Concerts from the Library of Congress, 2011-2012


Please see the Season-at-a-Glance page for information on when tickets will be available for these concerts/events, and the Tickets page for information on how to obtain tickets.

Image: Patty Loveless, Tim Nichols and Clint BlackCOUNTRY MUSIC ASSOCIATION Songwriters Series
Wednesday, NOVEMBER 16, 2011 at 8:00 pm - Coolidge Auditorium

Image: Bob DiPieroBob DiPiero hosts an intimate evening of country in the Coolidge with top-tier country stars: Patty Loveless, Tim Nichols, and Clint Black.



Image: U.S. Army BluesTHE U.S. ARMY BAND “Pershing’s Own”
Saturday, FEBRUARY 4, 2012 at 8:00pm - Atlas Performing Arts Center
Saturday, MAY 5, 2012 at 2:00pm - Coolidge Auditorium

CMA LogoThe U.S. Army Band continues its excellent family-friendly Concerts from the Collections series, exploring big band music from the era of Ella Fitzgerald and Nelson Riddle (Saturday, February 4) with the U.S. Army Blues at the Atlas Performing Arts Center.

On Saturday, May 5, music by American Mavericks, including Charles Ives, George Antheil, Alan Hovhaness, Henry Cowell and others (Saturday, May 5) at the Library of Congress Coolidge Auditorium.

Saturday, MAY 19, 2012 at 2:00 pm - Coolidge Auditorium

A recital by 23-year-old Armenian cellist Narek Hakhnazaryan, a Young Concert Artists laureate who captured the 1st Prize and Gold Medal at the 14th International Tchaikovsky Competition in June 2011. Pianist to be announced.

This concert is being presented in conjunction with a special exhibit, To Know Wisdom and Instruction: The Armenian Literary Tradition at the Library of Congress. Opening April 19, 2012, the exhibit commemorates the 500th anniversary of the first Armenian printing press and book at Venice in 1512, and the designation of Yerevan, Armenia as UNESCO’s Book Capital of the World, 2012. The exhibition and accompanying book To Know Wisdom and Instruction: The Armenian Collections of the Library of Congress will feature manuscripts, fabrics, and printed books from the Library’s African and Middle Eastern Division, Near East Section, as well as items from the Library’s other custodial divisions.

CMA LogoGRAY CLOUDS: Late Chamber Music of Franz Liszt
LECTURE-RECITAL: "Gray Clouds: Late Chamber Music of Franz Liszt"
with Sabrina Tabby, Scott Moore, violin / Dávid Tóth, viola / Anna Bikales, harp /
Zsólt Balogh, piano
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2011 at 2:00 pm - Coolidge Auditorium

Tamás Zétényi presents a program developed in a year-long residency as Visiting
Hungarian Fellow at Bard College, through research in the Library’s Liszt collections.
Harmonically visionary transcriptions and chamber works – elegies, prayers and
meditations – that stretch the boundaries of tonality and foreshadow music written
a century later.

LISZT: transcriptions of Angelus!, R.W. - Venezia for piano trio; and Am Grabe Richard Wagners for string quartet; and, for cello and piano, Unstern: sinister, disastro; Die Zelle in Nonnenwerth (Elegie); Nuages gris; Schaflos, Frage und Antwort; Wagner/Liszt, La lugubre gondola I and II; and O du, mein holder Abendstern.

Presented in cooperation with the Bard College Conservatory

Saturday, FEBRUARY 18, 2012 at 2:00 pm - Coolidge Auditorium

The Drops will perform and talk about their explorations of 150 years of American music history, and their research in the archives of the Library of Congress. Music based on the African American string band tradition, including jigs, reels, ballads, blues and worksongs from the pre-Civil War South to the present day.

Presented by the Music Division and the American Folklife Center


Mary Pickford Theater, James Madison Building, 3rd Floor. No tickets are required for these events, but seating is first come, first served (theater capacity is 64).

Bach & Friends by filmmaker Michael Lawrence
Wednesday, APRIL 11, 2012 at 7:00 pm - Mary Pickford Theater

“Transformative”... A beautifully photographed two-hour documentary not only for Bachlovers but anyone who loves music. Reflections and performances by more than two dozen world-class artists, including Philip Glass, Joshua Bell, Simone
Dinnerstein, Edgar Meyer, Bela Fleck, Jake Shimabukuro and Hilary Hahn. (running time, 116 minutes).

American Musical Theater at the Library of Congress: Concerts from the Archives
Curated by Mark Horowitz, Music Division

Stephen Sondheim 70th Birthday Concert
Thursday, APRIL 5, 2012 at 7:00 pm - Mary Pickford Theater

Hosted by Nathan Lane, and featuring Marin Mazzie, Audra McDonald, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Debra Monk, an orchestra of 25 playing new orchestrations by Jonathan Tunick, conducted by Paul Gemignani, and directed by Kathleen Marshall, this extraordinary concert featured Sondheim’s rarely performed The Frogs, followed by 13 songs by other writers selected by Sondheim –– “Songs I Wish I’d Written (At Least in Part),” and closing with 5 songs “I’m Glad I Wrote.” (originally presented May 5, 2000).

American Creativity: The Composer-Lyricist Jonathan Larson
Thursday, APRIL 12, 2012 at 7:00 pm - Mary Pickford Theater

Celebrating the Library’s acquisition of Jonathan Larson’s papers, this concert included songs from throughout Larson’s too-brief career, but included several numbers that were either cut from or early versions of songs from RENT, as well as three Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation winners performing their own songs. The company brought together RENT’s original musical director, Tim Weil, the show’s original band, original RENT performers Anthony Rapp and Gwen Stewart, joined by the electric Natascia Díaz, Randy Graff, and Jeremy Kushnier.

Life Begins at 8:40 - A Revue with Music by Harold Arlen, Lyrics by Ira Gershwin & Yip Harburg
Thursday, APRIL 19, 2012 at 7:00 pm - Mary Pickford Theater

This special concert marked the Library’s reconstruction of this mostly forgotten score from 1934, and prepared the way for its first-ever recording. Bursting with an eclectic collection of songs, this concert featured the wildly talented Kate Baldwin, Christopher Fitzgerald, Rebecca Luker, Brad Oscar, and Faith Prince.


Enlightening and enjoyable, informed and informal, these Talking About Music events allow us the luxury of showing off the unique resources of the world’s largest music repository. (All events are open to the public. Tickets are not required, unless otherwise noted.)

BACHFEST at the Library of Congress, Coolidge Auditorium
Saturday, APRIL 14, 2011 beginning at 11:00 am - Coolidge Auditorium

A marathon day exploring the legacy of harpsichordist and Bach scholar Wanda Landowska, whose substantial archives are held in the Library's collections.

Lecture-Demonstration (11:00 a.m. - 12:15 p.m)
"Bach and the Landowska Legacy," SKIP SEMPÉ, harpsichord
Harpsichordist Skip Sempé performs on Wanda Landowska's unique Pleyel instrument and also on her clavichord, with a talk on her Bach performances and the Library's substantial Landowska archives.  (No tickets are required for the Lecture-Demonstration; seating is first-come, first-served.)

Preconcert Performance (6:00 p.m. – 7:15 p.m.) *please note time change from 6:15pm
The young Chinese-canadian marimbist PIUS CHEUNG, a winner of the Young Concert Artists Auditions, has already been recognized as a master soloist, touring worldwide since his 2003 debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra. His recording of the Goldberg Variations elicited a New York Times feature praising his technical command and deeply expressive interpretation.
No tickets required for this performance

Concert (8:00 p.m.) SOLD OUT---Standby tickets available at the door beginning at 6:00
JUILLIARD BAROQUE “Vital…sheer virtuosity” The New York Times
Monica Huggett, Artistic Director
Monica Huggett and Cynthia Roberts, violins / Robert Mealy, violin and viola / Sandra Miller, flute
Phoebe Carrai, cello / Gonzalo Ruiz, oboe / Roberto Nairn, double bass / Kenneth Weiss, harpsichord
An impressive all-star line-up from the Juilliard School: nine sought-after period instrumentalists, familiar names for early music lovers worldwide. Their Bach performances are powerful – “an explosion of energy” – but also reveal a “transparency that brings every strand of Bach’s counterpoint into focus” (The New York Times).

J.S. BACH: Concerto in A minor for flute, violin and harpsichord, BWV 1044
J.S. BACH: from A Musical Offering, BWV 1079, 3-part ricercare for solo harpsichord; canons; and 6-part ricercare
J.S. BACH: Brandenburg Concerto no. 5 in D Major, BWV 1050

Request ADA Accommodations Five (5) Days in Advance by calling 202-707-6362 or
For More Information, please contact Kevin Lavine at 202-707-3686 or

Image: Lucille Ball and Desi ArnazLECTURE/RECITAL: "What the Autograph Can Tell Us:
Beethoven’s Piano Sonata in E Major, opus 109"

with William Meredith, Ph.D, lecturer and Shin Hwang, piano
Saturday, SEPTEMBER 10, 2011 at 12:00 pm - Coolidge Auditorium

William Meredith, Director, The Ira F. Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies One of the treasures of the Library’s collection of composers’ autographs is the manuscript of Ludwig van Beethoven’s late E Major piano sonata. Executive Director of the American Beethoven Society and a professor at San José State University, William Meredith presents a fascinating event with a distinguished collaborator, Malcolm Bilson as partner. Mr. Bilson is one of the few pianists performing today who plays this work according to Beethoven’s tempo markings and with attention to historically informed performance practices. This talk and performance focuses on elements of the creative process visible in the autograph, and some interesting details it can reveal about things Beethoven does not want the performer to do.

LECTURE: Louis Armstrong, Composer of King Oliver’s “Dipper Mouth Blues”
Thursday, MARCH 29, 2012 at 12:00 pm - Coolidge Auditorium

Thomas Brothers, Professor of Music, Duke University.

Image: Antonin DvorakDVOŘÁK IN THE NEW WORLD: Symposium and manuscript display
Saturday, OCTOBER 1, 2011 from 1:00-4:30 pm - Whittall Pavilion and Coolidge Auditorium

Michael Beckerman, Carroll and Milton Petrie Professor of Music, New York University
Eva Velická, Dvořák Museum, Prague

For the first time in more than a century, Antonín Dvořák’s original manuscripts will return to the United States for a special one-day display at the Library of Congress. Dvořák scholar Michael Beckerman has organized a symposium with presentations about the composer’s years in America. Beckerman will speak on the role of African American sources in Dvořák’s conception of an American music. Eva Velická, the Dvořák Museum’s Director, will join him for a discussion, “Manuscripts as Storytellers.”

1:00   Lecture and discussion
         (reservations are required for this lecture; please rsvp to 202-274-9105)
3:00   Dvořák manuscript display is open for viewing
         Coolidge Auditorium foyer - (no reservations required)
3:30   Lecture and demonstration, “Dvořák and Black Music”
         Tenor Reginald Bouknight sings arrangements of spirituals by Henry Burleigh,
         as well as other fragments of black music that Dvořák encountered during his years in America,
         with commentary by Dr. Beckerman - (no reservations required)

Presented in collaboration with the Embassy of the Czech Republic


Presented in the Whittall Pavilion unless otherwise noted. An informal lunchtime series of talks, presentations, and performances showcasing the collections of the Library’s Music Division, and the knowledge of its expert curators.

October 6 - Music for Film: How It’s Done and the People Who Do It (Loras Schissel)
November 3 - Muzio Clementi: Father of Modern Piano Technique (Robin Rausch)
November 17 - Coolidge Commissions of Roy Harris (James Wintle)
February 9 - Music from the Library’s Russian Imperial Collection (Kevin LaVine)
February 23 - It’s Show Time: Sheet Music From Stage and Screen (Sharon McKinley)
March 8 - Dance and Democracy: Politics and Protest, World War I through the Cold War (Elizabeth Aldrich and Victoria Phillips Geduld)
March 22 - Schoenberg and Early Music (Daniel Walshaw)
March 29 - Louis Armstrong, Composer of King Oliver’s “Dipper Mouth Blues” (Thomas Brothers, Professor of Music, Duke University) Presented in Coolidge Auditorium - (AMS Lecture)
April 5 - Chamber Music in Berlin, ca. 1750 (Daniel Boomhower)
April 19 - Graham and Copland’s Appalachian Spring (Loras Schissel and Elizabeth Aldrich)
May 3 - [CANCELED] The History and Reconstruction of Native American Flutes in the Library’s Dayton C. Miller Collection (Steve Bliven, researcher; Barry Higgins, instrument maker and performer) - to be rescheduled in Fall 2012


PAOLO PANDOLFO, viola da gamba
Date to be announced - Coolidge Auditorium
This master class is presented in cooperation with the Viola da Gamba Society of America, Greater Washington-Baltimore chapter.

Saturday, April 27, 2012 at 11:00 am - Coolidge Auditorium

Concerts are presented in the Library’s historic Coolidge Auditorium, located in the Thomas Jefferson Building, 1st and Independence, S.E., unless otherwise noted (view Library of Congress maps & floor plans). All events are free of charge to the public, but tickets are required, available through TicketMaster for a nominal service charge, and from the Atlas Performing Arts Center box office for onLOCation at the Atlas events. For updated concert listings, and details about repertoire and preconcert presentations, please visit this Web site frequently and subscribe to the concert series mailing list. All programs are subject to change without notice.