By Nancy Miller, special to the Globe

Pianist Fredericka King possesses the rare ability to make connections of all sorts remarkably clear through her playing. Last night at Jordan Hall, King offered evidence of this in the compelling logic with which she moved from one note to the next, in the way she sustained a broad musical thought over the course of an entire movement, or in the irresistible feeling that all the works on the program somehow resonated within each other, despite the 200 or so years that they collectively spanned.

King accomplished this through the combination of absolute control over and unbroken awareness of what is going on under her fingers at all times with deeply sensitive musical instincts. Throughout she seemed to care little about sheer virtuosic display, concentrating instead on warmth and richness of expression.

The three sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti that opened the program were at the same time unabashedly pianistic (though intended for the harpsichord) and delightfully idiomatic the D minor (L.422) mysterious and shadowy, the G minor (L.126) cloaked in somber hues while hovering poignantly in midair, and the A major (L.345) abounding in high spirits in a flood of fancy fingerwork.

The First Piano Sonata of the black American composer George Walker that followed proved to be a real treatThe Sonatas first movement is a fragrant, densely textured web of fourths, permeated with broad lyrical melodies, the second a set of skillful and sentimental variations on the Kentucky folk song Bury me beneath the Willow, the last a rousing toccata. King obviously has a deep affinity for the piece and played it from the heart with flair.

Four Preludes by Rachmaninoff, drawn from his total of 24, glowed in rich harmonic textures (as in the F sharp minor, op.23 no.1) and glistened in shimmering filigree (the C minor, op.23.no7). The well known G minor op.23 no.5 could have withstood more bravura, likewise the Schumann Symphonic Etudes.


By Jean Swain, Rutland Herald

Fredericka King, appearing at the Rutland Free library Sunday afternoon, met with well-merited approval in her first solo piano concert before a Vermont audience.

Her academic background was evident in her knowledgeable introduction of several of her selections Sunday. She chose a well-balanced program of compositions by Mozart, Beethoven, Debussy and Chopin, giving her listeners a representative sampling from some of the richest years in the musical history of western civilization.

The tall self-assured young woman with the pleasant manner entered the Nella Grimm Fox Room, and with no preliminary calisthenics, adjustments of the piano bench or other prefatory exercises sailed into Mozarts Sonata in a minor, K.310, showing herself almost immediately to have a clean and sinewy style.

She played calmly, attentively, concentrating on her performance without sacrificing expressiveness. Although her technique effectively transmitted the meaning of the music to all her listeners, it was particularly interesting for those fortunate to be able to see her long, strong, fingers at work on the keyboard.

One of the most striking examples of this kind of carefully dexterous fingering came in Debussys Images, Book I. In the first piece in the set of three, she successfully captured the shimmering, sparkling, surging nuances implied in its name, Reflets dans leau (Reflections in the Water). Hommage a Rameau, a solemn tribute paid by the composer to an earlier French musician, evoked an imaginary concept of muffled bells tolling in a park of fallen leaves.

In the third part, Mouvement (described by King as a little wisp of something going by), those sitting near her could see how she placed her left hand over her right, both playing at the same time, so that one formed a little roof over the other while playing different notes within that small area defined by a handful of keys.


By Ray Trent, The Carolina Times

On Sunday, October 16, the Triangle Note-Ables, an affiliate of North American Negro Musicians, Inc.(NANM), presented to the Durham community a pianist of outstanding technical ability and deeply sensitive musical instincts, FREDERICKA KING, who happens to be female and African American. She recently made a debut at Carnegie Hall.

Ms.Kings performances have been lauded around the world. Her achievements, accolades, awards, degrees and fellowships in music are numerous.

An afternoon teaching session was very rewarding to the young and older musicians who attended. Most commented about Ms.Kings warmth and personality.

The evening concert began with three sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti, followed by a sonata of Franz Joseph Haydn, all well executed., They showed Fredericka Kings control and command of the piano.

After a brief intermission, the Durham Arts Council was filled with the colorful harmonies of Claude Debussys Preludes from Book I.

The works of George Walker, an African American composer, have caused great difficulty to many musicians for years. Ms.King handled his Sonata No.1 (1953) with ease and grace, executing a rhythmic motif that travels to all areas of the piano.

Several standing ovations brought Ms.King back for bows and an extra piano piece.

All in the audience expressed their appreciation, commenting that this recital will always live in their memory.

A bouquet of flowers was presented to Ms. King by Thea Jones, an aspiring young pianist and an engraved plaque was given by the Triangle Note-Ables.

By Nancy Miller, Special to the Globe

Sundays program by the Boston Orchestra and Chorale, the 20th such event. Offered a mixed bag. In addition to two sets of spirituals, it featured a variety of works by balck composers (and a few non-black) composer. These included a mini-recital by the stylish and graceful pianist Fredericka King (she) contributed expert readings of Scarlattis shadowy D minor Sonata, L.422, the earthy, compellingly-structured Andante from Florence Prices Sonata no.1 (Price is recognized as the first black woman to write symphonies), the brilliantly propulsive first movement of George Walkers first sonata, and Liszt's "Grand etude after Paganini".



By Kay Bourne, Bay State Banner

When it comes to music, Black History Month dresses up February with all the finery of a brides outfit, offering some things old, others new, a few things borrowed, and definitely things that are blue.

A concert presenting the music of Florence B. Price breaks the silence muffling the career of a woefully neglected black woman composer. The Feb.9 event at the Museum of Fine Arts, Music of Black Women Composers, might well have been retitled Masterworks Uncovered.

First on the program was Prices sprightly Dances in the Canebrakes for piano solo, wonderfully rendered by Fredericka King, who has a sure and lyrical touch.


Brookline, MA

Dear Ms.King,

We were thrilled that you could come to our school yesterday to play for the 5th through 8th graders. They certainly appreciated your taking the time to be with them.

The success of a program such as this lies with the performer. Your being at ease with the youngsters, your willingness to share anecdotes, your ability to interject interesting information, involve the kids and laugh with them helped to make it a memorable event. And thats not saying anything about your excellent choice of pieces and your skill in presenting them!

I must apologize for the quality of the piano. The music teacher lambasted me afterwards for allowing such a wonderful professional to play on that thing!

I hope that the concert at South Church was successful and that our paths will cross again.


John Dempsey

Assistant Principal