By M. Scott Morris / NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – Most members of the Tupelo Symphony Orchestra will get the night off for Saturday’s concert at Link Centre.
Stanislav Ioudenitch, a Gold Medalist at the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, will have the stage to himself for the first half of the program.
He’ll perform Maurice Ravel’s “Sonatine,” Frédéric Chopin’s “Valses” and Igor Stravinsky’s “Trois Mouvements de Pétrouchka.”
“I think these three pieces really do feature Stanislav in the manner in which a Gold Medal winner from the Van Cliburn should be presented, showing the breadth of his skills with an amazing variety of works,” said Steven Byess, TSO musical director.
“Sonatine” will showcase Ravel’s flair for atmospheric and exotic sounds. The Chopin selection will display the diversity the composer imbued into his waltzes, Byess said.
Stravinsky’s piece will require an impressive display of talent by Ioudenitch.
“Stanislav uses something, a technique called planing, where all 10 fingers move around and they’re constantly in use,” Byess said. “It’s extraordinarily demanding.”
After the intermission, Ioudenitch will be joined by his wife, Tatiana Ioudenitch, for Franz Schubert’s “Fantasy in F Minor for Piano Four-Hands.”
“I’m quite sure that in the very proper and pious times in the early 1800s, when this was written, male and female pianists would have enjoyed playing this piece greatly because of the close proximately to one another, the intermingling of arms and fingers and hands,” Byess said. “I think it’s a delightful example for this couple, Stanislav and Tatiana, but it’s also a profoundly beautiful work that Schubert wrote for piano.”
The pair’s daughter, violinist Maria Ioudenitch, will take the stage next for Pablo De Sarasate’s “Zigeunerweisen,” which means “Gypsy Life.”
“The original version was written for violin and piano,” Byess said. “I am orchestrating this for a small string orchestra to accompany Maria. I’m excited about that.”
Ioudenitch will return for the final three pieces of the program. He’ll start with Ástor Piazzola’s “Adios Nonino” and “Libertango.”
“Piazzolla wrote music that revolutionized the traditional tango into a new style that is actually called the ‘New Tango,’” Byess said. “It incorporates elements from jazz and classical music. I chose these pieces because they are yet another element to the virtuosity of Stanislav.”
The final composition will be a Peter Nero arrangement of Vincent Youmans’ “Tea for Two.”
“It has wonderful harmonies that jazz artists love,” Byess said. “Nero made an arrangement for piano and string orchestra for this really wonderful, catchy, bouncy tune.”
The concert will be an intimate affair, where a world-class musician will unleash the depth and breadth of his talent over a wide selection of music.
“I think you’ll be amazed,” Byess said.