French Fantasy

Naoko Takao (piano) with Serenity Trio - JMU faculty members Beth Chandler (flute), Diane Phoenix-Neal (viola) and Jaclyn Wappel (harp)

Tue, Jan 22 @ 8 pm

RECITAL HALL

French Fantasy

Naoko Takao (piano) with Serenity Trio - JMU faculty members Beth Chandler (flute), Diane Phoenix-Neal (viola) and Jaclyn Wappel (harp)

Tue, Jan 22 @ 8 pm

RECITAL HALL


SERENITY TRIO PHOTO BY ERNIE DIDOT

Replete with charming melodies and mesmerizing tonal colors, this collaborative concert by guest pianist Naoko Takao and Serenity Trio features works by Maurice Ravel and Claude Debussy, including the radiant Sonatine by Ravel and the innovative trio for flute, viola and harp by Debussy.

Naoko Takao, a native of Japan, has been a recipient of many awards including the Gold Medal at the San Antonio International Piano Competition. Her recent engagements include solo and chamber music appearances at venues such as the Kennedy Center Terrace Theater, the Smithsonian Chamber Music Series, Coolidge Auditorium at the Library of Congress, Lensic Performing Arts Center, Le Domaine Forget (Canada), Mozart Festival Texas, and Festival Miami (Florida). Takao is also busy in academic circles as invited artist, adjudicator, master class clinician, and conference presenter. She is equally comfortable in a diverse range of traditional and modern repertoire, and is known particularly for her affinity to works by Beethoven, Chopin, and Rachmaninov. Since 2010, Takao has been on the faculty at the Frost School of Music, University of Miami, where she directs the graduate program in Keyboard Performance and Pedagogy.

Serenity Trio was formed in 2017 by JMU faculty members Beth Chandler, Diane Phoenix-Neal and Jaclyn Wappel to explore, enjoy and perform music written for their unique combination of instruments. The new and colorful instrumental grouping was first explored just over 100 years ago by French composer Claude Debussy, who wrote his Sonata for flute, viola and harp in 1915.

Flutist Beth Chandler enjoys an active career as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player, and teacher. A frequent guest artist and master class clinician, Chandler has performed and presented at major venues, festivals, and universities throughout the United States and abroad. She was a Fulbright Scholar and past president of the National Flute Association. Chandler won the 2016-2017 College of Visual and Performing Arts Distinguished Teacher Award and is a professor of flute at JMU. www.bethchandler.com

Violist Diane Phoenix-Neal performs nationally and internationally as a collaborative chamber musician and soloist, most recently in France, Poland and Brazil. Her sound is described as “rich and sumptuous” (Classical Voice of North Carolina) with “an admirable combination of precision and fire” (The New York Times). Phoenix-Neal is principal violist of the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival Orchestra, and received her training from The Juilliard School, the UNC School of the Arts, and UNC Greensboro.

Jaclyn Wappel is a versatile performer, instructor and scholar whose accolades include First Prize in the Midwest Solo Harp Competition, a performance of Mozart’s Concerto for flute and harp in Italy, and a Carnegie Hall performance with Purdue University. Wappel served as adjunct professor at Earlham College and most recently served as instructor/ensemble director for Harp Services Ltd. in Hong Kong. She received her D.A. degree from Ball State University in 2016 and currently teaches at James Madison University and Southern Virginia University.


HIGHLIGHTS


  • Kyle Abraham's company, A.I.M, brings its "lush movement, infectious music and magnetic dancers" to the Forbes Center for the first time!



  • Jeremy Denk is "a pianist you want to hear no matter what he performs" (The New York Times).



  • The Shanghai Opera Symphony Orchestra makes its Forbes Center debut on its first-ever North American tour!



  • Staunton dance devotee Pamela McCray wins 2018 Circle of Excellence Award


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