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Buy Tickets for Stretto Piano Multi-Artist Celebration

  • Sun Jun 02, 2024
  • 3:00pm
  • In-Person Ticket
  • Leonard Nimoy Thalia, 250 95th Street
  • $10 - $50

Visiting Presenter / Music

Stretto Piano Multi-Artist Celebration

Description

International Stretto Piano Festival Day 4

Narrow Keys, Broad Minds, No Boundaries

View all the 2024 International Stretto Piano Festival concerts HERE!

Celebrating Stretto pianists Donna Weng Friedman and Julia Furlan (New York), Elizabeth Wolff (NYC/Twin Cities), Anna Arazi (Boston), Julia Siciliano (Chicago), plus their collaborators including The River Road String Quartet, narrator Diana Solomon-Glover, violist Jesscia Thompson, pianist Luba Slepoi, flautist DarienFrench-Owen, and clarinetist Alan Schaffer, the Fourth International Stretto Piano Festival is delighted to present music by great classical and contemporary composers including Brahms, Rachmaninoff, Gubaidalina, Florence Price, Stefania DeKenessey, and Valerie Coleman.

Most or all of the pianists will be playing on a Stretto piano with a 5.9 inch octave.

Our diverse artists of various ages and backgrounds are exploring and enjoying stretto pianos like never before. Some are new to them and some have played on them for years, earning university degrees, winning competitions, and exploring hard-to-reach repertoire as often as possible. It’s time for these wonderful instruments to be known and played everywhere by artists of all genres. The Festival and Stretto Piano Concerts hope that this event can be a springboard for more year-round global events featuring international artists that gain publicity and new followers, and create opportunities for composers and performers everywhere.

Program:


Johannes Brahms: 4 Klavierstücke, Op.119

Florence Price: Piano Quintet in A minor
I. Allegro non troppo

Sofia Gubaidalina: Chaconne

Stefania DeKenessey: Microvids

Frédéric Chopin: Waltz in C-sharp minor, Op. 64, No. 2

Intermission

Valerie Coleman: Portraits of Langston

Sergei Rachmaninoff: Sonata in G Minor, op. 19, for viola and piano


Award winning pianist Donna Weng Friedman enjoys a distinguished career as a soloist, chamber musician, educator, curator, producer, filmmaker and app developer. In 2023 she was inducted into the Steinway & Sons Teacher Hall of Fame and was the inaugural winner of the Women Who Innovate Grant 2023, awarded by the International Alliance for Women in Music, Global Initiatives committee for her "impactful and meaningful" work. Donna wrote, directed and produced the award winning documentary short, NEVER FADE AWAY featuring Chun Wai Chan, the first principal dancer of Chinese descent in New York City Ballet’s 75-year history. Never Fade Away premiered at NYU's Jack Crystal Theater, appeared on the big screen at Times Square in honor of AAPI Heritage Month in May 2023 and has since won thirty-nine laurels from film festivals worldwide. Her album Heritage and Harmony: Silver Linings, featuring exclusively AAPI/BIPOC artists, garnered the Silver Medal at the 2023 One Earth Award, and two Silver Medals at the 2022 Global. Music Awards. Donna was awarded a 2022 New York Women Composer’s grant for her series “Five Composers and a Pianist”.
In collaboration with WQXR, Donna created and produced Heritage and Harmony, a virtual concert series in celebration of Asian Pacific Heritage Month. She is the co-creator and co-host of HER/MUSIC;HER/STORY, a mini-series on WQXR that shines a light on women composers, past and present.
On March 8th, 2022, she launched a virtual education program in collaboration with the National Women’s History Museum called Heritage and Harmony: Her Art, Her Voice, featuring leading female BIPOC role models in the arts to inspire and empower future generations of groundbreaking young women.
Donna has performed in concert halls worldwide, and appeared as soloist with major symphony orchestras, including the Atlanta, Philadelphia and Shanghai Symphony Orchestras. She has collaborated with world-class artists including Carter Brey, Anthony McGill, Elizabeth Mann, Ani Kavafian, David Shifrin, St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, Paul Neubauer, Marya Martin and Kelly Hall-Tompkins. The curator of the Donna Weng Friedman '80 Master Class Series at Princeton University, she is a member of Princeton University Music Department’s Advisory Council. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Princeton University where she was a University Scholar and a Master’s of Music Degree from the Juilliard School where she was a winner of the highly coveted Gina Bachauer Piano Competition as well as the William Petschek full scholarship award. Donna had the honor and privilege of studying with the great pedagogue Nadia Boulanger and the inimitable pianist Radu Lupu.


A top prize winner at the New York Summer Music Festival Concerto Competition and the Rondo Young Artist Competition, pianist Julia Furlan has performed in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Tenri Cultural Institute, Montclair State University, Nyack NY’s Carnegie Room, Maureen’s Jazz Cellar, and the Greenwich House, among others. She has performed as a soloist for the Leschetitzky Association Gifted Young People’s concerts and Summit Music Festival’s Solo Gala.
An advocate of musician’s health and performing arts medicine, she received her Master’s degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy with an emphasis in Injury Preventive Piano Technique from Salem College, under piano technique pioneer Dr. Barbara Lister-Sink. Julia also holds a certificate in the “Essentials of Performing Arts Medicine” and teaches at the Intensive Training Workshops of the Lister-Sink Institute. She received her Yoga Teaching Certification to further her knowledge of the body and how it relates to playing the piano.
As a William Macdonald Scholarship recipient, Julia graduated from McGill University’s Schulich School of Music with a Bachelor’s in Piano Performance under Sara Laimon, with a minor in Music Entrepreneurship. From her first lessons at age 4, she has also studied with David Budway, Christine Renstrom, Michael Oelbaum, and Mark Pakman, the latter at Manhattan School of Music’s Precollege Program. Throughout her studies, she has premiered several works written by living composers Henri Colombat, Gabriel DufourLaperrière, and Drew Harris.
After studying and playing on alternatively sized keyboards with narrow piano keys, also known as stretto pianos, she is an advocate for smaller-handed, female pianists who have been disadvantaged by the large, conventional keyboard size. She has worked with the International Stretto Piano Festival since 2023, which champions these instruments and the artists that play them. Apart from her career as a performer, Julia started as a writer for the classical music news source, The Violin Channel, in 2018. She now serves as acting Editorial Manager, leading a team of writers and supervising the website’s content and international partnerships.

Pianist Elizabeth Wolff has developed a large following both as a chamber musician and as a soloist. She has collaborated with such noted string quartets as the Shanghai, the Brunswick, the Rosamonde, and the Zapolski, and has participated in music festivals including Music Mountain, Aspen, Music at La Gesse, Mohonk, The Beethoven Festival, and the Festival de Musique en Lorraine. Founder and Director of Music at Lake Willoughby, Ms. Wolff has also been on chamber music faculties of Summertrios and Music Mountain and was for 5 years, Co-Director of Chamber Music Retreats at Vassar. She is currently on the faculty of the Young Artist World Piano Festival and is the Artistic Director of Music @ 10,000 Lakes. Ms. Wolff is the recipient of numerous awards and sponsorships including the Pro Musicis Foundation's International Award, The Belsky Music Award, a Music at La Gesse Fellowship, and The Jerome Foundation debut recording grant. In New York, she was presented as recitalist on The Distinguished Artist Series at The Tisch Center of the 92nd Street 'Y', by Pro Musicis at Merkin Concert Hall and Florence Gould Hall, by The Metropolitan Museum of Art for their instrument collection, and at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.
As well, she has been featured pianist in live radio broadcasts on WQXR, WNCN and WNYC. Other United States solo concert performances include The Phillips Collection in Washington DC, The Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts in Chicago, The Schubert Club in St. Paul, and numerous Pro Musicis sponsored national recital tours. Miss Wolff's appearance at London's Purcell Room received rave critical acclaim and was followed with highly successful tours of Austria, Holland and France. She was invited back to Vienna to perform works of Brahms in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of his death. Ms. Wolff's affinity for and love of the piano works of Rachmaninoff have garnered special notice. She was guest soloist on WQXR's "Russian Nights" special broadcast, and she has conducted master classes as well as performed in recital at the renowned Rachmaninoff Institute in Tambov, Russia. In 2005, her article on Brahms' evolving use of three was published for the Institute's International Science Conference. In addition, Ms. Wolff has performed for the International Conference of the Rachmaninoff Society in London and Vienna. Of her recording of the Six Moments Musicaux, Opus 16, American Record Guide noted, "I have never heard anything quite like the enchanting soft playing in No. 5, and No. 6 is a remarkable performance...a stimulating and musical pianist." This disc, which also features a premiere recording of the two sets of Moments Musicaux (Opus 7 and 84) by Moritz Moszkowski, is currently available at www.magnatune.com/artists/wolff.
Elizabeth Wolff's commitment to teaching is demonstrated through the broad range of her educational activities. She was seen on CBS '60 Minutes' in a segment featuring her student, the prodigious young composer Jay Greenberg. She has been on faculties and given master classes for numerous colleges, including the University of Minnesota, Hunter College, SUNY at Purchase and New York University and has presented for The College Music Society, the World Piano Pedagogy Conference and for The Piano Teachers Congress of New York. She has coached chamber music in affiliation with Chamber Music Associates, as well as maintained a diverse class of individual students. Her Access To Music series, whose intention is to introduce works by contemporary composers while simultaneously providing more visibility and viability for the solo recital is celebrating its 10th year. Ms. Wolff received a Bachelor of Music degree from Northwestern University and a Master of Science degree from The Juilliard School where she was a scholarship student of Rosina Lhevinne. Her mentor is currently and always Seymour Bernstein.

Anna Arazi is a Boston-based Russian-Israeli classical pianist and educator who enthusiastically advocates for contemporary and rarely performed music by female composers. Anna has premiered dozens of solo and chamber works by American, British, Israeli and Russian composers, including Ketty Nez, Vera Ivanova, Talia Amar and Angela Slater. Her performance credits include the Bell’Arte festival in Belgium, Paine Hall at Harvard University, the Mishkenot Sha’ananim Center in Jerusalem, and Weill Recital Hall in NYC. Anna works with advanced students in her private studio and serves as a collaborative pianist at Boston Conservatory at Berklee. Anna is an affiliated artist at MIT and the current president of the Massachusetts Chapter of the World Piano Teachers Association.


Award-winning concert pianist, Julia Siciliano has been heralded as a musician with “fabulous creative power” by the Bonn General-Anzeiger. Ms. Siciliano has become a well respected artist on the world stage, being invited as a solo artist by many prestigious orchestras, and festivals, most recently with the Orquestra Sinfónica de la Region de Murcia for the MurciArt Music Festival. A winner of many local and international piano competitions, Julia has won top prizes at the Sicily International Piano Competition, Heida Hermanns International Competition, Iowa Piano Competition, and MTNA National Competition. A highly active chamber musician, Julia has been invited to perform on concert series and festivals with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra Chamber Players, the Euskadiko Orchestra (Basque National Orchestra)’s chamber music series “Miramon Matinees”, the MurciArt Festival in Murcia, Spain, and with the soloists of the Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano. She has given recitals with Metropolitan Opera stars Amanda Pabyan, Eric Owens, and Marina Domashenko, and internationally acclaimed string players Ray Chen, Simone Lamsma, and Kyril Zlotnikov. Most notably, Julia performed the complete “accompanied sonatas” of Beethoven in the year 2020 at the Teatro Victoria Eugenia in Donostia-San Sebastián, Spain, and in various venues throughout the United States, France, and Sweden.


Theatre

Leonard Nimoy Thalia

Expected Run Time is 120 minutes

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