Piano for Four Hands

Why did Poulenc write a piece that sounded like he wanted to take it out on the piano? How does this fit to the sometimes even humorous streaks in his music? Did Dvorák use real folk dances from his native Bohemia when he wrote Op. 46, Book 1? And why do musicians switch sides when they play on one piano together?

These were some of the questions Timothy Brown and Justin Hartz answered following their wonderful piano recital on April 18. It was one of the days with fewer middle school students than usual in the audience. Subsequently, the questions asked were of a more academic nature. However, without the students having prompted the Q&A part of our rehearsals in the first place, it became quickly apparent that they shape the atmosphere of our recitals even while occasionally absent. So I conclude: Our concert series is a true intergenerational effort. What else could we wish for?

And so we thank the following for their much appreciated contributions:

  • The Hospitality Committee of the church,
  • Janet Waanders as the organizer of the Series,
  • Our Music Director Ben Berman,
  • The Middlesex County Cultural & Heritage Commission, especially Ms. Rosalyn Neal,
  • The Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders
  • The New Jersey State Council of the Arts/Dept. of State, and
  • All the faithful providers of soup and bread from both the church and Pine Grove Cooperative Nursery School.

About Rev. Dr. Hartmut Kramer-Mills

Hartmut Kramer-Mills, a native of Jena, Germany, began his theological education at Heidelberg University. After the Middle Exam in 1986 he received a scholarship from the World Alliance of Reformed Churches for McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. He graduated from McCormick with a Master of Divinity in 1988. He graduated from Marburg University in Germany with the Ecclesiastical Exam in 1990, and received a Dr. theol. from Greifswald University, Germany, in 1997. From 1990 to 1991 he was vicar at St. Wenzel in Naumburg, Germany. He was ordained minister of word and sacrament in 1993 through the Protestant Church of the Church Province of Saxony. From 1993 to 1998 he served as assistant pastor in Stoessen, Goerschen, and Rathewitz, Germany. At the same time he was lecturer for Church History at Erfurt College in Germany. From 1999 to 2000 he served the Spotswood Reformed Church in New Jersey as interim pastor. Since 2000 he and his wife serve the First Reformed Church in New Brunswick, New Jersey, as co-pastors.
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