Ira Levin

Ira Levin

Brillamment dirigé par le chef Ira Levin, l’OSQ joue tout en nuances et sait se montrer puissant aux bons endroits, comme lors du Dies Irae, qui ponctue à différents moments cette œuvre de Verdi
Le Journal de Québec

Le chef d’orchestre Ira Levin a dirigé avec élan et beaucoup de naturel, l’Orchestre symphonique a joué avec fermeté et aplomb, le choeur de l’Opéra de Québec n’a jamais chanté mieux ni plus subtilement.
maPress

The orchestra under Ira Levin was the great centre of interest: if the tension was sometimes lacking on stage, it was surely present in the strong work of the conductor with his responsive players: the music came out colourful, rhythmic, always interesting and alive.
Buenos Aires Herald

Es ist ziemlich unglaublich, welche Qualität Levin mit dem Orchester bei einem so anspruchsvollen Programm erreichen konnte.
Busonis Instrumentales Hauptwerk in Orchestralem Klanggewand

A native of Chicago, Ira Levin began piano lessons at the age of 9 and entered the Northwestern University School of Music’s program at 12 years old. At 17, he began his piano studies with Jorge Bolet at Indiana University, following him the next year to the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where he became Bolet’s teaching assistant as well. While at Curtis, he studied conducting with Max Rudolf, and appeared in performances of Leonard Bernstein’s Age of Anxiety, conducted by the composer himself.

In 1985 he was engaged as assistant to Michael Gielen at the Frankfurt Opera, where he made his conducting debut with Fidelio. He then went on to become Principal Conductor at the Bremen Opera from 1988-1996, and at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Düsseldorf, from 1996-2002, as well as holding the position of Principal Guest Conductor at the Kassel Opera from 1994-1998.

In 2001 he became Music and Artistic Director of the Theatro Municipal and the Municipal Orchestra in São Paulo, Brazil, the first North American to head one of the most important opera houses in South America. He held this post from 2002-2005, bringing the Municipal and its orchestra national and international acclaim. He conducted the first Janácek opera in Brazil’s history, Jenufa, in 2004, and the Brazilian premieres of Janácek’s Missa Glagolitica, Shostakovich’s 4th Symphony, Mahler’s 10th Symphony, Sibelius’ Kullervo, Schoenberg’s Concerto for String Quartet, and many other classic and modern works. In November of 2004 Ira Levin and the Municipal Orchestra of São Paulo won the coveted Carlos Gomes Award for the best orchestra in Brazil. From 2007-2010 he was the Music and Artistic Director of the National Theater of Brazil, in Brasilia, bringing the orchestra hugely diverse concert seasons and international attention, as well as one of the largest educational programs in South America, attended by over 45,000 students from public schools. He also toured with the orchestra in Brazil and South Korea.

Since this time Ira Levin has performed at opera houses and with orchestras throughout the world. These include the Semperoper Dresden, the Leipzig Gewandhaus, the Frankfurt Museum Orchestra, the Düsseldorf Symphony, the Duisburg Philharmonic, the Bruckner Orchestra Linz, the Badische Staatskapelle Karlsruhe, the Bremen Philharmonic, the Portuguese Symphony Orchestra Lisbon, the State of Mexico Symphony Orchestra, the National Symphony Taiwan, the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, the Dublin Opera, the Montpellier Opera, the Norske Opera in Oslo, the Cape Town Opera, and many others. Ira Levin has conducted more than 1000 performances of over 60 operas. His concert programs as a conductor and pianist have included most of the standard repertoire and many lesser-known works. He has worked with many internationally renowned instrumentalists, singers and stage directors.

Between 2011 and 2015 he was the Principal Guest Conductor at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, where he made his operatic début with Lohengrin in September 2011, and was invited back for the 2012 season to conduct the first-ever staged performances of Enescu’s Oedipe in the Americas. In 2013 he also made his début at the Berlin Philharmonic Hall, conducting his orchestration of Busoni’s Fantasia Contrappuntistica and Schumann’s 4th Symphony with the Berlin Symphony Orchestra. In this concert he also performed Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 14. In August 2014 he conducted Verdi’s Requiem with the Québec Symphony Orchestra at the Grand Théâtre de Québec. Further highlights of the 2014/15 Season included concerts in Porto Alegre and Sao Paulo, as well as Madam Butterfly at the Teatro Colón.

The 2015/16 season saw him conduct Don Carlos and The Fiery Angel at the Teatro Colón as well as revival of Falstaff with the Hannover State Opera, a successful collaboration that began in 2012. In Hannover again he conducted La forza del destino. He made his début at the Bucharest National Opera in March of 2016 conducting Oedipe. The following season he conducted several performances of Marschner’s Der Vampyr as well as Stravinsky’s Pulcinella at the Grand Théâtre de Geneve, marking his début at this illustrious house. More recently he made his US operatic debut with the New York City Opera conducting Respighi’s La campana sommersa and took over the musical direction of Schumann’s “Scenes from Faust” performed with the Suisse Romande Orchestra and the chorus of the Grand Theater Geneva. This season he will conduct Katya Kabanova at the Theatro Sao Pedro in Sao Paulo.

In addition to his busy schedule as a conductor, Ira Levin has written several piano transcriptions and orchestrations. His complete transcriptions for piano were published by the Finnish Edition Tilli in 2013, while the CD Ira Levin Piano Transcriptions was already released by the Spanish label Lindoro in 2007, and chosen by the prestigious magazine Revista Bravo as the best classical CD of the year in Brazil. In the 2011/12 Edition Tilli also published his orchestrations of Busoni’s Fantasia Contrappuntistica and Liszt’s Fantasia and Fugue on BACH, works which have been performed in Germany, Finland, Brazil, Argentina and
Uruguay. His 2012 orchestration of César Franck’s Piano Quintet, entitled Symphony in F minor, had its successful world premiere with the Helsinki Philharmonic under the direction of Leif Segerstam in October 2014. His 2014 orchestrations of five Rachmaninoff works have been successfully performed by the Buenos Aires Philharmonic, Porto Alegre Symphony and the orchestra of the SODRE, Montevideo. Most recently, his 2015 orchestration of Reger’s piano masterpiece, Variations and Fugue on a theme by J.S. Bach, received its successful world premiere in Turku, Finland in February 2016, also under the direction of Leif Segerstam. Ira Levin conducted this and other works by Reger with the Brandenburg State Orchestra and with the Malaga Symphony later that year.

With the London Symphony Orchestra he recorded a CD of works by the American composer Michael Colina, which appeared in 2011 on Fleur de Son/Naxos, receiving excellent reviews. A second CD with Levin and the LSO featuring works by Colina was released in September 2012. A 2014 recording of Colina’s Requiem, Requinauts, with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and Chorus was released on Fleur de Son/Naxos at the end of 2014, again to critical acclaim.

Other CDs include the first modern recording of the 1899 1st edition of Bruckner’s 6th Symphony with the Symphony Orchestra of the Norrlands Opera, released in 2009 by Lindoro. The world premiere recording of the 1892 1st edition of Bruckner’s 2nd Symphony will be available in 2016. More recently, he appeared in the Maximum Reger documentary, named by BBC Music Magazine as the “standout classical DVD release of 2017”, performing some of Reger’s works with the Brandenburg State Orchestra.

An award winning pianist, he won the 1st prize at the American Chopin Competition in 1980. He has performed throughout the United States, South America, and Europe. He continues to appear in recital and concert, often leading concertos from the keyboard as well.

Ludwig van Beethoven
Fidelio
Walter Braunfels
Die Vögel
Benjamin Britten
Peter Grimes
Ferruccio Busoni
Doktor Faust
Arlecchino
Francesco Cilea
Adriana Lecouvreur
Gaetano Donizetti
Lucia di Lammermoor
George Enescu
Oedipe
George Gershwin
Porgy and Bess
Detlev Glanert
Caligula
Georg Friedrich Händel
Saul
Alcina
Engelbert Humperdinck
Hänsel und Gretel
Christoph Willibald Gluck
Orfeo ed Euridice (Berlioz)
Leoš Janácek
Jenufa
Ruggiero Leoncavallo
Pagliacci
Frank Martin
The Tempest
Pietro Mascagni
Cavalleria Rusticana
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Così fan tutte
Die Entführung aus dem Serail
Don Giovanni
Le nozze di Figaro
Idomeneo
Die Zauberflöte
Modest Mussorgsky
Boris Godunov (Original 1869, 1872 and Shostakovich)
Carl Nielsen
Maskerade
Jacques Offenbach
Les contes d’Hoffmann (Oeser and Kay Versions)
Hans Pfitzner
Palestrina
Amilcare Ponchielli
La Gioconda
Sergei Prokofiev
L’amour des trois oranges
Ognenny angel (The Fiery Angel)
Giacomo Puccini
La Bohème
Gianni Schicchi
Madama Butterfly
Suor Angelica
Il tabarro
Tosca
Sergei Rachmaninov
Aleko
Francesca da Rimini
Gioacchino Rossini
Il barbiere di Siviglia
Camille Saint-Saëns
Samson et Dalila
Arnold Schönberg
Moses und Aron
Dmitri Shostakovich
Ledi Makbet mtsenskovo uyesda
Bedrich Smetana
Prodaná nevesta (The Bartered Bride)
Johann Strauß
Die Fledermaus
Richard Strauss
Der Bürger als Edelmann
Elektra
Die Frau ohne Schatten
Der Rosenkavalier
Salome
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky
Yevgeny Onegin
Giuseppe Verdi
Aida
Un ballo in maschera
Don Carlos
Ernani
Falstaff
La forza del destino
Macbeth
Otello
Rigoletto
Simone Boccanegra
La Traviata
Il Trovatore
Richard Wagner
Der fliegende Holländer
Götterdämmerung
Lohengrin
Parsifal
Das Rheingold
Siegfried
Tannhäuser
Tristan und Isolde
Die Walküre
Carl Maria von Weber
Der Freischütz
John Adams
Violin Concerto
Johann Sebastian Bach
Brandenburg Concertos
Concertos
Cantatas
Suites
Samuel Barber
Second Essay
Medea’s Meditation and Dance of Vengeance
Piano Concerto
Béla Bartók
The Miraculous Mandarin
Concerto for Orchestra
Complete Piano Concertos
Violin Concerto No. 2
Viola Concerto
Music for strings, percussion & celesta
Dance Suite
Divertimento
Ludwig van Beethoven
Complete Symphonies
Complete Concertos
Complete Overtures
Missa Solemnis
Alban Berg
Violin Concerto
Hector Berlioz
Overtures – Roman Carnival, Benvenuto Cellini,
Beatrice and Benedict
King Lear
Corsaire
Romeo et Juliette
Requiem
Te Deum
La Damnation de Faust
Harold en Italie
Symphonie fantastique
Chasse Royale et Orage
March Troyenne
Leonard Bernstein
The Age of Anxiety
Halil
Symphonic Dances from West Side Story
Candide Overture
Franz Berwald
Symphony No. 3
Ernest Bloch
Schelomo
Johannes Brahms
Complete Symphonies
Complete Concertos
Complete Overtures
Haydn Variations
Piano Quartet No. 1 (orchestration by A. Schönberg)
Ein deutsches Requiem
Gesang der Parzen
Alto Rhapsody
Song of Destiny
Serenade No. 2
Benjamin Britten
Sinfonia da Requiem
Four Sea Interludes
Max Bruch
Violin Concerto No. 1
Anton Bruckner
Symphonies Nos. 1 (Linz), 2 (1892), 3 (1889), 4 (1888), 5, 6 (1899), 7, 8 (Nowak), 9
Te Deum
Ferruccio Busoni
Fantasia Contrappuntistica (orchestration by Ira Levin)
Turandot Suite
Die Brautwahl Suite
Piano Concerto
Violin Concerto
Indian Fantasy
Berceuse élégiaque
Sarabande & Cortege
Geharnischte Suíte
Nocturne Symphonique
Ernest Chausson
Poeme de l’amour et de la Mer
Poeme
Carlos Chavez
Toccata
Frédéric Chopin
Piano Concertos 1, 2
Michael Colina
Los Caprichos
Violin Concerto
Guitar Concerto
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Baba Yaga Fantasy
John Corigliano
Piano Concerto
Claude Debussy
La Mer
Nocturnes
Iberia
Prélude a l’apres midi d’un faune
Alphons Diepenbrock
Elektra Suite
Paul Dukas
L’apprenti sorcier
Henri Dutilleux
Violin Concerto
Antonin Dvorák
Symphonies Nos. 6, 7, 8, 9
Carnival Overture
Scherzo Capriccioso
Symphonic Variations
The Wild Dove
Slavonic Dances opus 46
Piano, Violin and Cello Concertos
Edward Elgar
Symphony No. 1
Enigma Variations
Cello Concerto
Falstaff
George Enescu
Suite No. 1
Romanian Rhapsody No. 1
Manuel De Falla
El Amor Brujo
The Three Cornered Hat suite
César Franck
Symphony in f-minor (orchestration of the Piano Quintet by Ira Levin)
Symphony
Le Chasseur Maudit
Symphonic Variations
Psyche and Eros
George Gershwin
Concerto in F
Rhapsody in Blue
Cuban Overture
An American in Paris
Catfish Row (Porgy and Bess Suite)
Camargo Guarnieri
Abertura Festiva
Abertura Concertante
Piano Concerto No. 2
Choro for cello
Three Dances
Edvard Grieg
Peer Gynt Suites Nos. 1, 2
Piano Concerto
Georg Friedrich Händel
Royal Fireworks Music
Water Music
Joseph Haydn
Die Schöpfung
Die Jahreszeiten
Nelson Messe
Harmonie Messe
Seven Last Words (orchestral version)
Symphonies Nos. 31, 44, 45, 48, 49, 60, 68, 82, 83, 86, 88, 90, 92, 93
104
Piano and Cello Concertos
Karl Amadeus Hartmann
Gesangsszene
Symphony No. 6
Paul Hindemith
Symphonic Metamorphosis on Themes by Weber
Mathis der Maler Symphony
Nobilissima Visione
Symphony in Eb
Concert Music for Strings and Brass
Concerto for Orchestra
Gustav Holst
The Planets
Jacques Ibert
Flute Concerto
Vincent d’Indy
Istar
Andre Jolivet
Piano Concerto
Basson Concerto
Leoš Janácek
Sinfonietta
Glagolitic Mass
Aram Khachaturian
Violin Concerto
Zoltán Kodály
Dances of Galanta
Eduardo Lalo
Cello Concerto
Franz Liszt
Faust Symphony
Fantasia and Fugue on Bach (orchestration by Ira Levin)
Orpheus
Tasso
Les Preludes
Heroide Funebre
Piano Concertos & Totentanz
Witold Lutoslawski
Concerto for Orchestra
Gustav Mahler
Symphonies Nos. 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9,10 (Cooke)
Kindertotenlieder
Rückert Lieder
Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen
Das Knaben Wunderhorn
Das Lied von der Erde
Frank Martin
Jedermann Monologue
Bohuslav Martinu
Double Concerto
Violin Concerto No. 2
Memorial for Lidice
The Parables
Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy
Symphonies Nos. 3, 4, 5
Overtures –The Fair Melusine, Hebrides, Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage
Rob Roy
A Midsummer Night’s Dream – complete incidental music
Die erste Walpurgisnacht
Piano & Violin Concertos
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Piano Concertos Nos. 9, 14 – 27
Symphonies Nos. 25, 26, 28, 29, 33
41
Mass c
minor
Violin and Wind Concertos
Serenades & Divertimentos
Masonic Funeral Music
Carl Nielsen
Symphonies Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Maskarade overture
Marlos Nobre
Convergencias
Concerto Breve
Divertimento
Almeida Prado
Variations for orchestra
Sergei Prokofiev
Scythian Suite
Romeo and Juliet
Suites Nos. 1, 2
Complete Concertos
Symphonies Nos. 1, 3, 5
Lieutenant Kije
Suite
Symphonie Concertante
Sergei Rachmaninov
Complete Piano Concertos and Rhapsody on a theme by Paganini
Isle of the Dead
Symphony No. 2
Symphonic Dances
Maurice Ravel
Rapsodie Espagnole
La Valse
Mother Goose Suite
Daphnis and Chloë Suite No. 2
Piano Concerto for the left hand
Piano Concerto in G
Max Reger
Psalm No. 100
Serenade in G major
Symphonic Prologue to a Tragedy
Hiller Variations
Ottorino Respighi
Pini di Roma
Feste Romane
Joaquin Rodrigo
Concierto Madrigal
Gioacchino Rossini
Overtures – Semiramide, Guglielmo Tell, La gazza ladra, La Cenerentola, Il barbiere di Siviglia
Miklos Rozsa
Sinfonia Concertante for violin and cello
Albert Roussel
Bacchus ed Ariane Suite No. 2
Camille Saint
Saëns
Symphony No. 3
Complete Piano Concertos
Violin Concerto No. 3
Claudio Santoro
Symphony No. 9
Ponteio
Florent Schmitt
Le Tragedie de Salome
Alfred Schnittke
Viola Concerto
Cello Concerto No. 1
Concerto grosso No. 1
Arnold Schönberg
Pelleas und Melisande
Chamber Symphony No. 1 (version for full orchestra)
Verklärte Nacht
Five Orchestra Pieces
Survivor from Warsaw
Franz Schreker
Prelude to a Drama
Franz Schubert
Symphonies Nos. 2, 4, 5, 8, 9
Symphony in C “Grand Duo” orchestrated by Joachim
Robert Schumann
Complete Symphonies
Piano & Cello Concertos
Overtures – Manfred, Genoveva
Scenes from Faust
Dmitri Shostakovich
Symphonies Nos. 1, 4, 5, 6, 9,10, 15
Violin Concertos Nos.1 and 2
Cello Concerto No. 1
Jean Sibelius
Kullervo Symphony
Symphonies Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7
Pohjola’s Daughter
The Tempest Suites
Violin concerto
Lemminkäinen Legends opus 22
Oceanides
Rakastava
Luonnotar
Alexander Scriabin
Le Poeme de l’Extase
Bedrich Smetana
Ma Vlast (Complete)
Karol Szymanowski
Symphony No. 4
Johann Strauß Jr.
Die Fledermaus Overture
Waltzes, Polkas and Marches
Richard Strauss
Don Juan
Tod und Verklärung
Till Eulenspiegel
Don Quixote
Ein Heldenleben
Der Rosenkavalier Suite
Die Frau ohne Schatten Suite
Bürger als Edelmann Suite
Four Last Songs
Igor Stravinsky
The Firebird Suite (1919)
Petrushka (1947)
Le Sacre du Printemps
Pulcinella (complete)
Jeu de Cartes
Symphony in Three Movements
Josef Suk
Asrael
A Fairy Tale
Sergei Taneyev
Symphony No. 4
Peter Tchaikovsky
Symphonies Nos. 1, 2, 4, 5, 6
Manfred Symphony
Francesca da Rimini
Romeo and Juliet
The Tempest
Hamlet
Voyevoda
Suite No. 3
Complete Concertos
Nutcracker (complete)
Swan Lake (complete)
Sleeping Beauty (complete)
Ralph Vaughan-Williams
Symphonies Nos. 5, 6
Fantasia on Themes by Thomas Tallis
Giuseppe Verdi
Requiem
Te Deum
Overtures – La Forza del Destino, Luisa Miller, I Vespri Siciliani
Jan Vorisek
Symphony
Heitor Villa
Lobos
Uirapuru
Amazonas
Bachianas Brasileiras Nos. 2, 4, 5, 7
Choros Nos. 6, 10
Guitar Concerto
Richard Wagner
Overtures and orchestral excerpts from: Lohengrin, Tannhäuser, Ring, Parsifal, Tristan und Isolde, Meistersinger, Rienzi, Faust Overture
Carl Maria von Weber
Symphony No. 1
Overtures – Der Freischütz, Euryanthe, Oberon, Der Beherrscher der Geister
Anton Webern
Passacaglia
Hugo Wolf
Penthesilea
Prometheus
Harfenspieler 1-3
Marco Aurelio Yano
Oboe Concerto