Igor Kalnin, Luther College assistant professor of music will give a recital at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 16 in the Noble Recital Hall of the Jenson-Noble Hall of Music on the Luther campus. Kalnin will perform on the violin in a chamber ensemble Duo MemDi.
The recital is open to the public with no charge of admission. The first half, dedicated to music by African-American composers, includes a program of C.C. White’s Lament, Op. 12, No. 2, H. Leslie Adams’ Intermezzo for Violin and Piano and the world premiere of J. Lee III’s Sonata No. 2 for Violin and Piano. There will be a short intermission followed by Beethoven’s Sonata for Piano and Violin in C Minor, Op. 30, No. 2 and L. Paganini "La Campanella." Arranged by F. Kreisler.
Duo MemDi was founded by Kalnin, violin, and Rochelle Sennet, piano, in the summer of 2010 while they served as faculty members at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan. Their objective is to perform music that embraces the diversity of world cultures, focusing on commissioning and performing the music of composers from underrepresented groups. All of Duo MemDi’s live performances are presented from memory, a rare feat in the world of chamber music. They memorize the music because they believe that it allows for a performer to connect to the composer’s ideas in a more holistic and insightful way. These foundations are the inspiration for the name Duo MemDi, pulling from the words memory and diversity.
Kalnin has performed internationally as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestra leader. He began his career as a faculty member at the Glinka State Conservatory in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, and later joined Chamber Orchestra Kremlin in Moscow. After relocating to the United States in 2004, Kalnin served as a violin instructor at Yale University and as a leader for several orchestras across the East Coast and Midwest. Currently, he serves as assistant professor of violin at Luther College and as Concertmaster of Sinfonia da Camera in Urbana, Illinois. He also spends his summers teaching at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan, where he also serves as Concertmaster of Blue Lake Festival and Opera Orchestras as well as conducting the Advanced Chamber Orchestra.
Sennet has established herself as a well-known performer, professor and scholar. Her recital programs showcase her versatility with frequent performances of works by Bach, Beethoven and African American composers such as H. Leslie Adams, Jeffery Mumford, James Lee III and Pulitzer Prize winner George Walker. She was a co-winner of the Kranert Center Debut Artist Competition, a national finalist at the Music Teachers National Association Steinway & Sons Young Artist piano competition and a prize winner in numerous competitions across the world. She currently serves as associate professor of piano at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Kalnin has received his Doctor of Musical Arts from Michigan State University, his artist diploma from Yale University, a graduate diploma from Glinka State Conservatory and his Bachelor of Music from Balakirev Music College. Sennet has received a Bachelor of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, a Master of Music from the University of Michigan an 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 five choirs, three orchestras, three bands, two jazz bands and nearly 800 student musicians. Luther students participate in large ensembles, faculty-coached chamber groups, private lessons and master classes. More than 275 music majors study music theory, ear training, history, education, composition, jazz, church music and performance.