New England Conservatory in Boston has announced that pianist Alfred Brendel, who retired in December 2008 from a long solo concert career, will be in residence at the conservatory from November 3 to 7. During that time, he will give a public lecture, conduct several masterclasses, and receive an honorary doctorate. Brendel’s residency takes place during a season at the conservatory that includes more concert programs for NEC musicians under the direction of Hugh Wolff, the conservatory’s new Stanford and Norma Jean Calderwood Director of Orchestras. The orchestra program will be streamlined to include three instead of four ensembles—the NEC Philharmonia (a rotating roster of the conservatory’s oldest players), the NEC Symphony (youngest players), and NEC Chamber Orchestra (conductorless ensemble coached by Donald Palma). From September to December at Jordan Hall, the Philharmonia will perform six concerts and the Symphony and Chamber Orchestra each will perform two concerts. Wolff will conduct the NEC Philharmonia and Symphony, as will John Page, Christopher Wilkins, Charles Peltz, and Carlos Kalmar.

Posted August 4, 2009