Awards & Events

YSU, Akron Announce Keyboard Festival

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Youngstown State University’s Dana School of Music and the University of Akron have announced The Northeast Ohio Keyboard Festival, a joint piano festival that includes two master classes and four concerts starting Sunday, Sept. 30.

The event features guest artist, Mark Nixon of London, United Kingdom, a graduate of the University of Cape Town, University of South Africa (UNISA), the Amsterdam Conservatory and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, and award-winning musician.

Faculty artists include Caroline Oltmanns, James Wilding, Misook Yun, Marcellene Hawk Mayhall, Alice Wang, Sean Baran, Mayumi Kikushi, Philip Thomson and Todd Gafke.

The collaboration between YSU and the University of Akron is a reflection of the depth and density of culture in northeastern Ohio, including Youngstown, Akron, Cleveland and Kent, said Dr. Caroline Oltmanns, professor of piano at the Dana School and the event’s co-director. The festival is meant to bring together those communities to continue the vibrant music scene, she said.

“We are thrilled to offer this piano festival for the fourth year to the communities of Youngstown and Akron, celebrating French composer Claude Debussy,” Oltmanns said. “The concerts, master classes and recitals are all dedicated to the beauty of keyboard instruments, to the sounds they are able to project, and the stories we musicians get to tell through them.”

The opening concert featuring Mark Nixon is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 30 at 3 p.m. at the University of Akron’s Guzzetta Hall, 224 E. Buchtel Ave., in Akron, Ohio 44325. Tickets are $12, $6 for students and free for University of Akron students.

All other events are free and open to the public, including a Claude Debussy Tribute Concert at Youngstown State University on Monday, Oct. 1 in Bliss Recital Hall at 7:30 p.m. The event continues on Tuesday, Oct. 2 with a master class with Mark Nixon in the University of Akron’s Guzzetta Recital Hall from 1 to 2 p.m., and a YSU event in collaboration with the Youngstown Music Teachers’ Association at St. John’s Episcopal Church at 323 Wick Ave., Youngstown, Ohio 44503 that includes a master glass with Nixon from 5 to 6:30 p.m. and a student concert from 7 to 8 p.m.

The event concludes on Wednesday, Oct. 3 with Music at Noon: Keyboard Festival Student Recital at the Butler Institute of American Art at 12:15 p.m.

Parking for YSU events is available in the M30 Wick Avenue parking deck for a fee.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.