Town Hall recital to mark bicentenary of Chopin

To celebrate the bicentenary of the birth of composer Frédéric Chopin, Shetland Arts is to host a piano recital by the distinguished pianist and organist Charles Matthews.

The concert, in the Town Hall on Friday 19th November, will include a rich and varied programme of Chopin’s piano music including the Grande Valse Brillante in E flat major, Fantaise-Impromptu and Sonata no. 2 in B flat minor, interspersed with readings from the composer’s letters.

Chopin was born on 1st March 1810 in the Grand Duchy of Warsaw. From 1830 he lived in Paris but in 1848, following the revolution and encouraged by his Scottish pupil and admirer Jane Stirling, he fled to Britain.  He travelled extensively around the centre of Scotland, describing it in a letter to Marie de Roziers as “this beautiful land of Walter Scot”.

Charles Matthews studied at the Royal College of Music, London, and was an organ scholar at Trinity College, Cambridge. He performs and broadcasts internationally for radio and television and has made a recording of Francis Routh’s <i>24 Preludes for Piano</i> which is released in December 2010. He has won numerous awards, most notably first prize in the 1999 Franz Liszt Memorial Competition in Budapest.

Emily Sharp of Shetland Arts said: “This concert is a must for all classical music fans. 2010 marks the bicentenary of Chopin’s birth and there are celebratory concerts taking place all over the world. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear some of the most beautiful piano music played by such a well respected pianist.”

Charles is also an accomplished tutor, teaching organ at the Birmingham Conservatoire and contemporary music on the annual Curso Internacional Matisse at San Lorenzo de El Escorial in Spain. As part of his visit he will be taking master classes for secondary school piano students.


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