FLORENCE – The Francis Marion University Artist Series will present, in a free concert open to the public, Barbara and Gerhardt Suhrstedt, piano duettists on Jan. 20 in the Kassab Recital Hall, Hyman Fine Arts Center, at 8 p.m.
The Suhrstedts are one of America’s few touring one-piano, four-hand teams. They will present “Slava: The Glory of the Arts in Tsarist Russia,” featuring Russian music, art and poetry from the 1800-1917 historical period.
Critics describe the musicians as performing with "astounding uniformity and precision." The Suhrstedts presented their first piano duet concert in 1979. Since their 1982 New York debut, they have performed in 40 states, in Canada, and in Russia. Their May 1998 concert at the Grand Palace in Peterhof (a summer palace of the Romanov Tsars) brought them a standing ovation.
“Slava: The Glory of the Arts in Tsarist Russia” continues the Suhrstedts' innovative and acclaimed tradition of multimedia presentation, incorporating the poetry and visual art with the music of Russia during a time when Russia gave the world some of her greatest artists. Only with the end of the Cold War have many of these artworks begun to be appreciated outside of Russia.
The Suhrstedts will also be performing in Florence County schools the week following the concert, including a three-day musical residency at Royall Elementary. It has been five years since they last performed in Florence.
Barbara Fetrow Suhrstedt is a native of Ohio and graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. Gerhardt Suhstedt is originally from Charleston, S.C., and a graduate of Furman University. The couple met and married while completing graduate study at Boston University’s School for the Arts.