On January 8, the 2014 Gilmore Artist was announced: pianist Rafał Blechacz. The Gilmore site relates some of his accomplishments:
In 2005, Blechacz was named the uncontested winner of the prestigious International Chopin Piano Competition – the first Polish musician to win the competition in 30 years. In addition, he was awarded First Prize as well as all the special prizes of the competition – a feat no other pianist has achieved. He has performed in Europe, Japan and North America to critical acclaim, and he has ensured himself a huge following among piano aficionados.On May 6, Jim and I attended Blechacz's solo recital, at Chenery Auditorium. Of course he performed Chopin, with some Bach and Beethoven thrown in:
Bach: Partita No. 3 in A Minor, BWV 827It was all amazing (though I confess a fondness for the Pathétique). It is hard to believe that we can hear such a wonderful musician, such fine piano music, right here in Kalamazoo.
Beethoven: Sonata No. 8 in C Minor, Op. 13, “Pathétique”
Chopin: Nocturne in A-flat Major, Op. 32, No. 2
Chopin: Two Polonaises, Op. 40
Chopin: Three Mazurkas, Op. 63
Chopin: Scherzo No. 3 in C-sharp Minor, Op. 39
Two days later, we attended another recital, this one presented by Llewellyn Sanchez-Werner, one of this year's Gilmore Young Artists. He performed in Stetson Chapel, on the Kalamazoo College Campus.
|Before the recital|
This time, we went with Jess & Kevin, and their two oldest.
|Kevin, Jess, Jim|
|K and L|
|I love the windows in Stetson Chapel|
Sanchez-Werner performed these pieces:
Liszt: Vallée d’ObermannAfterwards, he graciously chatted with K & L - he confessed that he started playing "in his early two's". And on our way out, we met his mother, who was equally charming. (Young K was much more comfortable chatting with the mother, than with Sanchez-Werner!)
Ravel: Alborada del gracioso
Beethoven: Sonata No. 31 in A-flat Major, Op. 110
Sanchez-Werner: Chasing Serenity – first performance
Chopin: Polonaise-Fantaisie in A-flat Major, Op. 61
Rachmaninoff: Moments musicaux, Op. 16, No. 1 in B-flat Minor
Ravel: La valse
With all this piano talk, I am reminded that back on April 3, I attended a student recital, where K and L both performed. Unfortunately, I only have a picture of L's flute-playing:
|L and Annette|
Plenty of good music to go around, here in Kalamazoo!