NSA Conservatory of Music – Artist Series: Gilbert de Greeve holds Piano Masterclass and Concert
Greek drama, Dickens and Shakespeare, French and English national anthems, Spanish and American popular music styles, French mythology, the poetry of Baudelaire, depictions of weather patterns, and an escape to exotic Mediterranean islands. And all this in one evening — thanks to Belgian pianist Gilbert De Greeve’s riveting performance of Debussy’s Preludes for Piano.
Considered one of the most significant contributions to the repertoire in the twentieth century, Debussy’s twenty-four preludes are simultaneously lessons in musical craftsmanship and the liberal arts.The preludes are programmatic, meaning that each has a narrative, character, event, or location associated with it. De Greeve’s performance, timed to commemorate Debussy’s untimely death a hundred years ago, was a fitting homage to the greatest of modern French composers.
The three-day journey through Debussy’s preludes began on Thursday with De Greeve’s two-hour lecture-recital on Book I, the first twelve in the collection. De Greeve resumed on Friday evening with Book II, leaving no stone left unturned in his meticulous presentation of form, harmony, and perhaps most insightfully, Debussy’s allusions and quotations. De Greeve offered the community a masterful exposition of the preludes with a remarkable degree of accessibility for the many non-musicians in attendance.
On Saturday, De Greeve provided a masterclass for NSA students Gabriel Gollehon, Karis Taylor, and Sarah Grace Alders. Each student performed a work that he/she studied throughout Jerusalem Term, receiving nearly an hour of instruction.
De Greeve is no stranger to NSA, having performed a recital of piano works by Zoltan Kodaly and Robert Schumann last season. He is a composer, performer, and tireless advocate of the Kodály method of music education. At present he continuous to be active worldwide as speaker, performer, and composer, and he is also the Honorary Director of the State Music Academy of Antwerp and Honorary Professor of the Royal Conservatory of Music of Antwerp. He is a Charter Member of the International Kodály Society and was actively involved in the Board of the IKS since 1983, first as Vice President and from 1999 until 2011 as President.
You can enjoy the concert here:
Part 1: https://youtu.be/R7Z_QaZO1bw
Part 2: https://youtu.be/TX2pFhi-YDQ