The Sid Williams piano will get a good workout at Sarah Hagen's next Mattina Musica event.

Mattina Musica will feature three pianists on March 9

Elizabeth and Marcel Bergmann to join Sarah Hagen at Sid Williams Theatre

Mark Allan

Special to the Record

The Sid Williams Theatre piano will get quite a workout when Sarah Hagen hosts the next Mattina Musica concert on March 9, part of the Sid Williams Theatre Society’s Blue Circle Series.

The Comox Valley-raised pianist will welcome Elizabeth and Marcel Bergmann, known professionally as the Bergmann Piano Duo.

“We’re going to play on only the one piano,” Hagen said of herself and her two guests. “The piano at the Sid might just dissolve into a puddle,” she joked.

They will open with a piece composed by Marcel Bergmann for one hand.

“Then I’ll play something with both my hands. We’ll all play with one hand each, all the way up to Rachmaninoff for six hands.”

Rehearsal time is an issue that will be partly resolved when the three touring pianists converge the day before the concert.

The 20-minute Variations by Brahms will allow the Bergmanns to show what they can do.

“They’re one of the most outstanding and remarkable piano duos internationally. For people to have the opportunity to hear four hands, I think it’s going to be really special.”

Pianists, Hagen revealed, enjoy playing duets.

“It’s kind of a solitary instrument, but when people really play duets and really think alike and have played together for so many years, that’s a whole other experience.”

The series, whose Italian name means morning music, is going “better than I ever hoped,” Hagen said. “People are happy and the audience is continually growing. I’ve been really happy with the quality of the artists.”

Hagen loves being able to program musicians she respects and wants to play with.

“I’m living the dream. I get to play with the people I choose. I really handpick them. I always have this list of people in my mind.

“I’m starting to look at next season. It’s a question of juggling people, finding the balance between instruments and personalities.”

Hagen must be patient and deal with musicians’ busy and far-flung schedules.

“There are some people I ask and they want to be on, but they can’t because of their schedules, which is the only time I’m ever disappointed, but I hope they can come the next year.”

Although she moved to Vancouver in 2011, Hagen returns to the Comox Valley at least five times per season to perform Mattina Musica concerts. How does playing here compare to the many other places, including Carnegie Hall, where she has performed?

“I think I can tell more inside jokes,” she chuckled.

“It sounds kind of corny, but my mom’s there,” she continued. “My piano teacher comes to every concert.”

The Mattina series has spread to other communities, she noted. After four years of playing regularly in Nanaimo, Hagen said it’s developing a hometown feel.

The itinerary on Hagen’s website includes a staggering list of performances.

“Just since the new year, I flew back from a holiday in Europe, I stopped in Toronto on the way, I was on the Island, went to Halifax, Labrador, came back for a day, went to the Island, went to Edmonton, came back yesterday and tomorrow I’m taking the float plane to Victoria.

“That’s a pretty typical couple of weeks for me. I don’t really think about it much anymore.

I was listening to Natalie MacMaster speak in Halifax and she said when you’re doing what you love, you don’t tire of it.”

When asked if she ever awakens and isn’t sure what town she’s in, Hagen laughed. “Almost every day.”

The next Mattina Musica (Morning Music) concerts happens March 9. Music lovers are welcome to meet in the Sid Williams Theatre lobby at 9:45 a.m. for tea, coffee and conversation before the 10:30 a.m. concert.

For more information, visit http://sarahhagen.com and  HYPERLINK “http://www.sidwilliamstheatre.com” www.sidwilliamstheatre.com, phone 250-338-2430 or visit the Sid box office at 442 Cliffe Ave. in Courtenay.

 

Mark Allan is a freelance writer and a former editor of the Comox Valley Record.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Box containing hundreds of family photos found in Courtenay returned to rightful owner

Local media sources collaborate to solve family photos mystery

Two Comox Valley groups share annual Project Watershed award

Keep It Living Award given to Morrison Creek Streamkeepers and Comox Valley Land Trust

ATV crash at bottom of Mount Washington sends two to hospital

Two people were hospitalized following an ATV (all terrain vehicle) accident shortly… Continue reading

Game on! Outdoor pickleball season starts up in the Comox Valley

Comox Valley Pickleball Association members Evie MacDonald and Donny Cruickshank (near court)… Continue reading

Island Health signs working agreement to turn former Comox hospital into a ‘dementia village’

Island Health has signed a project development agreement with Providence Living to… Continue reading

B.C. records no new COVID-19 deaths for the first time in weeks

Good news comes despite 11 new test-positive cases in B.C. in the past 24 hours

Comox Valley business map offers information on local eateries, grocery stores and more

Search and click for hours and services offered during the COVID-19 pandemic

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

RCMP told of alleged assault in Courtenay hours after the fact

Police only made aware of possible attack through social media posts

Tahsis opens its gates to visitors to save local economy

Seasonal local businesses that rely on tourism hope to survive despite drop in tourist numbers

BC Corrections to expand list of eligible offenders for early release during pandemic

Non-violent offenders are being considered for early release through risk assessment process

Comox Valley United appeals to district to support field house proposal

The Comox Valley United Soccer Club is looking for an approximate $150,000… Continue reading

Habitat for Humanity VIN wins national award for innovative approach to building

Courtenay and Campbell River builds represent 400 per cent growth in historical annual average

Most Read