P.D.Q. Bach, aka Peter Schickele, the “21st of J.S. Bach’s 20 Children,” plays piano.
P.D.Q. Bach, aka Peter Schickele, the “21st of J.S. Bach’s 20 Children,” plays piano.

On Friday, May 12 at 7:30pm, Portland Columbia Symphony presents the West Coast premiere of a new co-commissioned piano concerto by P.D.Q. Bach, aka Peter Schickele, the “21st of J.S. Bach’s 20 Children.” “Concerto for Simply Grand Piano and Orchestra” will be performed by pianist Jeffrey Biegel.

The concerto’s story began in 2002, when Jeffrey Biegel approached Schickele, a sort of musical comedian, to consider composing a new work for piano and orchestra for Biegel to perform. Schickele was too busy, and declined. In 2015, Biegel asked again. Portland Columbia Symphony is one of 15 orchestras presenting the work. “I am honored and delighted to bring this new “Concerto for Simply Grand Piano and Orchestra” to audiences in the USA and Europe during the 2016-17-18 seasons,” says Schickele.

The orchestra will also perform “Gloriana,” by David Bernstein. The work won the PCSO & Cascadia Composer Competition.

Music Director Steven Byess leads the orchestra in the finale performances of Portland Columbia Symphony’s 35th season with works by Debussy and Shostakovich.