We are living in a world of musical icons, musicians who inspire with their gifts, performances and longevity. Among them is Dick Hyman. Still going strong in his 80s, this legend of jazz piano now lives with his beautiful and equally talented wife and sculptor, Julia, in Venice.
So, it was no surprise that Hyman turned up, signature hat on head, to present a solo concert at Bradenton’s First United Methodist Church. (This series, by the way, is the deal of the century. It’s free — only a free-will offering is requested — and the list of well-known performers is mind-boggling.)
The concert, slated to start at 4 p.m., was bursting at the seams by 3 p.m., so extra seats were added to the stage. And it was to this over-capacity crowd that Hyman set about playing an almost impromptu program of his — and our — favorites.
Fats Waller was on the menu with a happy mix of ornaments, adornments and trills that turned Hyman’s fingers into a Marilyn Horne in ivory. While his body is classically upright, there’s lots of action in his outer regions as both feet slap the floor in time to the music like a frenzied tap dancer on speed, and his fingers kiss the keys.
There was a request for one of Richard Rodgers’ greatest waltzes, “Out of My Dreams,” and here Hyman gave us a gorgeous legato to contrast with the upcoming group of Joplin rags.
It was about this time my husband leaned over and whispered in my ear, “Dick plays better by accident than most play on purpose.”
It’s true. But it’s hardly an accident that Hyman gets all those notes under his agile fingers. He practices every day, and his classical and jazz background has set him up as the keyboard-and-musical genius he’s become. From rags and stride to the blues, Hyman has a handle on style and technique. In fact, he’s pretty much cornered the market on an inspirational, intellectual pianism that will continue to earn him rave reviews and heartfelt standing ovations.
— June LeBell
Currently 0 Responses
25 GLENN MILLER ORCHESTRA
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
25 Chamber Soiree: Trumpet
26 SILL Music Monday
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
26 Sarasota Concert Association: The 2015 Great Performers Series of concerts continues with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, performing "Folk Inspirations"
Key gets high five from Krauthammer
The night before he was scheduled to speak at the Ringling College Library Association Town Hall lecture, Fox News commentator and syndicated columnist Dr. Charles Krauthammer arrived late Monday night, Jan. 12, for his stay at the Inn on the Beach Resort at the Longboat Key Club.
OSU victory a gem for Holbrook
Karen Holbrook wore red and black to the Jan. 14 Longboat Key Rotary Club meeting.
Paul Glosser takes turning 85 in stride
Longboat Key resident Paul Glosser isn’t letting his 85th birthday slow him down.