Piano on the Common: music for two keyboards

Sat, Sep 25 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
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Stella Owen & Bonnie Anderson

Bonnie Anderson and Stella Owen return to Westford Common with a new program of light classical music from Mozart, Rachmaninoff, Espinoza, Billy Joel, Felix Arndt’s Nola, and selections from Mike Cornick’s Jazz Suite, (Latin, Blues, and Waltz)

  • BYO food/drinks
  • Bring your own chairs or blanket (a few benches are also available)
  • Free parking is available along Lincoln St. and at nearby lots

Venue/Location

Westford Common 

Admission and attendance

Advance purchase: $40/Family, $20/person, $10/Seniors & child under 12

Day of event: pay-as-you-can, cash or credit card


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About the artists

Bonnie Anderson, piano

Bonnie Anderson, keyboard

Bonnie has a varied career playing chamber music, recitals, church services, weddings, memorial services, orchestra concerts, and teaching students ages 12-86. Bonnie especially enjoys collaborating with musicians from the Boston Symphony, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, and Los Angeles Philharmonic. Highlights of her collaborations include a performance of Hindemith’s Trio for Saxophone, Viola and Piano with Branford Marsalis and Christof Huebner at the Nantucket Musical Arts Society Series, a recital with trumpeter Joseph Foley at the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra “Unleashed Series” in Houston, recitals with Four-Hand Piano partner Stella Owen in Boston, and guest pianist with Music on the Hill Chamber Music Festival in Rhode Island. As orchestral pianist, Bonnie performs with Orchestra of Indian Hill and as substitute keyboard player with Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, Concord Orchestra, and Portland Symphony. An enthusiastic educator, Bonnie teaches part-time at Phillips Andover Academy, at her studio in Manchester-by-the-Sea, and online via FaceTime and Zoom. Projects during quarantine have included outdoor concerts with piano partner Stella Owen on two keyboards, weekly workshops with students online, and preparing for a solo video project at Shalin Liu Performance Center. Bonnie’s recordings include a solo piano disc, collaborative disc with Joe Foley (trumpet/cornet/flugelhorn), and sample recording with cellist Trevor Handy. Bonnie grew up in Westford and graduated from Westford Academy. She studied at the Juilliard School, Michigan State University, the French Piano Institute in Paris, and received her doctorate in piano performance from Boston University.  

Stella Owen, pianoStella J. Owen, keyboard

Since our whole world is different, my biography should reflect that change, so for this concert, I’m speaking directly to you! These last several months have been extraordinary for all of us. During quarantine, Bonnie and I had to find a different way to rehearse. This is what we did: we called each other via FaceTime so we could see each other. Because simultaneous playing is not yet technically possible, we took turns muting so that one of us could hear both parts and could synchronize. Though not ideal, we were able to rehearse and learn new music. In fact, all the music we will play today has been practiced and rehearsed remotely! Four-hand music was not the only musical venture for me during quarantine. Early on, I was inspired by Melissa Etheridge; she was doing daily concerts during lockdown. I thought, “I could do that!” Beginning March 22nd, I played daily concerts on Facebook Live for 70 days. I used my keyboard to record the opposite part for four-hand music, played solo pieces, and sang songs while accompanying myself. I found the process cathartic and very centering. Every day I got dressed up, went live, and then planned and practiced for hours so that I could keep everything fresh.

Now for my standard biography: I have been playing music and performing since I was five years old. Currently I accompany strings at the Newton Suzuki School and play Principal Keyboard with Claflin Hill Symphony Orchestra. I also play clarinet, sing in a choir (which I really hope I can do again!), give solo recitals, and very much enjoy playing four-hand music with Bonnie, even though it is on two socially distanced keyboards. I hope you enjoy hearing this music as much as we enjoy playing it!

 

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