Violin and Cello Duo at Gray Towers

Violinist Mikhail Kopelman, former conductor of the Tokyo and Borodin String Quartets, and cellist Yosif Feigelson, international soloist and artistic director of Kindred Spirits Arts Programs, will perform duets by Beethoven, George Frideric Handel and Zoltan Kodaly at 5:30 p.m. on August 20 at the Gray Towers National Historic Site. This ‘Tea for Two’ concert will take place outdoors under a large canopy at the Pool Pavilion at Gray Towers.

A first, and it’s happening here

Kopelman and Feigelson have performed together in piano trios, but this will be their first time performing as a duo. “Mikhail Kopelman’s experience and accomplishments in chamber music are quite unique,” ​​says Feigelson. “I have a soloist’s point of view though, so for me it’s always a treat and an opportunity for new discoveries when we play together.”

Why these duets?

Beethoven wrote this music early in his career, and it was originally for clarinet and bassoon, but was soon adapted for a string duet. “The young composer is already showing control and imagination,” says Feigelson. “A lot of beauty and youthful vigor too.”

Handel’s Passacaglia is the last movement of a harpsichord suite that 19th-century violinist/composer Johan Halvorsen adapted for a string duet. “It became a crowd pleaser exploring the capabilities of instruments beyond Handel’s time,” says Feigelson.

Kodaly’s Sonata for Violin and Cello, written in 1914, was greatly influenced by French Impressionist composers like Debussy and Ravel. He blended these influences with folk melodies from his native Hungary to produce a large-scale rhapsodic work.

One of the surprises of this duo and the music they will perform is the variety of sounds they produce. For example, sometimes the cello shakes listeners as it hits higher notes than the violin plays. “Audiences will hear all kinds of exotic sounds, especially in the Kodaly,” Feigelson said. “These include artificial harmonics imitating folk wind and percussion instruments.”


This is the third of four Kindred Spirits concerts under the outdoor canopy of Gray Towers NHS in Milford, Pennsylvania. Tickets, $25; parking is free. Tickets are available through Eventbrite or in person at The Artisan Exchange, 219 Broad Street, Milford, PA. Seating is limited, so purchase your tickets as soon as possible to guarantee admission.

About Kindred Spirits Arts Programs

KSAP is a volunteer nonprofit organization that brings performing artists to Northeastern Pennsylvania. The organization also organizes educational enrichment workshops for secondary school students. Visit, email [email protected], or call 570-409-1269 to learn more about Kindred Spirits support. Donations and volunteers are greatly appreciated.

One of the surprises of this duo and the music they will perform is the variety of sounds they produce.