Whidbey Island Center for the Arts Announces PianoFest Headliner Schedule

Whidbey Island Center for the Arts Announces PianoFest Headliner Schedule

Whidbey Island Center for the Arts announces the headliner schedule for the second annual PianoFest Northwest from April 16 - 19, 2014. The four-day piano music festival will feature a Locals Night (4/16), as well as Classical (4/17), Latin (4/18), and Jazz Music (4/19). Respectively, the headliners for each day are local Northwest favorite Nancy Nolan, spectacular female trio Thirtyfingers, three-time Latin Grammy Award-winner Jovino Santos Neto, and performing on Whidbey Island for the first time in years, native piano virtuoso Aaron Parks.

PianoFest is an entertaining, educational, and inspiring expression of piano music on Whidbey Island. This festival is an annual tradition of eclectic keyboard experiences that will grow to embrace the developing talent of piano students in the community. In this way, it is fitting that Parks join the ranks of PFNW's lineup.

By age 15, Parks was already attending the University of Washington with a triple-major in math, computer science and music; three years later, he was the champion Cole Porter Fellow of the American Pianists Association. Parks appeared on three Blue Note albums by trumpetercomposer Terence Blanchard before making his own album for the label as a leader with the quartet set "Invisible Cinema" - which BBC Online declared "one of the great albums of 2008," describing the pianist as "a master of melody, and a composer and arranger of protean skill
and dexterity.

Three-time Latin Grammy nominee Jovino Santos Neto, a master pianist, composer and arranger, is among the top Brazilian musicians working today. Currently based in Seattle, Washington, he has throughout his career been closely affiliated with the Brazilian master Hermeto Pascoal. He was an integral part of Pascoal' s group from 1977 to1992, where he fine-tuned his artistry, performing around the world and co-producing several legendary records.

THIRTYFINGERS is six hands, three women, and one piano-a visual and sound sensation! Natalya Ageyeva, Lisa Bergman, and Deborah Dewey, each internationally-acclaimed pianists, combine their talents to play elegant classical music written for six hands. The group amazes with their keyboard mastery, virtuosity, deep musicality, and sparkling personalities. Instructive dialogue between the performers and audience, addressing unique challenges such as "who turns the page?" "who pedals?" and "how do we avoid injuring each other?" all part of the fun. This is a spectacle not to be missed!

Nancy Nolan is a Northwest native, Nancy was born in Seattle and is a graduate of the University of Washington with a degree in Drama and Fine Arts. She has worked professionally in theater with performances at ACT, The Group Theater and the Pioneer Square Theater. A seasoned artist and musician, Nancy began her career in Seattle doing the obligatory club and cabaret circuit, she has gone on to perform extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Japan, and Europe. Several of Nancy's performances at Jazz Alley were with legendary jazz artist and composer Steve Allen who describes Nancy as "... a wonder singer of particular interest... her own orignal style... thoughtful and emotional... ".

Natalya Ageyeva has dazzled audiences throughout the US and internationally. Her performances have been broadcast locally on KING-FM, and televised in Moscow and Chicago. She has appeared in Carnegie Hall, Benaroya Hall, and Rachmaninoff Hall in Moscow. Her pianism prompted one reviewer to write "immediately apparent was a tremendous technique at the command of a sharp musical intelligence and fingers of steel." She has appeared in such festivals as the Seattle Chamber Music Society, Methow Valley, Second City and Olympic. Her artistry has earned her awards worldwide including the Young Artist Competition in Moscow, Rotary Club in Chicago and the Zinetti International Chamber Music Competition in Italy. She is the founder and Artistic Director of the Russian Chamber Music Foundation of Seattle.

Lisa Bergman is a passionate promoter of classical music. She is Program Advisor of the Icicle Creek Center for the Arts in Leavenworth, founder and Artistic Director of the Mostly Nordic Chamber Music Series, and as just one outlet for her dedication to music education, Executive Director of "NOISE," the Northwest Opera in Schools, Etcetera. Bergman is a national Gracie award winning radio announcer on Classic KING-FM in Seattle, streaming worldwide on the Internet. She is a concert pianist specializing in collaborative piano and chamber music with six chamber music and one solo CD to her credit. Bergman was selected to the Washington State Music Teachers Association Hall of Fame for "extraordinary service, outstanding musicianship, dedication and leadership, contributing to the development and growth of music education in the State of Washington."

Deborah Dewey has earned an international reputation for her pianistic talent. Critics have praised the "sparkling passage work," "warm operatic lyricism," "thoughtful interpretation," and "sense of dramatic urgency" in her playing. Dewey has performed extensively as recitalist, chamber musician and guest soloist with orchestras. She won numerous national and regional piano competitions throughout her years of study. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors from Wellesley College and a Master of Music degree in piano performance from the Yale School of Music. Devoted to the development of young musicians, she has been a member of the piano faculties at the University of Washington, Whitworth College, The Cornish Institute and Yale University. She is currently in great demand as a competition judge, lecturer, piano instructor, and performer.

For more information about the festival and to purchase tickets visit https://tickets.wicaonline.com/public/default.asp?cgCode=18&cgName=Music%20Concerts.

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