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Piano prodigy Ethan Bortnick to play Largo Cultural Center

LARGO He has performed on stage with megastars like Beyonce, Kanye West, Barbra Streisand and Miley Cyrus.

He has donated thousands of dollars to charity.

He has been officially endorsed as a Baldwin Piano artist.

And he has already made 1,377 friends on Facebook.

Ethan Bortnick has done all this before his age hits double digits.

On Wednesday, the 9-year-old piano prodigy from Pembroke Pines will visit the Largo Cultural Center. His gig has been dubbed "Ethan Bortnick and His Musical Time Machine.''

"I don't think I've ever been to Largo before," he said in a phone interview last week while enjoying an after-school video game with his 4-year-old brother, Nathan. "I'm excited because I like new places.''

If you go, you can expect to hear classical music like Mozart and Chopin, as well as jazz, blues and rock.

"I'll be playing a little bit of everything, something for everyone, and, of course, one of my all-time favorites, the Beatles,'' Ethan said.

It just so happens the Cultural Center's house piano is a Baldwin.

"So that's kind of cool, since Baldwin has endorsed him,'' said Rob Mondora, artistic director. "But from what I understand, he's bringing his own extensions to reach the pedals.''

As a toddler, Ethan learned to play the piano by mimicking Baby Einstein on his toy piano. From what Ethan recalls, he wanted a bigger piano from the very beginning.

"I was begging my parents for a piano and lessons, but they were like, no, you are still in diapers,'' he said.

Gene Bortnick, Ethan's father, remembers he made the decision to take it up a notch and find his son a piano teacher after hearing Ethan play Alla Turca, the third movement of Mozart's Piano Sonata No. 11, on the tiny 10-key toy.

Piper Castillo can be reached at pcastillo@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4163.

IF YOU GO

Ethan Bortnick and His Musical Time Machine

When: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday

Where: Largo Cultural Center, 105 Central Park Drive

Tickets: $35 in advance; $40 VIP; all seats $40 day of show

For tickets or more information: Call the box office at (727) 587-6793.

Piano prodigy Ethan Bortnick to play Largo Cultural Center 10/09/10 [Last modified: Saturday, October 9, 2010 4:31am]
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