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People and Pianos Day



Welcome to Corvallis-OSU Piano International’s People and Pianos Day, where we transform the Corvallis Public Library into a pianistic carnival!

Highlights of our celebration include the popular Children’s Concert, performances in the lobby, mini talks and readings, and our featured presentation with pianist Alpin Hong – known as “the modern day Pied Piper” – sharing his insights and performing Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue.

All events are free to the public.

Saturday March 2, 2019

10:30 am      Children’s Concert: Snakes, Sharks, and Swans—A Whimsical Tour with Cello and Piano  

Victoria Wolff, cellist and Rachelle McCabe, pianist

11:30 am    Piano music in the Lobby

1:00 pm      Feature Program in the Meeting Room, with a 9-foot concert grand piano

Welcome  — COPI president Bonnie Esbensen

A Moving Performance

COPI Board Piano Quartet

Meet special guest Alpin Hong

Pianist and Poet: A Father and Daughter Collaboration

David Nembhard, pianist & Naomi Nembhard, poet

Passion and Process: Further Reflections on Chopin’s Winter Wind

Keenan Cabrera, pianist  

The Piano Breathes: Liszt’s Un Sospiro

Haoyang Jiang, pianist

The Pianist Invents: Transformation of a Musical Idea

Greg Starr, composer and pianist

The Piano Celebrates: America from West Side Story by Bernstein

Aaron and Abby Cohen, Rachelle McCabe, pianists

The Piano Transforms: Prokofiev’s Tale of the Old Grandmother and Toccata in A minor

Michael Gu, pianist

     Featured Presentation – Transformers: More Than Meets the Ear

Alpin Hong, pianist

An interactive and entertaining conversation that shows how composers can depict actions and create musical moods in ways that the audience can directly experience. The program celebrates the connections between classical music and television, movie, and video game soundtracks. Hong goes on to share how learning to perform transforms anyone’s ability to have confidence and succeed in any area of life.

For the grand finale, Hong will perform George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue!

A “Piano-tastic” weekend in Corvallis

At Corvallis-OSU Piano International, our mission is “bringing people together in a culture of piano through performance, education and advocacy.” We are always thrilled by the opportunity to present world-class pianists and spectacular repertoire through our Steinway Series. No less a key part of our mission is to provide first-class celebratory and learning events for the whole community. The first two days of March offer a delightful two-part pianistic celebration for all to enjoy!

On Friday, March 1, at First Presbyterian Church in downtown Corvallis, acclaimed “Pied Piper of the Piano” Alpin Hong displays his keen charisma and musicianship in a lecture-concert called Insights at the Piano: Masters of Metamorphosis. Following on the variation fun in Jeremy Denk’s January concert (see previous post), Hong describes his concert “Themes and variations by Mendelssohn, Muczynski, and Mussorgsky illuminating how composers mold our emotions through modulation, meter, and myth.” Hong’s presentations are always marked by incredible creativity and vitality. A New York Times review of his sold-out New York recital debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall called him a “pianistic firebrand.” In advance of his visit to Corvallis, he gives a special greeting to our community in this video.

The next day, Saturday, March 2, brings our ever-popular community celebration People and Pianos Day. Festivities begin with a Children’s Concert called Snakes, Sharks, and Swans, A Whimsical Tour with Cello and Piano, in which cellist Victoria Wolff and pianist Rachelle McCabe share the sounds of slithering snakes and aquatic animals. The afternoon festivities once again feature Alpin Hong, sharing his insights in a program called Transformers: More Than Meets the Ear, including a performance of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. Throughout the day, mini talks and lobby performances featuring community pianists will surprise and delight.

We hope you and your family will join us the first weekend in March for our pianistic extravaganza!

~ Matt Goodrich