The Catholic University of America

Oct. 8, 2014

Renowned Pianists to Perform During Concert Series

For the third consecutive season, the Benjamin T. Rome School of Music will play host to world-renowned pianists for performances and master classes during the Washington International Piano Series at CUA.

The series was established in 2012 by Ivo Kaltchev, ordinary professor and head of the Piano Division, as a way to showcase the music school’s new 9-foot New York Steinway D concert grand piano. Since that time, the series has grown in popularity. The 2014-2015 line-up includes 12 recitals and a piano master class.

The series began Oct. 5 with a faculty recital by soprano Sharon Christman, professor of music and head of the Vocal Division, and Kaltchev. It will continue this semester with performances by CUA faculty and guest artists from around the United States, Italy, and Germany.

The fall schedule of guest artists includes Lori Sims, the first-place winner of the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition; Maurizio Barboro, piano professor at the Paganini State Conservatory in Genoa, Italy, and artist-in-residence and permanent soloist of the “Dumitrescu” Philharmonic Orchestra of Valcea in Romania; and Sam Post, a member of the piano and chamber music faculty at Washington’s Levine School of Music. Performing faculty include James Litzelman, who teaches applied piano and courses in piano pedagogy and musicians’ wellness; and Ralitza Patcheva, professor of piano.

The series will continue during the spring semester with a series of performances of Beethoven’s 32 sonatas in chronological order, as well as a performance by junior Brian Billion, winner of The Catholic University of America International Piano Competition, which took place in August.

Among the pieces to be performed this year are Bach’s Goldberg Variations and the Art of Fugue, Beethoven’s 32 piano sonatas, Chopin’s complete 27 etudes, Liszt’s Sonata in B Minor, and Brahms’ Sonata No. 3 in F minor — some of the most important master pieces ever written for solo piano, said Kaltchev.

“To have all these pieces in one season is just remarkable because these are the staples of the repertoire,” he said. “This piano series brings so much prestige to the music school and the University. This is becoming an important presence in our calendar that you cannot miss.”

The remaining events in the series this fall include:

James Litzelman, Sunday, Oct. 12, 3 p.m.
Lori Sims, Wednesday, Oct. 22, 8 p.m. Master class, Thursday, Oct. 23, 10 a.m. to noon.
Maurizio Barboro, Thursday, Oct. 30, 8 p.m.
Ralitza Patcheva and Sam Post, Thursday, Nov. 6, 8 p.m.

All performances and master classes will take place in Ward Recital Hall, 620 Michigan Ave., N.E., Washington, D.C. Each event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 202-319-5414 or visit




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