This holiday season, there will be plenty of holiday activities, including some outstanding nearby concerts. One local pianist is freshening things up with “water.”
John Mark Harris, PhD, is an experienced pianist, playing internationally as both a soloist and with orchestras and ensembles. He holds a doctorate in performance from UCSD and a masters degree from New England Conservatory in Boston.
He has performed at the Salzburg, Berlin, and Donaueschingen festivals with the Southwest German Radio Symphony and the Berlin Symphony, which was hailed by The Wire as one of the top ten contemporary classical releases of 2010.
Harris has been playing piano for quite some time, though it wasn’t a talent he was necessarily born with.
“I was not a prodigy, but I have been drawn to music all my life,” Harris said in an email to Patch. “I think I started when I was around five, and always took opportunities to take lessons, or to play in bands. My first teacher was a sweet old lady, and I liked her, and so I think that had a tremendous influence on me.”
Harris said he tries to put together a major project every year, whenever he has the time and resources. Though this year’s recital falls within the holiday season, Harris said its theme is not miseltoe or winter wonderlands.
“The recital is based around the theme of water, but water has many manifestations,” Harris said. “The audience will hear music relating to the ocean, waves, rain, tears, the moon, and legends about the water.”
Harris’ recital will be a solo performance and feature music by Couperin, Debussy, Ravel and Liszt. It will be held at Avant Studios, located at 152b N. El Camino Real on Dec. 3 at 8 p.m. Space is very limited and reservations must be made in advance for this musical treat. Tickets are just $20 and can be purchased by contacting Michael Oyster at email@example.com.