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 NEWS

For immediate use

Oct.25, 1999 -- No. 649

‘Poet’ of a pianist to play, teach in Newman classical music series

By L.J. TOLER
UNC-CH News Services

CHAPEL HILL -- Alan Weiss "penetrates to the very core of the music," The Daily Telegraph wrote of the pianist’s London debut in 1982; as a musician, he is "a poet," reported Le Soir of Brussels.

On Nov. 7, the music professor and recording artist for Deutsche Gramophon in Belgium, who has performed in more than a dozen countries, will share his talent locally at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The 3 p.m. concert in Hill Hall, the second in this year’s William S. Newman Artists Series presented by the music department, will feature works by Fryderyk Chopin (1810-49), including Opus 25 Etudes and Opus 49 "Fantasy"; by the French pianist and composer Charles-Valentin Alkan (1813-88), including "Le Festin d’Esope"; and the complete "Pictures at an Exhibition" by Russian composer Modest Mussorgsky. (1839-1881.)

Weiss also will conduct a free master class for pianists, piano teachers and their students at 2 p.m. Nov. 6 at the Carol Woods Retirement Center, 750 Weaver Dairy Road.

A native New Yorker, Weiss has studied piano since age 10. He earned a doctor of musical arts degree in piano and musicology at the Juilliard School and studied under numerous prestigious pianists, said Newman series organizer David Arons.

"Weiss’s musical personality has been shaped under a great variety of powerful influences, all of which have contributed to the strongly individual blend of romantic ecstasy, classic poise and technical perfection to be heard in his playing," Arons said.

In 1974, Weiss won the Sol Hurok Memorial Award of the Concert Artists Guild of New York by unanimous decision of the jury. The next year, he was a winner in the Naumburg International Piano Competition in Carnegie Hall. He won a silver medal at the Queen Elisabeth of Belgium International Competition in 1978. Currently, he is piano professor at the Lemmens Institute of Music in Leuven, Belgium, and the Utrecht Conservatory in Holland.

With five more concerts, one each month through April, the seventh annual Newman series features faculty and guest artists performing classics by Beethoven, Ravel, Bach, Aaron Copland and more. The series honors William S. Newman, pianist and distinguished music professor at UNC-CH from 1945 to 1977.

Tickets, available at the door or in advance from the music department in 105 Hill Hall, are $12 for adults, $10 for senior citizens and $5 for students. Free parking will be available for concert-goers in the Swain lot off Cameron Avenue. For more information, call 962-1039.

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Series contact: David Arons, 942-2660