Pianist Alpin Hong will return to the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center May 14 and 15. His combination of stunning technique, emotional range and rare humor continues to bring audiences young and old to their feet. Unplugged on May 14 at 8 pm will feature the “Star Wars Main Theme” along with a storytelling narrative of how music has influenced his life. Classical Alpin on May 15 at 7:30 pm will feature Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata.” The second half will be a set with the South Milwaukee High School music students. Tickets are $25 for adults, $20 for seniors and $10 for students. Discounts are available if both performances are purchased. Tickets may be purchased by calling the Box Office at 414-766-5049 or online at southmilwaukeepac.org.
Alpin Hong will be spending a week in South Milwaukee working with School District of South Milwaukee music students from elementary to high school age. As an added bonus, Unplugged will begin with a free concert by the 484th Army Band at 7 pm. Alpin will join the band for their closing number, Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue.” Alpin’s performance will begin at 8 pm after a brief intermission.
Alpin Hong’s astonishing ability to connect to people of all ages, experiences, and backgrounds distinguishes him and shapes his evolving performance style. His extensive classical training, matched with his background in skateboarding, snowboarding, martial arts, and videogames, forms a creative force unmatched in its youthful vivacity and boundless energy. His tireless pursuit to find, inspire, and collaborate with talents in every community results in unforgettably magical presentations that simultaneously expand worlds yet hit close to home.
Alpin Hong is a native of Michigan and made his orchestral debut with the Kalamazoo Symphony at the age of ten. He moved to Los Angeles soon after and garnered competition victories at a young age with wins at the 1989 Stravinsky Piano Competition, the 1993 SYMF Competition and the 1994 Los Angeles Spotlight Awards Competition. His teachers have included Mark Richman, and Emilio del Rosario, and he completed his Master’s degree as a student of Jerome Lowenthal at The Juilliard School.
Whirlwind American tours and performances across the globe have earned pianist Alpin Hong the reputation as a modern day Pied Piper. Opening the ears, eyes and imaginations of hundreds of thousands of Americans, his combination of stunning technique, emotional range, and rare humor continues to bring audiences young and old to their feet. Indeed, the Santa Barbara News Press described Mr. Hong’s performance as “…a tour de force. Hong evoked a kind of Beatlemania when he came on stage. What a showman! What a musician!” In recognition of the pianist’s immense gifts for communicating his passion for music to audiences of all ages, The McGraw-Hill Companies honored him in September 2005 with the $10,000 Robert Sherman Award for Music Education and Community Outreach.
In July 2005, Gramophone magazine declared Mr. Hong’s first CD (works of Scarlatti, Brahms, Debussy and Stravinsky on MSR Classics) “a debut that enhances this young pianist’s reputation,” in particular praising his “strong finger-work and keen ear for voice-leading.” The release of his second album in January 2007, friendtaskmasterteacher, sold out of its first run within a matter of weeks and has already garnered critical acclaim. The New York Times lauded his “crystalline energy…clear and persuasive ideas…and remarkable breadth of coloration” and called him “a pianistic firebrand” in a review of his standing-room only New York recital debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, the result of his winning First Prize in the 2001 Concert Artists Guild International Competition.
Highlights of Mr. Hong’s recent appearances include performances at the internationally renowned Gilmore
Keyboard Festival in Michigan, the Grand Opera House in Wisconsin, and “a rock-star-like performance” of the Ravel G minor Piano Concerto in the opening gala of the Boise Philharmonic’s 07-08 season. His uniquely humorous and visionary approach to arts education has resulted in artistic residencies from coast to coast, and recent appearances at the Schauer Arts Center in Wisconsin, Strings in the Mountains in Colorado, and Henderson/Las Vegas in Nevada left a new generation of young people inspired and cheering.
ABOUT THE SMPAC
The South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center (SMPAC) provides the greater community with a creative, innovative and diverse exploration of the performing arts. Through the many opportunities offered, the SMPAC is bringing art to life on stage and to the lives of the people in South Milwaukee and the surrounding communities. Located on the South Milwaukee 6-12 campus, the SMPAC serves as a creative outlet for the greater community, as well as the students of South Milwaukee. The SMPAC allows everyone to participate in and experience the many art forms of music, dance and theatre through live performances, master classes and workshops.
Along with the eight-show Performing Arts Series, the SMPAC opens its doors to other presenters to bring such acts as Tommy Emmanuel, Leo Kottke, Leon Redbone, BoDeans, Cantare Chorale and the Milwaukee
Symphony Orchestra. They also provide a home to the School District of South Milwaukee events as well as the Grant Park Players, the local community theatre.
The South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center is located inside the South Milwaukee High School at 901 15th Avenue, South Milwaukee, WI between College and Rawson Avenues. It is easily accessible from I-94 and 794. Free parking is located in the northwest parking lot. Patrons should enter door #9. For tickets or directions, call 414-766-5049. For more information about the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center, visit their website at www.southmilwaukeepac.org.
This performance is supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.
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