Duo Turgeon will join the popular Bergmans to open the onstage Noteworthy Concert Series. (Submitted)

VIDEO: Onstage ‘Noteworthy’ concerts start up at Cowichan Theatre Oct. 7

If you’ve been enjoying getting onstage with the performers at the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre’s Noteworthy Concert Series in the past, prepare for a whole new season.

Pianopoly opens the 2019/20 series featuring The Canadian Piano Quartet.

Monday, Oct. 7, starting at 10:30 a.m., on the big stage at the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre, you can enjoy a special keyboard treat.

In Pianopoly, the Bergmann Duo join forces with Duo Turgeon in a playful pianistic display featuring works for multiple pianists. Both duos are laureates of the Dranoff International Two Piano Competition and have enjoyed collaborating over the years at various festivals and on tour.

They will explore a range of delightful and familiar repertoire, with works by Saint-Saëns, Bach, Rossini and Gershwin.

Elizabeth and Marcel Bergmann — the Bergmann Piano Duo — are famous for their razzle-dazzle playing and wide-ranging music choices. International prize-winning performers and entertaining raconteurs, they bring their magical touch to the Noteworthy series.

The Bergmann Piano Duo’s dynamic and energetic performances of uniquely eclectic programmes have inspired audiences for more than two decades. Their recitals and concerts with orchestra have taken them to many parts of the world, including the United States, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, France, Macedonia, Greece, China and Canada.

They have made recordings for the CBC, for several stations of the ARD in Germany and for National Public Radio in the U.S. The duo has recorded several CDs, which appear on the CordAria, Arktos, Koch International Classics, Naxos, ARS and Brilliant Classics labels.

Their most recent recording, American Stories on the ARS label, features exclusively Marcel’s arrangements. Their extensive repertoire ranges from the baroque to the contemporary and includes numerous own arrangements and compositions.

But, they also enjoy sharing the stage and for most of their concerts invite artist friends to perform with them.

For this concert, their friends are the Duo Turgeon (Anne-Louise and Edward) who last year, marked their 25th anniversary together.

Accolades follow wherever this duo performs. “The husband-and-wife team of Duo Turgeon play with hypnotic intensity,” wrote American Record Guide. In addition, La Scena Musicale said, “Duo Turgeon are on the path of the greats, included among four or five world-class piano duos.”

The year 2018 marked the 25th anniversary for Duo Turgeon. After completing their doctoral degrees in solo piano performance at the Yale University School of Music, Anne Louise-Turgeon and Edward Turgeon began their duo piano collaboration with encouragement from James Anagnoson (Dean, Glenn Gould School, Toronto) and the late Karl Ulrich Schnabel. The continued success of the critically acclaimed Duo Turgeon has taken them around the world, with debut performances at Carnegie Hall and the Concertgebouw of Amsterdam.

They have also had hundreds of engagements including such series as San Francisco International Music Festival, Montreal International Duo Piano Festival, Fulbright sponsored visits to Europe, several tours of Russia, and several recordings including those for Marquis/EMI, Albany and Vanguard Classics.

The Turgeons have been heard on classical radio stations throughout the world and are featured in the television documentary Two Pianos — One Passion, which airs on PBS affiliate television stations across North America.

With the Duncan audience seated on the stage with the performers, the atmosphere is relaxed, making for a connection that is immediate and intimate.

The performance offers more than 75 minutes of piano virtuosity punctuated by musical insights engagingly told. No wonder this concert series has developed a loyal following. Arrive early to mingle and enjoy a hot beverage and table of treats that starts each concert in a convivial atmosphere.

So, what’s coming up after this show?

On Sunday, Dec. 1, at 2 p.m., tenor Benjamin Butterfield joins the Bergmans, while on Monday, Feb. 3 at 10:30 a.m., you can enjoy the music of violinist Jasper Wood, and on Monday, April 6 at 10:30 a.m., the season closes with clarinettist Jose Franch-Ballester bringing his talent to the stage.

Tickets are $28 each, or $26 for Elder College members. The four-concert season ticket is $89. Book your seats in person at the Cowichan Ticket Centre, by phone 250-748-7529 or online at cowichanpac.ca.

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