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Sunday

December 4, 2016

3 PM at the
Stamford United Methodist Church
88 Main St, Stamford NY

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Image of a painting of a Schubertiade by Julius Schmid

"Schubertiade" by Julius Schmid, December 31, 1896.

Friends of Music celebrates the conclusion of its 30th Anniversary season with a free community concert in honor of its founder, pianist E. Lisa Kovalik. Mrs. Kovalik, affectionately known as "Lisa" to her many friends and colleagues, chose to present a "Schubertiade" as she has done in previous performances for us here in Stamford. Also in performance will be local artists Johana Arnold, soprano and Kim Paterson, piano and Mrs. Kovalik's former students and friends of Friends of Music Millette Alexander, piano and Frank Daykin, piano.

The Schubertiade tradition began during composer Franz Schubert's lifetime (Jan. 31, 1797 to November 19, 1828), usually as informal gatherings by fans of his music, often in private homes and often with Schubert himself in attendance. As time progressed Schubertiades became more formal public affairs, but always celebrated Schubert's ever-popular music.

In the mid-1980’s, Mrs. Kovalik was the catalyst for the birth of Friends of Music, which incorporated in 1986. Today, we honor her and celebrate the conclusion of our 30th Anniversary Season. Thank you, Lisa, for sharing your music with Stamford and for helping to bring so many wonderful artists to perform for us here for the past three decades!

Read more about the individual artists below.

 

December 4, 2016

Founder's Concert:
Schubertiade

Johana Arnold, soprano
Kim Paterson, piano

Lieder (selection)

Intermission

Millette Alexander, piano
Frank Daykin, piano

Fantasie in F minor, D 940 (piano, four hands)

Lisa Kovalik, piano

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat, D 960
1. Molto moderato

Program subject to change.

This concert is free of charge to the general public. Refreshments are served after the concert catered by A Taste of Europe Restaurant.

Thank you!” to all of our donors and especially to the Robinson-Broadhurst Foundation for your generous support which makes this concert and our entire season possible.



Photo of E. Lisa Kovalik, piano.

 

Eva Lisa Kovalik was born in Budapest, Hungary and began her musical studies at the age of six at the Franz Liszt Academy, first in the junior department and later as a student in the famed class of Lajos Hernadi. During her studies she won many awards and scholarships and received her Artist Diploma in 1956.

The same year she immigrated to the West, continuing her studies at McGill University in Montreal, receiving a B.M. Degree. While at McGill she performed extensively throughout Canada and had a performing contract with the Canadian Broadcasting Company. In 1964 she received a dual scholarship for Post Graduate Studies from the British and Canada Councils to study in England, focusing on 16th Century English keyboard music, while studying with Lili Kraus. Ms. Kovalik went on to become a graduate student and teaching fellow at the Juilliard School of Music while working at Columbia University on her Master’s Degree, receiving it in 1974. Her teaching fellowship at Juilliard led to an appointment to the faculty of the Evening Division, where she continued to teach until retirement in 2015.

In 1985, Mrs. Kovalik moved to Stamford with her physician husband. While waiting for their furnishings to arrive she rehearsed on the piano at the Presbyterian Church. Before long word got around of the amazing musician playing there, and folks began sitting in on her practice sessions. Lisa Kovalik's rehearsals were so popular that it was clear there was a hunger in the area to hear live classical music performances.

Mrs. Kovalik was asked to help organize concerts and gladly worked to fill this need for her new community. Through her efforts the Juilliard School sold the fledgling group a Steinway piano that needed a bit of care. Funds were raised for its purchase and renovation, and the performances were moved to the Cyr Center. In 1986 Friends of Music was incorporated. To this day the organization continues to present concerts to the musically-inclined residents of our area, and Lisa Kovalik is still a board member even though she no longer lives in Stamford.




  Photo of Johana Arnold, soprano.   Photo of Kim Paterson, piano.

 

Johana Arnold and Kim Paterson met in the Fellowship Program at Tanglewood in 1974. Often paired together in recitals, they continued making music together in New York City and married there in 1980. Kim, a graduate of SUNY Purchase, accompanied both singers and instrumentalists. Johana's career took a turn into the world of Renaissance, Medieval and Baroque music with the Ensemble for Early Music, Folger Consort and then the Western wind Vocal Ensemble, the acappella sextet.

Kim and Johana moved to the Catskills in the mid 1980's. They raised their achildren here and found many venues for performance together and separately. Kim is a member of the Catskill Symphony Orchestra and is the organist at the First Presbyterian Church in Oneonta. He is a recital accompanist and plays in the pit for theatrical performances at SUCO. Johana has been a frequent soloist with the CSO and has enjoyed many theatrical and musical roles in the area. Both teach privately and at the colleges SUCO and Hartwick in Oneonta.

Johana and Kim have performed in several past FOM concerts, most recently the all-Liszt program with Lisa Kovalik. They are thrilled to return to help FOM celebrate 30 years of dedicated music-making!




Photo of Millette Alexander, piano, and Frank Daykin, piano.

 

Millette Alexander started her piano studies at age 5, won the gold medal in 3 successive years in the Music Education League competition at Steinway Hall in NYC, attended the Juilliard Pre-College Program and subsequently entered the Theater Department at Northwestern University. After graduation she pursued a successful career in acting, performing for many years on television and in the theater including 14 years on The Guiding Light.

The past 33 years have been devoted to her first love, the piano, as well as to her 3 children. She continued her studies with Pamela Mia Paul and Jeffrey Siegel, and after a fortuitous meeting with Frank Daykin in Lisa Kovalik's ensemble class at Juilliard, the Alexander-Daykin Piano Duo was formed and is celebrating its 32nd anniversary this year. The duo has performed extensively in this country and in France and has produced 2 CDs. Bach's The Art of the Fugue was voted one of the 10 best new releases by American Record Guide.

Ms. Alexander is a frequent accompanist and chamber music player and adjudicates for several music organizations including Juilliard. In 1997 she founded and is the current Artistic Director of Chamber Music Central, which began as a 2-week summer festival for young musicians and has expanded to two 2-week sessions plus a Fall and Spring semester during the academic year. Hundreds of intermediate and advanced string, woodwind and piano students have participated in these programs. She chaired the committee which produces a chamber music series for the Westport Arts Center and was a member of the Westport Arts Council. Millette Alexander maintains a private teaching and coaching studio in her home in Westport, CT.

Frank Daykin is equally known as soloist, collaborative pianist, teacher, and writer. He is particularly identified with the French piano and chamber music repertoire, having performed the complete solo piano works of Ravel on Ravel’s own piano at the Ravel house/museum in France. His 37-year partnership with Millette Alexander in piano duo performance has produced two award-winning recordings and a host of performances in the US and abroad, always to rave reviews. The Toronto Citizen named them “surely the finest duo in the world today” and the New York Times proclaimed, “they make music as one.”

He continues with numerous chamber groups including the Ambrosia Trio and Gotham Trio. Currently, he is on the faculty of the Chamber Music Conference/Composers Forum of the East at Bennington, VT, and the Chamber Music Central summer camp for children (CT). His seminars on topics ranging from Schoenberg, to Schubert, French music, Beethoven, Shostakovich, Messiaen, and Schumann are some of the most popular events at the Conference. His The Encyclopedia of French Art Song: Fauré, Debussy, Ravel, Poulenc was published by Pendragon Press in 2013, and has since made its way to most conservatories and college music departments worldwide. Daykin has also had four volumes of poetry published, including 2016’s I Have My Doubts. Many of his poems have been set to music by contemporary composers.


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