LATROBE, PA – The 48th season of the Saint Vincent College Concert Series will kick off at 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 7, with a performance from clarinetist Yoonah Kim and pianist Kevin Ahfat in the Robert S. Carey Student Center’s Performing Arts Center on the Saint Vincent campus.
Kim is earning recognition as a young artist of uncommon musical depth and versatility, performing works ranging from Johannes Brahms to Jorg Widmann. Winner of the 2016 Concert Artists Guild International Competition, this Korean-Canadian artist is the first solo clarinetist to win the award in nearly 30 years. Born in Seoul and raised in British Columbia, she holds a master of music degree from The Juilliard School and a bachelor of music degree from Mannes College of Music at the New School, where she studied under Charles Neidich
Her program is entitled “Dear Clara.” It will include “Fantasiesücke, Op. 73” and “Sonata in A minor” by Robert Schumann, “Sonata No. 2 in E-flat Major” by Johannes Brahms and various selections from Clara Schumann, including “Three Romances.”
Kim will be accompanied by Ahfat, who completed principal studies at Juilliard under the tutelage of Joseph Kalischtein and Stephen Hough. Ahfat recently finished his time in-residence as a Rebanks Fellow at the Royal Conservatory in Toronto and is a recipient of the 2019 Sylva Gelber Music Foundation Award.
A native of Canada, Ahfat gave the North American premiere of Saint-Saëns’ “Third Sonata for Cello and Piano,” recently published by Bärenreiter-Verlag. In anticipation of this, he filmed and produced a mini documentary entitled “Soirée pour Camille,” a short film documenting the historical context of the work, the artistic partnership of Ahfat and Herlin and their joint exploration of French music. Continuing his dynamic exploration of music in tandem with film, Ahfat recently partnered with Riddle Films to release a cinematic performance of Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition,” filmed live at Koerner Hall in Toronto.
Following the performance, there will be a meet-and-greet reception with the artists.
Single tickets are available for $26. College, high school and middle school students are admitted free with valid ID, while children under the age of 12 are admitted free with adult supervision. Group rates are available for parties of 10 or more. Tickets may be purchased by phone at 724-805-2177, or by visiting www.stvincent.edu/concertseries.
Kim’s and Ahfat’s concert is the first of six performances on the 2019-20 Saint Vincent College Concert Series schedule, which also includes:
- Oct. 19: Jeanne Cotter – Pianist, Composer, Storyteller
- Nov. 9: Benjamin Baker (violin) with Daniel Lebhardt (piano)
- Jan. 25: Pianist Nathan Lee
- Feb. 15: Pennsylvania Pipes! Featuring organists Donald Fellows, J. Christopher Pardini and Wesley Parrott
- March 14: A Night of Intimate Chamber Music and Conversation, featuring Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Musicians Christopher Wu (violin), Suzanne Park (violin), Andrew Wickesberg (viola) and Anne Martindale Williams (cello)
Founded in 1971 by Rev. Joseph Bronder, O.S.B., the Concert Series emphasizes the traditional classical chamber repertoire, as well as artists of other genres. Performances have won national and international competitions, and many have performed on some of the world’s greatest stages. Each year, Saint Vincent awards the Bronder Prize for Piano to an exceptionally talented young pianist at the beginning of his or her career. The prize is named for the Concert Series’ founder, a concert pianist and classical music performer.
The Concert Series is directed by Thomas Octave, associate professor of music at Saint Vincent College. The performances are supported in part by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.
PHOTO 1: Korean-Canadian clarinetist Yoonah Kim
PHOTO 2: Canadian pianist Kevin Ahfat
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