Faculty Artist Series

Duo MemDi to perform Feb. 25 at Luther College

Formed on the fundamentals of memory and diversity, Duo MemDi will take the stage at 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 25, in Noble Recital Hall in Luther's Jenson-Noble Hall of Music.

The Faculty Artist Series performance by Luther College Assistant Professor of Music Igor Kalnin, violin, and Rochelle Sennet, pianist and associate professor of piano at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is open to the public with no charge for admission.

The concert begins with "Et in terra pax" for solo violin, Op. 97 by Salvador Brotons, followed by "Gathering Shatters, Quasi Rhapsody for Violin and Piano" by Anton Prischepa and "Zigeunerweisen," Op. 20 by Pablo de Sarasate. Following an intermission, the performance will conclude with Sonata for Violin and Piano No. 1 in F minor, Op. 80, by Sergei Prokofiev.

Kalnin and Sennet formed Duo MemDi in the summer of 2010 when they were faculty members at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan. Their concert pieces are all performed by memory, as they believe it allows them "to connect with composers' ideas in a more profound and insightful way." The duo also strives to bring more diversity and inclusion into their work.

An internationally-known soloist, chamber musician and orchestra leader, Kalnin relocated to the United States in 2004 from his native Russia. In addition to being a leader for several orchestras on the East Coast and in the Midwest, he currently is the Concertmaster of Sinfonia da Camera in Urbana, Illinois. At the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, he serves as the Concertmaster of Blue Lake Festival and Opera Orchestras and conducts Advanced Chamber Orchestra. He received his undergraduate diploma from Balakirev Music College and his graduate and postgraduate diplomas from Glinka State Conservatory, both in Russia. He has an Artist Diploma from Yale and a Doctor of Musical Arts from Michigan State University.

Sennet is an established performer, teacher and scholar, showing her prowess on the keyboard with her performances of Bach, Beethoven, Pulitzer-Prize winning composer George Walker and African American composers H. Leslie Adams, Jeffrey Mumford and James Lee III. A co-winner of the Krannert Center Debut Artist Competition, Sennet was a national finalist at the Music Teachers National Association Steinway & Sons Young Artist piano competition and was a prize winner at the Kingsville International Piano Competition, San Antonio Tuesday Musical Club Piano Competition and the U.S. Open Music Piano Concerto Competition. Sennet received a Bachelor of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, a Master of Music from the University of Michigan, Artist Diploma from Texas Christian University and a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Illinois.

Luther is home to one of the largest collegiate music programs in the nation, with six choirs, three orchestras, three bands, two jazz bands and more than 800 student musicians. Luther students participate in large ensembles, faculty-coached chamber groups, private lessons and master classes. Nearly 275 music majors study music theory, ear training, history, education, composition, jazz, church music and performance.