One of the great joys of being a conductor is collaborating with guest soloists whose artistry and skill inspires everyone around them. Such was the case last month at the Frederick Symphony concert on May 7, 2011 which featured pianist Jeffrey Chappell performing Rachmaninoff’s Third Piano Concerto. Not only was it a privilege to work with Jeff, my colleague at Goucher College, but it was a rare opportunity to collaborate on what is widely considered the world’s most demanding piano concerto.
Jeff wrote about the performance and how he prepared for it on his blog (entries dated May 23-31, 2011) and even said it was “the best concert I ever gave in my life so far.” Now, I’ve been privileged to hear Jeff perform many times (including a dazzling improvised fugue, all styles of jazz and classical music, and his own brilliant compositions), so this was quite a profound statement. But after reading about Jeff’s experiences on his blog, I have a deeper understanding of his perspective. There was also an article about the concert in the Frederick News Post. (not a review; it appeared before the concert).
Thanks to the efforts of Ted King of King Video Productions , and with the permission of Jeff Chappell, videos of the complete performance (the first movement is broken into two parts) are now available on YouTube and are embedded below. Enjoy!
Elisa Koehler is Professor of Music and Chair of the Music Department at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, South Carolina. Formerly the Director of the Center for Dance, Music, and Theatre at Goucher College and the Music Director and Conductor of the Frederick Symphony Orchestra, she is a professional conductor, trumpeter, and author. Dr. Koehler has performed on both modern and period instruments with the Bach Sinfonia, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Handel Choir of Baltimore, Knoxville Symphony Orchestra, Washington Cornett and Sackbut Ensemble, Baltimore’s Bach Concert Series, and as the leader of Newberry's Victorian Cornet Band. Her publications include two books: Fanfares and Finesse: A Performer’s Guide to Trumpet History and Literature (Indiana University Press) and A Dictionary for the Modern Trumpet Player (Rowman & Littlefield), numerous articles on historic brass for the ITG Journal, and new performing editions of the Haydn and Hummel trumpet concerti for Carl Fischer Music. She was named a Distinguished Alumna by the University of Tennessee in 2009 and elected to the Board of Directors of the International Trumpet Guild in 2017. In 2014 Dr. Koehler received Goucher College's highest faculty honor, the Caroline Doebler Bruckerl Award, which recognizes an exemplary faculty member in the areas of scholarship, teaching, and service. She earned a doctorate in orchestral conducting from the Peabody Conservatory, a master’s degree in trumpet performance from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and bachelor’s degrees in both music education and performance from Peabody.
View all posts by Elisa Koehler