Violinist Bomsori Kim (from her SFP event page)
Every season San Francisco Performances (SFP) offers a free Gift Concert to subscribers and donors. This special offering is made possible through the generous support of George and Camilla Smith. Once subscribers and donors have had an opportunity to respond, the remaining tickets are made available for purchase by the general public. Through past experience, I have come to expect these concerts to take place in the spring; but the Gift Concert for the 2019–20 season will take place next month. The claims of subscribers and donors have been met, so the remaining tickets are now available.
This season’s Gift Concert recitalist will be the young South Korean violinist Bomsori Kim. Her accompanist will be the Finnish pianist Juho Pohjonen. Kim will be making her SFP debut, but Pohjonen has given SFP recitals in 2008 and 2011. While I did not have a chance to listen to him on either of those occasions, his 2011 concert took place shortly after he had performed Ludwig van Beethoven’s Opus 37 (third) piano concerto in C minor in Davies Symphony Hall with Marek Janowski conducting the San Francisco Symphony. Suffice it to say that, when I was compiling my month-by-month account of best concerts of the year, that concerto performance had a lock on January.
Kim and Pohjonen have prepared an impressively innovative program with selections from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, most of which get less exposure than they deserve. The program will begin with Robert Schumann’s Opus 105 (first) violin sonata in A minor. This will be followed by Jean Sibelius’ Opus 79, a collection of six pieces for violin and piano. The “geographic base” will then shift from Finland to Poland with a performance of Karol Szymanowski’s Opus 28, which couples a nocturne with a tarantella. Schumann’s first sonata will then be complemented by Sergei Prokofiev’s second violin sonata (Opus 94a in D major, which was originally written for flute and piano). The program will then conclude by providing its own encore, Franz Waxman’s “Carmen Fantasie,” written for the 1946 movie Humoresque.
This concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, November 6. The venue will be Herbst Theatre, whose entrance is the main entrance to the Veterans Building at 401 Van Ness Avenue, located on the southwest corner of McAllister Street. This location is excellent for public transportation, since that corner has Muni bus stops for both north-south and east-west travel. All remaining tickets are being sold for $45. Tickets may be purchased in advance online through a City Box Office event page.