Beethoven in Salem

April 17, 2015 @ 7:30 pm
Salem Athenaeum
337 Essex Street
Salem, MA 01970
$25; $20 Members; Free for students with ID

Susanna Ogata, violin, and Guy Fishman, cello, both principal players from Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society, join the Society’s resident conductor and keyboard virtuoso Ian Watson for an evening of Beethoven performed on period instruments.  The trio will perform sonatas and variations by the young Beethoven, composed as he was still touring Europe as a firebrand soloist, and before tragic deafness set in.  They will play on a violin & cello from the 1700s, as well as a replica of the piano Beethoven would have been intimately familiar with during this time in his life.  The sounds the trio evokes from these instruments approximate what Beethoven would have heard himself, and are sure to imbue this exciting music with freshness and vivacity.


Israeli-born cellist Guy Fishman is active as a concerto soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and orchestral player. He is Principal Cellist of Boston’s Handel and Haydn Society, with which he made his Symphony Hall solo debut in 2005. Mr. Fishman is in demand as an early music specialist in the United States and abroad, having performed in recital and with Boston Baroque, Apollo’s Fire, Emmanuel Music, the Boston Museum Trio, Arcadia Players, and El Mundo. He performs on standard cello with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, The Mark Morris Dance Group, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, the Colorado Music Festival, and the Springfield Symphony, where he has been guest principal cellist. He has performed in recital with Dawn Upshaw, Gilbert Kalish, Eliot Fisk, Daniel Stepner, Lara St. John, Richard Egarr, and Mark Peskanov, and has toured and recorded with pop artist Natalie Merchant. He is on the faculty at New England Conservatory of Music.

Fishman has appeared at the Tanglewood, Kneisel Hall, Chautauqua, Aston Magna, Connecticut Early Music, and Musicorda festivals. He was a member of the New Fromm Players at Tanglewood, principal cellist of the New York String Orchestra at Carnegie Hall. He has also appeared on NPR broadcasts. His playing has been praised as “plangent” by the Boston Globe, “electrifying” by the New York Times, and “beautiful….noble” by the Boston Herald. A critic for the Boston Musical Intelligencer, listening to Guy’s recent performance of Haydn’s C-major concerto, related that he “…heard greater depth in this work than I have in quite some time.”


Violinist, Susanna Ogata, enjoys an active performance schedule in greater New England and beyond. She has been praised for “totally convincing, spontaneous and free-flowing playing” (The Berkshire Review) and her musical “sensitivity and fire” (Boston Musical Intelligencer). Dedicated to exploring music on historical instruments, Ms. Ogata has participated in concerts presented by the Bach Ensemble led by Joshua Rifkin, Arcadia Players, Ensemble Florilège, Newton Baroque, L’Académie, Boston Baroque, Sarasa, Foundling, Musicians of the Old Post Road, Blue Hill Bach, Genesee Early Music Society, SoHIP concert series, and Boston Early Music Festival. She is a founding member of several period instrument chamber ensembles: Boston Classical Trio, Copley String Quartet, and Coriolan String Quartet.

Ms. Ogata has appeared as soloist with the Handel and Haydn Society, Bach Ensemble, Arcadia Players, Blue Hill Bach, Foundling, Eastman Musica Nova Ensemble, Boston Virtuosi, and the Waterloo/Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra. She has recorded for Nonesuch and Telarc and has been featured on WGBH radio broadcasts. Her first of four CDs traversing the complete sonatas for piano and violin of Ludwig van Beethoven, with fortepianist Ian Watson, will appear in June 2015.

 She is a tenured member of the Handel and Haydn Society. In 2014, she was appointed Assistant Concertmaster of the orchestra.


Ian Watson has been described by The Times in London as a keyboard performer with “virtuosic panache and brilliantly articulated playing” and “a world-class soloist.” He has appeared as soloist or conductor with the London Symphony, London Philharmonic and Royal Philharmonic Orchestras, Scottish Chamber, English Chamber, Polish Chamber, Irish Chamber and Stuttgart Chamber Orchestras, Bremen Philharmonic, Rhein-Main Symphony Orchestra, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, English Baroque Soloists, The Sixteen, Arcadia Players, where he is Music Director, and the Handel and Haydn Society, where he was appointed Resident Conductor in September 2014.

In 2012-13, Ian directed the North American premiere of the new edition of Bach’s St. Mark Passion with the Bach Society Houston, and took part in a recording of Bach’s four Lutheran Masses in London for Coro Records with Harry Christophers and the Sixteen. He made a critically acclaimed debut directing the Baroque Band in Chicago. June 2014 saw the start of a major project with violinist Susanna Ogata, to record the complete Beethoven’s violin sonatas, and in October, performances of Beethoven’s Triple Concerto and Ninth Symphony in Mechanics Hall, Worcester and Northampton, MA with Arcadia Players, all on period instruments.

Born in England, Ian won a scholarship at age 14 to the Junior School of the Royal Academy of Music in London, later winning all the prizes for organ performance including the coveted Recital Diploma. He completed his studies with Flor Peeters in Belgium. Ian’s first major appointment was as Organist at St. Margaret’s, Westminster Abbey, at the age of 19, a position he held for ten years, and was also Music Director of the historic Christopher Wren Church, St. James’s Piccadilly.