Mar 14, 2009

duo parnas

duo parnas has established itself as an extraordinary musical force with flawless and amazing ensemble. Its performances include a wide range of double concerti with orchestra, an expanding repertoire of duo literature, piano and string trios, quartets and more. This season these teen-aged phenoms of duo parnas, Madalyn and Cicely Parnas, have performed duo concerti with the New York String Orchestra conducted by Jaime Laredo, the Albany Symphony Orchestra conducted by David Alan Miller, and the Catskill Symphony Orchestra led by Charles Schneider. They have given recitals at the Grand Montgomery Chamber Series, the Hewitt Pantaleoni Series at SUNY Oneonta, the Renaissance Musical Arts Series, among others. They were awarded 1st prize in the 2008 International Chamber Music Competition at Weill Recital Hall and in the 2008 NYASTA Solo Competition, and are recording their second CD, following the release of their highly successful debut CD. duo parnas will give the premier of Brian Fennelly's "Sigol for Two", a duo written for them, which earned 1st prize at the New York Composer's Circle Competition. duo parnas’ pedigree boasts grandfather Leslie Parnas, one of the greatest of living cellists, winner of the Tchaikovsky Competition and founding member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, as well as their equally remarkable uncle, Richard Parnas, who served as principal violist for the National Symphony Orchestra for 35 years.

Seventeen-year-old violinist, Madalyn Parnas, revealed a robust musical personality early, earning top competition prizes in violin, voice, and piano by age 10. Now a veteran performer, she has performed more than thirty concerti with orchestra. Miss Parnas is described by critics as "a dazzler" and "a show-stopper", who displays "breathtaking dexterity achieved with effortless grace... technical virtuosity... [and] emotional maturity far beyond her age." Madalyn is a college junior earning the highest academic honors. She studies with renowned violinist James Buswell at the New England Conservatory. Madalyn plays a violin made in 1687 by Gioffredo Cappa.

Sister cellist Cicely Parnas, 15, has also performed over 20 concerti with orchestra. She, too, made known her extraordinary talent early, soloing with orchestra and taking 1st prize, the youngest winner ever, in the Berkshire Scholarship Competition at age 9. A seasoned performer and an exciting young artist, Miss Parnas has earned critics' endorsements as a player "possessed of prodigious technique and an Olympic gymnast's poise" who charms the listener with "an astonishing mix of pungency and finesse." Cicely, a freshman in college, studies with Peter Wiley. She plays a William Forster cello made in 1790. Together Madalyn and Cicely are chamber music students of Peter Serkin, with whom they will present several trio concerts later this season, including the opening of Music Mountain's 80th year on Sunday, June 14, 2009.