Concert pianists to perform in Freeland

Don’t miss the final two concerts of the 2023 Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Whidbey Island Concert Series, both which feature concert pianists. The church is located at 20103 State Route 525 in Freeland. A suggested donation of $25 at the door is appreciated but all are welcome.

On Saturday, July 22 at 7 p.m., join Lino Rivera, concert pianist and music professor, to experience an evening of transcendent piano music. Rivera was born in the Philippines and is known for engaging his audiences by bringing the pieces he plays to life through sharing his knowledge and interacting with the audience, breaking the formality of the concert experience.

Rivera has performed as a solo recitalist, concerto soloist, and accompanist on three continents. He has been featured on several radio and television broadcasts, notably live performances with the Manila Symphony Orchestra and the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra. Rivera is a professor of music at Saint Mary’s College of California in Moraga and holds a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Maryland. He now teaches piano, chamber music and music history at Saint Mary’s College.

The program will include selections from the following: three ethereal pieces by Liszt – St. Dorothea, St. Francis of Paola Walking on the Waves, and Hymn to St. Cecelia; the improvisatory and cerebral music of Bach (Prelude and Fugue); the emotional, humorous, and down-to-earth music of Beethoven (Sonata Op. 31, No. 3), Schubert (Klavierstuecke) and Filipino composer Bernardino Custodio (Ritual Dance).

On Saturday, July 29 at 3 p.m., acclaimed pianist Katya Grineva joins the roster of distinguished artists who have shared their music during the 2023 Concert Series. Her concert titled “Love & Water” will include a selection of romantic classics chosen to honor our island home surrounded by the waters of the Salish Sea.

Known as a pianist of exceptional romantic and poetic expression, Grineva holds the distinction of having been invited to perform at Carnegie Hall more than any other solo female pianist in the organization’s history. Her performance style has been described as “liquid… dreamlike” by The New York Times. Born in Moscow, she studied piano at the Moscow Music School, and then the School of Music at the Moscow Conservatory, where she studied with Professor Pavel Messner. She moved to New York in 1989 and received a scholarship to enter the Mannes School of Music graduate program, studying with Nina Svetlanova, followed by private coaching with Vladja Mashke, who played a key role in the young pianist’s development.

The program will include Clair de Lune – Claude Debussy; Boat on the Ocean – Maurice Ravel; Poems of the Sea – Ernest Bloch; Barcarolle – Pyotr Tchaikovsky; Fantasie-Impromtu – Frédéric Chopin; St. Francis de Paul Walking on the Waves – Franz Liszt and more.