Mar 6, 2022 - 2 PM EST
The artistry of Venezuelan-born pianist and NACO Creative Partner Gabriela Montero might defy description, but it is always magically rewarding. Her graceful execution of classical repertoire and her uncanny ability to improvise complicated musical pieces in real time make her truly a one-of-a-kind musician. Performing with a quartet comprising some of the finest string players in the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Gabriela deftly conveys the vital beauty of Antonin Dvořák’s Piano Quintet No. 2, a work that rightly occupies an exalted place in the canon of chamber music.
Venezuelan-born composer Teresa Carreño was that rarest of artists, a true quadruple threat: composer, piano virtuoso (and Grieg’s favourite pianist), opera singer, and conductor. Her brilliance on the piano was apparent at a very young age—she played at the White House for Abraham Lincoln at the tender age of 10. Carreño composed her brilliant String Quartet in B Minor in 1896 while on tour in Europe. So extensive was her musical influence on the world that a crater on Venus was named after her!
Described by musicologist Martin Cooper as “a musical clown of the first order,” Francis Poulenc created works filled with fun, nostalgia, and rhythmic wit. His Sextet for Piano and Winds is no exception—“about as determinedly lighthearted and satiric as anything he ever wrote” (laphil.com) and a perfect vehicle for Gabriela Montero’s playful artistry.