Dr. Jeffrey Langford and Dr. Joanne Polk
Saturday, July 18, 2015
Doctorow Center for the Arts
Piano Performance Museum
7971 Main Street, Village of Hunter
Musicologist Dr. Jeffrey Langford and pianist Dr. Joanne Polk will present a lecture on the music and history of Felix and Fanny Mendelssohn. . The Mendelssohn’s were siblings, and competitive ones at that, whose family clearly favored Felix as the star composer. Yet Fanny continued to compose, against the wishes not only of her brother, but her father and grandfather as well. Fanny’s greatest support came from her husband, Wilhelm Hensel, a painter and sculptor who encouraged Fanny to pursue her passions and her talents. The lecture will examine the music of Felix and Fanny, their influence on one another, and the stories of their almost excessively intertwined lives. The lecture will involve extensive demonstrations of the music on a mid-nineteenth century Broadwood piano of the kind that the Mendelssohn’s might have used. This instrument is one of the special pianos in the Piano Performance Museum collection.
An important part of this lecture is the opportunity audiences will have to hear this music played on an instrument that is considerably different from a modern concert grand and to consider how this older instrument might have impacted the composing and performance of the Mendelssohn’s.
This lecture/demonstration is part of the Catskill Mountain Foundation’s Piano Performance Museum Concerts & Conversations series. It is made possible with the generous support of the Jarvis and Constance Doctorow Family Foundation.