Pianist Edberg to perform tonight at Gobin

Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Judith Edberg

Judith Edberg, Professor of Piano Emeritus at the University of Tampa, will perform a program of works by Johannes Brahms, Theodore Leschetizky, and Alexander Scriabin at 7:30 p.m. today in the sanctuary of Greencastle's Gobin Memorial United Methodist Church.

It is the seventh concert of this year's Greencastle Summer Classical Music Festival, which presents free programs every Wednesday evening through the summer. This week's concert is underwritten by a donation from Neal B. Abraham and Donna Wiley, in memory of famed chemist and amateur pianist Percy Julian.

Tonight's concert will begin with the famous Brahms Ballade "Edward," inspired by a Scottish folk ballad about a son who had murdered his father and places a curse on his mother.

"It's almost like Halloween in July," explains the festival's artistic director, Eric Edberg, a music professor at DePauw and Judith Edberg's son.

The program also includes six other Brahms works, five Intermezzos and the famous Rhapsody in G Minor.

Judith Edberg has long had a special interest in music for the left hand alone.

"I mentioned to Mom that as I was telling people about her all-Brahms program, several folks said they enjoyed her set of left-hand pieces on last year's recital so much last year that they wished they could hear more this summer," Edberg said. "So more or less 'by popular demand' she's including left-had pieces by Theodore Leschetivsky and Alexander Scriabin."

Judith Edberg began piano study as a small girl in the Detroit area, where her mother was an active piano teacher. She earned her bachelor and masters degrees from Wayne State University, studying with Edward Bredshall, Mischa Kottler, and Julius Chajes, and studied in Paris for a summer with Lazzare Levy.

An active recitalist, concerto performer, and chamber music partner in the Detroit area, she moved to Tampa in 1971, where she was soon appointed to the music faculty of the University of Tampa, becoming director of keyboard studies and chair of the music department.

In the spring of 1980 she studied music for left hand alone, a particular interest and specialty of hers, with the eminent pianist Leon Fleisher.

She has appeared as concerto soloist with the Royal Oak Symphony, the Wayne State University Orchestra, the Detroit Jewish Community Center Orchestra, the University of Tampa Orchestra and Concert Band, the Tampa Bay Chamber Orchestra, and the Aurora Orchestra in Colorado.

The Detroit Free Press wrote she "played with freshness and enthusiasm." The Tampa Tribune has praised her "pointed dramatic playing" and the St. Petersburg Times wrote that she played "in a forceful, no-nonsense way that cut through the orchestral texture with striking effect."

Judith Edberg and her husband moved to Greencastle in the fall of 2007. She's enthusiastic about the charms of Putnam County.

"I can't imagine a more beautiful area," she says, "and we just love living here."

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: