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Jordan Bak: World Premiere of Esteban Zapata Folk Songs

WQXR's Artist Propulsion Lab Concert Series

Wednesday June 9 2021 • 7:00pm - 8:15pm ET
Available for viewing
In-person event


“A star in the making,” (Seattle Pi) Jamaican-American violist Jordan Bak will premiere Esteban Zapata’s Folk Songs live from The Greene Space. Newly written for Jordan by the Spanish composer, the music incorporates the Iberian sound of Andalusian flamenco and traditional music of Portugal.  Jeffrey Mumford, Quinn Mason, Bach, and Hindemith round out the program. WQXR’s Terrance McKnight hosts.

Jordan Bak, viola
Nina Bernat, double bass
Yi-Fang Huang, piano

J.S. Bach

Sonata for Viola da Gamba and Harpsichord, arr viola/piano BWV 1027

Jeffrey Mumford

through the filtering dawn of spreading daybright, for viola and bass

Quinn Mason

In Memory, for solo viola (2020)

Esteban Zapata

Folk Songs for Solo Viola (2021) – World Premiere (written for Jordan)

  • II. Fado
  • III. Bulería

Paul Hindemith

Viola Sonata, Op. 11 No. 4

Individual creators and performers have been hit hard by the pandemic shutdown, which has made it especially difficult for them to earn an income. WQXR has been working on ways to help in any way possible, so as part of its newly-announced STAR initiative, WQXR is pleased to announce the first cohort of its Artist Propulsion Lab. Six early and mid-career artists, hand-selected by the WQXR team, will receive an honorarium of $15,000, as well as a budget of up to $5,000 to engage collaborators and commission works. They will have the opportunity to take advantage of WQXR’s various outlets to reach audiences via Greene Space performances, on-air curation opportunities, and much, much more.

“A star in the making,” (Seattle Pi) Jamaican-American violist Jordan Bak is an outstanding artist of passion, energy, and authenticity in the recital and chamber music arenas. A Sphinx MPower Artist Grant Recipient and a top laureate of the 2020 Sphinx Competition, Bak is also a winner and Audience Prize recipient of the 2019 Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition, the recipient of the 2019 Samuel Sanders Tel Aviv Museum Prize and the 2019 John White Special Prize from the Tertis International Viola Competition. In addition to his growing solo career, Jordan Bak is a member of the celebrated New York Classical Players and is a featured artist for WQXR’s inaugural Artist Propulsion Lab.

Highlights of the 2020-2021 season include virtual recitals at Merkin Concert Hall, The National Arts Club and the American Viola Society, as well as performances at WQXR/WNYC’s The Greene Space, The Chamber Music Society of Detroit, and Kaufman Music Center’s Musical Storefronts. Bak will also be returning to the legendary Marlboro Music Festival in Vermont. He has been heard as a recitalist and chamber musician in the United States at such venues as Alice Tully Hall, Bruno Walter Auditorium, Jordan Hall, and Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, among others, and in Europe at the Verbier Festival, the Conservatoire de Musique de Genève, the Centre de Musique Hindemith, and the Helsinki Musiikkitalo.

A proud advocate of 20th and 21st century new music, Bak gave the world premieres of Kaija Saariaho’s Du gick, flög for viola and mezzo-soprano and Die Aussicht for string quartet and soprano. Bak also gave an acclaimed performance of the Druckman Viola Concerto with The Juilliard Orchestra at Alice Tully Hall in New York. He has additionally collaborated with such composers as Eli Greenhoe, Sampo Kansurinen, Caroline Shaw, and Delong Wang.

Event Details

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1 hour and 15 minutes
The Greene Space
44 Charlton St
New York , NY 10014 United States


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