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Bethlehem, Pa., January 8, 2013— International Steinway pianist Jeffrey Biegel will perform at the inaugural Betty Aierstock Moore Memorial Concert in honor of Moravian College’s attainment of “All-Steinway School” status on Friday, January 24, at 7:30 p.m., in Foy Concert Hall. Biegel will perform a program that includes: Beethoven’s Appassionata Sonata, Bach’s French Suite No. 5, Chopin’s Ballade No. l, Paderewski’s Nocturne in B-flat Major, and J. Strauss Jr’s By the Beautiful Blue Danube. The concert is presented in partnership with Jacobs Music, Philadelphia. A reception will follow the concert.
Considered one of the great pianists of our time, Biegel has created a multi-faceted career as a pianist, recording artist, composer and arranger. His electrifying technique and mesmerizing touch have received critical acclaim and garner praise worldwide.
A personal connection between Moravian College Artist-Lecturer in Composition Sean O’Boyle and Biegel was “instrumental” in bringing the renowned pianist to the College. “What a personal thrill it is for me to have my great friend and colleague Jeffrey Biegel perform at Moravian College,” O’Boyle noted. “Jeffrey is an artist of enormous stature, a brilliant musician and the finest pianist of his generation. The Moravian College Community will be transported by his thrilling performance and our students will have an experience like no other."
The career of pianist Jeffrey Biegel has been marked by bold, creative achievements and highlighted by a series of firsts: He initiated the first live internet recitals in New York and Amsterdam in 1997 and 1998, and, in 1999, assembled the largest consortium of orchestras (over 25), to celebrate the millennium with a new concerto composed for him by Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, whose 'Millennium Fantasy for Piano and Orchestra' was premiered with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in 2000. He also transcribed Balakirev's 'Islamey Fantasy' for piano and orchestra, premiered with the American Symphony Orchestra in 2001, followed with Charles Strouse composing a new work titled 'Concerto America' for Biegel, premiered with the Boston Pops in 2002. He further arranged the piano part for Billy Joel's 'Symphonic Fantasies' in 2006, with performances at the Eastern Music Festival, the Boris Brott Festival and with the Indianapolis, Harrisburg, and other U.S. orchestras.
Biegel's published works include The World In Our Hands (Hal Leonard), Christmas In A Minute (Hal Leonard), The Twelve Days of Christmas (Hal Leonard), Hey Ho, the Wind and the Rain (Hal Leonard), Hanukah Fantasy (Hal Leonard), There Shines a Light Ahead (Porfiri & Horvath), Different Kind of Hero (Carl Fischer), and Four Psalms for Choir (LeDor Group).
Known for his standard-setting performances of the standard repertoire, Mr. Biegel will perform two premieres later this year during the 2013-14 season: Lucas Richman's 'Piano Concerto' with the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, and, Jake Runestad's 'Dreams of the Fallen' with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra and Symphony Chorus of New Orleans at the National WWII Museum on Veterans Day 2013. He recently formed a new piano trio, the Dicterow-DeMaine-Biegel trio with violinist Glenn Dicterow, and cellist Robert Demaine.
Highlights of recent performances include two world premieres with the Pacific Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Carl St. Clair: Richard Danielpour's 'Mirrors for Piano and Orchestra, and, William Bolcom's 'Prometheus for Piano, Orchestra and Chorus', and a global webcast with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Leonard Slatkin conducting, in Beethoven's "Choral Fantasy" and William Bolcom's "Prometheus". He performed the premiere of his adaptation of pop legend Neil Sedaka's 'Manhattan Intermezzo' for piano and orchestra with Orchestra Kentucky, and performed the World Premiere of Ellen Taaffe Zwilich's 'Shadows' for piano and orchestra, with the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, commissioned by eight orchestras. His recent recordings include 'A Grand Romance' (2013), 'A Steinway Christmas Album' (2011) and, 'Bach On A Steinway' (2010) for the Steinway & Sons label; Leroy Anderson's 'Concerto in C', conducted by Leonard Slatkin with the BBC Concert Orchestra, Ellen Taaffe Zwilich's 'Millennium Fantasy' and 'Peanuts Gallery', a solo cd of Vivaldi's 'Four Seasons' for Naxos; 'Classical Carols' for Koch and the Complete Sonatas by Mozart on the E1 label. His chamber music recordings with Trio21 include Kenneth Fuchs' 'Falling Trio' based on the novel, "Falling Man" by Don DeLillo, for Naxos, and, Glen Roven's musical adaptation of the classic children's book, "Runaway Bunny", with guest narrator, Welsh-born actress Catherine Zeta Jones.
Up to the age of three, Biegel could not hear or speak, until corrected by surgery. The “reverse Beethoven” phenomenon can explain Biegel's life in music, having heard only vibrations in his formative years. Born a second-generation American, Biegel's roots are of Russian and Austrian heritage. A Russian cousin, pianist Herman Kosoff, emigrated to the United States in the early 20th century, and had studied with the great Leopold Godowsky in Austria.
The concert will formally celebrate Moravian College with the presentation of their All-Steinway School plaque, to be presented by Sally Coveleskie, Steinway & Sons’ national director of institutional sales and Chris Rinaldi, president of Jacobs Music Company. A champagne and cake reception will be provided by Jacobs Music Company.
General admission is $15, $12 for senior citizens, and $5 for students. The concert is presented in partnership with Jacobs Music of Philadelphia.
Foy Concert Hall is located on Moravian College’s Priscilla Payne Hurd Campus in historic downtown Bethlehem. Moravian College encourages persons with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities. Anyone who anticipates needing any type accommodation or who has questions about the physical access provided should contact Bill Bauman of the Music Department at (610) 861-1650 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In July of 2013, Moravian College received a gift from the late Betty Louise Aierstock Moore ’45 that will secured the acquisition of an additional 10 Steinway & Sons pianos, achieving the designation as an “All-Steinway School.” This noteworthy distinction is held by only 113 colleges and universities nationwide. Steinway, a preeminent name in music, is widely known for providing students and faculty with the highest quality pianos for instruction and performance.
Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM), the Music Department at Moravian College provides its students with high-quality personalized music degree programs that are comprehensive and offer training in the theory, history, and performance of diverse styles. Music is taught within in a liberal arts context, integrating intellectual, artistic, and personal growth. The music program’s academic opportunities give music majors foundations for careers in teaching, performing, composing, research, and more.
Moravian College is a private, coeducational, selective liberal arts college located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Tracing its founding to 1742, it is recognized as America's sixth-oldest college. Visit the Web site at www.moravian.edu.