Youth to headline java concerts

HENDERSONVILLE, NC – (PNAN) Hometown concert pianist Christopher Tavernier will perform for two coffee-themed concerts on Friday, January 14 and Saturday, January 15, 2017 at the Hendersonville Community Theatre. These concerts are part of a three-concert series, sponsored by the Music Foundation of Western North Carolina. The “2nd Annual Benefit Concert Series” will also include a classical and jazz concert on Friday, January 27, 2017.


Christopher Tavernier

“I’m glad to be a part of the Foundation’s concert series that will help the Theatre,” Tavernier said. “It is working out really well because I’m able to include two of my coffee-themed concerts into the series. I’ve played these concerts in Upstate South Carolina and in Asheville, and now I’m really excited to play them here in my hometown.”

The Saturday, January 14 concert at 4:00 pm, “A Rich Blend of Piano Solo Classics,” will have some the most noted and popular classical piano solos from the Baroque, Romantic and Modern periods, including J.S. Bach’s “Prelude and Fugue in F minor, BWV 881;” Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Sonata in C Major, Op. 53 Waldstein;” Frederic Chopin’s “Nocturne in C minor, Op. 48, No. 1;” Franz Liszt’s “Saint Francis of Paola Walking on the Waves;” and Sergei Prokofiev’s “Sonata No. 7 in B flat Major, Op. 83.”

Matthew Hanna

The Sunday, January 15 concert at 4:00 pm, “Cappuccino: A Rich Swiss Blend of Clarinet & Piano,” will include local clarinetist Matthew Hanna. They will perform both solos and duets, the most noted being the modern classic “Sonata for Clarinet in B-flat and Piano” by the late French composer Francis Jean Marcel Poulenc, who wrote the piece in honor of his friend Swiss composer Arthur Honegger in 1962.

“This will be a diverse concert,” Tavernier said. “The Poulenc piece is classical, but there are definite jazz-like elements. It has three movements, and each is very different giving the listener a wide range of emotional feelings. It helps to know that jazz musician Benny Goodman commissioned the piece in hopes of debuting it with Poulenc. But unfortunately Poulenc died suddenly, and Leonard Bernstein was called in for the premier, which was in 1963 in New York City’s Carnegie Hall. So here you have a French composer, honoring a Swiss composer, at the request of an American jazz musician. It’s not your typical classical concert. If you’ve not heard this piece, you’ll be surprised. In addition, we’ll be playing several pieces representing a wide range of international music.”

Also on the program are several other selections, both solos and duets. The solos will include three clarinet pieces by Igor Stravinsky, “Fantasie” by Jorg Widmann, and “Rhapsody for Clarinet” by Willson Osborne. The piano solos will be Sergei Prokofiev’s “Sonata No. 7 in B flat Major, Op. 83” and Claude Debussy’s “Reflections in the Water.” And the duets will be four short pieces by Howard Ferguson, and Sergei Rachmaninoff’s “Vocalise for Clarinet and Piano Op. 34 No. 14.”

For more information, 828.707.2604 or see:



At the age of six, Christopher Tavernier began his piano studies. In recent years, he has played sold out concerts in Spartanburg, Asheville, and Hendersonville. He has won several regional competitions, and in 2014 placed second in the National Elizabeth Harper Vaughn Concerto Competition in Kingsport, Tennessee, making him the youngest performer in the competition’s history.

     This year Tavernier won the Asheville Symphony’s Concerto Competition and was a semifinalist in the Midwest International Piano Competition. His concerto repertoire includes works by Bach, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff, Prokofiev, and Liszt. His pianistic lineage and training extend from Beethoven and Liszt through his teacher Dr. John Cobb. He is the first International Perzina Artist in Perzina Pianos’ 145-year history.

Matthew Hanna studied clarinet with Dr. Robert Chesebro at Furman University. During that time, Hanna was active as a competitor and placed first in the International Clarinet Association 1995 Young Artist Competition. He placed first in the Southeastern Clarinet Workshop Competition and won the Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) state and divisional woodwind competitions. He was a finalist in the National MTNA High School Woodwind competition.

     In addition to being a member of Carolina Youth Symphony for three years, Hanna was featured as a soloist in 1996 performing the Carl Stamitz Clarinet Concerto No 3. in B flat Major. He is currently active in the Upstate South Carolina music scene, performing regularly with local orchestras including the Spartanburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Foothills Philharmonic, and GAMAC Orchestra. He is currently principal clarinet with the Brevard Philharmonic. He is a founding member of the Papageno Woodwind Quintet and performs as a singer and clarinetist on the front line of the Foothills Oompah Band.

Published by on January 2017. Filed under Art-in-Performance Section, Centerstage Section, News (Time related), North Carolina, Palette News Arts Network/PNAN, People and Places. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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