Thursday, February 27, 2014

Coming to the Midland College stage ...

We've already advised uou ... get ready for Midland College Week during April 7-12. The week will provide lots of events and activities for the community to see what “your college has to offer.” That will include ...

“Fantasies & Illusions”
presented by Midland College Department of Music
Sunday, April 13
3:00 p.m.
Wagner & Brown Auditorium
Allison Fine Arts Building

On Sunday, April 13, at 3:00 p.m., Midland College (MC) will present an interdisciplinary show integrating visual art, dance and music starring pianist Eugenio Zapata and dancer Yelena Konetchy. This unique show features works by Rachmaninoff, Beethoven, Chopin, Earl Wild, William Bolcom, Amy Beach and Clarence “Pine Top” Smith. The performance promises outstanding piano music, flowing dance movements and a multimedia presentation. The performance will be held on the Midland College main campus in the Allison Fine Arts Building Wagner & Brown Auditorium. It is FREE and open to the public; tickets are not required.

MC Program Chair of Visual & Performing Arts Dr. Nicholas Elderkin explained, “I have been visiting with Eugenio Zapata for several months about the possibility of performing at MC. The Midland audience will absolutely love how this show integrates classical and jazz piano performances with dance and a beautiful visual arts interpretative program. The concert promises to be a wonderful way to relax and enjoy a Sunday afternoon.”

Fantasies & Illusions highlights works that show the trials and tribulations of our human conditions, as well those that make the audience want to tap their feet and smile. Music is at the foreground, while dance and images alternate to create a fantasy world. Audiences will experience a wide palette of sound, images and movements that will hopefully touch their hearts.

About Eugenio Zapata, pianist

Eugenio Zapata is a native of Colombia, South America. He completed undergraduate piano studies at the Andes University in Bogota. After performing and teaching for several years he traveled to the United States where he completed a master’s degree in Piano Pedagogy and Performance at Pennsylvania State University. He then traveled to Texas where he completed doctoral studies at Texas Tech University under the tutelage of Dr. William Westney, who has also performed at Midland College.

At Texas Tech Zapata was able to integrate his training in music, dance, theatre, and visual arts into the interdisciplinary fine arts doctoral program. His research brings findings in cross-modal theories of music perception into piano pedagogy. His creative work explores themes such as gender, race, religion, culture, war and social justice. These themes are integrated into the shows he designs that include dance, theatre, video, acting, photography, poetry and animation.

He has over 20 years of teaching experience with positions at Penn State University, Lubbock Christian University, Texas Tech University, Mount Marty College and Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp. In the summer of 2013 he joined the Piano Faculty at The Orpheus Academy of Music in Austin, Texas. He has published several articles on piano pedagogy and recorded several CDs. He has performed throughout the United States, Europe and South America.

About Yelena Konetchy, dancer

Yelena Konetchy is a Russian born dancer who immigrated to the United States at an early age. Her dance studies include extensive training in The Vaganova Technique under Andrei Petrovitch Bossov (18-year soloist with the Kirov Ballet at the Mariinsky Theatre). In addition, she has worked and studied under Sally Bliss of the Tudor Trust, Monnette Garcia of The Alvin Ailey Dance Company, Grace Holmes from The San Francisco Ballet and Lori Belilove of The Isadora Duncan Dance Company in New York City.

Yelena's professional performance experience includes dancing in works from early modern and contemporary to ballet. She has performed with The Illinois Ballet, The Charleston Ballet Theatre and The Thel Dance Theatre (acting as company manager).

Ms. Konetchy is also a prolific choreographer who has created works for numerous shows in a broad range of dance styles including Contemporary, Ballet, Modern and Broadway. Some of her creative work includes choreographies for The Big Range Dance Festival 2012, Austin Shakespeare, Sea Born Cruises and Crank Collective’s musical ‘Cabeza De Vaca’ at the Long Center in Austin, Texas.

Currently residing and performing in Austin, Texas, she teaches ballet and modern dance at Tapestry Dance Studios.

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