Lang Lang Takes Stage with 50 Roland Pianos and 100 Young Musicians
One hundred piano students from California’s Bay Area took to the stage at Sonoma State University’s Weill Hall in October to perform a program entitled, “101 Pianists.” Each student was paired with another student on one of 50 Roland RP401R digital pianos onstage, and together, while accompanied by world-renowned classical pianist Lang Lang, they performed two-handed arrangements of Schubert’s Marche Militaire, No. 1 in D major and Brahms’ Hungarian Dance, No 5. in F-sharp minor.
“101 Pianists” is a program that was developed by Lang Lang himself to share classical music with children around the world. He also wanted pianos students to experience performing as a group in a social setting similar to the experience of performing in school bands and orchestras. “I started 101 Pianists to give piano students an opportunity to play together,” says Lang Lang. “It started about 15 years ago at one of my concerts where I invited students to join me for an encore – and we had a wonderful time. So, I wanted to do more of these events as a workshop and also a performance for the community. It’s now one of the key programs of my foundation.”
The talented young pianists who performed at Sonoma State were hand-selected by the Lang Lang International Music Foundation from nominations submitted by local music teachers. After several months of practice on their own and a master class from Lang Lang himself, they joined together as a “piano orchestra” for a concert that was enjoyed by parents, teachers, and the entire community.
The 101 Pianists program visits multiple cities around the world. This is the second year in a row that Roland U.S. has participated in the program here in the U.S.