Liza Stepanova performs ‘Maverick’ program for first solo faculty recital

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Liza Stepanova Musical Mavericks recital

The UGA Hugh Hodgson School of Music will see one of its faculty members perform her first-ever UGA solo faculty recital in Ramsey Concert Hall on Monday, Feb. 1, at 8 p.m.

Liza Stepanova, assistant professor of piano at the School of Music, is set to perform a program she’s dubbed “Musical Mavericks,” which will include works spanning four countries and nearly 300 years.

Stepanova says the title comes from the composers’ penchant for writing “independently of the prevailing artistic trends of their time.”

“As a result, they forged completely unique and striking compositional voices, and it is interesting to juxtapose their works,” said Stepanova.

Jean Philippe Rameau, a French composer of the Baroque era, contributes the oldest compositions to the program: selections from “Nouvelles Suites,” completed in 1728. Stepanova credits his work in opera as innovative, but finds that his keyboard works exhibit many of the same traits and are “more quietly game-changing.”

Czech composer Leoš Janáček’s “1.X.1905” brings great emotional weight to the program, the piece having been written after the composer witnessed a murder during a public demonstration.

The most modern of the compositions in the program comes from Anna Clyne: “On Track.” This piece is written for piano and tape, with the recorded element being composed of a wide variety of manipulated sounds.

Stepanova’s program also pulls from the famous ballet work of Igor Stravinsky with  “Three Movements from Petrushka,” a virtuosic work which paints vivid pictures of Russia.

The final portion of Stepanova’s recital brings several of her fellow School of Music faculty members to the stage: Michael Heald, associate professor of violin; Maggie Snyder, assistant professor of viola; and Dr. David Starkweather, professor of cello. 

The quartet will perform Gabriel Fauré’s “romantic and sweeping” Piano Quartet in C minor.

Stepanova performs widely as a soloist and chamber musician, notably as the founding member of the Lysander Piano Trio. The summer of 2016 will see her return to SongFest at The Colburn School in Los Angeles where she serves as the piano program director. She will also make her debuts at the Copenhagen Summer Music Festival in Denmark and on the Steinway Series at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. For more info on her work, visit liza-stepanova.com.

The UGA Hugh Hodgson School of Music sponsors more than 350 performances each year. To view the performance calendar, subscribe to the weekly email concert listing or learn more about the School of Music, go to music.uga.edu.