FOR RELEASE Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Ludovic Morlot Leads Annual Cultural Celebration Featuring Six Instrumental Soloists, Including Japanese Virtuoso Pianist Nobuyuki Tsujii

Acclaimed Rising Star of the Indian Violin Ambi Subramaniam to Make Debut Performance with the Seattle Symphony


Celebrate Asia

On January 27, 2013, the Seattle Symphony will present the fifth annual Celebrate Asia event at Benaroya Hall, a program that explores the rich musical traditions of Asian countries alongside Western classical music. The concert will be conducted by both Music Director Ludovic Morlot and Seattle Symphony Assistant Conductor Stilian Kirov. This East-meets-West program features Japanese pianist Nobuyuki Tsujii, performing Tchaikovsky’s popular Piano Concerto No. 1. Tsujii, who was born blind, was a gold medalist at the 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, with a performance that was deemed “absolutely miraculous” by Van Cliburn himself.

Ambi Subramaniam — an internationally acclaimed rising-star of the Indian Violin — and mridangam player Mahesh Krishnamurthy will join the Orchestra to perform Shanti Priya, a work composed by famed Indian violinist and composer L. Subramaniam, who is also Ambi’s father. Seattle Symphony Resident Pianist Kimberly Russ and local pianist Oksana Ezhokina will also team up to perform Colin McPhee’s Tabuh-Tabuhan, a striking orchestral work inspired by McPhee’s experiences traveling in Bali. The concert will also feature the world premiere of Zvonimir Nagy’s Suizen, the winning entry in this season’s Celebrate Asia Composition Competition, which features Hanz Araki as soloist on the Japanese shakuhachi flute. The Orchestra will open the program with Claude Debussy’s Pagodes from Estampes. The January 27 concert begins 4 p.m. and takes place in the S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium. Tickets are available from $19 to $76.

The day’s festive activities begin at 3 p.m. with pre-concert performances in the Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby. Four local ensembles representing different ethnicities within Seattle’s Asian community will be featured: Filipiniana Dance Company will perform the tinikling dance, a popular traditional dance from the Philippines; Kolintang Ensemble Washington will perform traditional Indonesian music; Village of a Thousand Gingkos, a short work composed by Mercer Island High School senior Christina Sun for the Seattle Symphony’s 2012 Young Composers Workshop, will also be performed. Northwest Kung Fu and Fitness will conclude the pre-concert performances with a rousing Chinese Lion Dance, leading concertgoers to their seats.

After the concert, the celebration will continue in the Grand Lobby with a performance featuring Japanese Taiko drummers One World Taiko. Both pre- and post-concert lobby performances are included with a concert ticket.

Complete program notes, artist biographies and additional information can be found by clicking the links in the above text and by visiting

Celebrate Asia Composition Competition
The Seattle Symphony’s Celebrate Asia Composition Competition invites submissions from up-and-coming composers who find inspiration and influences in Asian culture, music and traditions. After receiving numerous local, national and international submissions, the reviewing committee selected Zvonimir Nagy’s Suizen as the 2012 winner. Nagy is Assistant Professor of Musicianship Studies at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. Suizen, scored for Orchestra and Japanese shakuhachi flute, was inspired by a Zen meditative practice during which a bamboo flute is played as a means of achieving a state of self-realization. The piece will receive its world premiere at Celebrate Asia. Commissioning of Zvonimir Nagy’s Suizen is generously underwritten by Yoshi and Naomi Minegishi.

About Celebrate Asia
In partnership with numerous local community groups, the Seattle Symphony honors and celebrates Seattle’s Asian community with the fifth annual Celebrate Asia concert. The concept originated several years ago when local Asian leaders from the region’s Chinese, Filipino, Indian, Indonesian, Japanese, Korean, Thai and Vietnamese communities wanted to find a way to strengthen bonds with the broader community through a cultural celebration. For more information about Celebrate Asia, visit

How to Purchase Tickets
Celebrate Asia tickets are available from $19 to $76.

Phone: Call the Seattle Symphony Ticket Office at (206) 215-4747 or toll-free at (866) 833-4747
Online: Visit to purchase tickets online or use the Seattle Symphony’s iPhone and Android apps.
In Person: Visit the Ticket Office in Benaroya Hall, located at Third Avenue & Union Street.
Ticket Office Hours: Monday–Friday, 10 a.m.– 6 p.m.; and Saturday. 1–6 p.m.
Groups Sales: To purchase tickets for groups of 10 or more, call (206) 215-4784.
Students/Seniors: Student and senior rush discount tickets, subject to availability, go on sale at the Seattle Symphony Ticket Office two hours prior to matinee performances, and must be purchased in person.

Review Tickets
Members of the media who are interested in attending and reviewing Celebrate Asia should contact Jill Becker, Seattle Symphony Public Relations Manager, at or (206) 215-4758.


Sunday, January 27, 2013, at 3 p.m.

Benaroya Hall

Pre-concert Performances — 3 p.m.
Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby

Village of a Thousand Gingkos (Chinese community)
Filipiniana Dance Company (Philippine community)
Kolintang Ensemble Washington (Indonesian community)
Northwest Kung Fu and Fitness (Chinese community)

Concert Program — 4 p.m.
S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium

Ludovic Morlot, conductor
Stilian Kirov, conductor
Nobuyuki Tsujii, piano
Kimberly Russ & Oksana Ezhokina, piano duo
Hanz Araki, shakuhachi
Ambi Subramaniam, Indian violin
Mahesh Krishnamurthy, mridangam (Indian drum)
Seattle Symphony

Pagodes from Estampes
/orch. by A. Caplet

COLIN MCPHEE Tabuh-Tabuhan
    Kimberly Russ, piano
    Oksana Ezhokina, piano

ZVONIMIR NAGY Suizen (world premiere)
    Hanz Araki, shakuhachi

    Ambi Subramaniam, Indian violin
    Mahesh Krishnamurthy, mridangam


PIOTR ILYICH TCHAIKOVSKY Piano Concerto No. 1 in B-flat minor, Op. 23
    Nobuyuki Tsujii, piano

Post-concert Performance
Samuel & Althea Stroum Grand Lobby

One World Taiko (Japanese community)

Nobuyuki Tsujii’s appearance is generously underwritten by the Atsuhiko and Ina Goodwin Tateuchi Foundation through the Seattle Symphony’s Guest Artists Circle. The Tateuchi Foundation – a longstanding supporter of Celebrate Asia — has a mission to promote and improve international understanding, knowledge, and the quality of relations between Japan and the United States.

The Snoqualmie Casino is the presenting sponsor of Celebrate Asia.
J.P. Morgan Chase is the supporting sponsor of Celebrate Asia.
Celebrate Asia is also supported in part by Acucela Inc.