By Ann McCreary
Keyboard Confections will treat the Methow Valley to a smorgasbord of piano music and luscious desserts on Saturday (March 1), at 7 p.m. at the Methow Valley Community Center in Twisp.
Presented by Cascadia, Keyboard Confections is an annual fundraiser for scholarships for local music students.
Featured performers for the evening are award-winning pianist Kendall Feeney and Canadian pianist Rachelle Ventura, who will perform several duets. Their set of four-hand works follows a showcase of local piano talent and an intermission offering an array of locally prepared desserts.
Feeney, a member of Eastern Washington University’s music department, is known as “a champion of modern classical music in Spokane,” said local pianist Lynette Westendorf, who is coordinating Keyboard Confections.
“Kendall has raised the level of appreciation for modern music with concerts and radio programs,” Westendorf said.
The performance Saturday will be a “more mainstream classical program,” Westendorf said. Feeney will be joined at the keyboard by Ventura, a regional performer and adjunct faculty member at Spokane Falls Community College and Whitworth University.
They will perform a selection of Brahms waltzes, the “Mother Goose Suite” by Ravel, and two movements from Stravinksy’s “Petruska.” They will finish the evening with “Two Foxtrots” by Sascha Chwat.
“Their selections for the evening will satisfy every listener, from the solid classical waltz of Brahms to the French Impressionist character of the Ravel, the more challenging and exciting Stravinsky, and finally a rollicking, rhythmic finale with the Chwat,” Westendorf said.
Keyboard Confections begins with a showcase of local pianists. Michael Brady will perform a challenging and lyrical movement from the Prokofiev Sonata; Alice Glandon will play “Valcik in D-Flat” by John Mokrejs, a mid-20th century American composer; Linda Mendro will present “The Single Petal of a Rose,” a beautiful and elegant piece by Duke Ellington; and Richard Volckmann will play two of his original “show-style” works, said Westendorf.
Nate Hirsch, age 13, will perform two original songs and will sing and accompany himself on piano, and Bill and Diana Hottell will offer their well-known ragtime style.
Also on Saturday, Feeney will offer a piano workshop beginning at 10 a.m. in the Pipestone Room at the community center. All levels of pianists are welcome. Entry fee for the workshop is $20 for performers, $10 for auditors. The workshop is appropriate for any level of pianist and any style of music. For information or to sign up, call Westendorf at 996-3418.
Keyboard Confections raises money for scholarships offered by Cascadia to help local students study music. For more information, visit www.cascadiamusic.org.