Deborah Belcher, Pianist
Deborah Belcher has performed as recitalist and collaborative pianist throughout the Midwest, the Eastern U.S. and in Canada, and has appeared as guest soloist with orchestras including the Sammartini Chamber Orchestra (IL), the Elmhurst (IL) Symphony, the Windermere Chamber Orchestra (Ontario), the Converse College Chamber Orchestra (SC) and The Blue Ridge Symphony Orchestra (NC). Her chamber music affiliations have included tenures as founding member and pianist in The Abelard Trio, Trio Appassionata and, for twenty-five years, the Statsky-Belcher Duo.
Dr. Belcher has been heard in public radio and television broadcasts throughout the Midwestern and Southern states. This versatile pianist’s repertoire extends beyond the standard works to include works by American women composers and music employingavant gardeuse of the piano. In 2004 she developed an affinity for the music of Astor Piazzolla and became an aficionado of Argentine Tango. She has frequently performed tangos by various composers (often with dancers accompanying her onstage!). Press reviews of her performances have noted that“…her playing led us to new discoveries about Chopin”and have commented on “technical and musical gifts in substantial amounts.” The Cleveland Plain Dealer has praised the “lyrical expressiveness” of her playing. Richard DeVinney, writing for The Grand Rapids Press, said “Her playing breathes with believable emotional force.”
Having pursued a thorough academic education, Dr. Belcher holds performance degrees with Honors from Winthrop University, Indiana University, and Michigan State University, where she studied respectively with Dr. Jess Casey, Dr. Karen Shaw and Professor Joseph Evans. She studied additionally with Eugene List at The Eastman School of Music and Robert Goldsand at the Manhattan School of Music, and has performed for & received coaching from Walter Hautzig and Lorin Hollander in master class settings. Dr. Belcher has studied chamber music with such artists as Raya Garbusova, Josef Gingold, & Tadeusz Wronski, and has received chamber music coaching from Krysztof Penderecki and members of The (original) Juilliard String Quartet. She has received performance grants and scholarships from The Presser Foundation, The Michigan Council for the Arts, and Michigan State University.
Dr. Belcher’s teaching engagements have taken her to The Interlochen Center for the Arts, The Cleveland Institute of Music, and Converse College. During those tenures she simultaneously maintained a private class of pre-college and adult students while also serving variously and intermittently as Piano Adjudicator for the Kiwanis Clubs of Canada, as Artist-in-Residence at The Windermere Institute in London, Canada and as Consultant and Seminar Leader Trainer for The New School of Music of Paradise, CA. She has indulged two additional musical loves along the way, performing chamber music for piano and strings and accompanying vocalists whenever possible.
Residing in Asheville, NC since 1991, Dr. Belcher is Artist-Director of Asheville Piano Experience and guides students of all ages in beginning, advanced & professional studies. She performs regularly as soloist and as collaborative artist on concerts sponsored by the Asheville Area Piano Forum (of which she is a charter member), on the Asheville Art Museum’s Pianoforte Series, and regionally under the auspices of BelCher Music.
Dr. Belcher may be reached via deborahbelcher.com