Concert pianist Matthew Graybil to open Piano Series season at Franco Center

Concert pianist Matthew Graybil returns to the Franco Center in Lewiston on Friday, Nov. 4. The program opens the center’s Piano Series season. Submitted photo by Kaupo Kikkas

Concert pianist Matthew Graybil will open the Piano Series season at 7 pm on Friday, Nov. 4, at the Franco Center in Lewiston. One of the most popular pianists to have performed at the Franco Center, Graybil will begin the program with his arrangement of Stravinsky’s “Pulcinella Suite.” Beethoven’s “Sonata No. 14, Opus 27 (Moonlight)” will complete the first half of the recital. Following intermission, he will feature works by Bellini and Chopin, and end the scheduled program with Bellini’s arrangement of Liszt’s “Reminiscences of Norma.”

Graybil stands out among the new generation of American classical pianists. He was praised by The New Yorker as “an exceptional artist” and by the Southampton Press for playing described as “hypnotic and compelling.” Following the release of his debut album, in 2012, featuring works by Brahms and Schubert, Fanfare Magazine called him “one of the most sensitive, poetic young pianists to debut on record in recent memory.”

In September 2015, Graybil and Igor Lovchinsky, a close friend since their time at Juilliard, opened the Franco Center’s 10th Piano Series Season with the New England premiere of the Piston work, for which they had collaborated in the New York premiere the previous year. A record of Chopin’s Complete Etudes, Op. 10 was released by the Chopin Project in 2016, and his recording, with Larry Weng, of the Piston Concerto for two pianos soli was released in February 2018 for Steinway & Sons records. He returned to Steinway’s recording studio in August, 2018, to record selections from his Debussy centennial celebration program. In March 2020, he released his most recent album with violinist Niv Ashkenazi, entitled “Violins of Hope” for Albany Records.

A native of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Graybil began his piano studies at age 6 and gave his first recital within a year. His teacher was Harvey Wedeen. He made his orchestral debut, at age 14, with a performance of the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1. He received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the Juilliard School under the tutelage of Jerome Lowenthal and Matti Raekallio. He has given masterclasses at music schools and universities internationally and served as a faculty member of the Lancaster International Piano Festival. He resides in New York City. A prizewinner in national and international competitions, Graybil has given solo recitals and performed with orchestras and in chamber groups in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Netherlands, and France.

Doors and cash bar open an hour before the show.

Tickets are $20. No charge for students. Tickets can be purchased online at www.francocenter.org or by phone at 207-689-2000. Tickets can also be purchased in person at our box office between 10 am and 1 pm on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. The Franco Center is located at 46 Cedar St. into Lewiston. Parking is in the mill lot. Handicap access is on the Lincoln St. Alley side of the building.


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