JUNIATA COUNTY >> There's much to be said for a man who doesn't forget his roots, no matter how humble the place he grew up.
Upper Tuscarora Presbyterian Church, outside the tiny village of Waterloo, is the humble place that has not been forgotten by Dr. Timothy Blair, piano professor and dean of the School of Visual and Performing Arts at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. On a regular basis, Blair provides a generous portion of musical artistry to area residents through the college's desire to share with others its access to international performers.
There's a special reason concerts are scheduled in this tiny hamlet.
Blair said, "Since I grew up in the Tuscarora Valley and am a member of the Upper Tuscarora Presbyterian Church, it seemed like a natural fit to bring the arts from WCU to Upper Tuscarora to benefit the good citizens of this four-county region together to enjoy and celebrate life through music."
The church is near the meeting place of Franklin, Huntingdon, Juniata and Perry counties.
Its next Visiting Artist Series concert, at 2 p.m. April 12, will feature Russian pianist Igor Resnianski, winner of the First China International Piano Competition and the All Russian Piano Competition. He will offer a program of music by composers Frederic Chopin, Joseph Maurice Ravel and Alessandro Scarlatti.
Resnianski will, of course, be playing a Steinway grand piano — the church's piano.
The instrument was bought for the congregation by the organization that funds the church's concert series, JM Blair Family Trust.
"The piano came to us from Reifsnyder's Music Company in Lancaster, which is now owned by Jacobs Music Company of Philadelphia," said Blair. "Robert Rinaldi, the vice president of Jacobs Music Company, serves on my ... dean's advisory board and continually works on behalf of Jacobs Music to support the arts throughout Philadelphia at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts and beyond."
Following the concert, there will be "grazing" of Russian food. An offering will be taken.
Russian native Resnianski received music degrees in Russia, graduating with distinction from Novosibirsk Conservatory and Music College. He then completed the artist diploma at Texas Christian University and his doctorate from Temple University. He studied on scholarship at the Van Cliburn Summer Piano Institute.
IF YOU GO
Russian pianist Igor Resnianski, 2 p.m. April 12, Upper Tuscarora Presbyterian Church, 677 Brick Church Road.
Directions: Follow Pa. 75 north through Concord in Franklin County. Turn left onto Brick Church Road (state route 3027) in Waterloo. For more information, call 264-3836.