Pianist brings emotion to MSO show

March 21, 2009|By CHRIS COPLEY

HAGERSTOWN -- In the first years of the 19th century, the world of symphonic music saw a new development: Composers sought to express ideas and emotions in their music.

Concert-goers saw plenty of emotion from piano soloist Chu-Fang Huang at Saturday night's Maryland Symphony Orchestra concert.

"She was very passionate," Julianna Dahbura said in the lobby of The Maryland Theatre during the concert's intermission.

"I thought I'd see smoke coming off the keyboard," Krissy DiMercurio said.

The two teens attended the concert with their fathers.

Huang performed the piano solo of Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 3. Beethoven is part of the MSO's MasterWorks IV concert, "Dawn of the Romantics." Other pieces on the program are Symphony No. 3 ("Rhenish") by Robert Schumann and Felix Mendelssohn's "Märchen von der schÃ
nen Melusine."

The 26-year-old Chinese pianist was expressive as she played, swaying her body, attacking the keys and letting her hands flow over them.


Tacoma Park, Md., residents Nancy Hughes and Tim Rahn attended Saturday night's concert. Rahn said he's been coming to MSO performances since the symphony was formed 26 years ago. This weekend's show drew him because of the Beethoven concerto.

"It's always good to hear something live," he said. "You get a new perspective."

David and Rita Brizzee also enjoyed Huang's presence at the piano. Rita Brizzee performed as a pianist when she was younger.

"She seems very young, but she really seemed to enjoy herself," she said. "(The MSO) was very fortunate to have booked her."

The concert will be repeated today at 3 p.m. Tickets are available online at or by calling 301-797-4000.

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