Years ago, Richard Masters visited the Percy Grainger House in White Plains, New York, a pilgrimage undertaken out of respect for Percy's gifts to the world of music. He was thrilled to play Percy's piano and enchanted by Percy's home, choc-a-bloc with its pictures, books, and music. He never forgot this visit and contacted us last year to see if we could arrange a concert. We were delighted at this request and happy to help Richard "give back" to the music world with his performance. He has dedicated all proceeds from his concert to our preservation effort.
Richard is a soloist, opera coach, chamber musician and orchestral pianist based in Blacksburg, VA, where he is an Assistant Professor of Piano and Collaborative Piano on the music faculty at Virginia Tech's School of Performing Arts. He has performed solo, chamber and vocal recitals throughout the U.S. and in Europe.
As a solo pianist, Richard plays a wide variety of standard and non-traditional repertoire, including contemporary pieces written for or commissioned by him. A strong proponent of contemporary American composers, he has performed world premieres of pieces by Kenneth Frazelle, Charles Nichols, Kent Holliday, and many others. He is an enthusiastic performer of British music from the early 20th century.
Recent appearances include performances at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum's "Music at the Gardner" series, the National Flute Convention in Washington D.C., the San Francisco Conservatory, the Schola Cantorum in Paris, and concerts in Toronto and Trinidad/Tobago. In the 2018-2019 season, he will tour Texas, performing the complete songs of Henri Duparc with Ariana Wyatt, soprano, and Marc Callahan, baritone. Solo appearances will include performances in Alabama, Mississippi, Virginia, and on the concert series at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda, California.
In addition to his performances as a pianist, Richard is active in the world of opera and musical theatre as a coach and conductor. He recently conducted performances of Carousel, Fiorello!, Oh, Kay!, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Le Nozze di Figaro, Babes in Arms, and in Summer 2018 served as associate head coach with the Pittsburgh Festival Opera, working on Wagner's Das Rheingold and Strauss's Arabella. Prior to joining the faculty at Virginia Tech, he was principal opera coach at the University of Texas at Austin.
Richard Masters holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music (DMA), the Juilliard School (MM) and the University of Colorado at Boulder (BM).