Public Lectures

Great Piano Works:  from the "Baroque to the Impressionists” & “ the 20th century to the Present”

Piano and keyboard music throughout history has given us a lens not only the composer’s creative process, but provides us with a rich source of study for other art forms and history, such as literature, cultural roles, visual arts, and significant world events. The emotional power, expressive range, and symphonic quality of piano and keyboard repertoire have made it possible for us to see the development of music as a whole from every period of music’s long history and its current developments.

Great Piano Works, Part I: from the Baroque to the Impressionists

by Scott Lowell Sherman

7PM, July 13 (Thursday)

From the Goldberg Variations of Bach, to the keyboard Sonatas of Beethoven; to the piano concerti of Brahms, and the exceptional literary and poetic qualities of Schumann, Schubert, Reger, Liszt, Debussy and Poulenc—this first part will cover major keyboard works which gives us a lens into the lives of these composers, their method to which they pushed the boundaries of music, developed their own musical language, and their lasting importance to the canon of classical music.

Great Piano Works, Part II: from the 20th Century to the Present

by Yaoyue Huang

7PM, July 18 (Tuesday)

From the Piano Suite Op. 25 of Schoenberg, to the Second Piano Sonata of Boulez; from John Cage’s Etudes Australes to the “-isms” of Glass, Bolcom, Murail, Dench—this second part will cover the challenges of the 20th and 21st centuries, including world wars, commercialism, commodification, and leaps in technological developments, which have inspired major keyboard works that reflect the times in which they were composed. As a result, these compositions have expanded our horizons of artistic expression through sound and provided a powerful lens through which to view the cultural and social contexts that shaped them.