Acclaimed pianist Carter Johnson

Pianist returns for music inspired by grandmother

On July 18, acclaimed pianist Carter Johnson will be returning to the Comox Valley to give a special performance, his first solo recital here in several years.

Johnson, a native of the North Island, is quickly establishing himself as one of Canada’s most exciting young pianists and has won prizes in national and international competitions—just a few weeks ago he returned from the Shenzhen International Competition in China, in which he was Canada’s only competitor.

His program, titled Music My Grandmother Loves, is inspired by his own grandmother and is composed entirely of music by Chopin, her favourite composer.

According to Johnson, “Chopin has achieved something that is rare among composers—he is revered by the greatest of artists, but he is also dearly loved by those who hardly ever listen to classical music.”

Because Chopin’s music is so popular with those who rarely frequent the concert hall, he hopes that this concert will create an opportunity to captivate a wider audience while still preserving the time-honoured recital tradition.

On Johnson’s program is a thoughtfully-curated selection of Chopin’s many styles, from his electrifying scherzos to his most beloved waltzes and nocturnes.

“Of all the recital programs I’ve designed, this one is perhaps the most easy to love,” says Johnson. “I’ve been able to include many pieces that have not only been audiences favourites, but my favourites too.”

Music My Grandmother Loves will be at 7:30 p.m. on July 18 at the Stan Hagen Theatre, North Island College. Tickets are $20 for adults ($10 for students) when pre-purchased, and are available at both Blue Heron and Laughing Oyster Books. Tickets at the door are $25. Light refreshments will be served.