Pianists Susan Grace and Steven Beck bring together two distinguished careers. Each has earned recognition as a soloist and chamber musician in the U.S. and abroad. Both artists share a special interest in the vast repertoire for two pianos and the unique collaboration involved in its performance. Their program at Schmitt Music will include works by John Corigliano, Ofer Ben-Amots, Carlton Gamer, Milton Babbitt, Paul Moravec, Stefan Wolpe, and Frederic Rzewski.
In 2013, NY pianist Steven Beck joined forces with Colorado College Artist-in-Residence Susan Grace to reform QUATTRO MANI after the retirement of Alice Rybak. Their first performance was Paul Lansky’s Shapeshifters and Fitkin’s Circuit with the Austin Symphony Orchestra. Such was the chemistry on that occasion, The Austin Chronicle named the Austin Symphony Orchestra with Quattro Mani as one of the Top 10 Classical Treasures of 2013. “On a fine program mixing old and new music, the 21st century works by Fitkin and Lansky struck sparks—the former deliciously mercurial, the latter pleasurably suspenseful.” Other duo performances include the Alabama Symphony, Colorado College Intermezzo Series and Summer Music Festival, Colorado Symphony Drum Show, as well as Subculture, Bargemusic and National Sawdust, all in New York City.
Quattro Mani’s intense involvement with modern repertoire has led to dedications and collaborations with leading composers, including George Crumb, Paul Lansky, Tod Machover, Poul Ruders, Michael Daugherty and Fred Lerdahl. Both Susan Grace and Steven Beck have earned recognition as soloists and chamber musicians and now come together to form one of the most dynamic piano duos before the concert-going public. Quattro Mani records for and is managed by Bridge Records.
Grammy nominated pianist, SUSAN GRACE has performed solo and chamber recitals, and has appeared as soloist with orchestras in the United States, Europe, the former Soviet Union, Korea, India and China. She has, in addition, performed in numerous series and festivals, including the Aspekte Festival in Salzburg, St Paul Chamber Orchestra’s new-music series Engine 408, Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., the Grand Teton Festival, the Cape Cod Music Festival, Festival Mozaic, Music at Oxford, and the Helmsley Festival in England.
Ms. Grace has recorded for Bridge Records, the Belgium National Radio, WFMT in Chicago, the Society of Composers, Wilson Audio, Klavier International and Klavier Music Productions. She was nominated for a Grammy in 2005 in the Best Small Ensemble Performance category and is a Steinway Artist.
Ms. Grace is Associate Chair, Artist-in-Residence and Senior Lecturer in Music at Colorado College and Music Director of the internationally renowned Colorado College Summer Music Festival which is in its 30th season. She has been awarded the Christine Johnson Professor of Music beginning in the fall of 2014.
STEVEN BECK has been described by the New York Times as “an eloquent and persuasive performer of contemporary works”. He made his debut with the National Symphony Orchestra, and has been a soloist with the the Odense Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic Ensembles series, New Juilliard Ensemble, Sequitur, Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players, Virginia Symphony and was recently featured as soloist on the New York Philharmonic’s “Symphonic Sondheim” concert. Mr. Beck has made festival appearances at the Aspen Music Festival, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, the Greenwich Music Festival, the Monadnock Music Festival, the Woodstock Mozart Festival, and the Wellesley Composers’ Conference. His annual performances of Bach’s “Goldberg Variations” on Christmas Eve at the Barge have become a New York institution.
Mr. Beck has worked with composers Elliott Carter, Henri Dutilleux, George Perle, George Crumb, Poul Ruders, Charles Wuorinen and Louis Karchin among others. Mr. Beck is a member of Quattro Mani, a piano duo specializing in contemporary music as well as a member of the Knights, Talea, andPleasure is the Law. His recordings are on the Albany, Bridge, Boston Records, Monument, Mulatta, and Annemarie Classics labels.