Tribute and Insights w/ Donna Weng Friedman

Tribute and Insights w/ Donna Weng Friedman

In today's episode, we started with touching tributes to Tanya Ragir and Joe Patrych, honoring their legacies in our community. Additionally, Donna shared about the legacy of Joe Patrych, a cherished member of the New York piano community whose unexpected departure in December deeply affected so many. Donna Weng, moved by Joe's passing, shared heartfelt reflections on his life and contributions. Joe's presence in the Greater New York piano community was profound. He left behind a legacy of excellence in music production and sound engineering. Donna's tribute to Joe set the stage for a session filled with gratitude, remembrance, and celebration of his impactful life.

As we transitioned into the session's discussions, Donna shared updates on her ongoing projects and collaborations. She spoke about her efforts to harness the power of music and poetry to address mental health challenges among children and teens. She draws inspiration from the famed "Carnival of the Animals," delivering its spirit in present-day forms. Donna's commitment to using art as a tool for healing and expression was truly inspiring, and we look forward to supporting her upcoming performance. We also got a sneak peek of "Never Fade Away," Donna's film which was showcased at Times Square in honor of AAPI (Asian American Pacific Islander) Heritage Month. The film, depicting her immigrant father's life-changing encounter with music, has garnered acclaim at numerous film festivals worldwide. Additionally, Donna shared about her induction into the Steinway and Sons Teacher Hall of Fame, reflecting on her teaching experience and the significance of this recognition.

Donna graciously shared personal reflections on her journey within the piano world, delving into the transformative experiences that have sculpted her identity as both an artist and educator. Through her narrative, she underscored the profound impact of resilience, the strength of community, and the boundless potential of artistic expression to bridge divides and foster profound connections.

As the session concluded, we had the opportunity to immerse ourselves in β€œQuiet Poems”,  three solo piano pieces by Donna's friend Kim Sherman, complemented by a visually captivating video by Karl Sonnenberg. Departing from classical norms, it highlights the interplay of sound and silence, prompting reflection on what lies between the notes.

Here’s a little bit about our guest Donna Weng Friedman: 

Award winning pianist Donna Weng Friedman enjoys a distinguished career as a soloist, chamber musician, educator, curator, producer, filmmaker and app developer. She was inducted into the Steinway & Sons Teacher Hall of Fame on October 5th, 2023, for her "passionate commitment to teaching and inspiring young people in music" - Gavin English, President of Steinway & Sons Americas.

Donna wrote, directed and produced the award winning documentary short, NEVER FADE AWAY featuring  Chun Wai Chan, the first principal dancer of Chinese descent in New York City Ballet’s 75-year history.

Donna is the inaugural winner of the Women Who Innovate Grant 2023, awarded by the International Alliance for Women in Music, Global Initiatives committee for her "impactful and meaningful" work.

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Creators and Guests

Eathan Janney
Eathan Janney
Eathan has 20 years of experience as a piano technician. He studied with Dave Miller, the staff piano technician for the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, New Jersey. Dave Carpenter, the inventor of the Verituner electronic tuning device, provided mentorship for Eathan in Chicago. Eathan also worked with Ken Eschete and Bill Schwarts, the staff piano technicians at Northwestern University in Chicago. In 2009, he founded Floating Piano Factory of New York, a company that allows piano technicians to move from Apprentice to Craftsman level while offering value pricing to clients as technicians progress toward mastery. In 2017 he founded Piano Technicians Masterclasses, an online project designed to offer cutting-edge instruction from piano industry masters to anyone on the globe with an internet connection.
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