Brandon Coleman.

Virtual Series Featuring a Diverse Group of Artists Playing the Iconic Instrument Debuts Monday, July 19

To celebrate the summer reopening of the much-loved public piano at Union Station, Metro Art Presents is offering a back-to-back week of virtual pop-up piano performances highlighting a diverse group of Los Angeles-based musicians. From July 19 through July 23, Metro Art Presents “Play On!” will airnightly at 7 p.m. across Metro, Metro Art and Union Station Facebook and Instagram platforms, and on Union Station’s YouTube channel.

The series kicks off July 19 with pianist and producer Jamael Dean, a  jazz prodigy who has collaborated and performed with artists like Kamasi Washington, Thundercat, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Carlos Niño. The grandson of soul jazz drummer Donald Dean, Dean has been influenced by both contemporary jazz and traditional forms.

The July 20 performance will feature Donia Jarrar, an emerging Arab and Muslim-American composer, pianist, producer, and interdisciplinary artist working across the fields of contemporary music, film, dance, theater and installation art. Her music spans the genres of classical, electronic, experimental and chamber pop, with improvisation as a key element of her performance. Born in Kuwait to a Palestinian father and an Egyptian mother, Jarrar is a composer-librettist member of Decameron Opera Coalition.

Inna Faliks, originally from Ukraine, will highlight the series on July 21. Faliks, currently head of piano for UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music, will offer stellar performances of Ravel and Liszt. She has performed across the U.S. and around the world, including at the Ravinia Festival and the National Gallery in Washington, D.C., and Portland Piano Festival as well as acclaimed performances at the Festival Internacional de Piano in Mexico, in the Fazioli Series in Italy, in Israel’s Tel Aviv Museum and Beijing Center for Performing Arts in China. Locally, Faliks has performed for Camerata Pacifica, with the modern dance troupe Bodytraffic at the Broad Stage Santa Monica and with the Jacaranda series, among others.  

On July 22, Brandon Coleman—a keyboard maestro, vocalist, composer, producer and arranger—will highlight the performance series on Thursday evening. A regular fixture with contemporary luminaries Babyface, Donald Glover, Flying Lotus and Kamasi Washington’s band, Coleman represents a new chapter in the evolution of jazz and funk fusion. His album, “Resistance,” was released in 2018 to critical acclaim on Brainfeeder Records. 

The series will close July 23 with Jonathan Montes, an up-and-coming multi-genre keyboardist originally from Mayagüez, Puerto Rico, whose Latin jazz stylings and production work have appeared on the television series “Jane the Virgin.” As a pianist-keyboardist, Montes has been part of many recordings including the Latin Grammy-nominated album “Bajo Mundo” from bassist Oskar Cartaya, All 4 One “Twenty” anniversary album, and “New Tradiciones” from Adrienne Houghton. Montes has also toured around the world and performed on stages including the Hollywood Bowl and Latin Grammys.

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