Pianist Matthew Bengston will perform at Hope College on Friday, Nov. 17, at 7:30 p.m. in the Concert Hall of the Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts.
The public is invited. Admission is free.
Critically acclaimed as a “musician’s pianist,” Bengtson has a unique combination of musical talents, ranging from pianist, to composer to analyst, and is a scholar of performance practice, and thus is in demand as both soloist and collaborator.
As a La Gesse Fellow, he has been presented in concerts in France, Italy and Hungary, at Thomas Jefferson’s home Monticello, and in solo recitals at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. He has also appeared on the Pro Musica series in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. He has performed with numerous orchestras in the American Northeast, and also performed with violinist Joshua Bell on NPR’s “Performance Today” and XM Satellite Radio’s “Classical Confidential.”
Lawrence Budmen of “American Record Guide” has called him “a remarkable artist” with “big-boned pianism, rich tonal colors, and dazzling techniques.…”
Bengtson is an assistant professor of piano literature at the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre and Dance, where he teaches piano, fortepiano, and courses and seminars on piano repertoire. Before that, he taught at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Music and was a staff pianist at the Curtis Institute.
He studied piano performance as a Harvard undergraduate with Patricia Zander; he also studied contemporary piano literature with Stephen Drury, and chamber music and performance practice with Robert Levin. He earned his MM and DMA degrees in piano performance at the Peabody Conservatory, studying with Ann Schein. He also studied harpsichord with Webb Wiggins and fortepiano with Malcolm Bilson on a fellowship at Cornell University.
He is co-author of “The Alexander Scriabin Companion,” for Rowman and Littlefield Press. He was awarded the Stefan and Wanda Wilk Prize for Research in Polish Music for his paper The “Szymanowski Clash: Methods of Harmonic Analysis in the Szymanowski Mazurkas,” due for publication in the Canadian journal Intersections.
The Jack H. Miller Center for Musical Arts is located at 221 Columbia Ave., on Columbia Ave. between 9th and 10th streets.