Luiz Simas performing Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Forest)
Friday, October 20 | 7:30 PM | Main Church & Online

Composer/singer/pianist Luiz Simas was born in Rio de Janeiro. He performed and recorded with some of the greatest Brazilian artists, and many of his original compositions were recorded in Brazil and abroad. Living in New York since 1989, he has performed in venues such as the Birdland Jazz Club, the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, the Metropolitan Room, and the Iridium in New York. He’s also performed in Jazz Festivals and clubs in Norway, France, the UK, Ukraine, Switzerland, Germany, Austria, the Caribbean, and Brazil. In 2018 he formed the Simas & Amorim Duo with brilliant Brazilian guitarist Wesley Amorim. Luiz is thrilled to be performing in this concert at Saint Francis Xavier. The program will include Luiz’s seldom performed composition Mata Atlântica (Atlantic Forest) Piano Suite, as well as other original pieces and his arrangements of well-known Brazilian tunes.

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Piano Recital with Ellie Alpern
Sunday, November 12 | 2:00 PM | Main Church & Online

Ellie Alpern holds a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from West Chester University and a Master of Music in Piano Performance from Catholic University of America. Based in Philadelphia, she has performed extensively in solo recitals, taught at Settlement Music School as well as other music schools in the region, and accompanied for such varied productions as “West Side Story,” “The Magic Flute,” and a touring dance and movement company. She is also a singer in Anna Crusis Feminist Choir, the longest-running feminist choir in the United States. Ellie fervently believes that everyone should have the opportunity to connect with the absolutely beautiful, rich, and varied music written for the piano, and she is thrilled to be playing these favorite works in this magnificent space.
photo: Brad Gellman

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Matt Phelps performing The People United Will Never Be Defeated by Frederic Rzewski
Friday, February 9 | 7:30 PM | Main Church & Online


Written in 1975, The People United Will Never Be Defeated is the preeminent piece of piano music written by a contemporary American composer. Based on the Chilean socialist protest song of the same name and known for its extreme technical difficulty and intense emotional display, it seeks to portray the oppression of the Chilean people during the Pinochet regime while also depicting the difficulty that comes with any social change. Matthew Phelps is a pianist and conductor based in Nashville, Tennessee. He is the Director of Music at West End United Methodist Church while also enjoying a diverse performing career. He is the founder and artistic director of the professional chamber choir Vocal Arts Nashville, the artistic director of the early and new music ensemble Collegium Cincinnati, and the pianist for the Elliston Trio which has performed throughout the nation. He is a frequent recitalist known for his performances of Rzewski’s music, and has won numerous awards as a pianist, conductor, and organist. A former resident of New York City and member of St. Francis Xavier, he is pleased to be returning for this performance.

Steve Sandberg and The Art of the Piano
Sunday, March 17 | 2:00 PM | Main Church & Online

Three-time Emmy-nominated pianist/composer/raconteur Steve Sandberg plays classical masterpieces as well as original music that masterfully blends classical, global music traditions, and jazz with the excitement of virtuosic improvisation.

In his March 17 recital at St. Francis Xavier Steve will perform a selection of his favorite classical compositions (several Chopin Mazurkas, plus pieces by Debussy, Ravel, Bach); his original compositions inspired by these masterpieces; and some 20th century jazz masterpieces by Billy Strayhorn, Chick Corea, and others. There will also be selections from Steve’s “Dream Music Project,” begun during the pandemic, in which Steve turns his listeners’ dreams into music.

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Linda Ippolito and Adi Braun “A Few of our Favorite Things”
Saturday, April 27 | 7:30 PM
Main Church & Online
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Join pianist Linda Ippolito and vocalist Adi Braun, with her trio, as they pay tribute to some of their favourite music in this program of classical and American Songbook delights. Linda and Adi invite you to an evening of Latin, romantic, swing tunes and ballads featuring music by Lacuona, Ginestera, and the songs of Cole Porter as Adi celebrates the launch of her 6th CD, “Night and Day”. An evening not to be missed!

Lessons and Carols: Go, Tell it on the Mountain!
Sunday, December 17 | 7:00 PM
Christmas Cookie Reception to Follow