Juilliard alumna performs

For Anita Chang, it all began with a visit to her babysitter. The neighbor had a piano and the 5-year-old started playing it. Three years later, she was performing in front of audiences from New York to California.
“I told my parents I had to have piano in my life.” Chang said.
Now an accomplished concert pianist, Chang brought her talent to Pierce College on Oct. 15 as part of the Thursday Concert Series.
Her concert, “Poet of the Piano,” included work by Frederic Francois Chopin.
In her New York debut, music critic Harris Goldsmith wrote in his review, “I felt that she gave the most imaginative, fiery and ultimately convincing account of her pianism and musicianship.”
Chang currently teaches at Los Angeles Harbor College in the music department and has performed at Pierce College.
As an alumna of The Juilliard School and member of multiple city symphonies including the Los Angeles Opera, Bergman is well-acquainted with Chopin’s work.
Professor of music appreciation, James Bergman, who is tasked with organizing the concerts at Pierce, is familiar with Chang’s unique sound and style.
“She has a very warm sound, a very rich sound.” James Bergman said.
Chang got her bachelor of music degree from California State University, Fullerton. She received her master’s of music degree from the Manhattan School of Music. In 1994, Chang earned her doctorate of musical arts from the University of Texas, Austin.
Chang has also received the Composer’s prize at the Second Annual New Orleans International Piano Competition.
Chang began her performance with a little background on the Polish composer Chopin and explained how Chopin redefined the piano.
“Chopin made the piano dance and sing, he made it weep and laugh.” Chang said.
Chang wanted to feature Chopin’s contribution to the piano.
“He brought the piano to life,” Chang said. “He is showing the whole world what this instrument can do.”
Chopin aimed to bring the music to life and said that music is “there to serve our imagination.”
New to Chang’s repertoire are the musical numbers Fantasie-Impromptu and Scherzo; both of which she learned a week before the performance.
“My favorite moment happened today. There were two pieces on the program I just learned a week ago,” Chang said.
“[Chang] put her all, she left it there on the stage. The pieces themselves were intricate, I enjoyed the variation,” Asia Herbison, a theater arts major, said.
“It was breathtaking and captivating to watch this performance,” said philosophy major David Gonzalez after the show.
Next week’s concert will feature the Los Angeles Baroque players and are held in the Performing Arts Center at 12:45 p.m. on Thursdays.