Cornell's Music Mondays series opens with multimedia performance

MOUNT VERNON — Hydra, a unique multimedia performance of music, painting and literature, opens Cornell College’s sixth annual Music Mondays series Sept. 29.

Music Mondays concerts are at 8 p.m. in King Chapel on the Cornell campus. General admission is $8 at the door.

Offering a sensual blend of elements featuring water as the central theme, Hydra spotlights acclaimed pianist Kevin Kenner playing works by Chopin, Liszt, Debussy, Ravel, Janacek and other composers. Waterscapes by Turner, Klimt, Chagall, Monet, da Vinci, Rothko and many others will accompany his music, while excerpts from top American and European novelists and poets will be read by actress Kathleen Juhl, associate professor of theater at Southwestern University, Texas. She is a 1977 graduate of Iowa State University and former performer with Old Creamery Theater in Garrison.

Kenner is an internationally known solo pianist and a professor to London’s Royal College of Music. “Kenner is a major talent. His recital revealed an artist whose intellect, imagination and pianism speak powerfully and eloquently,” wrote Washington Post critic Joan Reinthaler after a 2001 appearance. Twelve years earlier, Kenner took top prize in the International Chopin Competition and a bronze medal in the International Tchaikovsky Piano Competition.

Duesseldorf critic Antje Olivier claims that Kenner’s Chopin style is “so musically definitive that all other standards are forgotten.” He has performed with world-class orchestras including the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Warsaw Philharmonic and the NHK Symphony of Japan. Kenner returns to Cornell after a 1999 solo performance, collaborating now with Juhl.

The rest of the 2003-2004 Music Mondays schedule is:
Nov. 3: Emanuele Segre, classical guitarist
Feb. 9, 2004: Chanson, male a cappella sextet
March 15, 2004: The Peabody Trio