Archive for July, 2008

Two Special Pianists

Friday, July 11th, 2008

On Friday at 8 pm, pianist Anya Alexeyev plays works by Haydn, Schumann, Scriabin and Rachmaninoff. On Saturday at 8 pm and Sunday at 4 pm, violinist Mark Peskanov, cellist Adrian Daurov and pianist Anya Alexeyev play works by Prokofiev, Schnittke and Arensky.

Dear Music Lovers,

This weekend our Barge is enjoying the company of a very gifted pianist, Anya Alexeyev. She visited us last summer when she performed a solo piano recital and also played four hands with her father Dmitri Alexeyev. (Many of you probably heard of him. He is one of the most distinguished musicians appearing today, due to his numerous victories at the most prestigious international competitions. He has been performing in major concerts venues for many years, both as soloist with the major orchestras and in solo recitals, and sometimes in chamber music concerts, like he has done the last 3 or 4 years at the Bargemusic.)

Tonight Anya is doing a solo piano recital of her favorite pieces (as she confessed to me earlier this week during our rehearsals). I would describe her playing as very natural and expressive. She plays with great clarity and strength. I wish she lived closer by—this way you, dear music lovers, would have a chance to hear her more often.

Next Wednesday at the Barge, Steven Beck starts his Beethovenathon. During four concerts on Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday he will perform sixteen sonatas. I know he has been practicing about sixteen hours a day for a while now and he tells me he is having a blast doing it. I am not surprised. Steven has been challenged many times. Let me tell you about my first experience with him.

Six summers ago I invited him to perform with me at the Barge for his debut performance. About six weeks before the concert I get a phone call—Steven has been in a terrible car accident: collapsed lungs! Broken Hands! Broken jaw! Just to name a few of the horrible injuries he suffered. Fast forward six weeks later—Bargemusic stage, Mr. Beck is at the piano with his wired jaws, metal bolts in his both hands and who knows what else, playing a Mozart Sonata with me—and beautifully—a total miracle…

See you at Barge,
Lots of Love,
Mark Peskanov

Happy 4th of July!

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

On Thursday at 8pm, Jazz Night features guitarists Howard Alden and Bucky Pizzarelli. On Friday at 7pm, Bargemusic celebrates Independence Day with the Voxare Quartet and guest violinist, Mark Peskanov, playing works by Mozart and Dvorak. On Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 4pm, violinist Mark Peskanov, cellist Edward Arron and pianist Jeewon Park play works by Haydn, Beethoven and Dvorak.

Dear Music Lovers,

What an exhilarating week we just had!

This past Friday, NeoLIT ensemble, in their Bargemusic debut, gave an exciting performance of many interesting new compositions by American women composers.

And if that was not exciting enough, we had a special guest in attendance-Steve Smith, prominent music writer-and this time he was assigned by the New York Times to review this concert. Fast forward two days later: I am at the computer at 1am reading the music review of our concert from the New York Times website. It’s a beautiful review, where the writer compliments the musicians for their performance, composers for their compositions and in his words, Bargemusic for its “admirable Here and Now series, which celebrates contemporary American music.”

This Thursday, two of the very finest guitar players you’ll ever hear are performing here. And Friday is our big celebration of Independence Day.

Fast rewind to the early 70s in an Odessa, Soviet Union, movie theater: I am with a friend of mine and his mother watching a French comedy titled something like “Inspector Cousteau in New York.” I was twelve and for the first time I was seeing New York City. It was totally overwhelming. It was in color. I saw the Statue of Liberty, China Town and the Empire State Building. I have no idea how this movie passed the censorship back then. At the end of the film, I was full of tears and so was my friend. In that moment, we both felt hopeless behind the Iron Curtain. I could never have imagined then how I would be practically holding the hand of the Statue of Liberty from our Bargemusic tented roof this Friday.

Happy Independence Day and Lots of Love,
Mark Peskanov