The Palm Springs Cultural Center is pleased to announce the first annual ModernPlus Palm Springs Keyboard Series. The Series, conceived and presented by Dr. Charles Metz and Howard W. Schreiber in association with the Palm Springs Cultural Center, the Palm Springs International Piano Competition, the CV Philharmonic Society and Youth Training Orchestras of America, will take place on three nights - January 17, 18 and 19, 2023. It is built around the private collection of instruments belonging to Dr. Charles Metz. The centerpiece is a rare modern grand piano, a Bösendorfer instrument, built as one of only six, in 1958 for the World’s Fair in Brussels.
The 1958 Bösendorfer Grand Piano is a mid-century masterpiece both visually and musically. It was restored to its original splendor in 2018 by a leading restorer in Santa Monica, California. Its case is a work of independent sculptural beauty, capturing the angles and architectural lines of mid-century architecture so prevalent in the Palm Springs area.
All three nights of the series will contrast the 1958 Bösendorfer Grand Piano with earlier instruments from Dr. Metz’ collection, including a reproduction fortepiano, and an early 19th century square piano built by a company owned by the composer Muzio Clementi. The intent is to entertain audiences not only with performances on this range of instruments, but to also educate them about the evolution of keyboard instruments over the course of centuries.
World renowned American concert pianist Angie Zhang will perform all three nights of the series and play all three instruments. Zhang is among the most celebrated and impactful artists in today’s classical music scene. Her performances on harpsichord, fortepiano, and modern piano have been praised by industry executives and presenters and are loved by audiences around the world.
Dr. Charles Metz and Howard W. Schreiber, both well-known pianists themselves, will also perform during the series. Dr. Metz studied piano at Penn State University, beginning his harpsichord studies through private lessons with the legendary Igor Kipnis. In the process of earning a Ph.D. in Historical Performance Practice at Washington University in Saint Louis Missouri, he studied with Trevor Pinnock. Howard Schreiber grew up in a musical family and studied piano intensively as an undergraduate at the Manhattan School of Music where he studied with Seymour Lipkin and Isabelle Yalkovsky Byman.
The programs for each night of the series will be announced in late December but are scheduled to include at least two pieces by local resident and composer Joe Giarusso, President of the Palm Springs International Piano Competition (formerly the Waring).
The ModernPlus Palm Springs Keyboard Series benefits the Palm Springs Cultural Center, a 501c3 organization.
Tickets are available at www.psculturalcenter.org, at https://modernpluspalmsprings.eventbrite.com or at the Palm Springs Cultural Center box office.
Nightly repertoire subject to change.
January 17, 2023 7:00pm
Clementi Piano Duet
in E-flat major, Op. 3, No. 2 SP
Featuring Charles Metz
and Angie Zhang
Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 14
in C-sharp minor, Op. 27, No. 2 FP
Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 23
in F minor, Op. 57 BD
Andante con moto
Allegro ma non troppo - Presto
January 18, 2023 7:00pm
Clementi Sonatina No. 1
in C major, Op. 36 SP/BD
Chopin Piano Sonata No. 3
in B minor, Op. 58 BD
Finale, Presto ma non tanto
Gershwin: The Man I Love BD
part of the Great American Songbook
January 19, 2023 7:00pm
Beethoven 32 Variations
in C minor, WoO 80 FP
Special Duet Selection
by Joe Giarusso
(Announced the evening of the performance)
Featuring Howard Schreiber
and Angie Zhang
Kuhlau Sonatina in G major
Op. 20, No. 2 FP
Adagio e Sostenuto
KEY: BD = Bösendorfer Grand Piano, FP = Fortepiano, SP = 1806 English Square Piano
About The Instruments:
1958 Bösendorfer Grand Piano
The 1958 Bösendorfer Grand Piano, centerpiece of the series, is a rare modern grand piano, built as one of only six, in 1958 for the World’s Fair in Brussels. The instrument is a mid-century masterpiece both visually and musically. It was restored to its original splendor in 2018 by a leading restorer in Santa Monica, California. Its case is a work of independent sculptural beauty, capturing the angles and architectural lines of mid-century architecture so prevalent in the Palm Springs area.
The striking Viennese Fortepiano which will be featured in the series is a copy of an 1805 Anton Walter instrument. Walter instruments were favored by both Mozart and Beethoven. This instrument was built in 2017 by Paul McNulty in the Czech Republic. The decoration is Empire with mahogany veneer and gilt Egyptian styled woman’s head for the legs.
1806 English Square Piano
Found in an antique shop in Santa Barbara last year (in unplayable condition), the 1806 English Square Piano which is featured in the series is now fully restored. It represents a very important link in the history of the piano and piano playing. It was this instrument which, because of its lower cost and wide availability, catapulted the technical developments in music composing and performing, and made its way into many homes.
About The Musicians:
Dr. Charles Metz
Charles Metz studied piano at Penn State University, beginning his harpsichord studies through private lessons with the legendary Igor Kipnis. In the process of earning a Ph.D. in Historical Performance Practice at Washington University in Saint Louis Missouri, he studied with Trevor Pinnock. Graduating from Optometry school after completing his Ph.D, he had a private practice for twenty years. He has appeared with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Ars Antigua, and the Newberry Consort of Chicago. As a guest clinician and recital-lecturer at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Penn State University in State College PA and recently at Cornell. As an early keyboard specialist, he is currently performing on his historic Italian virginal, harpsichords, and fortepianos. He released a CD with Navona Records “William Tisdale: Music for Virginal” in February 2021. As an owner of an 1806 Clementi square piano, he has a keen interest in the music and instruments of Muzio Clementi with plans to record on this antique instrument in 2023.
Howard Walter Schreiber
Howard Schreiber grew up in a musical family and studied piano intensively as an undergraduate at the Manhattan School of Music where he studied with Seymour Lipkin and Isabelle Yalkovsky Byman. Howard ultimately chose to attend law school and worked as a corporate lawyer in New York before moving to Los Angeles where he sought to return to nurturing his creative impulses. Howard wrote several comedy pilots including a sitcom for Kelsey Grammar’s production company at Paramount. He also did extensive legal consulting and script work on the hit show Law & Order. More recently Howard has written several prizewinning scripts, including "My Big Gay Divorce" which was a finalist in the Austin Film Festival screenplay competition. Howard continues to divide his time between his musical, screenwriting and legal pursuits. Howard recently joined the board of the Palm Springs International Piano Competition, formerly the Waring.
American concert pianist Angie Zhang is among the most celebrated and impactful artists in today’s classical music scene. With her entrepreneurial spirit and innovative mindset, she has contributed greatly to scholarship, diversity, and inclusion in the piano world and beyond. Her life’s mission is to inspire awe by sharing the complete story of the piano, building on the discourse by Chimamanda Adichie about the Danger of the One-Sided Story. Using this approach in her avant-garde recital programming and personalized methods of staying in touch with her audience goers, she has built an empire of piano lovers who come from all areas of interests, careers, and backgrounds. Her dedication to her mission and community-building has enhanced the lives of so many, including those who have had unfortunate experiences with the piano or lessons in the past. Angie loves guiding people towards finding their own transformative relationship with music and art, something we all need.
A large part of her mission is showcasing the diversity of the piano, composers, and people needed to build and maintain these works of art. Her performances on harpsichord, fortepiano, and modern piano have been praised by industry executives and presenters and are loved by audiences around the world. Her visionary approaches were first honed at The Juilliard School, where she spent thirteen years from the age of ten. Following her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in New York City, she relocated to Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she is currently a Doctoral Candidate in Piano Performance at the University of Michigan, and Assistant Professor of Piano, Harpsichord, Cello, and Music Theory at Concordia University - Ann Arbor. Please follow or message Angie on Instagram @angiezhangmusic.