On the surface, Christopher O'Riley is a curiosity, both for being a serious classical pianist with a Radiohead fixation and for this late booking at the Dakota, nominally a jazz club. In reality, O'Riley is a seriously gifted pianist who doesn't let the artificial lines among musical genres bother him, seeing the perfect logic of interpreting Radiohead or Nirvana in a context that's usually the realm of Bach or Chopin. In many ways, it's a similar logic to the Bad Plus, offering unique perspectives by playing angular, jazz-informed versions of, say, Pink Floyd (another O'Riley subject as well). Outside the classical arena, O'Riley has also done album-length investigations of cult folkies Elliott Smith and Nick Drake, whom he has paired with Debussy in concert. For this solo piano performance, expect O'Riley, who by the way hosts one of the best classical-music programs on the radio (NPR's From the Top), to juggle classical pieces with his interpretations of pop material. (photo by Wendy Lynch)
Mondays, Tuesdays, 7 p.m. Starts: July 20. Continues through July 21, 2009
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