Hawaii Public Radio welcomes the Ardente Duo (violinist Darel Stark and pianist Sachi P. Hirakouji) to the Atherton Performing Arts Studio on Saturday, August 31, at 7:30 p.m. Stark and Hirakouji offer their interpretations of the serene Sonata for violin and piano in G Major Op. 96 by a mature Beethoven and the energetic Sonata for violin and piano in E-Flat Major Op. 18 composed by a youthful Strauss before delving into his symphonic work. The concert also gives audiences a rare opportunity to enjoy the Atherton’s magnificent Bösendorfer grand piano. Tickets can be purchased online or by calling 808.955.8821 during regular business hours. Tickets for the Ardente Duo’s evening of chamber music are $30 general, $25 for HPR members, and $15 for students with ID. The Atherton Studio is located at Hawaii Public Radio, 738 Kaheka Street
Violinist Darel Stark is also a violist, composer, conductor and educator. Since his debut at age seven, he performed on three continents including concerts at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center and Weill Recital Hall. He is concertmaster of the Bach Chamber Orchestra, teaches violin and orchestra at the Honolulu Waldorf School, and chamber music at ʻIolani School. With the Honolulu Symphony for sixteen years, he is associate principal violin of the new Hawaiʻi Symphony Orchestra. Born in New York City, he graduated from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University and studied violin with Nicole DiCecco, Lazar Gosman and Berl Senofsky. His many accolades include prizes at international competitions in Italy and Switzerland, a TIME Magazine College Achievement Award, two Friedberg Prizes in chamber music from Peabody, and prizes in over a dozen local and national competitions. He recorded for Beauport Classical, Musica Baudino, CBS Masterworks, and SONY Classical.
American-born Japanese pianist Sachi P. Hirakouji holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from the University of Washington. After completing her Bachelor of Music in piano performance at the Kunitachi College of Music in Tokyo, Dr. Hirakouji worked as a certified piano teacher for YAMAHA, and continued her studies at the University of Hawaiʻi, where she received her Master of Music degree in piano performance under Peter Coraggio. She has performed as a chamber musician and featured soloist with the University of Hawaiʻi Symphony Orchestra, the Hawaii Opera Theater, the University of Washington Symphony Orchestra, and South Shore Chamber Orchestra. Dr. Hirakouji has performed in Master Classes with Paul Badura-Skoda, Hiroko Nakamura, Carla Giudici, and Frank Heneghan. Her vast collaborative and accompanying experience allowed her to work with the prominent musicians in diverse fields, such as the world-renowned violist Paul Coletti, the master of the Mongolian horse-head fiddle Bo Li, and the choral conductor/composer Abraham Kaplan. She is an active and passionate chamber musician, as well as involved in charity and outreach concerts. Dr. Hirakouji currently serves as the Academy Choir accompanist for Punahou School and plays for their five choirs.