It’s been quite a year for Clayton Piano Festival. October 2016 saw their biggest season yet, presenting 6 concerts in 8 days in unique venues from Benson to Cary, featuring a wide array of distinctive artists, performing in styles from progressive rock to ragtime, with many more outreach performances in local schools. The season ended with a concert at the Clayton Center, where 5 grand pianos were heard at the same time in a joyous celebration of 5 years. As the year ended with a packed-out Holiday Gala, this one begins with the ever-popular Valentine’s Day event.
“This Valentine’s Day concert is special to me as it will present one of my former teachers, Craig Ketter, and his wife, the gifted soprano, Valerie Gonzalez,” states Jonathan Levin, the festival’s director.
Ms. Gonzalez has had a multifaceted career, singing in some of the world’s leading opera houses throughout Canada, Great Britain, and the US, in addition to directing a Music Academy in Northern New Jersey and writing novels in her spare time. Craig Ketter is no stranger to the Triangle area, having begun his musical education in Raleigh and later going on to perform as a collaborative artist and concert pianist on NPR’s Performance Today series, CBS Sunday Morning, Carnegie Hall, Avery Fischer Hall, Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires and many more top venues around the world.
In addition to a lavish dinner provided by the Wagner House, guests will hear an eclectic musical feast. “You’ll hear famous solo piano works, opera favorites, Broadway hits, and fun numbers from song literature, all having to do in some way with love,” says Valerie. “This concert feels like a homecoming for us, as we look forward to sharing our music with family, friends and new acquaintances as well,” Craig concludes. “We hope to make it a very special evening for all.”
After the concert, there will be a reception where the audience will be able to mingle with the performers. For more information and to reserve tickets please go to www.claytonpianofestival.org, or contact Stephen Levin at (919) 606-9701. The Historic Wagner House which is located in Downtown Clayton at 121 E. Main Street.