Piano festival attracts talented musicians and scholars
Queen’s School of Music students will benefit from access to the expertise of three renowned pianists and scholars over the next several weeks.
“I have found that the master classes, recitals and lectures offered by PianoFest visiting artists inspire students to play better,” says Ireneus Zuk, a professor in the School of Music and organizer of the festival. “They hear the calibre of the performances on the international scene and they strive to reach that level.”
As they prepare for their end of term recitals, Queen’s piano students will have the chance to play for Heather Schmidt, Roy Howat and Derek Yaple-Schobert. The students will receive feedback from the visiting artists and gain valuable performing experience.
The broader Kingston community of classical music lovers will also enjoy hearing the award-winning pianists in concert.
Dr. Schmidt was recently nominated for a Juno Award, Canada’s highest music honour, in the classical composition of the year category. She will perform her own works as well as compositions from 19th-century women composers Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel and Clara Schumann. She will also present a public lecture on women composers past and present, which is co-sponsored by Queen’s Department of Gender Studies.
Dr. Howat, a pianist and the foremost expert in the world on French piano music, will offer a recital and master classes for piano and chamber music. His public lecture will reconsider the works of composer Claude Debussy 150 years after his birth.
Dr. Yaple-Schobert is an emerging pianist from Montreal. A specialist in Scandinavian composers, his latest recording is works by Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg.
Several university funds support the PianoFest including the Principal’s Development Fund International Visiting Artist Program, the Faculty of Arts and Science’s visiting artist fund and the George Taylor Richardson Memorial Fund.
Complete PianoFest, Opus 8 details can be found online.