January 2016 snowed-out concert.

BACH Sonata No. 3 in C Major, BWV 1005
BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 7 in C Minor, Op. 30, No. 2
RAVEL Sonata No. 2 in G Major
FRIEDMAN DC Premiere of new work for Violin and Viola

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Stephen Hough, Piano

Sunday, September 25th
7:30 p.m.

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“the most perfect piano playing conceivable” (The Guardian)

Polinger Artists of Excellence Concert Series

Stephen Hough is regarded as a renaissance man of his time. He has distinguished himself as a true polymath, securing a reputation as a writer, composer and uniquely insightful concert pianist. With a long-standing international following, Mr. Hough is commended for his mastery of the instrument and for his original and inquisitive mind. In addition to being the first classical performing artist to receive a MacArthur Fellowship, a grant for individuals who show exceptional creativity in their work, he has earned a multitude of other prestigious awards. Click here for a recent review.

SCHUBERT Sonata in A Minor, Op. 143, D. 784
FRANCK Prelude Choral and Fugue
HOUGH Sonata III (Trinitas)
LISZT Valses Oubliées No. 1 and No. 2
LISZT Transcendental Etudes No. 10 and No. 11

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Smaller is Better

Sunday, October 30th
3 p.m.

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With Pianist Mayumi Sakamoto

new orch wash lotoSmaller is Better, The New Orchestra of Washington’s (NOW) motto for its Season Five, is the inspiration for this program of three orchestral works in reduced instrumentation. NOW’s ensemble of soloists will enhance the intimate qualities of the works, and the virtuosity of each individual part. Japanese pianist Mayumi Sakamoto, the youngest person ever (at the age of 19) to participate in the Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition in Moscow, will solo in Grieg’s beloved piano concerto in A Minor. Ms. Sakamoto is the winner of the 2004 International Edvard Grieg Piano Competition in Oslo.

MOZART Overture to The Marriage of Figaro (arr. Ian Farrington)
GRIEG Piano Concerto in A Minor (arr. Mordechai Rechtman)
BRAHMS Symphony No. 2 (arr. Ian Farrington)

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Pacifica Quartet, String Quartet

Sunday, November 13th
7:30 p.m.

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“remarkable expressive range and tonal beauty…. their alluring sound proved breathtaking” (The New York Times)

Polinger Artists of Excellence Concert Series

Recognized for its virtuosity, exuberant performance style, and often-daring repertory choices, the Pacifica Quartet has gained international stature over the past two decades as one of the finest chamber ensembles performing today. Named the quartet-in-residence at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music in March 2012, the Pacifica was also the quartet-in-residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2009–2012) – a position that has otherwise been held only by the Guarneri String Quartet – and received the 2009 Grammy Award for Best Chamber Music Performance.

HAYDN Quartet in G Major, Op. 76, No. 1, Hob. III:75
SHOSTAKOVICH Quartet No. 3 in F Major, Op. 73
BEETHOVEN Quartet in F Major, Op. 59, No. 1

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Polinger Artists of Excellence Concert Series

“poised and monstrously talented” (Philadelphia Inquirer)

“enchanting, sensitive lyricism and hypnotizing forcefulness” (Jerusalem Post)

Violinist Benjamin Beilman, a 2012 Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient and First Prize winner in the 2010 Young Concert Artists International Auditions, is one of his generation’s fastest rising international stars, winning praise in both North America and Europe for his passionate performances and deep rich tone.  Since his gold medal win at the Thirteenth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2009, Chinese pianist Haochen Zhang has captivated audiences in the United States, Europe, and Asia with a unique combination of deep musical sensitivity, fearless imagination, and spectacular virtuosity.

BEETHOVEN Sonata in D Major, Op. 12, No. 1
RAVEL Sonata in G Major
FRANCK Sonata in A Major

Click Here for Beilman Video

Click Here for Zhang Video


duo parnas, Violin + Cello

Sunday, March 5th
7:30 PM

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Polinger Artists of Excellence Concert Series

“a lush tone and executing its complex interplay with pinpoint precision” (The New York Times)

duo parnas is the stunning collaboration of supremely musical sisters, violinist Madalyn Parnas and cellist Cicely Parnas. The duo has earned rave reviews for their exciting and technically flawless performances. They were officially recognized in Carnegie Hall with a 1st prize win at the 2008 International Chamber Music Ensemble Competition. They have performed across the globe in music festivals, recitals, and as soloists with orchestra and have earned international acclaim for their recordings. Their profound artistry speaks of their life-long partnership and performance career.

HONEGGER Sonatine for Violin and Cello
BACH Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major
YSAYE Sonata for Solo Violin, Op. 27, No. 2
HANDEL/HALVORSEN Passacaglia in G Minor
RAVEL Sonata for Violin and Cello

Click Here for duo parnas Video

Click Here for Cicely Parnas Video


We’re on the Air

Tune in to Classical WETA’s Front Row Washington at 90.9 FM on Monday, March 5 at 9 p.m. to hear a broadcast of the spectacular Lise de la Salle concert recorded live at the Bender JCC’s Kreeger Auditorium at the November 12, 2017 Polinger Artists of Excellence Series concert.

Click here for more information.

Brian Ganz Preview Mini-Concert

Saturday, January 12th
2:00 PM


Brilliant pianist Brian Ganz continues his “Extreme Chopin” quest to perform all of Frederic Chopin’s works.

Hear Mr. Ganz in a preview mini-concert at the Bender JCC as he presents a sampling of pieces to be performed at his upcoming recital at the Music Center at Strathmore.





Klezmer Concert and Reception SOLD OUT

Sunday, April 7th
6:00 PM

This event has SOLD OUT – Join the Bender JCC community for a heart-warming, festive, toe-tapping concert featuring Klezmer and Eastern European Jewish music in addition to tunes from The Great American Songbook.

Reception 6:00 PM with wine and heavy hors d’oeuvres.
Concert: 7:00 – 9:30 PM with 30 minute dessert reception at intermission.

Cost: $36

Mount Vernon Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra Concerts

The concert is SOLD OUT. However, there may be seats available at the last minute. The Box Office will open at 1 PM. Feel free to come in on Sunday and put your name on the waiting list.

The Mount Vernon Virtuosi, a new chamber orchestra established by Peabody Conservatory cello faculty artist Amit Peled, is dedicated to nurturing and training local graduate music students.

In their final concert of the season, the Mount Vernon Virtuosi will present a special “Cellobration” entitled Around the World in Six Cellos.

BOCCHERINI Sonata in C Major for Two Cellos 
BACH   Air
BRUCH Kol Nidrei Op. 47
SAINT-SAËNS Cello concerto arranged for six cellos
POPPER Hungarian Rhapsody Op.68