Argentine Tango: Winnie Cheung and Ben Bogart of Cuarteto Tanguero
Jan 19 @ 7:00 pm
Argentine Tango: Winnie Cheung and Ben Bogart of Cuarteto Tanguero @ PianoForte Studios

Ben Bogart and Winnie Cheung first encountered tango music through the dance’s incredible portrayal of emotion and intimacy, and have since joined forces to spread tango beyond Latin America and make it more accessible for everyone. Each has performed all over the world, alongside Grammy and Tony winners and world-famous musicians and orchestras. As part of the band Cuarteto Tangeuro, their 2018 release “Guapeando” hit the Top 10 on the Billboard’s World Music Chart

Ben is a bandoneón player who specializes in Argentine Tango music. He holds a degree from Berklee College of Music, and a certificate from the Orquesta Escuela de Tango Emilo Balcarce. While living in Argentina for six years, he studied alongside the greats: Nestor Marconi, Rodolfo Mederos, Carlos Lazarri, and Marcos Madrigal. As a soloist, Ben has performed with orchestras, string quartets, and tango groups. He is currently the sitting President of Tanguero Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to building tango audiences and promoting self-expression through tango.

Winnie is a pianist who has a love for both the dance and music of tango. She hails from Hong Kong, and holds a B.A. in Music from the University of Chicago, and a M.M. and D.M.A. from the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York. As a composer, Winnie has won several awards including the prestigious Brian M. Israel Prize from the Society for New Music, and collaborated with the likes of Augusta Read Thomas, Louis Andriessen, and others. She has taught composition and orchestration at the Eastman School, as well as music theory at the Music Institute of Chicago and the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University.

Ben and Winnie share their knowledge at festivals and workshops across the United States, and have developed online classes to teach the next generation of tango aficionados.

Schubertiade | Presented by the PianoForte Foundation
Jan 26 @ 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Schubertiade | Presented by the PianoForte Foundation @ PianoForte Studios

The PianoForte Foundation will be hosting its annual Schubertiade, a celebration of Franz Schubert’s life and music.

Performances to include the hilarious Wedding Roast trio, the rare epic Die Bürgschaft, the Harper songs and many other favorites, ending with a group sing-along of An Die Musik.

Musicians to include:
Ariana Strahl – soprano
Ashlee Hardgrave – soprano
Carl Alexander – soprano
Sarah Ponder – mezzo-soprano
Gregory Peebles – tenor
Pete Wesoloski – baritone
William Roberts – bass-baritone
Eugenia Cheng – piano

An intimate evening with Greg Spero to benefit John’s Hopkins & Northwestern
Feb 14 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
An intimate evening with Greg Spero to benefit John's Hopkins & Northwestern @ PianoForte Studios

All ticket sales will benefit both John’s Hopkins & Northwestern Feinberg School of Medicine to help further advance multiple sclerosis research.

Duo Terra: Four Hands Piano Recital
Feb 22 @ 7:00 pm

Olga Ridgway
Pianist Olga Rikova Ridgway has delighted audiences internationally with depth of musicality and technical brilliance. Originally from Tashkent, Uzbekistan she graduated from Tashkent State Conservatory and subsequently studied at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, Belgium. Moving to Chicago in 2003, she studied at the Chicago College of Performing Arts, receiving an Artist Diploma in piano and Master’s in Piano Performance. Olga received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Northwestern University. She studied with Ludmila Lazar and Alan Chow in Chicago, and Genya Paley in New York City.

Olga was awarded numerous prizes and awards including first prize at the Union League Competition, she was a prizewinner at the Thaviu-Issak Piano competition, Ibla Grand Prize International Piano Competition, Musician Club of Women Piano Competition (Farewell Award) and Central Asian Piano Competition.

Olga has performed as recitalist, chamber player and orchestral soloist in Belgium, Germany, Austria, Italy and throughout the United States. Most recent appearances include performances at the Chicago Cultural Center, Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Merkin Hall in New York City and Carnegie (Weill) recital hall.

Sarai Buchanan
Native Chicagoan,
Sarai Buchanan makes her home in Harlem, having earned her Master of Arts degree in Piano Performance from the City College of New York, where she studied with Alison Deane. She has also studied with New York-based pedagogue, Genya Paley. She holds an undergraduate degree from the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University in Chicago. As a soloist and collaborative artist, Sarai has appeared at several international music festivals including the International Music Academies in Cremona, Italy and Regensburg, Germany (2011), and the Orfeo Music Festival in Vipiteno, Italy (2012-13). Additionally, she has performed at New York’s Merkin Hall and Shephard Recital Hall through the City College of New York, where she has participated in chamber and solo recitals.

Julia Siciliano: Piano Recital
Mar 24 @ 3:00 pm
Julia Siciliano: Piano Recital @ PianoForte Studios

Award-winning concert pianist, Julia Siciliano has been heralded as a musician with “fabulous creative power” by the Bonn General-Anzeiger. Ms. Siciliano has become a well-respected and anticipated rising talent on the world stage, being invited as a solo artist by many prestigious orchestras, and festivals, most recently with the Motor City Symphony. A winner of many local and international piano competitions, Julia has won top prizes at the Heida Hermanns International Competition, Iowa Piano Competition, MTNA National Competition, and Beethoven Sonata Competition. Active as a chamber musician, Julia has been invited to perform with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra Chamber Players, and has given numerous recitals with Metropolitan Opera stars Amanda Pabyan, Eric Owens, and Marina Domashenko.

Julia has an active performing career in both solo and chamber music capacities across stages in North America, Central America, Europe, and Asia. She has performed multiple times live on Chicago radio station WFMT, Detroit’s historic Scarab Club, Cincinnati Music Hall, the Bulgarian Consulate in New York City, Kioi Hall in Tokyo, Teatro Falcone Borsellino in Ragusa, Italy, Orpheum Theatre in Sioux City, Iowa, Teatro Nacional of Gautemala, Parvis de l’église Notre-Dame d’Espérance in Cannes, Chateau Haute Sarpe in St. Emilion, and Deutsche Telekom Headquarters in Bonn.

Her debut solo album “Dream Catchers”, a two disc album featuring small scale works by Beethoven, Schumann, Schubert, Ravel and Debussy, released in 2016 to great acclaim. Fanfare Magazine declared “this release has merit as a career milestone” and leaves “no doubt about the devotion and seriousness of Siciliano’s approach to music.” Gramophone Magazine praised her “fine technique and natural musicality” pinpointing her “masterful delicacy, harmonic motion, and timing” in Debussy’s Images II.

Siciliano holds degrees from the Eastman School of Music, where she studied with Nelita True, and the University of Michigan, where she studied with Logan Skelton.

Jose María Usandizaga
Valses Nobles et Sentimentales
Don Pedro Albeniz
Variaciones Brillantes para Piano Forte Sobre el Tema favorito “Mira, oh Norma, ai tuoi ginocchi” de Bellini
Logan Skelton
Civil War Variations
Après une Lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata
Keri Johnsrud & Kevin Bales Present the Music of Fred Rogers
Apr 25 @ 8:00 pm
Chicago­-based vocalist Keri Johnsrud and GRAMMY nominated pianist Kevin Bales have come together once again for the release of their latest project Beyond the Neighborhood: The Music of Fred Rogers. Johnsrud and Bales have succeeded in reimagining and rearranging the music that has been heard by numerous generations on the beloved children’s television program Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. The songs, which up until now were specifically tailored for a child’s ear, are now presented as reinvented gems that are wise and wistful, simple but not simplistic, and even, in some cases, a bit sultry. In this collection, Mister Rogers’ songs not only relate to adults; they seem to have been written for adults in the first place.

“It pays tribute to Fred Rogers’ music and spirit in a fashion that glows with respect and carries over some of the powerful messages of the show itself. It’s delicate and moving and one of the highlights of the year’s music so far.” – Michael Bailey, All About Jazz

Keri Johnsrud

Kevin Bales
Chad Lawson – re:piano
Apr 30 @ 7:30 pm
Chad Lawson - re:piano @ PianoForte Studios

A Steinway artist with multiple #1 releases, Chad Lawson has a different approach to classical music; don’t make it classical.  

His 2018 release, re:piano, pushes the envelope of the piano ’sounds’ like with the album composed of loops, effects and layers of textured landscapes.  all from a piano. Lawson was invited to share his approach to re:piano on NPR’s Weekend Edition with Scott Simon and continues to garner press across the Globe.

In 2015, his release The Chopin Variations, caught the attention of CBS TV’s Sunday Morning,  NPR’s All Things Considered and PRI’s Performance Today.  Along with the violinist from Lady Gaga and the cellist from Kanye West, the trio has turned the classical world on its head as it has ‘deconstructed Chopin’ into a modern-day/minimalist landscape. The Huffington Post called it “Intricate elegance” while NPR’s All Things Considered said “You haven’t heard the Polish composer performed the way Chad Lawson plays him.”  Lawson simply wanted to re-introduce Chopin to the Spotify generation.  The generation where genres no longer apply.  The generation that hears only two styles of music; good or bad.

Chad is the official composer for the Amazon television series, Lore, in addition to the podcast titled the same. His music has also been used for The Walking Dead, Vampire Diaries, Viceland and numerous commercial placements have included clients such as IBM, Microsoft, Purina, Delta Airlines, USB Financial, Asprey of London and many more.

U.S. Tour Dates:

April 28, 2019 – Cathedral of the Incarnation / Garden City, NY

April 30, 2019  –  Pianoforte Foundation / Chicago, IL

May 8, 2019  – The Herbst Theatre / San Francisco, CA

US Media Contact:

Karen Lee @  Evolution Promotion

Text 617.285.1243 E:

“Evolution Promotion introduced the magic of Ludovico Einaudi to the US and his success story continues to defy musical boundaries around the globe. We are thrilled to embark on a new journey with extraordinary talent,

Chad Lawson, who is inspiring the Spotify Generation with his unique musical genius”  – Evolution Promotion