Arts and Entertainment

Renowned pianist tickles the ivory in Oak Harbor

Pianist Jeffrey Gilliam  performs Jan. 30 in Oak Harbor. - Submitted photo
Pianist Jeffrey Gilliam performs Jan. 30 in Oak Harbor.
— image credit: Submitted photo

One of the Northwest’s finest piano players will entertain and educate a North Whidbey audience Saturday, Jan. 30, at the Oak Harbor Lutheran Church, 1253 NW Second Ave.

The concert is presented by the Whidbey Island Chapter of the Washington State Music Teachers Association.

About a dozen local music teachers, predominantly piano instructors, are trying to bring some of the best music in the region to this area for islanders to enjoy.

Judy Prichard said the appearance Jan. 30 by Jeffrey Gilliam, piano professor at Western Washington University in Bellingham, will be educational as well as entertaining. The professor, whose experience includes 14 years at the International Menuhin Music Academy in Switzerland, will be talking to the audience about his work as well as performing.

“He’ll play lots of short pieces and will talk about his work,” Prichard said. “It’s geared toward students,” but is of course available to all lovers of fine music.

Prichard described Gilliam as a pianist of international renown, who often accompanied famed violinist and conductor Yehud Menuhin. Expect to hear some Chopin, as the Oak Harbor concert was timed to coincide with the 200th birthday of the famous Polish composer and virtuoso pianist.

If this concert goes well, the music teachers hope to sponsor others featuring regional artists for islanders to enjoy.

“There will be homemade goodies,” Prichard added as an enticements to the Gilliam concert. “Pianists are all good at cookies.”

The Jan. 30 concert begins at 7:30 p.m. Oak Harbor Lutheran Church is located next to the high school football stadium. Tickets are $15 each or $40 for a family, available at the door or in advance at Mr. Music and Click Music.Biz in Oak Harbor, Miriam’s Espresso in Coupeville, The Book Bay in Freeland, and Useless Bay Coffee Company in Langley.

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