Pianist Nyaho in Concert on Dec. 2

Pianist Dr. Nyaho will appear in a Wolfeboro Friends of Music concert on Dec. 2.

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Wolfeboro Friends of Music heralds the winter season and coming holidays with a spectacular program by pianist Dr. William Chapman Nyaho, to be given on Sunday, December 2 starting at 2 pm. Dr. Nyaho was last heard in the area in 2011. The concert will take place at Anderson Hall, Brewster Academy in Wolfeboro. 

The sonorities of Brewster’s Yamaha concert grand will sound forth as Dr. Nyaho opens with Bach transcriptions including “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring” in the Myra Hess version. More transcriptions are slated in an enticing group of Gershwin songs embellished by the scintillating pianist Earl Wild published as “Seven Virtuoso Etudes”.

Dr. Nyaho promises selections such as “Fascinating Rhythm”, Embraceable You”, “The Man I Love”. Centerpiece of the concert will be Beethoven’s final piano sonata when we may expect these words of one reviewer of Nyaho, to be revealed: “Effortless technique, splendid rhythmic grasp and fullness of tone allowed his performance to reach great heights…” (The Desert Sun, Palm Springs, CA.). Sonata No. 32 in C minor, Op. 111 demands a dedication of purpose and wondrous attention as the final Arietta rises through a multiplicity of figures to end softly in a heavenly transcendence.

Dr. Nyaho is a productive musicologist, collector, publisher, since over the decades he has compiled and published with Oxford University Press, five performing volumes of piano pieces titled “Piano Music of Africa and the African Diaspora”. He introduces us to Robert Nathaniel Dett, born in Niagara Canada in 1882 and who died in 1943 after a fulsome career as composer, pianist, choral conductor, organist and music professor who performed at Carnegie Hall and at Symphony Hall in Boston. Attendees of the concert also will hear Dett’s piano suite “In the Bottoms (Suite characteristique)” in five movements marked Prelude (Night), His Song, Honey (Humoresque), Barcarolle (Morning) and Dance (Juba).

Further, the audience may view his five volumes of the Oxford publication during intermission, as well as obtain Nyaho’s CD’s ‘Senku’ and ‘Asa’ issued by MSR Classics. Chapman Nyaho’s performances have taken him to Africa, the Caribbean, and Asia as well as to Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center and Princeton University. He is a frequent guest at colleges and universities and serves in the capacity of adjudicator for national and international piano competitions. He is an active member of the Music Teachers’ National Association, currently teaches at Pacific Lutheran University and a beloved piano instructor at his home studio in Seattle.

Born in the U.S. but raised in Ghana, Chapman Nyaho says “One of my biggest mentors was Dr. Maya Angelou”. He met the famous poet and author through family and friends and was a regular guest at her home. “She taught me how to share my gift.” William studied at St. Peter’s College, Oxford University (UK), continuing at the Conservatoire de Musique de Geneve, Switzerland, the Eastman School of Music (MM), and the University of Texas at Austin, where he received his Doctor of Music Arts degree. Chapman Nyaho is the recipient of prizes from international piano competitions.

Tickets are available for $25 at the door, Black’s Paper Store and Avery Insurance in Wolfeboro; at Innisfree Bookshop in Meredith, by calling 603-569-2151; or visiting www.wfriendsofmusic.org. High school students with ID will be admitted free of charge; any child accompanied by an adult ticket purchaser will be admitted free of charge.

Sponsoring Chapman Nyaho’s appearance are Paul and Debbie Zimmerman, J. Clifton Avery Insurance, and the Taylor Community. Tickets are sold at the door if not purchased ahead at Black’s Paper and Gift Shop, Avery Insurance, or Innisfree Booksellers in Meredith.