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Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 24, 2017

Murasaki Duo plays at Sondheim

Sep 25, 2017

The Murasaki Duo, featuring husband-and-wife team Miko Kominami and Eric Kutz will present a cello and piano pair recital, “Inspired By Dance,” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Sondheim center.

Since its founding in 1996 at the Juilliard School, the Murasaki Duo has been dedicated to performing the cello and piano literature as chamber music. Named in homage to Lady Murasaki, the author of the world’s first novel, cellist Eric Kutz and pianist Miko Kominami weave their instruments’ voices together in a unique and compelling equal partnership.

The duo has performed throughout the United States and Canada, including concerts in Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Minneapolis, Washington, D.C., and Toronto. It has given a six-concert tour of Scandinavia, which included performances in Copenhagen and Oslo; last spring it performed in London and Tel Aviv.

Kominami, Luther adjunct faculty in music, earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in piano from the Juilliard School in New York as well as the Piano Performance Certificate from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. She has performed extensively throughout North America as a soloist as well as with other artists.

As a soloist, Kominami has performed with Orchestra Iowa, Danbury Symphony, Kishwaukee Symphony, Malibu Coast Chamber Orchestra and the Luther College Symphony. She is an award-winning pianist, recipient of the Artists International Award, the Canada Council Arts Grant and first prize at the 1996 Concerto Soloists’ Competition in Philadelphia.

Kutz, Luther associate professor of music, earned a Bachelor of Music degree from Rice University and master’s and doctoral degrees from the Juilliard School.

He is active as a teacher, chamber and orchestral musician, and soloist, performing for audiences across North America and Europe. Kutz summers in Chicago as a member of the Grant Park Orchestra’s cello section. He has also appeared in the New York Philharmonic, Minnesota Orchestra, and Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, and served as principal cellist of the Houston Grand Opera Orchestra and the Juilliard Orchestra.

Advocates for new music, the Murasaki Duo actively commissions new works, in addition to performing the classics. The duo released a new compact disc that American Record Guide praised the recording as containing “fine, beautifully balanced performances,” and it concluded, “These are two outstanding musicians.” The Violoncello Foundation gave the recording its 2016 Listeners Choice Award, from among all cello CD’s released the previous year.

The duo has been a part of leading festivals, such as the Niagara International Chamber Music Festival, the Malibu Coast Music Festival, the Icicle Creek Music Center, Cello an American Experience, and Lutheran Summer Music, and it has been broadcast on public radio stations throughout the country.

General admission tickets for Murasaki Duo are $20 at available at the Fairfield Arts & Convention Center ticket office, 472-2787 and online www.FairfieldACC.com.

Fairfield Concert Association members are admitted with proof of membership.

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