If you're not yet familiar with the music of George Walker, now is the perfect time to get acquainted. The composer and Eastman School of Music alumnus is celebrating his 95th birthday this year, and his alma mater will host a retrospective recital of his complete piano sonatas. The virtuosic motifs, restless rhythms, and insatiably creative energy behind Walker's piano music is immediately captivating, if difficult to pin down stylistically. Twentieth century modernism and impressionistic atmospheres, jazz and Romantic flourishes alike intermingle. The first Pulitzer Prize-winning African-American composer, Walker wrote his brilliant second piano sonata while studying at Eastman. Pianist Redi Llupa will perform Walker's five piano sonatas, with the composer's son, Gregory Walker, joining in to perform Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 1.
A recital for George Walker's 95th birthday will take place Monday, April 2, at Eastman School of Music's Hatch Recital Hall, 433 East Main Street. 7:30 p.m. Free. 274-1000; esm.rochester.edu; georgetwalker.com.