Free piaino series opens July 21 at Davis & Elkins College
Davis & Elkins College Artist-in-Residence Jack Gibbons will perform three free Sunday afternoon concerts for the Halliehurst Piano Series this summer.
The concerts are scheduled for July 21 and 28, and August 4 at 2 p.m. in the Great Hall of Halliehurst on the campus of Davis & Elkins College.
Gibbons opens the series with the sublime music of Beethoven. The July 21 performance entitled “Beethoven: Isolated Genius” will feature two of the composer’s most popular piano sonatas, the “Pathetique” and “Appassionata.” As usual, Gibbons will also intersperse his program with informal anecdotes about the composer and his music.
On July 28, Gibbons will present “Chopin & Alkan: Piano Legends.” The program will reflect the relationship between two of the 19th century’s greatest pianist composers, who also happened to be friends and next-door neighbors in Paris. The performance will include some of Chopin’s most well-known works including the “‘Heroic’ Polonaise,” “Ballade No. 3” and a selection of preludes, nocturnes and mazurkas, as well as some of Alkan’s most spectacular music including the “Marche Funebre” and “Marche Triomphale.”
Gibbons will conclude his series with “A Piano Party” (Music by Gershwin, Gibbons & More) on Aug. 4. The program will feature a mix of music by Gershwin, including recreations of the composer’s wonderful show tunes improvisation; Alkan, Chopin’s unusual next-door neighbor whose bicentenary is being celebrated this year; and some of Gibbons’ own popular compositions, including his “Waltz on a Musical Box.”
This is the second year Gibbons has presented the classic piano series. He has served as an artist-in-residence at D&E since 2010, performing and writing his own compositions. During his time he has performed at elementary schools throughout the region as well as Washington, D.C.’s Kennedy Center, Pittsburgh’s Steinway Gallery and New York’s Carnegie Hall.
His performances have been received with tremendous standing ovations in some of the world’s great concert halls, including New York’s Lincoln Center and London’s Queen Elizabeth and Royal Albert Halls, and his recordings have consistently attracted rave reviews, awards and commendations.