Alice Rybak and Susan Grace
The duo piano team Quattro Mani has gained high praise from both critics and audiences for their concerts and recordings. Formed in 1989, Quattro Mani has performed throughout the USA and Europe. The duo's special interest in twentieth century repertoire has led to dedications and collaborations with many composers, including George Crumb, Joan Tower, Paul Lansky, Poul Ruders and Frederic Rzewski. Pianists Susan Grace and Alice Rybak bring together two distinguished careers. Each has earned recognition as a soloist and chamber musician in the United States and abroad. Both artists share a special interest in the vast repertoire for two pianos and the unique collaboration involved in its performance.
Following the release of Quattro Mani's debut CD, A Game of Go, Fanfare wrote: "Grace and Rybak play all of this music with power and intelligence, shaping large expressive phrases. Quattro Mani's blistering performance forms the beating heart of an arresting recital." Quattro Mani's next CD - a recording of George Crumb's music for two pianos - was issued by Bridge Records, and was immediately nominated as "Best Chamber Music CD of the Year" by the International Critics Committee of the Cannes Classic Awards. This CD received Fanfare's "Critics Choice" and highest ratings from France's Repertoire as well as from ClassicsToday.com. About Quattro Mani, the Pulitzer Prize-winning Crumb writes: "The duo piano team Quattro Mani is one of the very finest I have heard. Susan Grace and Alice Rybak are wonderful artists and their performances are both technically and musically superb."
Quattro Mani has been featured on three recent critically acclaimed discs: The Music of Poul Ruders, Vol. 4 (BRIDGE 9143) and Complete Crumb Edition, Vol. 8 (BRIDGE 9155) which was chosen as one of the 'Top 10 CD's' by Amazon.com. Their most recent disc, Harmony for a New World (INNOVA 603) was awarded an 'Editor's Choice' from The Village Voice. Two releases are scheduled for this Spring: A disc of works written for Quattro Mani by composers George Crumb, John Noveck, Paul Lansky, Lance Hulme, Stephen Jaffe and Jed Distler; and Quattro Mani's first orchestral recording, featuring duo piano concertos by Poulenc, Milhaud and Bartok.
ALICE RYBAK is instructor of piano and director of the accompanying program at the University of Denver's Lamont School of Music. The winner of several prestigious competitions and awards, Rybak entered the Juilliard School at age seven, where she studied piano with Herbert Stessin. She has studied piano and chamber music with Menahem Pressler, Abbey Simon, and Janos Starker at Indiana University's School of Music. In demand as both soloist and collaborative artist, Rybak has performed throughout the country, including performances with the Colorado Symphony, Amarillo Symphony, and National Repertory Orchestras as well as appearances at New York's Town Hall and the 92nd Street Y. As the winner of the United States Information Agency's 'Artistic Ambassador' competition, she presented five weeks of concerts and master classes throughout India, Thailand, and Malaysia and has also appeared at the Taipei Arts Festival.She has performed with a wide variety of musicians including violinists Rachel Barton and Dylana Jenson and Metropolitan Opera mezzo-soprano Judith Christin. Ms. Rybak was a member of the Colorado Chamber Players for ten years and was also the pianist of the Denver Trio. In the summer she teaches at Indiana University's School of Music Summer Piano Academy.
SUSAN GRACE has performed solo and chamber recitals, and has appeared as soloist with orchestras in the United States, Europe, the former Soviet Union, China and India. She has, in addition, performed in numerous series and festivals, including the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., the Grand Teton Festival, Music at Oxford, and the Helmsley Festival in England. Ms. Grace and her husband, Michael, have toured with a concert titled Piano Music and Painting; these programs, which include slides of the paintings upon which the piano compositions performed are based, have been presented recently on numerous series, including those at Florida International University, Bucknell University, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, South Dakota State University, the Loveland Civic Music Association, and the University of Lueneburg, Germany. These programs have also been chosen for presentation at national meetings of the College Music Society and the American Musicological Society. Ms. Grace and her husband have presented numerous lecture/concerts sponsored by the American Embassy on American piano music in India. As a collaborative artist, Ms. Grace has performed with cellist Janos Starker, violinists Martin Chalifour, Glenn Dicterow and Jose-Luis Garcia, clarinetist David Shifrin, soprano Martile Rowland and many other internationally known musicians.Ms. Grace is Artist-in-Residence and Lecturer in Music at Colorado College, Music Director of the Colorado College Summer Music Festival and Artistic Director of the New Music Symposium.
"The duo piano team Quattro Mani is one of the very finest I have heard. Susan Grace and Alice Rybak are wonderful artists and their performances are both technically and musically superb."
- George Crumb, composer
"It would be difficult to imagine finer performances than those here. Susan Grace and Alice Rybak of Quattro Mani capture the range and variety of this music."
10/10 "Highest Rating"
(BRIDGE 9105, BRIDGE 9143, BRIDGE 9155)
"Grace and Rybak play all of this music with power and intelligence, shaping large expressive phrases. Quattro Mani's blistering performance forms the beating heart of an arresting recital."
2000 Cannes Classique Nominee
Best Chamber/Solo disc (BRIDGE 9105)
10 de Repertoire
Quattro Mani on Bridge Records, Inc.