Levin offers musical tour of Paris

Published 12:00 am Thursday, March 8, 2018

I will never forget it, the night in 2014 at Trinity Episcopal Church at the piano concert performed by Jonathan Levin for the Natchez Festival of Music.

I was sitting with some musicians and singers brought there by the Festival of Music. They were in awe as well. The direct quote from one of the singers sitting with me was, “best Liszt I have ever heard.”

A moment of utter silence gripped the room after his last chords. We were not moving or clapping or speaking. We just sat in awe. How fingers can move that deftly with more grace than you can imagine, is beyond me.

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If you have never heard Levin play, you have a chance on March 22.

As part of Spring Pilgrimage this year, Levin has agreed to one performance at Brandon Hall. He is an intelligent, gifted musician with wonderful interpretive skills.  He makes the piano come alive.

Whether he is playing Chopin, Liszt, Brahms or Gershwin, he displays a level of musicianship only manifested after a great deal of study, practice and talent.  Plus, he is a very likable person.

Eager to educate those of us who can hardly play “Chopsticks” on the piano, he talks to his audience and embraces performance as a way to educate and enlighten the listener.

Jonathan is from North Carolina, but resides in New York City. He has been a summer resident of Natchez for the past eight years, coming to Natchez in early April to accompany for the educational outreach program for the Natchez Festival of Music, and usually staying through the later part of May every year.

The past two years, he has seen much success, playing at the Kremlin in Russia, making his Carnegie Hall debut and developing further his own piano festival in North Carolina, the Clayton Piano Festival.

He loves Natchez, and we love him too.

Levin will not be returning to Natchez this spring for his usual eight-week stint with the Festival, but he is coming to perform for one night only.

Levin’s description of the March 22 concert, “An American in Paris: Paris! That beguiling melting pot of culture, which has hosted artists of all nationalities for generations with its romance and charm.

Let me take you on a musical voyage to Paris and beyond, exploring the vast musical influences of this magical city on musical artists from the romantic generation to the present.

The program includes timeless favorites of Debussy, Liszt and Chopin as well as a thrilling solo piano arrangement of George Gershwin’s masterpiece of the same name.”

Get your tickets at the Natchez Pilgrimage Tours counter inside the Visitors Center at 640 South Canal Street or visit the website www.natchezpilgrimage.com or call Natchez Pilgrimage Tours for details: 601-445-6102, 601-445-6101.
Lynn Beach Smith is director of sales, Natchez Pilgrimage Tours.