Jon Nakamatsu

No Venue Is Too Small For Globetrotting Pianist

Monday, September 30th, 2013

American pianist Jon Nakamatsu is no stranger to the major concert halls of the world or to important classical music events.

In 2010, for example, he gave a recital at the Chopin Bicentenary at Philharmonic Hall in Warsaw, Poland. That same year, Nakamatsu played at the Beijing International Piano Festival.

And months later he was in recital at the prestigious Masters Series of the International Keyboard Institute & Festival in New York City.

Next weekend Nakamatsu will be at the piano in Las Placitas Presbyterian Church in Placitas.

The venue of his concerts – large or small, prestigious or otherwise – is not important to Nakamatsu.

“It’s all great. It makes it really fun,” he said in a phone interview.

“Some of the most exciting events aren’t in the big cities, and halls are all different. Given the right set of circumstances, you can have a magical performance when you least expect it.”

Nakamatsu’s program for the Placitas Artists Series concert is Franz Schubert’s Two Impromptus from Opus 90, Frederic Chopin’s Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Opus 58 and Robert Schumann’s “Carnaval,” Opus 9.

“All three composers wrote prolifically for the piano but they are drastically different, though they are lumped into the Romantic era,” Nakamatsu said.

The Schumann is a collection of small pieces that he said are unified under a large structure named “Carnaval.”

The Chopin sonata is the composer’s attempt at writing a huge work, he said.

“It is full of exciting, virtuoso piano figures, but it also has one of the most touching movement, the slow movement,” Nakamatsu said.

“It brings in the listener. It’s like a nocturne. It has a long, sequential middle section, extremely placid and thoughtful and absolutely beautiful.”

That movement itself, he said, is one of the highlights of the recital.



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