International Pianist Paul Lewis Next Music Series at Akin Guest

Midwestern State University's Music Series at Akin continues its tradition of bringing internationally acclaimed musicians to Wichita Falls when British pianist Paul Lewis takes the Akin Auditorium stage at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 15.

Lewis was recently named joint Artistic Director of the Leeds International Piano Competition with Adam Gatehouse, replacing Dame Fanny Waterman who held the post for 54 years. He was named the Royal Philharmonic Society's Instrumentalist of the Year in 2002, and has received the South Bank Show Classic Music Award.

Lewis began piano lessons at age 10 and enrolled at Chetham's School of Music in Manchester where he was taught by Ryszard Bakst. He later studied with Joan Havill at Guildhall School of Music & Drama in London and also had private lessons with influential pianist and author Alfred Brendel.

Lewis has performed with many world-class ensembles including the Chicago Symphony, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra in Germany, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. He is known for his interpretations of the complete Beethoven piano sonatas and classical and romantic repertoire. He became the first pianist to perform all five Beethoven concertos for London's BBC classical concert program "Proms" during its 2010 season.

For his program in Wichita Falls, Lewis will play Schubert's "Sonata in B major D.575," Brahms' "4 Ballades op.10" and "3 Intermezzi op.117," and Liszt's "Dante Sonata."

Along with his wife, the Norwegian cellist Bj°rg Lewis, Lewis is artistic director of Midsummer Music, an annual chamber music festival held in Buckinghamshire, U.K.

This closes the fifth season of the Music Series at Akin. It is sponsored by the Perkins-Prothro Foundation and Joe and Dale Prothro with the Lamar D. Fain College of Fine Arts at MSU. The series began in 2012 with pianist Yefim Bronfman and has since hosted musicians such as the Emerson String Quartet; cellists Julie Albers and Alisa Weilerstein; clarinetist Jon Manasse; and pianists Inon Barnatan, Barry Douglas, Jon Nakamatsu, Alessio Bax, Lucille Chung, and Orion Weiss.

Tickets may be purchased by contacting the MSU Music Department secretary at the Fain Fine Arts Center between 1-5 p.m. at 940-397-4267. General admission tickets are $25. Tickets for senior citizens and military are $22.50 for each. Admission is free for MSU students. Contact the MSU Music Department at (940) 397-4267 for more information.

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