Outstanding pianists, piano teachers and keyboard artists from throughout the nation will join internationally acclaimed pianists Leon Fleisher and Stefan Karlsson for the West Virginia University Keyboard Festival and Competition, to be held at the Creative Arts Center, July 2-6.

Titled “The Intersection of Jazz and Classical Music: a Piano Festival for Students and Teachers,” the event will explore the many ways jazz and classical music intersect and influence each other.

The idea for the festival sprang from a desire to celebrate the piano and diminish the barriers between the classical and jazz piano worlds, according to Christine Kefferstan, professor of piano at WVU and one of the organizers of the festival,

“Our aim is to stimulate a deeper appreciation for the connections between jazz and classical music, as well as to have a great deal of fun,” she said.

Kefferstan said there is sure to be a tremendous amount of energy created by the gathering of so many distinguished guests—including teachers and musicians from throughout the area, as well as the internationally known guest artists.

In addition to piano competitions for high school and college students, as well as some amazing concerts, the festival will feature various clinics, workshops, master classes and teacher panel discussions on a wide array of topics.

The schedule of workshops and classes includes:

Monday, July 2
9 a.m. – “How We Listen” – Valerie Zamora, concert pianist from Chapel Hill, N.C.

9:50 a.m. – “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing: Jazz Melodic Rhythm and Phrasing as the Gateway to Authentic Jazz Performance Style”
Bob Hallahan, jazz pianist from Virginia Commonwealth University.

10:30 a.m. – “Electronic Music Studio Open House – David Taddie, WVU professor of music theory and composition and director of the Electronic Music Studio.

12:30 p.m. – Master Class – James Miltenberger, WVU professor of piano, currently celebrating his 50th year on the WVU music faculty.

2 p.m. – “Classical Influences on Jazz Pianists – How to make the crossover?” – jazz pianist and composer Bruce Dudley of Nashville, Tenn.

3:15 p.m. – “Dancing Cheek to Cheek: The Common Ground of Jazz and Art Music in the Twentieth Century” – Christopher Wilkinson, WVU professor of music history, and Katherine Altizer, visiting professor of music history at WVU.

Tuesday, July 3
11 a.m. – Panel Discussion – “Career Paths: On Being a Jazz Pianist”
Moderator – Keith Jackson, Director, WVU School of Music;
Panelists – Neil Donato, jazz and classical pianist of southeast Michigan, Bob Hallahan, jazz pianist of Virginia Commonwealth University, and John Salmon, jazz and classical pianist of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

1 p.m. – Master Class – Christine Kefferstan, WVU professor of piano.

2:15 p.m. – Jazz Clinic – Stefan Karlsson, internationally known jazz pianist and faculty member at the University of North Texas.

4 p.m. – Master Class – Peter Amstutz, WVU professor of piano and coordinator of Keyboard Studies.

Wednesday, July 4
9 a.m. – “New Variations to the Bach Goldberg Variations” – Ruth Rendleman, professor of piano at Montclair State University.

10 a.m. – “Classical Improvisation” – Sam Gingher, pianist, teacher and composer of University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

11 a.m. – “The Physically Perceptive Pianist: Begin the Journey to Transform Your Playing!” – Jacqueline Herbein, pianist, teacher and clinician of Pittsburgh.

1 p.m. – Master Class – pianist Lucy Mauro, associate professor of piano at WVU.

2:15 p.m. –”Resources for Improvisation” – Bill Haller, professor of organ and organ literature at WVU.

3:15 p.m. – “Eine Kleine Mitternachtmusik: Crumb’s Fascination with Jazz and Nocturnal Imagery” – Kevin Richmond, assistant professor and coordinator of class piano at the University of Memphis.

4 p.m. – Master Class – YeeHa Chiu, Steinway artist and Hong Kong-born pianist, currently of Pittsburgh.

Thursday, July 5
12:30 p.m. – “The Cross-Pollination of Spanish, French and Jazz Styles in the Early 20th Century” – Jeffrey Brown, chamber musician and piano faculty member from Western Illinois University and Christopher Newport University, Michael Stryker, assistant professor of jazz piano at Western Illinois University and Tammie Walker, professor of piano at Western Illinois University.

1:15 p.m. – “From Mozart to Monk: Incorporating Jazz into the Collegiate Level Classical Piano Lesson” – Justin Badgerow, assistant professor of piano at Elizabethtown College in Ky.

2:15 p.m. – Panel Discussion – “Career Paths: On Being a Classical Pianist”
Moderator – Christine Kefferstan, professor of piano at WVU;
Panelists – Yeeha Chiu, Steinway artist and Hong Kong-born pianist, currently of Pittsburgh; Teresa Ehrlich, founder and director of the Renaissance Music Academy of Virginia; Vicki Berneking-Cavendish, soloist and professor of music emerita at James Madison University; and Jacqueline Herbein, pianist, teacher and clinician of Pittsburgh.

3:30 p.m. – “Fascinating Rhythm: The Crossroads of Jazz Elements and Classical Technique in the Works of George Gershwin and Transcriptions by Earl Wild” – Scott Beard, professor of piano at Shepherd University.

4:15 p.m. – “Playing Kapustin” – John Salmon, jazz and classical pianist of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Friday, July 6
1 p.m. – Master Class – Leon Fleisher, internationally known conductor and pianist.

Two special public events will be held as part of the festival:

A jazz concert by Stefan Karlsson will be held Monday, July 2, at 7 p.m. (admission $10) and “A Conversation with Leon Fleisher,” including reception, will be held Thursday, July 5, at 7 p.m. (admission $15). Both events will be in the Gladys G. Davis Theatre. For tickets and information, call (304) 293-SHOW or see www.ticketmaster.com.

There will also be free concerts by the jazz student winners on Tuesday, July 3, at 7:30 p.m. and by the classical winners on Friday, July 6, at 3 p.m. In addition, a free Showcase Jazz and Classical Concert will be held Wednesday, July 4, at 7 p.m. All concerts will be held in the Gladys G. Davis Theatre.

For more information on the WVU Keyboard Festival and Competition, contact Christine Kefferstan at 304-293-4521, email ckeffers@mail.wvu.edu, or see the Keyboard Festival and Competition website at: http://music.wvu.edu/keyboardfestival.

The priority registration date for the Festival is June 30, 2012. One-day registrations are also available.

To register online, go to: http://wvu.augusoft.net/.

-WVU-

CONTACT: Charlene Lattea, College of Creative Arts
304-293-4359, Charlene.Lattea@mail.wvu.edu

Follow @WVUToday on Twitter.