Andover Townsman, Andover, MA

June 19, 2013

Musical treat: Ukrainian-born cellist to share talents

The Andover Townsman

---- — A classically trained concert cellist kicks off a new “Casual Concerts at the Center” series with a musical glimpse of his career on Thursday, June 27, at 10 a.m. at the Center at Punchard, 30 Whittier Court.

Arkady Beletsky has spent his life performing throughout Europe and, after emigrating to the U.S. with his family in 1989, in the Boston area at such venues as Jordon Hall and Sanders Theatre. He now teaches in Andover and volunteers his time at the Center at Punchard through the SCRPT (tax abatement) program.

A native of Kiev, Ukraine, Beletsky started studying music at an early age. After years of training with several prominent cello masters in Kiev, Arkady’s family moved to Moscow to continue his musical education. He went on to graduate from the Gnesin Music College with a bachelor of arts and Gnesin Institute in Moscow with a master of arts degree.

He built a career performing and touring with a number of chamber groups. In 1983, together with his sister, he co-founded the Renaissance Chamber Ensemble, which became one of the most prolific and well-regarded chamber groups in pre-Perestroika USSR. Its eclectic repertoire included works by European composers of the 18th and 19th centuries, as well as music ranging from the Baroque to the modern eras. Under Beletsky’s leadership, Renaissance headlined more than 1,000 concerts throughout all parts of the Soviet Union. The ensemble also collaborated with prominent composers and musicians and cut several recordings.

Since coming to the U.S., Beletsky has performed solo, chamber and orchestral work in Boston and across New England. He has also participated in numerous music festivals and has made a live appearance on WGBH’s “Morning Pro Musica.”

In recent years, his focus has shifted from performance to teaching cello and chamber music. He was a longtime faculty member at the Longy School of Music in Cambridge and at The Music School of Providence, R.I., among others.

Beletsky now teaches cello and chamber music at Indian Hill Music Center in Littleton and Andover Community Music School, while also providing private instruction in his studio in Andover. He continues to perform as a soloist and with chamber groups throughout the U.S. and Europe as well.

His concert at The Center at Punchard is free and open to the public. Karen Payne-Taylor, the center’s program coordinator, says she’s thrilled to be able to showcase Beletsky’s talents and is hoping people make a morning of it and stay for lunch. Those interested in lunch must sign up in advance.

For a sneak preview of Beletsky’s concert, check out the Summer Outdoor Grill Night at The Center tonight, June 20. Beletsky will be providing the entertainment for the event, which goes from 5 to 7 p.m. (last seating at 6:30). Tonight’s featured dish is salmon. All meals start at $5 and require an advance purchase.

Immediately following Grill Night, BoomerVenture Screening Room will showcase the film “Jiro Dreams of Sushi,” a Japanese documentary with subtitles, at 7 p.m.

Summer Grill Nights continue Thursday, June 27, again from 5 to 7 p.m., with steak tips as the featured dish. Rhythm Aires tambourines will perform. A screening of the French film “Romantics Anonymous” follows at 7 p.m.

Because the kitchen at The Center at Punchard is being renovated this summer, only two Grill Nights are planned this season.

To reserve a seat for dinner or more information on upcoming events, call The Center at Punchard at 978-623-8321.