MusicWatch: Piano Profusion

Portland Piano International’s excellent American-themed summer festival continues today (Friday) with a lecture and performance by the great Bay Area pianist Sarah Cahill and Portland’s own eminence grise Tomas Svoboda in music by 20th century American composers Henry Cowell, Ruth Crawford, Svoboda, and more. Cahill, perhaps America’s leading new music pianist and also a radio host, returns Saturday morning with another program

Sarah Cahill plays Portland International Piano Festival Friday and Saturday

featuring works commissioned by contemporary composers (Terry Riley, Frederic Rzewski, Meredith Monk, et al) on themes of war and peace, followed by a master class with the another radio host (From the Top) and Radiohead cover pianist (among many other accomplishments) Christopher O’Riley, a “piano dissection,” a screening of the film Pianomania, and a recital of music of Gershwin, Stravinsky, John Adams, and more by the duo of Stephanie and Saar. The festival (which includes a host of other concerts, films, and  lectures), closes Sunday with O’Riley’s recital featuring the doomed Portland rocker Elliott Smith and the doomed German Romantic Robert Schumann.

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