My arts picks for the week feature an acclaimed young Polish pianist and a group of Grammy winners helping celebrate the release of a Fresno pianist’s new album.
The draw: Blechacz was a big winner at the 2005 Chopin International Piano Competition in Warsaw, and he’s since signed with the Deutsche Grammophon label, only the second Polish pianist to do so. In 2014 he won the Gilmore Artist Award, sometimes called ”the Piano Nobel,” which is awarded once every four years and comes with a $300,000 prize, for his “extraordinary piano artistry.”
The program: He’ll play works by J.S. Bach (the focus of his new album), Beethoven and (of course) Chopin.
The event: Fresno composer and pianist Gina Leneé celebrates the release of her new album of modern piano compositions, titled “Red Diamonds.”
The draw: Lenee’s newest original songs are produced by Will Ackerman, founder of Windham Hill Records. Also on the album are musical contributions from Ackerman and a bevy of internationally recognized recording artists, including cellist Eugene Friesen (originally from Fresno), percussionist Jeff Haynes, wind instrumentalist Premik Russell Tubbs and bass player Tom Eaton.
The live event: Leneé will be joined at the concert by Ackerman, who will emcee the show, along with Friesen, Haynes, Tubbs, Eaton, Jeff Oster and Todd Boston.