Fr. John Heim, director for the Xavier music series, discusses this year's highlights.
What are the highlights of this year's classical piano and guitar series season? This year we are highlighting younger artists. They make exciting performers, have lots of energy and facility and they work hard to make a name in the business. Two such artists in the piano listing are Gleb Ivanov on March 4 and Japanese-American Jon Nakamatsu on April 1. In the guitar listing, Roland Dyens (Feb. 18) is a real catch for us. He is a fine composer and a great performer. Most classical guitarists know and play some of his music. He is from France, and he visits the U.S. only occasionally.
Banu Gibson is a wonderful swing singer who teams up with music historians for an evening of music making(i.e., the music of George Gershwin). She is a class act with a fine voice, great style and an enchanting personality.
What keeps you coming back and running this series year after year? There's something about live peformances that just doesn't translate to vinyl, tapes or CDs. On stage, in front of a knowledgeable audience, for an hour and a half—that's the ultimate challenge. To see these miracles of talent happen—it's so amazing.
Do you have any future plans/goals for the series in the near future?Our goal is to keep classical music (swing is now classical) alive as an art form. We want to hear it performed live. We need a younger audience to help us achieve that goal. Any ideas?
How can people get involved and buy tickets for the different shows? The basic involvement we want is first to give classical music a chance. Come in and hear it without any preconceived ideas. You don't have to know anything about it, just listen to it and let the music speak for itself. Later on, maybe you'll want to go deeper into it, but it was first meant to be enjoyed. Yes, we need ticket takers and ushers, but we'd rather see you in a seat enjoying the music than passing out programs.
To contact the music series office call 745-3162 or visit the web site.