The Atlanta Music Club and Pro-Mozart Society said farewell to 2022 with its end-of-year concerts and events.
All that Jazz
The Atlanta Music Club sponsored a jazz concert at the home of Dave and Melissa Pope in Brookhaven Nov. 13. The program featured trumpeter and vocalist Joe Gransden who led both a duo and quartet. The duo included pianist Kenny Banks Sr. and the quartet added bassist Neal Starkey and drummer Dave Pope. Gransden entertained the crowd with his musical prowess, ability to hold a note for 43 seconds, and clever wit, augmented by the fine musicianship of the band members.
Pianist Kenny Banks Sr. impressed the crowd with his exceptional playing and display of his gospel roots. Musical styles ranged from Louis Armstrong to Frank Sinatra to Modern Jazz. The concert was well attended and another great success for the Atlanta Music Club.
Back to the Classics
The Pro-Mozart Society of Atlanta brought classical music to Sandy Springs at the St. John United Methodist Church Nov. 20. Award winning pianist Gleb Ivanov presented a program of Mozart, Ravel and Mussorgsky which awed the audience. Not only has he the technique to handle the most difficult and demanding music, but he has the heart and sensitivity to make music touch the senses.
Among the many awards, Ivanov won first prize in the prestigious Young Concert Artists-International competition which launched him to engagements all over the United States and the world. He has made his debuts at Carnegie Hall and at the Kennedy Center to critical acclaim. He comes from a musical family, and at age 8, accompanied his father at vocal recitals. He is also accomplished on the clarinet and accordion.
Many attending the concert commented that he is the best pianist they have ever heard.
They Pro-Mozart Society of Atlanta also dedicated this concert to Mr. and Mrs. Don Dietrichs, who were members of this organization for over 55 years. Pro-Mozart was an important part of their lives for several decades. Mrs. Dietrichs (Marilyn) served as president and was on the Board in several other positions.
Both Don and Marilyn Dietrichs loved classical music, especially Mozart. They loved the musical offerings that the Pro-Mozart Society of Atlanta offered which ranged from formal concerts, smaller recitals, auditions by musicians competing for scholarships, and smaller musical events in private homes. They also valued the lifetime friendships and community with others in Pro-Mozart who had a passion for classical music, and wanted to support and encourage the next generation of musicians.
Piano Prodigy at Christmas
The AMC welcomed piano prodigy William Zhang to their annual Christmas Luncheon at the Piedmont Driving Club Dec. 9. Born in Atlanta Northside Hospital in 2012, Zhang is a piano composer from Atlanta. In January of 2019, at the tender age of 6, Zhang stood out from 600 competitors from 17 countries and won the First Place and Top Winner of Judges Distinction Award at the prestigious American Protégé International Piano and String Competition 2019 in New York City. Soon afterwards, Zhang made his successful Carnegie Hall debut March 31, 2019.
Zhang started improvisation and composition at age 5. He composed “My Little Ovenbird” when he was 6. He wrote his first three-movement piano Sonata at age 7, and he wrote his second piano Sonata at age 8. In 2021, William released his first album for his original classical music compositions when he was 9.
Zhang serenaded AMC club members with selections by Mozart, Chopin and his own composition, “Sonata No. 2 in G Minor.” This sonata was inspired by the pandemic experience and composed when Zhang was 8 years old, and expresses uncertainty, confusion, fear, anger, and frustration, as well as a hope for peace.
Zhang is now working on writing a piece for an orchestra.