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Kim Cook, Cello and Carl Blake, Piano
April 16, 2019
Kim Cook, Cello and Carl Blake, Piano

Ludwig van Beethoven

Sonata No. 2 in G Minor, Op. 5, No. 2

Sonata No. 5 in D Major, Op. 102, No. 2

Kim Cook and Carl Blake formed a cello-piano duo at The School of Music at Penn State University.  As finalists in a national competition, they were selected by the U. S. Department of State as Artistic Ambassadors to tour Brazil, Peru, Mexico, Central America, The Dominican Republic, Jamaica, and Barbados.  The duo performed to critical acclaim at Weill Recital Hall (formerly, Carnegie Recital Hall) and Wigmore Hall in London.

KIM COOK, cello

Currently, Ms. Cook is Distinguished Professor of Music at The Pennsylvania State University where she was also awarded Penn State’s inaugural laureate for the 2008-09 academic year.

Hailed as “the superb American cellist” (Die Rheinpfalz, Frankfurt), Kim Cook is acclaimed for her “truly glorious tone” (Musical Opinion, London), “ravishing colors and textures” (New York Concert Review, Carnegie Hall), and “keen awareness of line and style” (The Strad). Ms. Cook has performed as a soloist in the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Finland, Russia, China, Israel, Jordan, Latin America, and throughout the United States. She has toured extensively as an International Artistic Ambassador for the U.S. State Department, presenting concerts and master classes throughout the world.

Cook’s recordings include concertos by Dvorak, Schumann, Lalo, Saint-Saëns, Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Strauss, and Haydn as well as the solo sonatas of Kodaly, Crumb, and Hindemith. In 2016, she recorded a CD of premieres of works for solo cello by Paul Reale for NAXOS.

A graduate of Yale University and the University of Illinois, Ms. Cook studied with Gabriel Magyar, Aldo Parisot, Alan Harris, and Janos Starker. Prior to her current position, she was principal cellist of the São Paulo Symphony (Brazil) under the direction of Eleazar de Carvalho and taught at New Mexico State University.

CARL BLAKE, piano

Carl Blake holds three degrees in piano performance: Bachelor of Music (magna cum laude) from Boston University, Master of Arts from San Jose State University, and Doctor of Musical Arts from Cornell University.  He is the first recipient of the Marian Anderson Young Artist Award (presented by Ms. Anderson herself) that led to a year of private study with Pierre Sancan of the Paris Conservatory of Music.

Mr. Blake has performed three times in Weill Recital Hall (formerly, Carnegie Recital Hall) and has toured in Russia, France, England, Central and South America, and the Caribbean Islands as Artistic Ambassador (along with cellist Kim Cook) for the United States Department of State.

Dr. Blake has received two Fulbright Senior Scholar Awards to lecture, teach, and perform in Honduras: the first, at the National School of Music in Tegucigalpa in 1999 and the second, at the National Conservatory of Music in Tegucigalpa and the School of Music in San Pedro Sula in 2006. Currently, he serves as Director of Music of The Church for the Fellowship of All Peoples in San Francisco.