Little Rock broadcast puts spotlight on American composers

Music lovers soon will have the chance to revisit some favorite University of Arkansas at Little Rock solo piano and chamber music performances, courtesy of a UALR professor and pianist.

Dr. Linda Holzer
Dr. Linda Holzer, UALR professor of music and
coordinator of classical piano studies

Tune in to KLRE FM 90.5 at 7 p.m. Sunday, June 28, or at 7 p.m., July 3, to hear a special hour-long program, “A Celebration of American Music,” featuring host Linda Holzer, concert pianist and professor of music.

“It’s a wonderful opportunity to celebrate American musical heritage, as we head into Fourth of July holiday observances,” Holzer said. “The centerpiece of the broadcast is the dramatic “Piano Sonata in E Minor,” by pioneering African-American composer and Little Rock native, Florence Price. I’m grateful to Nathan Vandiver, program director at KLRE/KUAR, for collaborating with me on this project.”

Composer Florence Price
Pioneering composer and Little Rock native Florence Price

In addition to hosting the broadcast, Holzer performed featured piano solos by composers Florence Price and Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, and was joined by veteran Arkansas Symphony musicians Sandra McDonald, violin, and Rafael León, cello for two piano trios by Gwyneth Walker. Zwilich made history in 1983, winning the Pulitzer Prize in music, the first woman to do so; audiences in Little Rock are familiar with Walker’s music from her past partnerships here, commissions for the Arkansas Chamber Singers, and the Arkansas Symphony’s Quapaw Quartet.  Her piano trios, “A Vision of Hills” and “New World Dances,” open and close this broadcast.

The music was recorded live, in-concert, at UALR’s Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall, most recently when the university hosted a concert during the Society for American Music national conference in March 2013.

Dr. Holzer, who joined the UALR Music Department faculty in 1995, and is on the artist roster for Arkansas Arts on Tour, is set to travel to Melbourne, Australia, in July to give a lecture-recital at the Australasian Piano Pedagogy Conference on iPad music performance technology.  In October, she will be a guest artist at North Dakota State University’s Challey School of Music in Fargo, N.D., for a concert and performance technology workshop, and in April she travels to Spelman College in Atlanta for a similar guest artist engagement.

Listeners can find more information for the broadcast on the KLRE web site.

Information for prospective UALR piano students is available here.

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