News Column

Teen music prodigy Ethan Bortnick won't perform in concert Saturday night in Fort Wayne

June 6, 2014

By Kevin Kilbane, The News-Sentinel (Fort Wayne, Ind.)



June 06--Acclaimed music prodigy Ethan Bortnick won't perform here Saturday as scheduled.

Local public television station WFWA, PBS-39, learned about 7 p.m. Thursday the 13-year-old Bortnick would not perform his "The Power of Music" concert planned for 7 p.m. Saturday in the Arts United Center in downtown Fort Wayne, said Mark Ryan, WFWA's creative services director.

Bortnick, a pianist, singer and composer, was to be accompanied by the local Voices of Unity youth choir and joined by concert tour guest performer Damian McGinty, an actor on the hit TV show "Glee" and a member of the Celtic Thunder vocal group.

WFWA was told the concert had been postponed but would be rescheduled, and the station is moving forward with that understanding, Ryan said.

Staff at Arts United of Greater Fort Wayne used the word "canceled" when describing the concert's status, but the staff member who rents its facilities could not be reached Friday for more details.

WFWA had worked with Bortnick's management to give away tickets to the concert as incentives during station fundraising pledge drives in December and March, Ryan said. Bortnick hosted his own PBS national television specials in 2010 and 2013.

A WFWA staff member worked Thursday night and Friday to notify pledge drive donors with Bortnick tickets that the show had been postponed, Ryan said.

Those ticket packages will be honored at the rescheduled concert, Ryan said. If the concert is not rescheduled, WFWA will work to get donors tickets to another concert or event.

Bortnick is scheduled to perform Friday night at the Van Singel Fine Arts Center in Byron Center, Mich., south of Grand Rapids, and on Sunday night at the Aronoff Center for the Arts in Cincinnati. Both concerts are scheduled to take place, box office staff at each venue confirmed Friday.

The Fort Wayne performance still is listed as available for ticket purchases on the concert tour schedule on Bortnick's website, www.ethanbortnick.com.

Bortnick, who began playing piano at age 3, has the ability to hear a song once and play it back note for note, his website said.

He plays jazz, classical, rock and original music, often calling up songs from memory based on what the audience seems to enjoy, the website said.

Bortnick has performed around the world and has been certified by Guinness World Records as the world's youngest solo musician to headline his own concert tour.

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(c)2014 The News-Sentinel (Fort Wayne, Ind.)

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Source: News-Sentinel (Fort Wayne, IN)