Of flutist Annie Wu, The Mercury News said, “This artist, it seems, can do anything.” Born in 1996, Wu first received national recognition at the age of 15 as the First Prize winner of the National Flute Association’s 2011 High School Soloist Competition, becoming the youngest winner in the NFA’s history. The California native is the winner of Astral’s 2015 National Auditions, as well as the First Prize winner of the 2016 James Pappoutsakis Flute Competition, the 2014 Yamaha Young Performing Artist Competition, and YoungArts Foundation’s 2014 YoungArts National Competition. In 2014, Wu was named a Presidential Scholar in the Arts, selected by the United States White House Commission.
Wu’s concerto engagements have taken her across the nation and beyond. She has performed with the Vienna International Orchestra, California Symphony, Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, Livermore-Amador Symphony, Diablo Symphony Orchestra, and the San Jose Chamber Orchestra. In 2012, the San Francisco Symphony invited her to perform the finale of Ibert’s Flute Concerto in Davies Symphony Hall for the SFS “Music For Families” educational series. These concerts reached nearly 26,000 students, teachers, and community members in the Bay Area.
Chamber music captured Wu’s heart from an early age. She now regularly performs with Boston-based pianist Feng Niu, presenting dynamically programmed recitals at Boston’s Jordan Hall and for series including Strathmore’s “Music at the Mansion” and the Phillips Collection’s “Sunday Concerts.” Recently the pair recorded and self-released a debut album titled “They Call Me Mignon: 11 variations on a voice.” The conceptual album follows German poet Goethe’s mysterious character Mignon, exploring how the flute can emulate the voice and music’s potential to expand one girl’s story. Wu’s accompanying academic thesis on this topic won top awards at Harvard University, including the Hoopes Prize for excellence in undergraduate research.
Veterans and active military members: Free with ID, in honor of Veterans Day
General admission: $15
Students and seniors: $10
“More than anything, music is a vehicle for storytelling. This program explores the many ways in which music can inform our identities, our experience of the environment around us, our own creative capacities, and the vastness of our collective history. We start in the autobiographical sense with Dutilleux’s Sonatine, the piece that begins his compositional journey. Then, we enter the natural landscapes of Takemitsu and Gubaidulina, as well as the vivid conjuring of Charles-Marie Widor’s Suite. For the second half of the program, Feng and I present selections from our recent debut album, exploring the incredibly rich history of a character that crossed national boundaries, languages, and centuries: Goethe’s mysterious Mignon.” —Annie Wu
Henri Dutilleux: Sonatine for flute and piano
Toru Takemitsu: Air for solo flute
Sofia Gubaidulina: Sounds of the Forest
Charles-Marie Widor: Suite, Op. 34 for flute and piano
Beethoven/Schumann/Wolf: Settings of Goethe’s First Mignon Poem, Kennst du das Land
Schubert/Beethoven/Tchaikovsky: Settings of Goethe’s Second Mignon Poem, Nur wer die Sehnsucht kennt
Paul Taffanel: Grand Fantasy on Themes from "Mignon" of Ambroise