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A Musical Tribute to a Former Lecturer

Jan. 15, 2014

blond-haired woman in a black dress

Alison C. Edwards

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Alison C. Edwards, assistant professor of music, pays tribute to pianist Earle C. Voorhies in a Jan. 31 performance in Meng Concert Hall. Voorhies taught piano at Cal State Fullerton from the 1970s to the early 1990s.

Edwards '87 (B.M. Music performance), was a student of Voorhies while a CSUF undergraduate. "He was a tremendous influence on my studies and my career," she explained. "His career spanned more than 75 years as a performer, master teacher, lecturer and writer.

"His lifelong commitment to teaching and his high artistic standards of excellence produced countless outstanding students," said Edwards. "Many of these students have enjoyed careers in music as concert pianists, composers, conductors and music educators."

Edwards noted that Voorhies attended the Juilliard School on a graduate fellowship in the 1930s and studied under Alexander Siloti (a student of Franz Liszt), Olga Samaroff, Abby De Avirett, Rosina lhevinne, Harold Bauer and Egon Petri. During these early years, she explained, Voorhies enjoyed a career in solo performance, in addition to touring as accompanist for the famed flamenco singer/dancer, Luisa Espinel.

"Voorhies' connection with the 20th-century performance and teaching world is unique, and his legacy lives on through his students," she said, noting that his last public performance was to a packed house at Harbeson Hall in Pasadena at the age of 79. Despite his failing health, Edwards added, "his unending personal drive and passion for fine musical performance enabled him to continue teaching until just three weeks before his death in 2006."

Beethoven: 32 Variations in C Minor
Beethoven: Bagatelles, Opus 126
Beethoven: Sonata in E Minor, Opus. 90
Poulenc: Melancholy
Debussy: Selected Preludes
Chopin: Scherzo No. 4 in E Major
Liszt: Mephisto Waltz No. 1

Tickets may be purchased online.

Tags:  Arts & CultureEvents