Kent State Keyboard Series on Nov. 12 combines music, visual art and poetry | Kent State University
Jerry Wong, Eric van Baars, Ana-Joel Falcon Wiebe
Jerry Wong, Eric van Baars, Ana-Joel Falcon Wiebe

Kent State Keyboard Series on Nov. 12 combines music, visual art and poetry

The Kent Keyboard Series continues its 2017-2018 season with pianist Jerry Wong, Kent State faculty member and Steinway Artist, on Sun., Nov. 12 at 5 p.m. in Ludwig Recital Hall. Guests include Eric van Baars, Director of the Kent State School of Theatre and Dance, as well as Ana-Joel Falcón-Wiebe, a specialist in 17th through 19th century European art. Tickets can be purchased in advance by calling 330-672-2787 (ARTS) or at www.kent.edu/music/buy-tickets. $15, adults; $13, seniors and Kent State University faculty; $10, groups of 10 or more; $8 non-Kent State students and Kent State student ineligible for the Fee for Free; FREE for full-time Kent Campus undergraduates and those under 18. Ludwig Recital Hall is at 1325 Theatre Drive in the Center for the Performing Arts. Ample free parking is available.

Kent State faculty member and Steinway Artist, Jerry Wong, will present a variety of pieces including works by Bach, Scriabin, Rachmaninoff and Rochberg. Central to the program will be Seymour Bernstein’s “New Pictures at an Exhibition.” Much like Mussorgsky’s seminal work “Pictures at an Exhibition,” Bernstein intended for his composition to represent paintings as musical impressions. Paintings include famous works by Degas, Toulouse-Laurtrec, Rosseau, Watteau, Chagall, Klee, Raphael, Freelander and Picasso. Different from Mussorgsky’s work is the addition of poetry describing each painting by award-winning poet Owen Lewis. Bernstein, a much sought-after pianist, teacher and prolific composer, currently resides in New York.

Attendees will not only be treated to the music but will also have the opportunity to explore how it relates to the visual art and poetry it represents. Prior to the concert, Dr. Ana-Joel Falcón-Wiebe will lead a discussion on the paintings being represented by the music and poetry. Focusing on Degas, Toulouse-Lautrec and Rousseau, it will explore the poetics of musicality in the relationships between painting, music and the written word. This presentation, free and open to all, will take place at 4 p.m. in room E-112 in the School of Music, just down the hall from Ludwig Recital Hall. During the concert, audience members will enjoy a recitation of each poem by Eric van Baars prior to each movements' performance. Additionally, as each movement is performed, its corresponding painting will be displayed on a large screen.

Described by Pulitzer Prize-winning critic Martin Bernheimer as "eloquent and elegant…(with) passion and introspection…sensitivity and a finely honed sense of style," pianist Jerry Wong has performed throughout the United States, Europe and Asia in prestigious venues such as Severance Hall, Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall and more. His performances have also been broadcast on stations around the world. A graduate of Indiana University, Peabody Conservatory and the Manhattan School of Music, where he completed the Doctor of Musical Arts degree, Mr. Wong's major teachers have included Menahem Pressler, Ann Schein, Sara Davis Buechner and Byron Janis. Currently, Dr. Wong serves as an Associate Professor of Piano at Kent State University, is the Coordinator of the Kent State Piano Institute and teaches at Kent/Blossom Music festival. He is a Steinway Artist.

Ana-Joel Falcón-Wiebe earned her Ph.D. in Art History from Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. Her work focuses on the intersections between visuality and criticism in the work of Théodule Augustin Ribot. She examines the relationships with seventeenth-century Spanish painting in nineteenth-century French painting with special focus on issues of cross-cultural exchange and identities. Other research interests include the musico-poetics in the work of Vincent van Gogh. Dr. Falcón-Wiebe has held curatorial positions at the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, the Brooklyn Museum, the Musée du Louvre, the National Gallery of Canada and the Agnes Etherington Art Centre. She has lectured within Art History departments at Skidmore College, Stony Brook University, Queen's University and is currently lecturing at Kent State University.

Eric van Baars serves as the Director of the School of Theatre and Dance at Kent State University as well as the Executive Producer for Porthouse Theatre. As an Associate Professor in the School, he has taught movement, musical theatre and acting. Additionally, he has directed the New York Musical Theatre Showcase and over 15 productions including “Into the Woods,” “She Stoops to Conquer,” and more. At Porthouse Theatre his directing and choreography credits include “Ain’t Misbehavin’,” “Sister Act,” “Fiddler on the Roof” “Once On This Island” and “Big River.” As an actor he has appeared in “Oliver” (Fagin), “Chicago” (Billy Flynn), “Damn Yankees” (Applegate), “The Music Man” (Harold Hill), “The Odd Couple” (Felix), “Anything Goes” (Lord Evelyn), “Sweet Charity” (Oscar), “Jesus Christ Superstar” (Herod), “Guys and Dolls” (Benny) and more.

2017-2018 Season

Sun., Jan. 28, 5 p.m. featuring Read Gainsford, guest artist
Sun., Feb 25, 5 p.m. featuring Donna Lee, Kent State faculty & Steinway Artist
Sun., April 22, 5 p.m. featuring Logan Skelton, guest artist

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