Join PAFA for a free recital of newly discovered modern classical music for piano by visual artist Mitch Gillette, performed by pianist Tom Lawton. The recital will be on Saturday, November 18th, starting at 7:30 pm, at The Rhoden Arts Center Auditorium.
In 1978, with an extremely limited musical background as a clarinetist in the Springfield, Vermont High School Concert Band, and no keyboard or music theory training, Philadelphia visual artist Mitch Gillette found himself working out musical compositions on his West Philadelphia housemate’s new piano in an obsessive fever. But after showing them to a graduate student in musical composition at The University of Pennsylvania who had little encouragement to offer, he concluded they lacked the necessary musical spark and put the pieces music away. He returned to painting.
Fast-forward to 2015, when he stumbled on the forgotten manuscripts. Curious as to how they might sound, and never able to play them properly himself, he entered them into a software program and for the very first time and heard them from start to finish in a piano simulation. He had uncovered roughly an hour of music, eleven separate works. He is unable to remember how he wrote them.
Gillette sought the opinion of a music professional. Well-known pianist Tom Lawton agreed to listen to the simulations and evaluate the pieces. To Gillette's shock, Lawton liked them. And further, Lawton was inspired to learn the music and record it.
Reserve your seat here.