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Gerald Carpenter: Jeremy Denk Joins Fellows for Chamber Music Concert

Maestro Jeremy Denk, Music Academy of the West faculty artist (piano), will gather some instrumental fellows about him for a concert of chamber music at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, July 22, at the Lobero Theatre.

Denk's charges will learn to collaborate in expanding ensemble, starting with a piano-violin-cello trio, increasing to a piano and string quartet, and concluding with a chamber orchestra.

The will first perform Franz Josef Haydn's "Piano Trio No. 40 in f#-minor, Hoboken 15/26 (1795);" then Robert Schumann's "Piano Quintet in Eb-Major, Opus 44 (1842); and finally, Wolfgang Mozart's "Piano Concerto No. 25 In C-Major, K-503 (1786)."

These are three composers who will not be taking leave of our concert halls any time soon.

Whether they join a symphony orchestra or a smaller ensemble — or both, quite likely — or strike out on their own, the participating fellows will be meeting Haydn and Schumann and Mozart in the workplace for the rest of their lives.

Haydn seldom, if ever, makes No. 1 on a music lover's list of favorite composers, and yet ... He is the perfect composer. The quintessential classicist, he handed on a complete arsenal of romantic paradigms to Beethoven and Schumann.

He wrote his first symphony in 1759, his last in 1795. He spent 30 years as a dutiful and productive court musician, a Kapellmeister.

But when his main noble patron died, and the family cut him lose with a pension and a sinecure, he flung himself on the market as a composer-performer, produced masterpiece upon masterpiece, and took up a triumphant residency in London.

From first to last, his music reveals a man delighted with his creations, with his powers of invention. (You can almost hear him asking: "How did I ever think of that?")

He is intoxicated with possibility. But here is where the classicism comes in: There is never too much.

When the French occupied Vienna in 1809, Napoleon put a guard of honor around the house where Haydn lay dying.

The composer had himself carried to the piano, where he commenced to play, as forcefully as he could, the Austrian national anthem, which he had written. [curtain].

Tickets to this concert start at $55, and can be purchased at the Lobero box office, 33 E. Canon Perdido St., by phone at 963-0761 or 899-2222, or on line at www.musicacademy.org.

— Gerald Carpenter covers the arts as a Noozhawk contributing writer. He can be reached at [email protected]. The opinions expressed are his own.

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