Friday pick: Keyboard Concerts welcomes pianist Drew Petersen

Photo: Dario Acosta

Drew Petersen performs Friday, April 1, at the Philip Lorenz International Keyboard Concerts series.

As last-minute substitutions go, this wasn’t too bad for Andreas Werz, artistic director of the Philip Lorenz International Keyboard Concerts series. There have been times in the past when he’s had only two-days notice to replace a sick pianist.

But 10 days was still a scramble to find a suitable name to fill in for the performance slot of the noted Polish pianist Rafal Blechacz, who was scheduled to play 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 1. As I told TMR readers last week, Blechacz “was obliged to cancel his performance due to an unfortunate circumstance involving vaccines and quarantine deadlines,” Werz says. “We will reschedule Mr. Blechacz as soon as possible.”

In this case, Werz turned to Opus 3, the artist talent management group in New York. His contacts quickly put out feelers among its roster of musicians: Who was available for a last-minute replacement?

That’s how Werz landed Drew Petersen, who was the recipient of the recipient of the 2018 Avery Fisher Career Grant and the 2017 American Pianists Award.

This young, up-and-coming pianist has elected to play a program of eight Chopin etudes, Rachmaninoff’s Sonata in B-flat minor, and two pieces by Ravel (“Sonatine” and “Gaspard de la nuit.”)


The concert will be held at the same time as the one originally scheduled: 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 1, in the Fresno State Concert Hall. Tickets are $25 adults, $18 seniors and $5 students.

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Covering the arts online in the central San Joaquin Valley and beyond. Lover of theater, classical music, visual arts, the literary arts and all creative endeavors. Former Fresno Bee arts critic and columnist. Graduate of Columbia University and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Excited to be exploring the new world of arts journalism.

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