CCM explores the world of classical piano this spring with the sixth installment of its annual Bearcat Piano Festival, starting on Monday, March 23, and culminating with the 10th edition of Pianopalooza on Saturday, April 4.

Guest artist Stephen Hough. Photo copyright Andrew Crowley.

Guest artist Stephen Hough. Photo copyright Andrew Crowley.

Launched in 2010 by CCM Professor of Piano Awadagin Pratt, this year’s festival features an exciting new joint collaboration with Xavier University, which brings internationally renowned pianist Stephen Hough to CCM’s Corbett Auditorium at 8 p.m. on Monday, March 30. This special occasion will also serve as Xavier’s inaugural Father John Heim Concert. An extraordinary pianist, composer, writer, teacher and painter, Hough was a 2001 MacArthur Fellowship recipient and received the honor of being named a Commander of the Order of the British Empire for his services to the art of music in 2014. His performance will include works by Debussy and Chopin.

Hough is not the only internationally renowned performer to grace the CCM stage during the Bearcat Piano Festival this year. Russian pianist Sergei Babayan (Artist-in-Residence at the Cleveland Institute of Music) will perform in CCM’s Robert J. Werner Recital Hall at 8 p.m. on Wednesday, March 25. A Laureate of Belgium’s Queen Elisabeth Music Competition and multiple time first-prize winner in competitions such as the Casadesus (Cleveland) and Hammamatsu (Japan), Babayan will showcase the works of Pärt, Liszt, Vladimir Ryabov, J. S. Bach, Chopin and Rachmaninov.

Additionally, the Festival will serve as a homecoming for another associate from Xavier. Polina Bespalko, Director of Xavier’s Classical Piano Series and a CCM alumna (AD Piano, 2005; DMA Piano, 2014), will return to Robert J. Werner Recital Hall at 8 p.m. on Friday, March 27, for a free performance highlighted by Franz Liszt’s monumental Sonata in B Minor.

Guest artists for this year’s Bearcat Piano Festival will also come from across the northeastern United States. New York will be on display at 8 p.m. on Monday, March 23, in the Robert J. Werner Recital Hall as Professors Jerome Lowenthal of the Julliard School and Ursula Oppens of CUNY and Brooklyn College give a free joint performance of diverse piano works. Also, University of Michigan doctoral student pianists will make a second consecutive trip to CCM for a free concert at 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 29.

This series of performances ultimately leads to the tenth-annual installment of Pianopalooza, which takes the stage in Corbett Auditorium at 8 p.m. on Saturday, April 4. Under the direction of CCM Associate Professor of Piano Michael Chertock, the event is a diverse cornucopia of CCM’s piano faculty and students as well as the CCM Concert Orchestra conducted by Visiting Assistant Professor of Music Aik Khai Pung. This eclectic event will focus on Sergei Rachmaninoff, showcasing three of his masterworks: the Piano Concerto No. 1 in F-sharp Minor, Op. 1; Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43; and the Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 30.

The Bearcat Piano Festival and Pianopalooza events never fail to excite and intrigue, and this year is no exception. Make sure to not miss out on seeing a plethora of local and international talents showcase the entire breadth of the keyboards!

Event Information

All events listed below take place on the campus of the University of Cincinnati unless otherwise indicated. Some events do require purchased tickets; please see individual event information for single ticket prices and ordering information. Visit ccm.uc.edu/boxoffice/bearcatpianofestival for the most current information.

Tickets can be purchased in person at the CCM Box Office, over the telephone at 513-556-4183 or online now through our e-Box Office! Visit ccm.uc.edu/boxoffice for CCM Box Office hours and location.

All event dates and programs are subject to change. Visit ccm.uc.edu or contact the CCM Box Office at 513-556-4183 for the most current event information.

Parking and Directions
Parking is available in the CCM Garage (located at the base of Corry Boulevard off Jefferson Avenue) and additional garages throughout the UC campus. Please visit uc.edu/parking for more information on parking rates.

For detailed maps and directions, please visit uc.edu/visitors. Additional parking is available off-campus at the new U Square complex on Calhoun Street and other neighboring lots.

For directions to CCM Village, visit ccm.uc.edu/about/directions.
____________________

2015 BEARCAT PIANO FESTIVAL SCHEDULE

8 p.m. Monday, March 23
BEARCAT PIANO FESTIVAL GUEST ARTIST RECITAL
Jerome Lowenthal and Ursula Oppens, piano

The Big Apple comes to CCM as esteemed artists Jerome Lowenthal (The Julliard School) and Ursula Oppens (CUNY and Brooklyn College) visit for an evening of diverse piano works, with a program featuring:
RZEWSKI: Four Hands
SCHUBERT: Four Impromptus, Op. 90
FAURÉ: Nocturne No. 6 in D-flat Major, Op. 63
FRANCK/CORTOT: Sonata for piano and violin (arr. for solo piano)
FAURÉ: Dolly Suite, Op. 56
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
Admission: FREE
____

8 p.m. Wednesday, March 25
BEARCAT PIANO FESTIVAL GUEST ARTIST RECITAL
Sergei Babayan, piano

Artist-in-Residence at CIM, Sergei Babayan is acclaimed for the immediacy, sensitivity and depth of his interpretations. His philosophy that a recital should reveal a spiritual dimension results in playing that sustains a captivating intensity. A student of such legendary musicians as Gornostayeva, Naumov, Pletnev and Vlasenko at the Moscow Conservatory, Babayan won consecutive first prizes in several major international competitions, including the Casadesus and Hammamatsu. Since that time, he has appeared in recital internationally in the most important venues, and with the world’s best orchestras. Additionally Babayan is a frequent two piano collaborator with Martha Argerich.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
Tickets: $15 general, $10 non-UC students, UC students FREE.
____

8 p.m. Friday, March 27
BEARCAT PIANO FESTIVAL GUEST ARTIST RECITAL
Polina Bespalko, piano

Pianist and Xavier University professor Polina Bespalko returns to her alma mater to present the works of Prokofiev, Kapustin, Gubaidulina, Pärt and the monumental Liszt Sonata.
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
Admission: FREE
____

4 p.m. Sunday, March 29
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN PIANISTS
Guest artists from the University of Michigan perform as part of the sixth annual Bearcat Piano Festival!
Location: Robert J. Werner Recital Hall
Admission: FREE
____

8 p.m. Monday, March 30
BEARCAT PIANO FESTIVAL GUEST ARTIST RECITAL
Stephen Hough, CBE, piano
Presented in cooperation with the Xavier University Classical Piano Series
The Inaugural Father John Heim, S.J. Concert

CCM’s Bearcat Piano Festival welcomes extraordinary pianist, composer, writer, teacher, painter and 2001 MacArthur Fellowship-recipient Stephen Hough to the stage for the inaugural Father John Heim Concert. Hough’s program will include Debussy’s La plus que lenteEstampesL’isle joyeuxand Children’s Corner and Chopin’s Ballade No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 23, Ballade No. 2 in F Major, Op. 38, Ballade No. 3 in A-flat Major, Op. 47 and Ballade No. 4 in F Minor, Op. 52. Appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2014 for his services to the art of music, Hough’s concert appearance is being presented in cooperation with the Xavier University Classical Piano Series, directed by Polina Bespalko.
Location: Corbett Auditorium
Tickets: $25 general, $15 non-UC/Xavier University students, $10 for UC and Xavier University students.
____

8 p.m. Saturday, April 4
PIANOPALOOZA X
Michael Chertock, director
Featuring the CCM Concert Orchestra
Aik Khai Pung, conductor

Celebrate the art of the piano with the tenth installment of this popular concert, showcasing CCM’s most spectacular student pianists, with special appearances by CCM’s faculty artists. In honor of the tenth annual Pianopalooza, the Concert Orchestra will join CCM’s pianists for performances of Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in F-sharp Minor, Op. 1; Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini, Op. 43; and Piano Concerto No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 30.
Location: Corbett Auditorium
Tickets: $15 general, $10 non-UC students, UC students FREE.
____________________

Programs and dates are subject to change. For the most up-to-date information, please visit us online at ccm.uc.edu.

CCM Season Presenting Sponsor and Musical Theatre Program Sponsor: The Otto M. Budig Family Foundation

Community Partner: ArtsWave

All-Steinway School Sponsor: The Corbett Endowment at CCM

CCM is proud to be an All-Steinway School.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s