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The Delta State University Department of Music will present Dr. Manabu Takasawa in a guest artist piano recital Piano Pointers---An Evening of Music and Conversation on Monday, January 14, 2013, at 7:30 p.m. in the Recital Hall of the Bologna Performing Arts Center.
The program consists of three sets of repertoire. One set includes works with familiar melodies varied by Ludwig van Beethoven, Louis Moreau Gottschalk, and Sigismund Thalberg. The other sets include standard repertoire by Frederic Chopin and a piece composed by a well known Japanese composer, Yoshihiro Kanno. “Variation” used in the first set as the theme of the set applies to the Chopin set, as one piece by Leopold Godowsky is based on a melody composed by Chopin. Contrasting to all works on the program is the piece composed by Kanno: the pianist will play Nambu bell as well as the piano.
Noted for his “sensitive touch” by The Washington Post and for his “beautiful sound with an abundant sense of fantasy” by Musica Nova magazine (Japan), Dr. Takasawa made a solo recital debut at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in 1992. In July 2003 he also gave a Tokyo debut recital to a sold-out audience.
He studied with José Ariel Rambaldi at Whitman College in Washington State and with Constance Keene at Manhattan School of Music. While in New York, he was invited by the late Artur Balsam, a renowned pianist and chamber musician, to participate in the Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festival in Maine. He also tutored with Thomas Schumacher at the University of Maryland. His doctoral dissertation focused on the American musician and educator, Abram Chasins. An article on Chasins has been published in the Clavier magazine. His awards and honors include being a finalist for the Mu Phi Epsilon International Competition and receiving the Homer Ulrich Performance Award.
He is currently Associate Professor of Music and the director of the Graduate Studies at the University of Rhode Island. He is also the creator and director of the URI Piano Extravaganza!, an annual piano festival of concerts and a competition for the university community and surrounding areas. His interest in communicating with students through music has taken him to performances in elementary and secondary schools in the Rhode Island area, and in schools as far as Japan, Taiwan and Vietnam. He also served as President of the Rhode Island Music Teachers Association from 2004 to 2006. His concert activities and interviews have been broadcast on Northwest Public Radio (Pullman, WA), WSCL-FM89.5 and WBOC-Channel 16 in Maryland, internationally on Mercury Radio (Poznán, Poland) and on a News 5 evening news broadcast in Belize.
Interested in discovering unfamiliar yet worthwhile music, Dr. Takasawa has recorded music by women composers as well as performed music of contemporary Japanese composers and the German philosopher Friedrich Nitzsche. Later this year he is also scheduled to perform a recital comprised of music from the six inhabited continents of the world.
The recital is sponsored in part through a generous donation from the Dulce Fund and is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Music Department at (662) 846-4615.