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Pianist Anthony de Mare, America’s reigning “Master of the Moderns,” will perform an anthology program 8 p.m. Wednesday, October 13 at Lafayette College’s Williams Center for the Arts. de Mare will integrate spoken word with selections drawn from the wealth of keyboard music created by 20th century American composers.

Tickets for the concert are $12 and can be ordered from the Williams Center box office by calling 610-330-5009.

Earlier that day, at 10 a.m., Lafayette students and the public are cordially invited to attend a free preview lecture-demonstration by de Mare on innovative American piano music of the 20th century in Williams Center room 123. In addition, Williams Center Director Ellis Finger will deliver an introductory overview of the performance at 7 p.m. (just before the concert) in room 108.

Since winning the Young Concert Artists competition in 1987, de Mare has proven himself to be passionate champion of the music of our age. He won First Prize and Audience Prize at the International Gaudeamus Interpreters Competition (The Netherlands) and the International Competition of Contemporary Piano Music (France), as well as several major grants from the National Endowment for the Arts.

de Mare has been described as “fascinating, compelling, incredibly articulate, humorous, compassionate, and alive.” Fanfare Magazine claims that de Mare’s performance “is a wonder every listener must hear to believe.”

His Lafayette program includes familiar composers such as Copland, Gershwin, and Ives, but also represents two of the important “California school” pioneers whose remarkable accomplishments are still undervalued: John Cage and Henry Cowell. Music by a pair of composers still shaping their careers represents perhaps the most exciting area of de Mare’s program, and this tribute to Meredith Monk and Frederic Rzewski will bring startling new awareness of the keyboard music of the late 20th century.

In particular, Rzewski’s “De Profundis,” with its powerful combinations of texts from Oscar Wilde’s Letters From Prison, combine with daringly fresh piano settings to reward the careful ear and open mind. Consider these musical canvases the counterparts to the breakthrough paintings of Pollock, Rothko, Motherwell, and de Kooning, the vanguard of our American century in the visual arts.

De Mare has been guest soloist with such orchestras as the San Francisco Symphony and Essen Philharmonic, and generated great excitement with performances at the International Bergen Festival in Norway, Mardi Gras Festival in Australia, “Music In The Morning Series” in Vancouver, and others in the U.S., England, and Germany. Numerous international composers have written for him, and several of de Mare’s recordings have been received with critical acclaim by The New York Times and Keyboard Magazine.

The 1999-2000 Performance Series at Lafayette College is sponsored, in part, by grants from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the Mid Atlantic Foundation for the Arts.

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