First in the Whistler concert series - SATURDAY 6 SEPTEMBER

In 1884 James McNeill Whistler painted the portrait of Pablo de Sarasate, the brilliant Catalan violinist, for whom Max Bruch had written his Scottish fantasy, and composer of virtuoso violin pieces which had excited a taste for Spanish music amongst notable composers of the day. Entitled Arrangement in Black: Portrait of Se￱or Pablo de Sarasate, it was one of many works by Whistler which included musical terms in their title.

These and other connections with music ヨ not least Whistler's influence on Claude Debussy ヨ are the focus of three concerts on 6, 20 and 27 September at Glasgow University as part of the city-wide Whistler Centenary celebrations. The series is promoted jointly by the Department of Music and Music-Makers.

Devised by Guszt£v Feny￶, pianist and director of Music-Makers, the programmes explore links with Whistler through a range of music for piano, strings and voice by composers as diverse as Debussy, Faur←, Liszt, Bart￳k and Rossini, to name just a few.

The opening concert on Saturday 6 September at 8pm offers an atmospheric programme, combining Debussy's String Quartet and the piano trio by Maurice Ravel, with a group of piano nocturnes. Performers are Guszt£v Feny￶ and the Edinburgh Quartet under their new leader, Charles Mutter, who will also scale the heights of violin virtuosity in three pieces by Sarasate.

Guszt£v Feny￶ will return on Saturday 20 September for a full-blown piano recital on the University's new Steinway piano, and the final concert, coinciding with Whistler's Mother's birthday on September 27, will be a song recital given by mezzo-soprano Sandra Porter and pianist Graeme McNaught.

All three concerts take place in the University Concert Hall, and entrance is by programme at the door.

Press contact: Andrew Bayly, Acting Concerts Organiser, Glasgow University tel. 0141 330 4092,

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First published: 3 September 2003