Michelle Cann at the Asheville Art Museum

The Asheville Art Museum’s Pianoforte Concert Series continues on Sunday, Oct. 21, with concert pianist Michelle Cann. Do you know those brilliant, good-natured teenage musicians you hear on NPR’s “From the Top?” Cann was one of them, in 2007, when she was 18. The AAM offers a chance to experience where such promise can lead. Judging from the recording of her appearance on the show, Cann’s skill and love for music surpasses talent, as her work over the last five years proves.

According to her website, Cann has performed at a number of distinguished classical music festivals, including the highly selective Taos Chamber Music Festival and The Perlman Music Program’s chamber festival, directed by Itzhak Perlman (also known as the violinist who performed at President Obama’s inauguration in 2009). Cann is currently a student at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia — a competitive institution to be sure (Cann was one of four pianists accepted out of 100 applicants in 2010).

Cann’s sister, Kimberly, is also an accomplished concert pianist — who lives and teaches in Asheville. The Cann sisters are famous to those who’ve seen them perform together. The sheer verve of both sisters gliding along their keyboards, and the evident passion and communication, is something to behold.

Unfortunately, Kimberly is unable to perform at Sunday’s concert, as was originally planned. Nonetheless, the concert will trade the power of simultaneity for the intimacy of a single, intent pianist — a quality that the museum’s black box-like East Wing gallery supports and augments. The Pianoforte Series provides one of the more immediate classical concert experiences in town, and the informal setting of the gallery allows for a view of the musician at work that’s typically exclusive to the page-turner (or the musician herself).

The Asheville Art Museum’s Pianoforte Series takes place on Sunday, Oct. 21 at 3 p.m. in the museum’s East Wing gallery (upstairs from the entrance level at Pack Place). Tickets are $6 for members, $8 plus museum admission for non-members. Contact Nancy Sokolove at 253-3227, ext. 120 for reservations. For more information about AAM and its events and programs, visit http://www.ashevilleart.org.


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