Monday, October 20, 2014

2014 NMTA Guest Artist: The luckiest people in the world

This week, music teachers from across the state will join together for a sharing of ideas, performances, and premiers. You can read interviews with the guest clinician and commissioned composer here and here, and now, a little bit about the guest performer: Mark Salman.

Salman has performed around the world and “is perhaps best known for his expertise on Beethoven, having performed the complete cycle of the thirty-two piano sonatas on both coasts as well as in 18 broadcasts on KING-FM in Seatttle.” He also has performed recitals celebrating Franz Liszt, Frederic Chopin, and Franz Schubert. 

Attendees at the NMTA Conference this year will be treated to Salman’s performance of:
  • Mendelssohn's  Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 14
  • Beethoven’s Sonata Op. 54 in F Major
  • Beethoven’s Sonata Op. 101 in A major
  • Chopin’s Mazurka in C# minor, Op. 6 #2
  • Chopin’s Mazurka in C Major, Op. 24 #2
  • Chopin’s Mazurka in C# minor, Op. 50 #3
  • Liszt, Czarda Macabre
  • Liszt, Valle d’Obermann (which is from his Year of Pilgrimage, First Year, Switzerland)
Salman also shared with LincolnCMN about some of the composers that he has performed the most, the emotion and drama that draw him to the works of Beethoven and Liszt, in particular:

Mark Salman - 2014 NMTA Conference
Guest Artist
photo courtesy of NMTA
“I've always felt very close to the works of Beethoven, and have performed them constantly throughout my life. I've always been drawn to Beethoven's comprehensive world - his music has drama, every range of emotion and is intellectually endlessly fascinating and complex.  Every time I come back to a piece of his music after several years I find I experience it anew, and find many new levels of meaning in it.  
Liszt is a composer that I have also spent a great deal of time with. Although on the surface a very different composer in style from Beethoven, I'm drawn to him for many of the same qualities. His music has everything in life in it, and he was more open to every facet of life experience in its full intensity than any other composer, and performing his music is a wide ranging and intense emotional experience. The intellectual underpinning and complexity of his music is often overlooked, but like Beethoven's works, I find my experience of his music to be fresh and new every time I come back to it.”
Aside from those great composers, some particular teachers and pianists that greatly  influenced Salman were “David Dubal, a professor at Juilliard, from whom I learned a great deal  about how to look at music in the context of other arts and general life experience, and…the opportunity to meet and play for Vladimir Horowitz, in whose presence I felt his connection with the long line of composers and pianists from Rachmaninoff going back to Liszt and Beethoven, and his feeling of duty to always do his very best in recreating the music of these great composers whose traditions he had inherited.”

Salman’s words for teachers everywhere, and especially for the teachers that he’ll be meeting and performing for in a few days at the conference are that they should “tell their students that they are the luckiest people in the world — they are able to live in intimate contact with some of the greatest works of art that humanity has ever produced, and live in daily contact with the great minds that produced these works.”

Let us never forget the privilege of being connected to the great artists who left us the amazing music that never ceases to move us as Salman’s performance is sure to do this week!
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