Kathryn Schmidt


A lecture-recital on Enrique Granados’ Piano Suite Goyescas: Love, Death and Goya


Spanish pianist and composer Enrique Granados (1867 – 1916) was “intoxicated” with the artworks of the great Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes (1746 – 1828) and wrote a set of piano pieces entitled Goyescas: Los Majos Enamorados. These pieces are a poignant tribute to those works of Goya that depict the gallant majos and majas of 19 th Century Madrid, and their love stories. Granados’ treatment of the material in Goyescas has much to teach current audiences about Spanish culture in the early 20 th Century. This lecture-recital will introduce listeners to Goyescas, paying special attention to the thread of narrative that is prevalent in the work as shown in surface musical features, evocative Goya-esque titles and Granados’ own descriptive language. Listeners will become acquainted with the majos of Spain through study of some of Goya’s Caprichos as cultural “mirrors” and Granados’ neo-Romantic musical portraits of those works. Alison Nystrom, soprano, will perform excerpts from two of Granados' Tonadillas (songs) that are closely linked to Goyescas and serve to further illustrate the story.


Described as a "poetic" pianist, Kathryn Schmidt was born in Swaziland, Africa and grew up in Winnipeg, Manitoba where she was the recipient of many awards and bursaries. She has appeared with the Grand Forks Symphony Orchestra (USA) and the Mennonite Community Orchestra, and was First Prize winner in the Digi-Key Co. Piano Competition in North Dakota (USA). In masterclasses Kathryn has worked with Andr é Laplante, Leon Fleisher, Janina Fiakowska, Angela Cheng, Boris Berman, Julian Martin, Jean-Philippe Collard, among others. Kathryn has studied at the Mozarteum Institute in Austria on scholarships from the Johann Strauss Foundation and the Mozarteum. She has also studied on scholarship at the Banff Centre of Fine Arts. Kathryn has recorded for both the television and film industries. In 2006, Kathryn adjudicated the Upper Island Music Festival in B.C. A devoted chamber musician as well as a soloist, Kathryn was a Collaborative Pianist at the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival (Maine, USA) as well as the Egmont Chamber Music Camp and VISI Art Song Institute (B.C.). In 2000, Kathryn assisted Prof. Rena Sharon at UBC, where she guest-lectured and coached Art Song duos. As a collaborator, Kathryn has performed in masterclasses with Graham Johnson, Margo Garrett, Stephen Varcoe, and Midori. Kathryn currently teaches piano and Keyboard Literature at TWU. She is in the final throes of a Doctorate of Musical Arts (UBC) with a major in Piano Performance and a minor in Musicology, studying with Prof. Jane Coop, Dr. Henri-Paul Sicsic and Dr. Vera Micznik. Her thesis is a narrative interpretation of Enrique Granados' piano suite Goyescas, through its important connection to Granados' own Tonadillas for voice and piano.