Piano Professor Robin McCabe produces this quarterly series highlighting music by composers inspired by fantasy, folk and fairytales, performed by top UW music students and special guests. This performance features music by Tchaikovsky, Ravel, Hirtz, Chopin, and Medtner, and a pre-concert lecture by Olga Levaniouk, professor in UW Classics.
4 pm Lecture: Olga Levaniouk, UW Classics
Streams of Stories: Entering the Same River Twice
4:30 pm: Concert
Fantasy in F minor, Opus 49......................................................... Frederick Chopin (1810-1849)
Kiwa Mizutani, piano
Trois Chansons (1914-15) .................................................................Maurice Ravel (1875-1937)
Trois beaux oiseaux du Paradis
Jingjing Qi, soprano; Minsun Kim, piano
“Dumka,” Opus 59 .................................................................. Peter I. Tchaikowsky (1840-1893)
Tong Liu, piano
“Fantasy on Themes from The Wizard of Oz” ....................................... Harold Arlen (1905-1986)
Herbert Stothart (1885-1949) (transcribed by William Hirtz)
Colleen Kennedy, piano; Nicholas Tagab. piano
OLGA LEVANIOUK is Professor of Classics at the University of Washington and author of the book Eve of the Festival: Making Myth in Odyssey 19. She studies Homer and early Greek poetry and myth, often using comparative evidence and approaches. Her work has involved Russian wedding songs, the Uzbek epic Alpamysh, and epics of India (Mahabharata and Ramayana, among others). Her publications include “Did Sappho and Homer Ever Meet? Comparative Perspectives on Homeric Singers,” “The Dreams of Barchin and Penelope” and “Sky-Blue Flower: Songs of the Bride in Modern Russia and Ancient Greece."
Performers (in order of appearance)
Originally from Kanagawa, Japan. KIWA MIZUTANI moved to the United States 6 years ago. She currently is pursuing her Bachelor of Music from The University of Washington, studying under Dr. Robin McCabe. She recently took 1st place at the UW School of Music’s annual Concerto competition and will be performing with the UW Symphony Orchestra on June 5th.
JINGJING QI is a second year DMA candidate at the UW. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Beijing Normal University, a top-level university in China. She has done various wonderful projects at the UW. In December 2018, she performed the recitative and aria "E Susanna non vien!...Dove sono i bei momenti" and the duet "Sull’ aria" from Le Nozze Di Figaro by Mozart in the concert “Italian Scenes and Arias” at the Brechemin Auditorium at the UW. In March 2019, she performed “The Black Swan” from The Medium by Gian Carlo Menotti and the trio “Under the Willow Tree” from Vanessa by Samuel Barber in the concert “American Portraits: Arias, Songs and Scenes of the American Experience” at the Brechemin Auditorium. In October 2019, she held her first DMA candidate recital at the Brechemin Auditorium at the UW. In November 2019, she performed the duet “Aber der Richtige” from Arabella by Richard Strauss and the aria “My Sleeping Beauty” from The Hero by Gian Carlo Menotti in the concert “German and English Song, Scenes and Arias” at the Brechemin Auditorium at the UW.
Pianist MINSUN KIM was born in Seoul, South Korea, and is currently pursuing her Doctoral Degree under the guidance of Dr. Robin McCabe at the University of Washington. Recently, she was selected as one of the winners in the thirtieth Frances Walton Competition and had numerous concerts in the Puget Sound area, performed at the Classical King FM and the Seattle Public Library as the soloist winner. Minsun also won the Concerto Competition at UW in 2018 and played Tchaikovsky piano concert No. 1 with UW Symphony. She studied at Seoul Arts High School and graduated cum laude from Seoul National University with professor Aviram Reichert received a merit-based scholarship. After graduation from Korea, she earned a master degree at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music studying under professor Emile Naoumoff. Minsun won first prize at the Peters Piano competition in Seoul and second prize at Hannum Music Competition in Seoul. She also awarded at several national competitions, including the Korean Competition, Samick Piano competition. As a soloist and collaborator, she has actively performed in Korea and America, including at Sejong Art Hall, YoungSan Art Hall, Auer Hall, Ford Hall. She is currently serving as a Teaching Assistant for the School of Music at the University of Washington and working as an instructor for Seattle Piano Academy.
TONG LIU began his piano studies at seven years of age while living in China and was admitted to the Middle School of the Shenyang Conservatory of Music in 2003. He won the 1st prize at the 2003 Schumann International Piano Competition China, Northeast region. In 2009, he received a full scholarship from Roosevelt University in Chicago and studied with Winston Choi and Adam Neiman. He was selected in 2014 as a fellow of the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival. In 2015, he collaborated with other musicians at the Bach Keyboard Festival in Chicago and for various MTNA events. Currently, Tong Liu is a doctoral student at the University of Washington studying with Craig Sheppard.
COLLEEN KENNEDY is a doctoral student in the UW Piano Performance program, where she studies with Dr. Robin McCabe. A frequent performer and collaborator, Colleen has appeared as a soloist with the Honolulu Symphony, as well as locally with the Eastside Symphony and Federal Way Philharmonic. In addition to performing, Colleen enjoys an active career as a piano teacher. Her students have won awards and honors in local competitions and festivals, including the NW Bach Festival, NW Viennese Classical Festival and the Seattle Music Teacher Association (SMTA) adjudications.
Seattle native NICHOLAS TAGAB began playing the piano since the age of eight, and has enjoyed it ever since. Mr. Tagab received his Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from the University of Washington under the tutelage of Dr. Robin McCabe. He completed his Master’s degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy in 2017 at the University of Miami, Frost School of Music, studying piano with Santiago Rodriguez, and piano pedagogy with Dr. Naoko Takao. While at UM, Mr. Tagab was a TA for the keyboard department, teaching both private and group piano lessons. In addition to being an active piano soloist, Mr. Tagab also is an active piano collaborator. He has worked with top choral programs both at the high school and university level, including the Frost Chorale at UM. Currently, Mr. Tagab is the staff accompanist and vocal instructor at North Creek High School, helping both soloists and choir groups achieve a high level of success the past three years. In the fall of 2018, Mr. Tagab returned to the University of Washington to study with Dr. McCabe and complete a DMA in piano performance. Nicholas will be performing with the Philharmonia Northwest Orchestra this upcoming May, as the 1st alternate winner of the University of Washington Piano Concerto Competition.
Host Bio: Robin McCabe
Celebrated American pianist Robin McCabe has established herself as one of America’s most communicative and persuasive artists. McCabe’s involvement and musical sensibilities have delighted audiences across the United States, Europe, Canada and in seven concert tours of the Far East. The United States Department of State sponsored her two South American tours, which were triumphs both artistically and diplomatically.
As noted by the New York Times, “What Ms. McCabe has that raises her playing to such a special level is a strong lyric instinct and confidence in its ability to reach and touch the listener.” The Tokyo Press declared her a “pianistic powerhouse,” and a reviewer in Prague declared, “Her musicianship is a magnet for the listener.” Richard Dyer, the eminent critic of the Boston Globe: ‘Her brilliant, natural piano playing shows as much independence of mind as of fingers.”
Her recordings have received universal acclaim. Her debut album for Vanguard Records featured the premiere recording of Guido Agosti transcription of Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite. Critics praised it as “mightily impressive.” Stereo Review described her disc of Bartok as “all that we have come to expect from this artist, a first-rate performance!” She was commissioned to record four albums for the award-winning company Grammofon AB BIS in Stockholm, which remain distributed internationally, including the CD “Robin McCabe Plays Liszt,” (AB BIS No. 185).
McCabe, earned her bachelor of music degree summa cum laude at the University of Washington School of Music, where she studied with Béla Siki, and her master’s and doctorate degrees at the Juilliard School of Music, where she studied with Rudolf Firkusny. She joined the Juilliard faculty in 1978 then returned to the UW in 1987 to accept a position on the piano faculty. In 1994 McCabe was appointed Director of the School of Music, a position she held until 2009. She has held a Ruth Sutton Waters Professorship and a Donald Petersen Professorship in the School of Music. In addition, McCabe is a dedicated arts ambassador and advocate for arts audience development, frequently addressing arts organizations across the country. With colleague Craig Sheppard, she has launched the highly successful Seattle Piano Institute, an intense summer “immersion experience” for gifted and aspiring classical pianists that enjoyed its sixth session in 2015. Also In 2015, McCabe performed and recorded the complete cycle of Beethoven’s ten sonatas for violin and piano, with colleague Maria Larionoff.
The winner of numerous prizes and awards, including the International Concert Artists Guild Competition and a Rockefeller Foundation grant, McCabe was the subject of a lengthy New Yorker magazine profile, “Pianist’s Progress,” later expanded into a book of the same title.
In 1995 McCabe presented the annual faculty lecture — a concert with commentary — at the University of Washington. She is the first professor of music in the history of the University to be awarded this lectureship. Seattle magazine selected McCabe as one of 17 current and past University of Washington professors who have had an impact on life in the Pacific Northwest. In 2005, to celebrate its 100th year as an institution, The Juilliard School selected McCabe as one of 100 alumni from 20,000 currently living to be profiled in its centenary publication recognizing distinction and accomplishments in the international world of music, dance, and theater. Today she is a highly- sought teacher at the University of Washington, with students from around the world seeking admission to her studio.
McCabe performs regularly throughout the United States, and in September of 2011 she made her first visit to South Korea. In October of 2015 McCabe gave solo recitals in Beijing, and master classes at the International Beijing Piano Festival. She appears often as an invited jurist for international piano competitions, most recently in New Orleans, San Antonio, and Vancouver, Canada. In June of 2016 she is invited to serve on the jury of the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition.