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Chicago Duo Piano Festival Set for Nichols Concert Hall, Now thru 7/21

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The Music Institute of Chicago's annual Chicago Duo Piano Festival celebrates its 25th anniversary today, July 12-21 at Nichols Concert Hall, 1490 Chicago Avenue, in Evanston. In addition to offering students coaching, lectures, master classes, and recitals, the Festival includes four public performances at Nichols Concert Hall featuring special guest Ukrainian piano duo Olga and Yuri Sherbakov in their Chicago debut, festival Founders/Directors Claire Aebersold and Ralph Neiweem, and Music Institute piano faculty, all performing duo piano repertoire.

Public performances:

Gala Opening Concert-Friday, July 12 at 7:30 p.m.

Chicago Duo Piano Festival Founders/Directors and Music Institute faculty piano duo in residence Claire Aebersold and Ralph Neiweem perform a program including Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, in celebration of its 100th anniversary, along with works by Schubert and Ravel.

Faculty Recital-Sunday, July 14 at 4 p.m.

The program includes Music Institute faculty and guest artists Mio Isoda and Matthew Hagle performing Debussy's En blanc et noir, Xiaomin Liang and Jue He playing a two-piano arrangement of Prokofiev's Classical Symphony, and Andrea Swann and Fiona Queen performing Bartok's Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion.

Faculty Extravaganza Concert-Tuesday, July 16 at 7:30 p.m.

In this popular event, members of the Music Institute faculty offer a varied selection of four-hand and two-piano repertoire. Performers include Maya Brodotskaya and Irene Faliks, Inah Chiu and Sung Hoon Mo, Alexander Djordjevic and Mark George, Elaine Felder and Milana Pavchinskaya, Mio Isoda and Matthew Hagle, Katherine Lee and Soo Young Lee, andXiaomin Liang and Jue He.

Guest Recital: Olga and Yuri Sherbakov (Oleyura Duo)-Friday, July 19 at 7:30 p.m.

Olga and Yuri Sherbakov (Oleyura Duo), a brilliant wife and husband duo from Odessa, Ukraine, making their Chicago debut, are 1st prize winners at the Rome International Competition for Piano Duos in both two piano and piano, four hands categories. They have been featured at the San Francisco International Festival, The First International Piano Duo Festival in Israel, Internazionales Festival Deutsche Musik, Festival of Greek Culture, Festival Musicale delle Nazioni, and Saint-Petersburg Piano Duo Festival. They have performed in prestigious halls in Kiev, Jerusalem, Rome, Moscow, Venice, St. Petersburg, Oslo, and Tel-Aviv and have appeared as guest soloists with The Ukraine National Symphony Orchestra, The Israel Chamber Orchestra, The Crimean Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Orchestra of the Norwegian National Opera. They are professors at Odessa State Academy of Music. They teach master classes in Ukraine and abroad. They are founders and artistic directors of the International Piano Duo and Chamber Music Festivals "Crimea Dialogues" and "Odessa Dialogues". They have performed frequently as guests and soloists with the Odessa Philharmonic Society.

For the Chicago Duo Piano Festival, Olga and Yuri Sherbakov perform works by Ukrainian and Russian composers, including Rachmaninoff's Suite No. 1 for Two Pianos.

Called a "duo piano mecca" by Pioneer Press, the Chicago Duo Piano Festival was founded in 1988 by Music Institute of Chicago faculty members Claire Aebersold and Ralph Neiweem. Its mission is to foster a deeper interest in the repertoire, performance, and teaching of music for piano, four hands and two pianos, in a fun and supportive atmosphere. The Festival offers coaching, master classes, concerts with special guest artists, and student recitals for students age 12 through adult. Registration details and a schedule are available at chicagoduopianofestival.org. Fees are $495 for full participants and $265 for auditors. Early registrants receive greater consideration for repertoire requests. The enrollment deadline is May 28, 2013.

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