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Daily Joy: Tango for Cello & Piano

Need a break? How about a beautiful tango featuring a talented young cellist and a jazz legend?

For today’s Daily Joy, enjoy the soothing sounds of “Tango Bittersweet” performed by jazz pianist Fred Hersch and teenage cellist Lydia Rhea.

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Lydia Rhea, 19, (cello), hails from Fishers, Indiana and has just started her freshman year at Cleveland Institute of Music, studying under Melissa Kraut.  She previously studied with Hans Jorgen Jensen at the Music Institute of Chicago. Lydia was the youngest musician to be accepted to the Ecoles d’Art Américaines de Fontainebleau, France on a full scholarship this summer. Lydia has soloed with numerous symphonies, including performing the Dvorak Cello Concerto with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. She is also a member of the Kairos Quartet of the Music Institute of Chicago, which won the Junior Division Gold Medal at the 2018 Fischoff National Chamber Competition.  In her spare time, Lydia enjoys reading and cooking vegan food.

About Fred Hersch:

Every time Fred Hersch sits down at the piano is an act of revelation, discovery, confession and evolution. An exploratory artist, eloquent composer, outspoken activist, influential educator and possessor of one of the most personal and expressive pianistic styles in improvised music, Hersch has led a singular life that has shaped one of the most acclaimed and influential voices in modern jazz. His remarkable and inspiring story is told in his much-anticipated 2017 memoir, Good Things Happen Slowly: A Life In and Out of Jazz, published by Crown Archetype/Random House; in the feature documentary The Ballad of Fred Hersch, which premiered in 2016 to rave reviews; and in the confessional jazz-theater piece My Coma Dreams.

At the forefront of the music for more than three decades, Hersch has earned countless awards and accolades including ten Grammy® nominations, numerous acknowledgments from the jazz world’s most prestigious institutions and publications, and such recent distinctions as being named a 2016 Doris Duke Artist and the Jazz Journalists Association’s 2016 Jazz Pianist of the Year. Hailed by Vanity Fair as “the most arrestingly innovative pianist in jazz over the last decade,” he stands as a defining figure in several different contexts, from breathtaking solo recitals and compelling duos to his gold-standard trios and innovative chamber pieces.

With more than 40 albums to his credit, Hersch can claim one of the most highly praised and consistently striking discographies in jazz history. His latest release, Open Book (Palmetto Records) is his 11th solo recording, capturing the bold adventurousness and intense beauty that have made Hersch one of the music’s most renowned solo artists. He’s also led some of the most peerless trios in jazz; the Wall Street Journal proclaimed his longstanding group with bassist John Hébert and drummer Eric McPherson “one of the major ensembles of our times.”

Parallel with his prolific career in music, Hersch has worked tirelessly over the past several decades as a fervent spokesman and fundraiser for AIDS services and education agencies and as a committed educator, teaching for many years at New England Conservatory; he is currently a Visiting Artist at Rutgers University.

Learn more at www.fredhersch.com

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