Muskegon, Michigan, October 25 2022—When Gabriela Martinez makes her first West Michigan appearance in nearly 10 years—performing Rachmaninoff’s big, lush Piano Concerto No. 2 with Scott Speck and the West Michigan Symphony on Friday, November 4—what better way to follow it up than with a masterfully-curated solo program the next evening at The Block?
Taking place at 7:30pm Saturday, November 5, Gabriela Martinez’s program titled Resonances will take listeners on “a journey to explore the echoes within us; the search and inspiration that happens beneath the surface”—in her own words. “What do you hear? What are you discovering? How does music resonate with you? Where does it take you?”
Among other places, Resonances will take listeners on a far-reaching journey of lush, colorful and often meditative piano music from the 19th and 21st centuries. Truly a program “for the musically curious,” as The Block’s tagline reads, it features six composers, three of whom are women, three of whom are young American millennials, and only one of whom—Beethoven—likely to be a familiar name to most listeners.
The program opens with Heartbreaker by the Grammy-nominated Missy Mazzoli, recently Composer-in-Residence for the Chicago Symphony. Reynaldo Hahn, like Gabriela Martinez, was born in Venezuela, but spent most of his life in France, and composed his impressionistic Portraits de peintres in 1895 to accompany four poems by his friend Marcel Proust—inspired, in turn, by Dutch paintings seen at a Louvre exhibit. Caroline Shaw’s Gustave Le Gray is a thoughtful work that unfolds “like a linen hymn… a photograph slowly developing on waxed paper,” as the composer’s own expressive score indications read. Sarah Kirkland Snyder’s The Currents is music of rapturous expression, immersive storytelling and dramatic narrative. Viet Cuong’s Veil is centered around a recurring G-sharp surrounded by damped notes that are finally released as the entire piano is essentially “unveiled.”
“The Block’s magnificent Steinway is almost an Artist-in-Residence in its own right,” notes WMS CEO Andy Buelow. “It’s fascinating to see it in the ever-changing hands of the guest artists who come through. But rarely do we have an opportunity to experience it being put to such a thoughtfully-crafted and fascinating program as Gabriela Martinez’s promises to be.”
Single tickets are priced at $48 for table seats, $32 for floor seats and, $10 for students with ID. To order, call 231.726.3231, visit www.TheBlockWestMichigan.org or in person at The Block, 360 W. Western Avenue, Muskegon.