Billy Joel in the Concert Hall

Billy Joel in the Concert Hall
© Sony Music
Billy Joel is known as a master of pops lyrics, harmonies, and rhythm; but lately, he's returned to his classical roots with a number of original pieces for solo piano. Pianist Jeffrey Biegel admired Joel's mastery of the medium and thought the "Piano Man's" works are a perfect fit for the concert hall. So, on 24 June, Biegel premieres Billy Joel's Symphonic Fantasies for Piano and Orchestra; Stuart Malina conducts the Eastern Music Festival Orchestra (Greensboro, NC). Biegel, along with orchestrator Phillip Keveren, developed this work using four of Joel's classical piano works. Malina's ties to Joel include a 2003 Tony Award for best orchestration for the score of Movin' Out, Twyla Tharp's dance musical based on Joel's pop songs. Biegel observes, "You can hear echoes of the past in it, but in a new way. If you like Rachmaninoff, Chopin or Schumann, you will like this." Malina conducts the work again next season for the Harrisburg Symphony's (PA) season-opening concert on 7 October.
 
Symphonic Fantasies for Piano and Orchestra
Duration: 27'
Piano; 2+pic.2+ca.2+bcl.2/4.4.3.1/timp.2perc/hp/str