ROCK HILL, S.C. - For many summers over the years, Winthrop's Department of Music has sponsored world-renowned pianists in masterclasses, including such names as Edwin Hughes and Walter Hautzig. This summer marks the introduction of another world-renowned artist, pianist John O’Conor, who will be in residence June 26-30.
O’Conor, who serves as the director of the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin, Ireland, has earned a worldwide reputation as a masterful interpreter of the Classic and early-Romantic repertoires. O’Conor will present a recital on Saturday, June 26, at 7:30 p.m. in Barnes Recital Hall. His program will include works by Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert and John Field. Recital tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors/faculty/staff and $5 for students. They will be available at the door.
Following initial studies in his native Dublin, O’Conor studied in Vienna with the renowned pedagogue Dieter Weber, won First Prize at the Beethoven International Piano Competition in Vienna in 1973 and made a special study of Beethoven with the legendary German pianist Wilhelm Kempff. He has toured the world in recital and concerto appearances and makes regular visits to Europe, the U.S., Japan, Korea and China.
His recordings on the Telarc label have brought him particular renown. CD Review described his box set of the complete Beethoven Sonatas as “Beethoven playing at its best”; the New York Times named his recording of the Beethoven Bagatelles as the best available; and his recording of the John Field Nocturnes spent many weeks on the Billboard charts. His recently released recordings of the complete Beethoven Piano Concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Andreas Delfs have been greeted with acclaim.
In addition to his career as a performer, O’Conor also is a distinguished teacher, having given masterclasses at conservatories all over the world. He has served as adjudicator of many international piano competitions, including the Leeds, Tchaikovsky, International Beethoven, Warsaw, Busoni, Gina Bachauer and William Kapell, among others.
During O'Conor's residence at Winthrop, pianist Lynn Rice-See, professor of piano at Middle Tennessee State University, will play June 28 at 7:30 p.m. in Barnes Recital Hall. In conjunction with the 200th birthday celebration of Robert Schumann and Frédéric Chopin, Rice-See will perform Schumann’s Carnaval, Op. 9 and Chopin’s Sonata No. 3 in B Minor, Op. 58. Admission to the June 28 performance is free.
For more information about the masterclasses, contact Matthew Manwarren, associate professor of music, at 803/323-4639 or the Department of Music at 803/323-2255.