Ballroom Marfa presented pianist Kimball Gallagher, who performed an intimate concert at the Crowley Theater in Marfa, including an original piece of music dedicated to Texas arts patron Toni Beauchamp. Gallagher also hosted a children’s concert the same day.
Gallagher is a dynamic classical pianist — he obtained his master’s degree as a pupil of Robert McDonald at The Juilliard School. His performances include shows at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music in Kabul and a sold-out debut at Carnegie Hall. Gallagher’s stop in Marfa was part of a world tourbuilt around his desire to open “an unparalleled forum for dialogue between artist and listener.”When asked what he planned for the Marfa performance, Gallagher said, “I’ve connected different pieces of music to some of the different countries I’ve traveled to throughout the tour. Two examples: The set of Chopin Études will be related to the experience I had of performing the Chopin Études in Kabul at the Afghanistan National Institute of Music with six machine gun guards at the door.
Gallagher also composed a personalized piano work unique to each performance, based on the name of an individual closely related to the event. “I’ve written preludes that include the names of King Bhumibol of Thailand, Uma Thurman, Nicola Bulgari, the US Ambassador to Tunisia, and the author Thomas Moore,” he says.
In the case of Marfa, he choseto create a piece of music in honor of beloved Texas arts patron Toni Beauchamp, who passed away earlier this year. In addition to her deep involvement in the arts community of her native Houston, Beauchamp was a generous supporter of Marfa Public Radio, The Chinati Foundation, the Marfa Book Company, the Lannan Foundation, Ballroom Marfa and other endeavors in Far West Texas.
This performance was Gallagher’s first occasion to visit Marfa, which has interested him since his days as an undergraduate at Rice University.
Support for this project provided by The Brown Foundation, Inc., Houston, TX and Texas Commission on the Arts.
Special thanks to Jeff Beauchamp, The Big Bend Sentinel, Jack Bresette-Mills, Dan Chamberlin, Rob Crowley, Jennifer Bell and Tim Crowley of the Crowley Theater, Rachel L
Graphic design by In Residence.