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  • David Kiser

Field Trip to a Piano Recital: Atlanta's Spivey Hall

Whenever we can we try to attend piano recitals by major pianists. Besides being fun outings these can be a big learning opportunity not only for our students but also for us! Spivey Hall in Atlanta is probably the best and most intimate recital halls on the East Coast. The acoustics are phenomenal and the space is beautiful.

We've seen pianists such as Murray Perahia, Stephen Hough, and Krystian Zimerman there. The recital with Perahia was the best recital I've ever attended and I still think about it to this day. He played the Brahms Handel Variations. On this occasion we saw the American pianist Jeremy Denk.

The best part of the program was the second half where Denk played American music. Of note was the narrated piece by Georgia native, Blind Tom.

He closed the program with Beethoven's last piano sonata. This is a piece that has been in his repertoire for a long time. The audience wanted an encore, but this Sonata is famous among pianists for saying everything that needs to be said about life. How could an encore follow it? Denk chose well and cleverly. He played the Prelude No. 1 in C major from Bach's Well Tempered Clavier. While the recital was not for us stylistically and temperamentally I do wish that Denk would get back to his writing. I'm waiting for a book. Any book! Look at Stephen Hough, he even wrote a novel. Denk is no less talented in literature. (Update! Denk has finally released his book: Every Good Boy Does Fine. I haven't read it yet but when I do I would be happy to give a further update on these pages. )

Any trip to Atlanta includes a stop at one of many great Asian restaurants. This time we ate at Lanzhou Ramen off Buford Highway. They make their own hand-pulled noodles.

Thanks for reading and stay posted for more studio news about our students who never fail to work hard and excel! Enjoy a few more pictures below:


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