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Mount Vernon Music features husband-wife piano duo

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Mount Vernon Music invites the public to attend “It Takes Two” – an extraordinary program of music for piano and piano four hands at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday in MVM Hall. Husband and wife pianists Evan Mitchell and Natsuko Ejiri will perform works by J.S. Bach, Debussy, Saint-Saens, Dvorák, Ginastera, Ravel, Stravinsky and Piazzolla. Piano enthusiasts and lovers of music in general should not miss this pianistic tour de force by two outstanding artists in perfect sync with one other.

Tickets are $10 for MVM members, $15 for non-members, and $5 for college students with valid ID. Children's admission through high school is free. (8th grade and younger must be accompanied by an adult ticketholder.) Memberships in MVM start at $25 and support all the organization’s work, including scholarships for young musicians and outreach work for schools and seniors. Memberships are good for the year June 1 through May 31, and members receive discounts on ticket pricing. Details can be found at MVM’s website.

For more information call Mount Vernon Music at 903-563-3780, or visit www.mountvernonmusic.org.

Mount Vernon Music is a 501(c)(3) organization formed in 2005 to further the performance of classical and other fine music in rural East Texas. For information on the mission and concert schedule of Mount Vernon Music, and about historic Mount Vernon Music Hall, please visit www.mountvernonmusic.org.

Lauded for his “impassioned and vigorous” playing (Pianomania), pianist Evan Mitchell has established himself as a bold and versatile artist. His richly varied schedule of over 50 appearances per year includes solo recitals, concerti, chamber music, outreach, and orchestral keyboard work. His performances have been deemed “incredibly beautiful” (Fanfare), “amazing” (Fort Worth Weekly), and “no less than stunning” (Lima News). Evan’s new recording of world premieres with bassist Szymon Marciniak is earning rave reviews; most recently, Bass World called their performances “intoxicating,” deeming this “a seminal recording.” He is also featured on the 2012 release “Piano de Pampa y Jungla: A Collection of Latin American Piano Music.” 

Evan’s performances have been heard in New York’s Steinway Hall and Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, in ten countries on four continents, and broadcast on WFMT (Chicago), WFHB (Bloomington), Classic FM 94.7 (Shanghai), and televised in North Texas. Recent highlights include debuts for the prestigious Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts (Chicago), at Merkin Concert Hall (NYC), and at several major venues in Shanghai.

Evan has soloed in concerts with such ensembles as the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, Fort Worth Symphony Orchetra, Lima Symphony Orchestra, Victoria Symphony, Sherman Symphony Orchestra; worked with conductors including Jaap van Zweden, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, Case Scaglione, Darryl One, Crafton Beck, and Richard McKay; and collaborated in recital with major artists including clarinetists Corrado Giuffredi and Michael Webster, flutist Leone Buyse, double bassist Gary Karr, plus members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the symphony orchestras of Cleveland and Rio de Janeiro (OSB). The 2016-17 season finds Evan opening the Sherman Symphony Orchestra season in October (Brahms, Concerto No. 2), playing everything from Bach and Beethoven to Stravinsky, Piazzolla, and klezmer on the Mount Vernon Music chamber series, and much more.

A passionate and articulate advocate for the arts, Evan looks constantly for ways to reach new audiences, and to inspire in others a love for music. The Texas Commission on the Arts recently named Evan to its Texas Touring Roster, a program that provides grants to nonprofit presenters in order to fund performances by the state’s finest musicians, poets, visual artists, and more. This season,

Evan returns for a fifth year as a featured artist for Cliburn in the Classroom, the signature educational outreach program of the Cliburn, which exposes more than 30,000 public school students annually to classical music and for which he has given more than 150 performances. Other performance affiliations include Avant Chamber Ballet and DFW-based Open Classical, whose motto – “Music that’s dressed down, not dumbed down” – summarizes a mission to present classical music in less formal, unconventional spaces. Evan’s enthusiasm for the music of our time is reflected in recent world premieres of works by Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Frank Proto, Shang Lu, and Stacy Garrop, several of which have been recorded and released commercially.

Among other honors, Evan has captured first prize in the Kingsville International Young Performers Competition, Five Towns Competition, PianoTexas International Festival Concerto Competition, and the Twelfth Annual Competition in the Performance of Music from Spain and Latin America, in which he was also awarded the Jacques Klein Prize for Best Performance of a Brazilian Solo Piano Work. He won Fifth Prize at the 2012 World Piano Competition, and has received additional recognition in the Schmidbauer International Young Artists Competition, Music Teachers National Association Competition, and the BNDES International Piano Competition

Evan won a special audience award in the final concert of the 2009 PianoFest series (Freiburg, Germany), and was featured in the Rising Stars

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MVM has klezmer for its next concert

A program of klezmer and klezmer-inspired music  will be performed by Orchard Ensemble at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 18, in Mount Vernon Music Hall, 402 Leftwich St. in Mount Vernon.

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Top Christmas movies

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Once again Christmas is here. It will be a time for family, friends and feeling what it was like to be a kid again. One of the best activities is to watch all the Christmas classics with loved ones.

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Local author Mary Brooke Casad joins Young Audiences of Northeast Texas

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Students at the Brook Hill Academy lower school, Bullard, are in for a very special treat. Sulphur Springs resident Mary Brooke Casad, author of the celebrated "Bluebonnet the Armadillo" children's books, will make her first appearance as a Young Audiences of Northeast Texas teaching artist for Brook Hill students in early March.

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Hannah Kirby at Poor David’s Pub on St. Patrick’s Day

“The Voice” finalist and local celebrity Hannah Kirby, with accompanist Kurt Bittner, will perform an acoustic set of special Irish music and select tracks from her debut album “Fire in My Soul” on March 17 at Dallas’ legendary listening room Poor David’s Pub.

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