December 9, 2011 |
Intermission chatter at Wednesday's Christian Zacharias recital took on ominous tones when one sage pianophile observed, "He tends to take things to the extreme. " And what makes Zacharias one of the most fascinating elder-statesman keyboard personalities is that you never know which extreme he'll take. Or if you're going to like it. Possessed of effortless technique, decades of accumulated repertoire, huge intellect, and wide-ranging imagination, he has options. The first half of his Philadelphia Chamber Music Society concert at the Kimmel Center brought together C.P.E.
November 17, 2011 |
As the 19th century hurried to a close, European composers seemed driven to fill its last years with song. Angelika Kirchschlager underlined that point in her recital Tuesday with pianist Warren Jones at the Perelman Theater. Almost their entire program was drawn from those closing years in songs by Brahms, Hugo Wolf, Mahler, and Reynaldo Hahn that showed both a cohesive tradition and energized prospects for change. Tracing such intangibles is not the strength of many singers, but with this mezzo-soprano each song seemed important in itself and also as a pylon marking some intricate shift in an imposing stylistic continuum.
October 23, 2011
Sunday Key players Pianist Daria Rabotkina plays works by Schubert, Bach, Prokofiev, Ravel, Scriabin and Rachmaninov at 2:30 p.m. at Eastern University's McInnis Auditorium, 1300 Eagle Rd., St. Davids. Tickets are $20; $15 for seniors. Call 610-649-2517. . . . Pianist Di Wu plays works by Debussy, Ravel, and Gounod/Liszt at 3 p.m. at the Museum of Art , 26th Street and the Parkway. Tickets are $23; $10 for students. Call 215-569-8080. On the boil In presenting the passions and frustrations of working-class life in England, Arnold Wesker was central to the "angry young men" movement of the 1950s.
October 10, 2011 |
LOS ANGELES - Roger Williams, 87, the virtuoso pianist who topped the Billboard pop chart in the 1950s and played for nine U.S. presidents during a long career, died Saturday at his home in Los Angeles of complications from pancreatic cancer. Known as an electrifying stage performer and adept improviser, Mr. Williams effortlessly moved among musical styles. "Roger was one of the greatest pianists in the world and could play anything, classical music to jazz. He was one of the greatest personalities I've ever known," said Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R., Utah)
September 27, 2011 |
The kind of well-groomed, well-tempered talents that arrive at the Kimmel Center are in some ways the best recommendation for refreshingly less-mediated recitals of the sort given Sunday by pianist Alexandre Moutouzkine eight blocks west at the Trinity Center for Urban Life. This young Russian pianist (just a hair over 30), presented by Astral Artists, programmed too much music (Corigliano, Schumann, Scriabin) and talked (however engagingly) at too much length. Yet he offered much to take home - even if, at the time, one struggled to take it in. The concert also felt like the beginning of a career that will matter.
August 7, 2011
Russian pianist Nikolai Petrov, 68, died Wednesday in a Moscow hospital after suffering a stroke a few months before. Mr. Petrov suffered a stroke in May while touring in Belarus and had since been in the hospital in severe condition. Mr. Petrov was born in 1943 into a family of musicians. He started touring in the early 1960s and was one of the few Soviet pianists to play abroad during the Cold War. He performed with symphony orchestras in New York and Washington, as well as top European orchestras.
July 24, 2011 |
In a city with much music and many African American musicians, the National Association of Negro Musicians, whose national convention begins here Sunday, shouldn't seem like such a secret. Were it not for the 92-year-old organization, the early careers of the late, legendary Marian Anderson, as well as the very much alive mezzo-soprano Marietta Simpson, might well have been harder. True talent rarely goes unnoticed. "But you can't spend the majority of your life Xeroxing the music that you need," says Simpson, who has an active concert career and a full professorship on the Indiana University voice faculty.
June 5, 2011 |
FORT WORTH, Texas - Concert pianists tend to measure their worth by success and failure. But there's plenty of gray area in between, as heard in the Van Cliburn Sixth International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs over Memorial Day weekend. The participants emerged into adulthood years ago, not with some competition's grand prize, but with a tire company in Ogden, Utah, or a race-car design that won the Indy 500; with a large, happy family, or maybe a more challenging one with an autistic child.
April 12, 2011 |
If the crepes, mimes, and erection of a presumably expensive and possibly ephemeral 81-foot homage to the Eiffel Tower made you doubt that a serious artistic thread could be discerned in the Kimmel Center's Francophilia festival, reassurance could be found Saturday morning at the Perelman - in a children's concert. For the last performance of its season, Astral Artists took on the French theme - and some Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts funding - to produce three works.
April 2, 2011 |
We know from many happy encounters over the years what Marc-André Hamelin thinks of Charles-Valentin Alkan, Nikolai Kapustin, Nikolai Medtner, and Kaikhosru Sorabji. But how does he do in Mozart? Hamelin's Thursday night performance of the Mozart Piano Concerto No. 17 in G major (K. 453) with the Philadelphia Orchestra didn't pack the punch and revelation of his other appearances here. The Canadian-born pianist - once a Philadelphian, now a Bostonian - is known as the conquering hero of towering technique.