The Golandsky Institute's Summer Symposium and International Piano Festival was held in Princeton, New Jersey during July 10-18, 2010. In its seventh year now, this week-long festival offers a multitude of evening concerts at Princeton's Taplin Auditorium.
Artistic director Edna Golandsky, the inspired powerhouse behind the Golandsky Institute, which specializes in the Taubman approach to piano pedagogy, was again responsible for a cutting edge program sure to broaden the horizon of festival participants and visitors alike. Under the tutelage of the Golandsky Institute Symposium, the nightly public concerts not only benefited the Princeton community, but also served as an extension to the daily workshops, lessons, and seminars which recently have been extended to include instrumentalists other than pianists.
Symposium participants from a broad range of ages and places - in the U.S. and abroad - kept Princeton’s quiet summer restaurant scene busy with enthusiastic pre- and post -concert clientele.
Daily lectures, master classes, clinics, and private lessons all explored the Taubman approach that has solved many a pianist's problems with technique, and propelled a good number of them towards their maximum potential.
I found it very intriguing to learn about the ins and outs of creating such a festival — its choice of location, for example, or the elements which contribute to its success. Says pianist and educator Adrienne Sirken, the Executive Director of the festival: "From the beginning, the festival was thought of as an integral part of the Golandsky Institute Symposium. It offers a wonderful opportunity to showcase artists that have been associated with the work already, and, of course, an opportunity to attract others interested in acquainting themselves with the work."
Sirken, who lives in Princeton with her husband, Dr. Aaron Friedberg, a faculty member of Princeton University's Department of Politics, and their two sons, was instrumental in bringing the Golandsky Institute to Princeton.
"At first, the Princeton University Music Department was not that keen on having the Golandsky Institute take over their practice rooms during that week," she confesses in a quiet moment during the symposium. “But thanks to the support of Princeton’s Director of Summer Conferences, Eric Hamlin, the feat was completed, and the first season took place in 2003.”