Robyn Wells | A Grand Italian Adventure

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Classical: Traditional Classical: Chopin Moods: Featuring Piano
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A Grand Italian Adventure

by Robyn Wells

This spirited CD showcases the Italian zest for life as captured by Bach, Clementi, Griffes, Chopin, and Poulenc, and was inspired by the artist's experiences in Italy.
Genre: Classical: Traditional
Release Date: 

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Tracks

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1. Italian Concerto, BMV 971 - First Movement - Bach
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4:25 album only
2. Sonata in C Major, Op. 36 No. 3 - Allegro Con Spirito - Clementi
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10:18 album only
3. Sonata in C Major, Op. 36 No. 3 - Adagio e Cantabile - Clementi
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4:29 album only
4. Sonata in C Major, Op. 36 No. 3 - Presto - Clementi
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5:43 album only
5. Roman Sketches, Op. 7 - The White Peacock - Griffes
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5:11 album only
6. Roman Sketches, Op. 7 - Nightfall - Griffes
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5:43 album only
7. Roman Sketches, Op. 7 - The Fountian Of The Acqua Paola - Griffe
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3:41 album only
8. Roman Sketches, Op. 7 - Clouds - Griffes
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4:43 album only
9. Gondollied In A Major - Mendelssohn
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1:56 album only
10. Tarantella, Op. 102 No. 3 - Mendelssohn
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1:33 album only
11. Barcarolle In A flat Major, Op. 44 No. 4 - Fauré
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4:06 album only
12. Tarantella - Robyn Wells
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3:13 album only
13. Barcorolle, Op. 60 - Chopin
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9:27 album only
14. Caprice Italien - Poulenc
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5:55 album only
15. Toccata In A Major - Paradisi
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2:04 album only
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Born in Washington, D.C., pianist Robyn Wells considers herself a native of Idaho, where she began her musical studies at age six. Her undergraduate years were spent at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington, studying with Dr. Calvin Knapp and Richard Farner; and one year at Moravian College in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, studying with Leander Bien. She graduated with a Bachelor of Music in piano performance from Pacific Lutheran, after which she spent two years on staff there as an accompanist.

Robyn received her Master of Music degree in piano performance from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where she studied with Dr. Viktor Polonsky. While there, she held an assistantship in accompanying, and established and taught an undergraduate course in piano pedagogy. After graduating, she continued her work as an accompanist in the music department.

For the last eighteen years Robyn has been active as a private piano instructor, and currently maintains a studio of 28 students. She is an active member of the National Federation of Music Clubs and the Music Teacher National Association. Robyn is in her second year as adjunct piano faculty at Albertson College of Idaho in Caldwell, Idaho.

In addition to accompanying and teaching, Robyn remains busy as a soloist. She has performed with the Miami University Symphony Orchestra, has been a featured soloist on community concert series in Idaho, Michigan, Massachusetts, Colorado, and California, has given guest recitals at several universities, and has given performances in Canada, Norway, and Italy. She has participated and won prizes in several piano competitions, including being named as a finalist in the 1998 Award-Debut Competition sponsored by the Ladies Music Club of Seattle. In 1998 and 1999, Robyn spent part of the summer in Siena, Italy, as a participant in the Sessione Senese per la Musica e l'Arte.

This year marks the eleventh year Robyn has managed and performed her own series of concert tours, which to date have included over 190 engagements throughout the United States. Robyn has four CD recordings: A Grand Adventure, A Grand Italian Adventure, A Grand French Adventure, and A Grand American Adventure.

Programming is an art in itself, and choosing music for a program is always a fun challenge.

A program is like a menu: all the components have to fit for it to be satisfying. I always try to start my programs with an "Appetizer" - a piece or two which will immediately make an audience happy they came to the concert. Follow that with the "Main Course" - a sonata, suite, or collection of pieces which are the "meat and potatoes" of the program - the main body around which everything else revolves. There must be several "Side Dishes" - pieces which complement the main course, but which also have enough merit and substance to be enjoyable on their own. And lastly, a "Dessert" - a closing piece which leaves the audience feeling satisfied and which completes the menu by leaving a good taste in the mouth (or ear!) If an audience desires an encore, it should be a light, enjoyable piece which leaves a nice finish.


Reviews


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joseph c barbarie

Hidden Gem
Although filled with rarities by major masters, the real surprise of this album is Ms. Wells's own "Tarantella" (Track 12). Wells adapts a mid-19th century manner of expression to her own ends in a showpiece full of rhythmic vigor and virtuosity. Obviously well-versed in the piano literature of this time, Ms. Wells' piece does not at all seem out of place among its neighbors by Mendelssohn and Chopin. And while the piece is garbed in the attire of the 1840s, it avoids any sentimentality or nostalgia. A witty, almost cheeky personality is evident here. It is to be hoped that Ms. Wells's voice will emerge to be heard above the clamor and cacophony of most modern "art" music.


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