FSU’s Department of Music to Present Pianist Dr. Joseph Yungen in Faculty Artist Series
The Frostburg State University Department of Music will present pianist Dr. Joseph Yungen in a Faculty Artist Series concert on Friday, Nov. 30, at 7:30 p.m. in the Pealer Recital Hall of FSU’s Woodward D. Pealer Performing Arts Center. The recital is free and open to the public.
Yungen’s concert will begin with a piece by Gabriel Fauré, the “Nocturne No. 6 in D-flat Major, Op. 63.” “Nocturne” was written after the death of Fauré’s parents and after he wrote his famous “Requiem.” The piece opens with a calm and lovely theme, which invokes a melancholy mood. Tension is then built in its exposition before two more themes that are livelier, which gives a sense of conflict. The main theme returns, giving the audience a sense of calmness again. This remains as one of his most popular piano works and a masterpiece in piano literature.
The second piece, “Trois Grandes Etudes (Three Grand Etudes),” is a set of three piano etudes composed by Charles-Valentin Alkan in 1838 and published in 1839. The first etude, “Fantaisie,” is played with the left hand only. “Fantaisie” serves as a magical world of sounds, cadences and dreams. It features tremolos, which are a trembling affect, dense sequences of chords and large jumps. The first known performance was by Ferrucio Busoni in 1908.
The second etude, “Introduction, Variations et Finale,” is for the right hand only. This is the longest and hardest of the three etudes. It features frequent cadenza-like flourishes along with a lot of similarities to the technical challenges present in the first etude.
The last etude is “Mouvement Semblable et Perpetuel.” This piece requires the use of both hands and is noticeably different from the first two etudes. It’s played in C minor and consists of a continuous stream of 16th notes duplicated two octaves apart. It gives the feeling of separation then coming together at the end.
The third piece, also composed by Alkan, is titled “Symphony for Solo Piano.” This is noted as a large-scale romantic work, consisting of four movements, “Allegro,” “Marche Funebre,” “Menuet” and “Finale.” This piece has become one of Alkan’s best known.
The opening movement, “Allegro,” is written in sonata form. The material in this piece is derived from the opening theme, which is shown in octaves in the left hand. The second movement, “Marche Funebre,” a funeral march, has a legato melody over staccato chords in the first section and a lyrical chorale in the middle. The third movement, “Menuet,” is full of energy and brightened by a lyrical trio. The final movement, “Finale,” is very technically demanding and referred to as a “ride in hell.”
The final piece is the “Nocturne, Op. 27, No. 1 in C-sharp Minor,” composed by Frederic Chopin in 1836 and published in 1837. This opening of this piece consists of switches between major and minor and uses arpeggios, which are chords broken into a sequence of notes, in the left hand. This piece gives a sense of serenity with a touch of moodiness and mystery. It builds up to a climax that feels like a revolt until it returns to its starting theme. This work is filled with tense moments.
Yungen is a successful solo performer, collaborative artist, new music advocate and teacher. Notable achievements include winning the Audience Favorite award in the 2008 Seattle International Piano Competition, winning first prize in the 88th annual Bruce P. Carlson Schubert Club Piano competition in Minneapolis and, in 2013, being named the featured soloist in the Hans Abrahamsen Concerto for Piano and Orchestra with Musica Nova. Yungen earned his doctorate in musical arts from Julliard School and is a member of the music faculty at FSU.
For more information, contact the Department of Music at 301-687-4109.
Friday, November 30, 2018 at 7:30pm to 8:30pm
Pealer Recital Hall, PAC
101 Braddock Road, Frostburg, MD, Frostburg
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