PianoSummer at New Paltz celebrates 20th anniversary

SUNY New Paltz will celebrate the 20th season of PianoSummer, an international summer institute and festival dedicated solely to piano music, with special recitals, concerts, master classes, a lecture and piano competitions  from July 12 – August 1 on the New Paltz campus.

All concerts and events are open to the public, some free of charge.

Schedule of Events (for a complete schedule of events visit www.newpaltz.edu/piano)

July 12 at 8 p.m.
The celebration begins on July 12 at 8 p.m. with the Faculty Gala presenting a breathtaking lineup of current PianoSummer music faculty from leading conservatories and universities. The program includes Vladimir Feltsman, Robert Hamilton, Phillip Kawin, Alexander Korsantia, Paul Ostrovsky, Robert Roux and Susan Starr playing Bach, Schubert, Rachmaninoff, Brahms, Nielson, Liszt, Tchaikovsky and Copland.

July 19 at 8 p.m.
Feltsman, artistic director of PianoSummer, will give an exclusive recital on July 19 at 8 p.m. The evening will mark an all-Schumann program.

July 26 at 8 p.m.
Heating up this summer’s milestone season is a special recital on July 26 at 8 p.m. featuring nine previous winners of the Jacob Flier International Piano Competition. These young, inspiring pianists include Alexander Beridze, Joey Chang, Baron Fenwick, Jun Luke Foster, Jennifer Shinyoung Ju, Ketevan Kartvelishvili, Hidemi Minagawa, Timur Moustakimov, and Yinfei Wang playing Mozart, Brahms, Scriabin, Chopin, Liszt, Bach, Rachmaninoff and Debussy.

August 1 at 8 p.m.
PianoSummer concludes with the highly-praised Symphony Gala on August 1 at 8 p.m. featuring the Hudson Valley Philharmonic, conducted by Feltsman, and a concerto performed by the 2014 Flier winner. The Flier winner will be determined the week prior to this performance. The evening’s program includes Verdi’s “La forza del destino” and Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 1.

Institute events
Institute events include a recital by Ketevan Kartvelishvili, winner of the 2013 Flier competition; master classes by guest faculty Emanuel Krasovsky and Victor Rosenbaum;  a lecture/discussion on Bach with Anthony Newman and PianoSummer faculty; the 2014 Jacob Flier Competition on July 21 & 23 at 3 p.m.; three student recitals; and a recital by the second and third-place winners of the 2014 Flier competition.

Tickets for all concerts and events are on sale now at the Box Office located in Parker Theatre. Box office hours are Monday through Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tickets may also be purchased by calling (845) 257-3880 or online at www.newpaltz.edu/piano.

PianoSummer is sponsored by the School of Fine & Performing Arts at SUNY New Paltz.

About PianoSummer Festival and Institute
PianoSummer was founded in 1994 by renowned maestro Vladimir Feltsman, distinguished professor of piano at SUNY New Paltz. One of the distinctive features of the Institute was, and continues to be, that every student works intensively and simultaneously with all the faculty members who represent a variety of traditions and styles. Additionally, the Institute provides a public setting in which students experience performing in front of an audience. Today, the program continues to focus on an integrated approach to learning and performance.

The Jacob Flier International Piano Competition was established in 1998 to honor Professor Jacob Flier, a distinguished pianist and pedagogue who taught for many years at the Moscow Conservatory and influenced several generations of prominent pianists including Feltsman, Rodion Shchedrin, Lev and Natasha Vlassenko, Mark Zeltser and Mikhail Pletnev.

About the Artistic Director
Vladimir Feltsman, founder and artistic director of PianoSummer, is an artist of immense range and insight, and recognized as one of the most imaginative musicians of our time. Feltsman was born in Moscow in 1952 and debuted as a soloist with the Moscow Philharmonic at the age of 11. He won first prize at the Concertina International Competition in Prague at age 15, an award that led him to enroll in the Moscow Conservatory where he studied under the tutelage of Jacob Flier. He also studied conducting at both the Moscow and the Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) Conservatories. In 1979, because of his growing discontent with the official Soviet ideology and rigid government control of the arts, Feltsman made his intention to emigrate from the Soviet Union clear by applying for an exit visa. In reply, he was immediately banned from performing in public. After eight years of struggle and virtual artistic exile, he was finally granted permission to leave the Soviet Union. In the summer of 1987, Feltsman arrived in the United States and was warmly greeted at the White House, where he performed his very first concert in North America. That same year, his debut at Carnegie Hall immediately established him as a major pianist on the American scene. The PBS television documentary “Journey from Home: Vladimir Feltsman in Moscow” recounts his return to Moscow after being banned from the concert halls. Feltsman is a regular guest soloist with leading orchestras in the U.S. He appears in many concert series and music festivals around the world and has an extensive discography. Feltsman teaches at SUNY New Paltz as well as Mannes College of Music in New York City.