On Wednesday night, about 330 people left their bodies in the Mary Seaton Room of Kleinhans Music Hall, stepped onto an Astral Traveler that looked an awful lot like a Steinway grand piano, and went off on a spiritual journey guided by the genius of Bach, as channeled through one of his disciples, visiting concert pianist Angela Hewitt. Although we touched down after 80 minutes, many feel as if they are still floating out there. I was looking forward to the experience, and like most in the audience, had heard recordings of Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” but had never experienced them performed, in a live concert setting, uninterrupted for 80 minutes, from start to finish. Everyone was moved, it was obvious, and in my case I was almost overwhelmed by a desire to have us all hold hands. In our cynical age people will exhort you to have a hard edge by saying things like “well, we’re not going to hold hands and sing ‘Kumbaya’ I can tell you.” But for me this was “a Kumbaya moment” and they don’t come along that often.
Angela Hewitt will offer a Master Class for several pre-selected pianists on Friday, March 24 at 5:30 p.m. at the Burchfield Penney Art Center, 1300 Elmwood Avenue.
Angela Hewitt will offer a Master Class for several pre-selected pianists on Friday, March 24 at 5:30 p.m. at the Burchfield Penney Art Center, 1300 Elmwood Avenue. As a member of the audience you don’t have to do anything; just sit there and listen to the young performers play a little, and learn a few things about the music as Hewitt gives them pointers. Master Classes are fun. For the audience.
Then Hewitt will play Bach’s most popular and beloved keyboard concerto (the one in D minor) along with one in D major, with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Stefan Sanders conducting, on the main stage of Kleinhans Music Hall on March 25 at 8:00 p.m. and Sunday March 26 at 2:30 p.m. In this conversation with Hewitt playing the D major concerto in the background, she tells how she chose the two concertos which she will play. The answer includes her observation: “The D minor is the greatest… no argument.” Tickets will be available at the door, or call (716) 885-5000 or visit www.bpo.org