Kennedy Center Chamber Players of the National Symphony Orchestra to Present Cunard Command Performances aboard Queen Mary 2

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12 August 2009 – Cunard Line is honoured to announce that the Kennedy Center Chamber Players – Nurit Bar-Josef and Marissa Regni (violin), Daniel Foster (viola), David Hardy (cello), Lambert Orkis (piano), and Loren Kitt (clarinet) – and Director of Artistic Planning Nigel Boon (pictured) of the National Symphony Orchestra will perform during Queen Mary 2’s 8 September eastbound Transatlantic Crossing. Sailing from New York to Southampton, England, The Players and Mr. Boon will present three different programmes in the Royal Court Theatre during the six-day voyage as part of their Cunard Command Performance:

Programme 1:
Stravinsky: Suite from L’Histoire du soldat, for clarinet, violin and piano
Dvorák: Piano Quintet in A major op. 81

Programme 2:
Beethoven: Trio in B-flat major op. 11, for piano, clarinet and cello
Mozart: Clarinet Quintet in A major K. 581

Programme 3:
Brahms: Sonata for Clarinet and Piano in E-flat major op. 120, No. 2
Brahms: Piano Quintet in F minor op. 34

“We are elated to welcome the Kennedy Center Chamber Players and Nigel Boon aboard our flagship liner Queen Mary 2, and proud to host them as part of our lineage of world-class performers who have sailed with Cunard,” said Peter Shanks, recently named president of Cunard Line. “Our guests will surely delight in this amazing concert experience.”

The Kennedy Center Chamber Players have earned extraordinary praise since their debut performance in November 2003. This exciting chamber ensemble, consisting of National Symphony Orchestra principals, performs several times a year at Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center, exploring various facets of chamber music repertoire. Past seasons have included appearances at the Library of Congress, the Robert H. and Clarice Smith Auditorium at Mount Vernon, the Barns of Wolf Trap, and Hillwood Museum and Gardens. The ensemble currently has two recordings: the Brahms Piano Quartet in G minor, Op. 25, and “The Beauty of Two,” an exploration of the duo sonata, both on the Dorian label. The National Symphony Orchestra, now in its 79th season, regularly participates in events of national and international importance, including performances for state occasions, presidential inaugurations and official holiday celebrations.

“To sail with Cunard Line is sure to be a wonderful experience,” said Nigel Boon, Director of Artistic Planning for the National Symphony Orchestra. “We are extremely honoured to have been invited to perform on board, and we know that this will be an experience that we’ll never forget,” he added.

Queen Mary 2 offers an array of accommodation combining classic Cunard touches with a stylish, refined elegance. The liner’s legendary Queens Grill and Princess Grill Suites afford guests spacious five-star accommodation and dedicated single-seating dining in the famed Grills Restaurants, along with a private sun terrace and cocktail and concierge lounges. Guests sailing in Britannia category accommodation enjoy gourmet dining prepared by world-class chefs in the Britannia Restaurant, the liner’s grand three-tier dining venue. As an added bonus, guests can experience the culinary creativity of celebrity chef Todd English in the first restaurant at sea bearing his name.

Nights are filled with themed Royal Balls and Galas, where guests can dance the night away to a live orchestra in the Queens Room, the largest ballroom at sea. Days are filled with such activities as perusing a vast selection of 8,000 books in the largest library at sea, enjoying traditional afternoon English tea or exploring the cosmos in the only planetarium at sea.

Queen Mary 2’s Transatlantic Crossings reflect the pinnacle of civility in ocean travel and refinement. The only company offering regularly scheduled Transatlantic liner service, Cunard is sailing 25 crossings in 2009, singularly offering the New Golden Age of Ocean Travel through such unique Cunard experiences as Cunard Insights, the line’s award-winning enrichment programme. The six-day Crossings afford guests opportunities for leisurely pursuits, ranging from wellness in the first Canyon Ranch SpaClub at sea, to wine tastings with a world-class sommelier.