On Friday, May 17th at 8:00 PM, The Watchung Arts Center will present the season finale of the ImpresaRIO Concert as part of the “Jazz in the Gallery” concert series.
When Rio Clemente hits the stage, he brings fire and passion and with him talented musicians to tantalize jazz enthusiasts and music lovers alike. As a master pianist, educator, composer, arranger and recording artist, Rio Clemente mixes a strong classical background with a rich knowledge of jazz history, then adds an amazing sense of creativity and interpretation. The result is a smorgasbord of music that is different from others, and nearly always produces a standing ovation and cries for “more.” Clemente has played jazz piano on concert stages, in clubs and restaurants, in churches, supermarkets and even the historic 1938 Steinway piano in the East Room of the White House. He has recorded with bassist Milt Hinton, performed Dave Brubeck’s mass (To Hope! A Celebration) and prepared a feature CD on Richard Rodgers that led Linda Rodgers to say, “Rio plays my father’s music better than anyone I ever heard–— with unremitting style and sensitivity, and always with a technique that is elegant.” Dave Brubeck has written, “Rio Clemente is EXCELLENT!”
Bria Skonberg, who was to join Rio for this season finale, has been offered a featured performance at the Apollo Theatre for a gala event presented by the Jazz Foundation of America on the same night. Rio has given his blessing to Bria, along with the Center’s, for her to take advantage of this opportunity. We look forward to Bria performing at the WAC with Rio at a future date.
American Composer and Pianist,Regan Ryzuk, has graciously stepped in to join Rio on stage. Regan is the son of renowned painter, Onufry Ryzuk and published author and playwright, Mary S. Ryzuk, PhD. He attended Manhattan School of Music and The Julliard School of Music and began his musical career touring with various ballet companies traveling through Europe and Latin America. This experience improved his improvisational techniques and laid the groundwork for one of his greatest piano compositional works, 48 Preludes and Fugues, in the style of Johann Sebastian Bach. After moving back to the United States, Ryzuk lived in New York and continued his writing and there developed a base of students, including Fountains of Wayne co-founder, Adam Schlesinger. Ryzuk was a founding partner of SOUNDGUILD, a TV/film music production company. In addition, he has provided songs for Extreme Music Library, LTD which features such notable artists as Quincy Jones.
Tickets are $18 in advance, $22 ($20 for WAC members, $10 for students) at the door.
Advanced price tickets can be purchased though the website at wathungartscenter.eventbrite.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION contact:
Stacy Gannon, Executive Director