BOONE—Works composed during the early 20th century will be performed by violinist Nancy Bargerstock and pianist Bair Shagdaron Nov. 4 at Appalachian State University.
The performance in Broyhill Music Center’s Rosen Concert Hall begins at 8 p.m. Admission is free.
The program is part of the Hayes School of Music’s Faculty Performance Series and showcases Bargerstock’s and Shagdaron’s talents as a musical duo.
“Bair and I have been collaborating for 14 years,” Bargerstock said of their musical partnership. The duo frequently perform on campus, have presented recitals across the state and have made recordings together.
“There are times when we have been involved in other things, but we are very comfortable playing together after such a long association,” she said.
The program features compositions by Sergei Rachmaninoff, Anton Webern and Claude Debussy. It was inspired in part by research Bargerstock conducted while working on her doctorate.
“The first 25 years of the 20th century is a most fascinating point in music history for me,” Bargerstock said. “All sorts of concurrent trends were occurring across the world. The influences on all composers of this time were vast as they were trying to find a new way of expressing themselves.”
The two Rachmaninoff’s preludes on the program were written in 1901 and 1910 respectively and reflect the composer’s attachment to romanticism and musical traditions of the previous century. Weber, who was a contemporary of Rachmaninoff, was experimenting in atonal compositions, which is evident in his “Four Pieces” that Bargerstock described as short, microscopic compositions.
Weber’s composition is contrasted with the Debussy sonatas written in 1917. The impressionist pieces illustrate another trend of the early 20th century. Further showcasing the musical diversity of the time is Gardner’s “Jazzetto, Op. 24,” written in 1925. Gardner was among the era’s composers who were beginning to include jazz elements in their music for piano and violin, Bargerstock said.
While their styles are diverse, the composers “were all searching for what would be the voice of the 20th century, or the first half of the century,” Bargerstock said.
Bargerstock has been a member of the music faculty at Appalachian since 1999. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from The Julliard School of Music in New York City, a soloist diploma in viola from the Orfeo Conservatory of Music in Athens, Greece, and a doctorate in violin performance from UNC Greensboro.
She has an extensive and prestigious performance career including radio, television and recordings. She has performed in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Boston Symphony Hall, Royal Albert Hall and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and throughout Europe and Asia.
She was violinist for 15 seasons with Alexander Schneider and the Brandenburg Ensemble, one of the most prestigious and well-known international ensembles. Additionally she has appeared in chamber festivals worldwide.
Shagdaron joined the faculty at Appalachian in fall 2000. A native of Moscow, Russia, he began studying music at age 4. He is a graduate of the Moscow Gnesins Music School for Gifted Children and the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory where he earned his doctorate degree in piano performance. He also holds a degree in composition from the conservatory.
As an accomplished soloist, Shagdaron took fourth prize at the 1980 International J.S. Bach Competition in Leipzig, Germany, and third prize at the 1992 International Competition for Piano and Orchestra in Mazara del Vallo, Italy. He has given master classes in Japan and also performed throughout the U.S., Russia, Japan, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Belgium and Mongolia.
He has been guest artist for An Appalachian Summer Festival, and a soloist with the Western Piedmont Symphony.