WQXR presents Beginner’s Ear, one hour of lunchtime bliss with guided meditation and a live performance by world-class musicians every Friday from January 17 through March 6. Each meditation will feature music from a different artist, to be announced.
Taka Kigawa, an “enthralling but elusive pianist” (New York Times), inaugurates the weekly series on January 17. Allow the sounds of Taka’s piano transport you on a sonic journey anchored by Debussy, Chopin and Bach. A short conversation on aspects of mindful listening will conclude the event, leaving you feeling re-centered and inspired.
Hosted and moderated by New York Times contributing critic Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim. Meditation led by Thomas Droge, founder of the Pathfinder Institute.
Beginner’s Ear was created by New York Times contributing critic Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim as a way to dissolve the mental static that so often gets in the way of a clear connection to a musical performance. Each 60-minute session begins with a mindfulness teacher leading participants in a 15-minute guided meditation. Out of the resulting deep stillness, a 30-minute musical performance emerges, unfolds in the space, and recedes back into the rich calm. The event wraps up with a short conversation, moderated by Corinna, about aspects of mindful listening.
Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim is a writer, music critic and the founder of Beginner’s Ear. Thomas Droge is an author, teacher, and Chinese medicine practitioner with deep roots in the Daoist tradition, as well as the meditation consultant for Beginner’s Ear.
The critically acclaimed pianist Taka Kigawa has earned outstanding international recognition as a concerto soloist, recitalist and chamber music artist, performing extensively in New York City, Boston, Cleveland, Washington, DC, Barcelona, Milan, Paris and Buenos Aires, in Ireland, as well as throughout his native Japan, including the cities of Tokyo, Kyoto, Nagano and Osaka. He has also been a featured artist on television and radio networks in the United States, Europe and Asia. Taka Kigawa was awarded First Prize from the prestigious 1990 Japan Music Foundation Piano Competition in Tokyo and the Diploma Prize from Spain’s 1998 Concurs Internacional de Música Maria Canals Barcelona. His 2010 New York City recital was chosen by The New York Times as one of the best concerts of the year, while a subsequent 2011 recital was selected as one of the most notable concerts of the 2011-2012 season by Musical America.