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Dr. Ryan Fogg Scheduled for Five Recitals in September

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C-N Prof to Offer All Beethoven Program

Dr. Ryan Fogg has a very busy September planned. The Carson-Newman music professor will complete a three-state, five-stop mini tour, teach a pair of master classes and host three guest performers on campus.

The associate professor of music and director of C-N’s keyboard studies program, Fogg has put together a concert program of three prominent Ludwig van Beethoven sonatas to represent the composer’s varied stylistic periods, Sonata in D major, Op. 10, No. 3; Sonata in F minor, Op. 57 “Appassionata” and Sonata in A-flat major, Op. 110.

Fogg has been praised by reviewer Peter Burwasser as being “an excellent pianist” who can draw from the instrument “an impressive range of sounds.”

Writing for Fanfare about The Fogg Project, a CD released last year, Burwasser noted that the Texas native possesses “dexterous fingers and an interest in contemporary music with an exotic tinge.” He championed Fogg’s ability to make a piano sound like both a xylophone and guitar. Those factors, along with his interest in a variety of music, produced “a compelling and engrossing release,” the critic asserted.

Fogg will begin the circuit at home with a September 6 concert in C-N’s Thomas Recital Hall, followed by a September 9 performance at Maryville College. He will play Nashville’s Lipscomb University on September 16 and move north to Lexington, Kentucky for a Transylvania University recital two days later. The tour concludes on September 24 at Shorter University, located in Rome, Georgia.

The effort required for a tour – including planning a program, practicing until the pieces breathe as if they are alive and then coordinating a travel schedule around one’s day job – may seem laborious, but is important, notes Fogg.

“It can be quite challenging, but I wouldn’t have it any other way,” smiled the pianist. “I enjoy performing – it’s a large part of who I am. Playing a program multiple times in different venues not only allows me to share wonderful music with many different audiences, it makes me a better pianist. I have to constantly adjust to the acoustics of the hall and the intricacies of the instrument, as well as maintain a high level of focus from one performance to the next.”

Much more than a demonstration of talent, performing connects a teacher and students in ways a layperson might not understand.

“Performing informs my teaching,” he said. “I believe the principles of teaching I have developed over the years are closely intertwined with my personal practice habits, and consequently, my performing mindset.”

While knowing their professor maintains a concert schedule might benefit students, the husband and father of an infant admits that it also reminds him that his students also have other classes and a life outside rehearsals and concerts. “Just as they must practice for a student recital or a jury, I’m practicing for these performances, so I’m experiencing the same process at the same time. It’s one thing for me to talk to my students about the rigors of practicing or the demands of performing, but when they see me on stage, I believe it makes my words more credible.”

As a student, Fogg earned degrees in piano performance from the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Houston, and East Texas Baptist University. He has recorded new works by American composers through Albany Records, and he has written articles for Clavier Companion and Piano Pedagogy Forum. Nationally certified through the Music Teachers National Association, he is a member of the College Music Society and Pi Kappa Lambda, the National Music Honor Society. He has been recognized by Carson-Newman with the Teaching Excellence and Leadership Award and the Faculty Creativity Award and was named Teacher of the Year by the Knoxville Music Teachers Association.

Fogg will also host three performers at C-N. Dr. Jerico Vasquez, artist in residence at Shorter University, will perform Thursday, September 13 and lead a master class the following morning. A master class on Wednesday, September 19 will feature Orion Weiss, who Fogg says is highly regarded among a new generation of American soloists and collaborators. The busy month concludes with a master class and September 27 recital by Dr. Sin-Hsing Tsai, the UC Foundation Associate Professor of Music at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

More information about concerts and master classes is available at http://www.cn.edu/libraries/tiny_mce/tiny_mce/plugins/filemanager/files/C-N_Piano_Events_2012-13.pdf.

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