A Good Bye

“We’re delighted to have him,” says Hidden Valley founder Peter Meckel of clarinetist Emil Khudyev. “He’s a fantastic player and gifted educator.”

When classical clarinetist Emil Khudyev takes the stage at Hidden Valley, it will be as much a tribute to a close family member as it will be an ode to his week-long residency students. His brother, Youth Music Monterey Conductor Farkhad Khudyev, will depart later this summer to take on a new post at the University of Texas in Austin, so the younger brother seeks to give him a proper send-off.

“I chose all of the selections on the program myself,” Emil says, “and I made the choices based on pieces that I know Farkhad just loves.”

Those wide-ranging eclectic choices include Fantasistykke by Danish composer Carl Nielsen; a J.S. Bach Adagio; a Gigue for Clarinet and Piano by 19th-century Frenchman Daniel Auber; In Memory of Nesimi by Redzhep Allayarov; the always ebullient Argentine Astor Piazolla’s Tango Etude #3, the well-known Victor’s Tale from the motion picture The Terminal scored by the prolific John Williams (the Star Wars series, JawsSuperman, E.T., and many others); and theCarmen Fantasy for Clarinet and Piano by 20th-century Russian composer Alexander Rosenblatt.

“We got to know him shortly after his brother Farkhad came here,” says Peter Meckel, Hidden Valley’s founder and general director. “Emil did a couple of concerts and I remember being just blown away by his work. When he was selected as the associate principal clarinet for the Seattle Symphony Orchestra I thought he ought to be doing a master class here because he now has attained a place in the musical world where he has a certain pedigree and authority.”

Emil Khudyev first appeared as part of the Hidden Valley masters series­ – which pairs an expert musician with students, before an end-of-session concert – last year. He is excited about his return.

“[Hidden Valley] is an extremely unique educational setting,” he says. “You get to do what you love most for an entire week with very talented kids, immersed in the residency, curricula, natural beauty and organic gardens. It’s like getting away from our modern world and going back 100 years. The atmosphere and peacefulness is what I like most.”

Six of the pieces he will perform are for clarinet and piano. His wife Marusawa Khudyev – herself an accomplished pianist – will accompany.

“I’m excited to return,” Khudyev says. “It’s so great how Peter Meckel first conceived it and how he has grown this festival into what it has become.”

EMIL KHUDYEV, clarinet. 7:30pm Monday, July 22. Hidden Valley Theatre, 104 West Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley. $25. 659-3115, hiddenvalleymusic.org


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