Friday July 30, 2021 @ 8:00 pm
The Knights are dedicated to transforming the orchestral experience and eliminating barriers between audience and music. The New York Times has described them as “an adventurous young orchestra that has established a strong reputation for polished performances and imaginative programming.” The ensemble performs the New York premiere of Nico Muhly’s Shrink with Finnish violinist Pekka Kuusisto.
7:00pm / Pre-concert conversation with Nico Muhly, Pekka Kuusisto, and Eric Jacobsen.
Learn About the Artists
Eric Jacobsen, conductor
Conductor and cellist Eric Jacobsen has built a reputation for engaging audiences with innovative and collaborative projects. As conductor of The Knights, Jacobsen has led the “consistently inventive, infectiously engaged indie ensemble” (The New York Times) at New York venues ranging from Carnegie Hall to Central Park, and at such renowned international halls as Vienna’s Musikverein, Cologne Philharmonie, and the Hamburg Elbphilharmonie. Now in his fourth season as music director of the Orlando Philharmonic, Jacobsen is also much in demand as a guest conductor and recently led the Camerata Bern, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Alabama Symphony Orchestra, ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, Deutsche Philharmonie Merck, and Yo-Yo Ma’s Silkroad Ensemble.
Pekka Kuusisto, violin
Violinist, conductor, and composer Pekka Kuusisto is renowned for his artistic freedom and fresh approach to repertoire. Widely recognised for his flair in directing ensembles, Kuusisto is Artistic Director of the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra (from season 21-22), and Artistic Partner with The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and Mahler Chamber Orchestra. He is also a Collaborative Partner of the San Francisco Symphony, and Artistic Best Friend of Die Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. In the 20-21 season, Kuusisto is Artist in Residence with the hr-Sinfonieorchester Frankfurt with whom he will appear as soloist, conductor and chamber musician. He is also In-Residence at Milton Court at the Barbican, which culminates in a concert with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra.
Kuusisto is an enthusiastic advocate of contemporary music and a gifted improviser and regularly engages with people across the artistic spectrum. Uninhibited by conventional genre boundaries and noted for his innovative programming, recent projects have included collaborations with Hauschka and Kosminen, Dutch neurologist Erik Scherder, pioneer of electronic music Brian Crabtree, eminent jazz-trumpeter Arve Henriksen, juggler Jay Gilligan, accordionist Dermot Dunne, and folk artist Sam Amidon. In the coming season he will premiere new concerti by Bryce Dessner, Djuro Zivkovic and Enrico Chapela and chamber works by Sauli Zinovjev and Calliope Tsoupaki. He also performs other concertos written for him including Daníel Bjarnason’s Violin Concerto, Anders Hillborg’s Bach Materia and Nico Muhly’s violin concerto, Shrink.
In recent seasons Kuusisto has premiered new works by Sauli Zinovjev, Anders Hillborg, Philip Venables and Andrea Tarrodi. He also tours around the world with orchestras such as Chicago and Los Angeles symphony orchestras, Concertgebouworkest, Orchestre de Paris, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, London Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Philharmonia, as well as Tapiola Sinfonietta, and the Australian, Scottish and Swedish chamber orchestras.
Kuusisto has released several recordings, notably for Ondine and BIS. He has recently recorded Ades’ Violin Concerto with Aurora and Nicolas Collon for Deutsche Grammophon, Hillborg’s Bach Materia and Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos Nos.3 and 4 with the Swedish Chamber Orchestra and Thomas Dausgaard for BIS and Daniel Bjarnason’s Violin Concerto with the Iceland Symphony Orchestra with the composer conducting for Sono Luminus. Past releases include Erkki-Sven Tüür’s Noesis concerto for violin and orchestra for Ondine and Sebastian Fagerlund’s violin concerto Darkness in Light for BIS, both recorded with Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Hannu Lintu.
The Knights are a Grammy-nominated collection of adventurous musicians, dedicated to transforming the orchestral experience and eliminating barriers between audiences and music.
Having performed and recorded with such renowned soloists as Yo-Yo Ma, Dawn Upshaw, Béla Fleck, and Gil Shaham, and appeared in venues including Vienna’s Musikverein and New York’s Carnegie Hall, recent highlights include a thrilling performance as part of the opening season of the new Hamburg Elbphilharmonie and an appearance as the first American orchestra-in-residence at the Festival de Pâques in Aix-en-Provence, performing multiple concerts throughout the city, including programs with pianist Jean-Yves Thibaudet and violinist Renaud Capuçon.
The Knights recently presented a fully-staged version of Leonard Bernstein’s Candide in honor of his 100th birthday at both the Tanglewood Music Festival and the Ravinia Festival, and gave the premiere of The Head and the Load with international artist William Kentridge at London’s Tate Modern and New York’s Park Avenue Armory. The Knights evolved out of friendly late-night chamber music sessions at the home of violinist Colin Jacobsen and cellist Eric Jacobsen. Since the orchestra’s incorporation in 2007, the brothers have served as its artistic directors.
“There’s every chance that Shrink will become a 21st-century classic.”
—Limelight Magazine, Australia
Pekka Kuusisto, violin
J.S. Bach: Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 in G Major, BWV 1048
Nico Muhly: Shrink (NY Premiere)
Jessie Montgomery: Starburst
Beethoven: String Quartet No. 11 in F Minor, Op. 95, “Serioso”
All artists and dates are subject to change and cancellation without notice as we work closely with local health experts and officials. Please note that all performances at Caramoor are in compliance with current New York State Regulations. Read our latest Health & Safety updates.