Possibly the best things about a summer piano festival are friendships renewed and friendships made…
Chaeyoung Park and Jae Hong Park, Silver and Gold Medalists of the 2016 Gina Bachauer Young Artists International Piano Competition, returned to Salt Lake City after a year of travel and continued recognition for their talent and dedication. They were reunited with their 2016 Host Homes, and both hosts and pianists were eager to reconnect.
Dmitry Rachmanov, 2010 Bachauer juror and professor of piano from California State University at Northridge, returned as Guest Artist to present the final concert and work with young pianists in the festival master classes. Tom Guinney, of Gastronomy Inc., a good friend of many arts organizations who generously hosts visiting artists, provided a spectacular home and piano for Mr. Rachmanov to utilize. In addition to making friends with Tom and his close associate Kenneth Pollard, he was instantly befriended by Billy the dog, who did not leave his side during the entire stay!
Each evening featured an artist with a distinct personality, with two performers on the verge of the concert careers, and the third a seasoned veteran specializing in Russian music. All performed with exquisite beauty and virtuosity. The audiences enjoyed a veritable feast of superb music from the Baroque to 20th century – Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Schumann, Bartók, Albéniz, Prokofiev, Scriabin, and Rachmaninoff. Three remarkable concerts exploring the musical delights of the great piano masterpieces!
The Master Classes and Festival Recital
Douglas Humphreys, the Artistic Director of the Bachauer, and Guest Artist Dmitry Rachmanov offered valuable advice to the six young pianists who had applied through an audition process for the opportunity to participate in the festival. After two days of intense master classes, the Festival Participants performed with style and confidence. The master teachers complimented them on how quickly they incorporated the advice they had been given. The students also gave each other complimentary, supportive and encouraging comments.
The School Concerts
The Utah Arts Festival
Following three days of wonderful piano music at schools, at Daynes Music and at the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center, Chaeyoung and Jae Hong performed back to back at the Utah Arts Festival outdoors on the Festival Stage. People wandering by or exploring art were drawn to the captivating sounds of Gershwin, Bach, Bartók, and Chopin, entering the performance area to witness up-close two exceptionally talented young pianists displaying their finest wares. The audience increased as the performances progressed, responding with enthusiastic applause.
It was a wonderful Festival. Leaving the Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center on Saturday night, more than one person asked why it was only three days – they would have liked it to goon and on.
Thank you to the performers, concert attendees, host families, and volunteers for making the 2017 Bachauer Piano Festival a memorable one!