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Two classical pianists to put on impromptu concerts

Posted March. 28, 2017 07:30,   

Updated March. 28, 2017 07:35

Impromptu music does not only belong to jazz. One can also improvise for classical music. Even during the Baroque period, indeed, improvisation mattered for the contemporary musicians. Bach, Mozart, and even Beethoven were well known for their off-the-cuff musical performance.

Two pianists are drawing much public attention with their plan to put on an impromptu concert.

On April 21, Gabriela Montero (47), a female pianist from Venezuela, is holding a concert at LG Art Center, her first performance in South Korea.

Winning the third prize in the 1995 Chopin Competition, Gabriela Montero is also well known for her ingenuity to turn the requested melodies from the crowd into her own music. Once the spectator plays the theme song of the movie “Harry Potter”, an exotic folk song, or their cell phone notification melodies, and Montero would put her own Bachian spin on them and create an entirely new melody.

“They don’t usually expect the short melody will turn into such an epic musical story. The laughter of amazement bursting in the audience makes me smile as well,” says Gabriela Montero. The first half of the show will feature the Brahms Intermezzo, and the latter half an impromptu concert engaging the audience. Ticket prices are from 40,000 to 80,000 won. For more information, please contact 02-2005-0114.

Korean pianist Park Jong-hai (28) is also presenting an impromptu concert on March 30 at Kumho Art Hall. Earning the second prize in the 2008 Nagoya International Music Festival as the youngest musician to do so, Park rose to international fame in the musical industry afterwards, finishing the Hong Kong and Dublin Music Competitions in the second place.

During his last concert in May last year, Park improvised his last song, which was well received by the audience. The first half of Park’s performance will feature the variation of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, Prokofiev’s Piano Sonata No. 2, and Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition, the latter half will present improvised piano songs. Ticket prices cost 40,000 won. For more information, please contact 02-6303-1977.

Dong-Wook Kim creating@donga.com