The world of classical music will collide with that of pop when pianist Christopher O’Riley and cellist Matt Haimovitz break the traditions of classical with their concert titled Shuffle.Play.Listen at 7:30 p.m. tonight at the Schwab Auditorium.
Based on its 2011 double-disc album, the world-renowned pair intertwines different genres of music in innovative ways.
O’Riley, host of NPR’s “From the Top,” has been playing piano since he was a child and is known for his unique mixing of genres.
Haimovitz debuted at the age of 13 as a soloist for the Israel Philharmonic and, at age 17, he recorded his first album with the Chicago Symphony .
“Audiences should expect to be surprised,” said Laura Sullivan , the marketing and communications director for the Center for Performing Arts. “They should leave all of their preconceived notions about classical music behind. “
The concert is a part of the Center for Performing Arts ’ three-year program called the Classical Music Project . The project’s goal is to bring the power of classical music to students and faculty, making them a part of the experience, and the Center’s leadership feel Shuffle.Play.Listen furthers that goal.
“Haimovitz and O’Riley are spending time on campus, engaging with students and the greater community, and helping to spread the word about the Project,” George Trudeau , director of the Center, said.
Since Jan. 16, the pair has been spending time on Penn State campuses — the first day in Altoona and the last two in University Park.
Yesterday, O’Riley held an informal conversation with the public presented by coolBLUE called “O’Riley and You,” in the lobby of the Outreach Building . He discussed experiences as the host of “From the Top,” as well as gave a live performance for the audience.
Of the types of music he enjoys to play, O’Riley said, “I play anything I cannot stand not playing.”
O’Riley and Haimovitz hope to give a variety of music to the crowd tonight. Each show is different, O’Riley said, like pushing shuffle on an iPod, hence the concert’s title name.
“I think this will be an amazing experience - the opportunity to hear two incredibly talented performers combine their artistry to explore their shared passion for music drawn from many genres,” Trudeau said.
Tickets are $42 for adults, $32 for those 18 and younger and $15 for students. They are available at the Eisenhower Auditorium or online.