Grammy-nominated pianist to perform at Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery concert

Grammy-nominated pianist to perform at Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery concert
Courtesy of Maple Grove Cemetery
By Merle Exit

Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery will be presenting a piano concert and talk on Saturday, March 3. It’s a concert of romantic classical and modern music performed by Grammy-nominated master pianist and modern music specialist David Holzman, who will also share stories of his career as a hearing-impaired musician. This event coincides with World Hearing Day.

The cemetery actually has some very famous classical musicians “in residence.”

“We have a strong connection to the world of classical music with Josef (1874–1944) and Rosina Lhevinne (1880–1976) buried at Maple Grove,” said Helen Day, Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery Senior Vice President. “They were both world class pianists and prize-winning students from the Moscow Conservatory who performed around the world and taught at the Juilliard School after moving to New York City in 1919. They lived in Kew Gardens for many years, and Rosina taught a number of contemporary pianists such as Van Cliburn and John Williams. We honor their memory each year with one or more classical concerts.”

Holzman is Professor of Piano at the C. W. Post Center of Long Island University. He became known to Maple Grove through other performers that have had concerts at the cemetery, according to Day.

“David was one of many performers at our Winter Waltz concert on Feb. 10,” Day said. “He received a Grammy nomination in 2002 and won the Indie Award in 2003 for best classical album, both for ‘Stefan Wolpe: Compositions for Piano (Bridge)’. At the March 13 performance, David will perform several Classical/Romantic pieces and a short 20th-century piece by Wolpe.”

Holzman will be playing short pieces of Brahms written when he struggled with hearing aids, as well as “Bland,” a virtuoso piece that he is recording at the event, and “Messiaen,” a religious piece.

Holzman will speak in between the pieces about having a cochlear implant in one ear and a hearing aide in the other. On World Hearing Day 2018, the World Health Organization aims to draw attention to the rise in the number of people with hearing loss across the world with the theme “Hear the future.”

A wine and cheese reception will follow the concert, which is scheduled for 4–5:30 p.m. at the Center of Maple Grove Cemetery, located at 127-15 Kew Gardens Rd. in Kew Gardens. Admission is free to those that RSVP to info@friendsofmaplegrove.org. Otherwise, there is a $5 fee for walk-in attendees.