World renowned clarinetist Alexander Fiterstein brings his trio to Virginia Tech on Monday, Oct. 13 at 7:30 p.m. as part of the Music on Monday series hosted by the School of Performing Arts. 

The performance will be held in the Squires Student Center Recital Salon.

The Alexander Fiterstein Trio was formed in 2008 with cimbalom player Walter Zev Feldman and accordionist Christina Crowder. For the Virginia Tech performance, cellist Nicholas Canellakis will perform in place of Feldman. Pianist and faculty member Tracy Cowden will also join the trio. The program will feature an evening of klezmer music. 

Born of the Jewish tradition, klezmer music originally consisted of lively dance tunes and instrumental pieces for weddings and other celebrations. The genre evolved in the early 1900s as Yiddish-speaking Jewish immigrants from Eastern Europe assimilated American jazz into the art form. Fiterstein’s remarkable versatility allows him to easily transition from the classical genre into the lively, vivacious style of this Jewish folk tradition.

Considered one of today’s most exceptional clarinet players, Fiterstein has performed in recital and with prestigious orchestras and chamber music ensembles throughout the world. Heralded by the New York Times as possessing a “beautiful liquid clarity,” he is recognized for playing that combines flawless technique and consummate musicianship with graceful phrasing and a warm soulful tone.

The Washington Post declares, “Fiterstein treats his instrument as his own personal voice, dazzling in its spectrum of colors, agility, and range. Every sound he makes is finely measured without inhibiting expressiveness.”

Fiterstein has appeared with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s at Lincoln Center, Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela, Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra, China National Symphony Orchestra, Danish National Symphony Orchestra, Israel Chamber Orchestra, Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, KBS Symphony Orchestra in Korea, Polish Chamber Philharmonic, Tokyo Philharmonic, and the Vienna Chamber Orchestra. He has performed in recital at the National Gallery of Art, the Kennedy Center, the 92nd Street Y, Carnegie’s Weill Hall, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, the Louvre in Paris, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, and the Tel-Aviv Museum.

In addition to the musical performance, Fiterstein will also host a free screening of the film "Orchestra of Exiles" on Sunday, Oct. 12 at 1:30 p.m. at the Lyric Theatre and will speak immediately following the film.

The performance is possible with major support from the Malcolm and Diane Rosenberg Judaic Studies Program in the Department of Religion and Culture at Virginia Tech, and Hillel at Virginia Tech. Main Street Inn is the official hotel sponsor of the Music on Mondays series.

Tickets for the Alexander Fiterstein Trio performance are $15 general, $10 senior, and $5 student, and may be purchased through the Squires Student Centers and Activities ticket office, or by calling 540-231-5615. Tickets will also be available at the box office beginning one hour prior to the performance. 

Squires Theatre is located in the Squires Student Center at 290 College Ave. on the campus of Virginia Tech. Free parking is available on weekends and after 5 p.m. weekdays in the Squires Lot, located at the corner of College Avenue and Otey Streets, in the Architecture Annex Lot on Otey Street, and the Perry Street/Prices Fork lots. Find more parking information online or call 540-231-3200. Alternative parking is available in the Kent Squire parking garage and the Farmers Market metered parking lot, both located on Draper Road. Additional downtown Blacksburg parking information can be found online.



Written by Willie Caldwell of Blacksburg, VA., a graduate student studying arts leadership in the School of Performing Arts.

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