Richard Pressley on Chopin at Univeristy of Indianapolis

The University of Indianapolis welcomes former student turned accomplished composer, Richard Pressley, back to their campus this Wednesday, March 17. The University of Indianapolis Music Department presents this Indianapolis event in the Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center at 4:00 pm this Wednesday. Turn up and find out what Pressley has to add to the conversation about the influence Frederic Chopin still has on the music world more than 200 years after his birth. This Indianapolis music event is FREE to all Indianapolis people.

The Polish composer, Frederic Chopin, was not only an inventive and innovative composer but also a virtuoso pianist. He lived his life in Paris, making a comfortable living as a composer and piano teacher, and giving a few elite public performances. Though he died at the young age of thirty nine, Chopin’s work lives on today not only performed by symphonies and pianists around the world, but also appropriated into popular music of today.

His work emphasizes nuance and expressive depth. He not only invented musical forms like the instrumental ballade, but his work paved the way for the invention of a myriad of famous musical forms today including the piano sonata, mazurka, waltz, nocturne, polonaise, etude, impromptu and prelude. According to the English musicologist Arthur Hedley, Chopin “had the rare gift of a very personal melody, expressive of heart felt emotion, and his music is penetrated by a poetic feeling that has an almost universal appeal.”

He created music that moved not only musical appreciators, but also other famous composers like Johannes Brahms, Robert Schumann and Franz Liszt. Today more than 230 of Chopin’s works survive, and are played around the globe. All of his best known compositions are for the piano, a memorial to his favorite instrument. Join Richard Pressley as he discusses the “music of the great Polish master and draws connections to the music of today, where echoes of lyricism and folk influences still can be found.”

A former student of the University of Indianapolis, Richard Pressley graduated with a BM in Music Theory and Composition from Butler University. His musical pursuits began with an interest in rock music. However, his experience playing and touring with rock and punk bands soon gave way to a talent on piano and a love of classical music. After completing his course of study at Butler University, Pressley attended St. Johns College, Cambridge University, where he earned a BA. Eventually he completed his Ph. D in Music Composition at the University of Minnesota. And though his dissertation took him two years to complete, he premiered a brand new symphony of “Mahlerian proportions” in the end.

After teaching music theory at The Master’s College in Acton, California for a few years, he and his wife moved back to Indianapolis to care for he elderly parents. He currently works as a freelance composer, research, writer and teacher. Join him at the University of Indianapolis this Wednesday for an entertaining discussion in honor of the 200th anniversary of Chopin’s birth. This Indianapolis education event is not to be missed.

After the talk, head to any of these great Indianapolis restaurants or Indianapolis bars for dinner and drinks. Discuss your new found knowledge of Chopin, and his influence on the music you listen to. Stay tuned to Indianapolis News, Events and Information on Fun City for all the latest on fun things to do in Indianapolis. We cover Indianapolis arts, Indianapolis culture, Indianapolis sports and more! Get out in Indy and find some fun!

Richard Pressley
Wednesday, March 17 at 4:00 pm

Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center
University of Indianapolis
1400 East Hanna Avenue
Indianapolis, IN 46227