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Two Piano Recital at A. C. Pianocraft, Inc.

- Classical and Cultural Connections

Two Piano Recital
By Arlene Portney and Marisa Sieiro
A. C. Pianocraft, Inc.
333 West 52nd Street
NY, NY 10019
Ask for Alex or Ted
(See a Showroom, Piano Restoration Tour,
and Owner Interview at A. C. Pianocraft, Inc.)

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
June 11, 2005


Student Recital:

Bach: Prelude and Fugue XXI. Performed by Amanda Mei.

Debussy: Dr. Gradus Ad Parnassum. Performed by Jessica George.

Grieg: Concerto in A minor, 1st Movement. Performed by Alysse Burroni.

Two Piano Recital:

Brahms: Variations on a Theme by Haydn, Op. 56.

Rachmaninoff: Suite No. 2, Op. 17, Introduction, Waltz, Romance, Tarantella.

Arlene Portney has toured through North and South America and Europe. She won the Prix Beracasa Award in Oaris, France, making her the first woman pianist to win first prize in a major competition. Ms. Portney, a graduate of Julliard and Yale University has studied with famed artists such as Sascha Gorodnitzki, Artur Rubenstein, Robert Casadesus and Nadia Boulanger. She has recorded many works with artists including, Eugene Fodor and John Corigliano. (Program Notes).

Marisa Sieiro began her piano studies at the age of 5 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She received a gold medal upon graduation from Conservatorio d’ Andrea in Buenos Aires at the age of 12. She gave many solo recitals to critical acclaim throughout the Midwest. She also performed as a soloist with the Indiana University Orchestra under the direction of Tibor Kozma. She continued her studies at the Juilliard School with Sascha Gorodnitzki and gave numerous recitals on the East Coast. She graduated from Juilliard. (Program Notes).

The earlier works tonight in this delightful recital at A.C. Pianocraft, where the acoustics are always superb, the pianos are always exquisite in sound, history, and structure, and the wine and cheese are abundant, were performed by students of Arlene Portney and Marisa Sieiro. Amanda Mei is youthful and poised, and her Bach performance was impressive. Jessica George played a rare Debussy work with confidence and fluidity. The Grieg Concerto, played by Alysse Burroni, was enhanced with Ms. Sieiro’s accompaniment for the orchestral background, and both pianists brought rapture to this warm night in late spring.

The Two Piano Recital officially commenced with both Ms. Portney and Ms. Sieiro on two fine, restored Steinways from Alex Kostakis’ extensive collection of one-of-a-kind pianos, and the two performers changed pianos after the Brahms Variations. This work includes passages for contrasting styles of simultaneous themes, played with robust energy and soaring tones. These pianists exuded passion and pride, as they worked collaboratively and creatively.

The Rachmaninoff Suite includes rapid, electrified elements, such as a Viennese Waltz, in the midst of a thunderous theme, and a lively, lyrical Tarantella with racing, repetitive rhythms and engaging embellishments. Most of this piece was actually danceable, by ballet terms, and Ms. Portney and Ms. Sieiro presented maturity and magic, with the progressively building rapture and romance. This was truly a lovely recital, and you can check Upcoming Events on for future concerts and salons at A.C. Pianocraft on West 52nd Street, NY, between 8th and 9th Avenues. You can expect a glass or two of wine, a selection of hors d’oeuvres, and perhaps the best acoustics in town.

First Restored Steinway Concert Grand
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Second Restored Steinway Concert Grand
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

Alex Kostakis with Arlene Portney and Marisa Sieiro
Photo courtesy of Roberta Zlokower

For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at