The HIRSCH-PINKAS PIANO DUO had its unintended debut at a Valentine's Day Concert at Dartmouth College. Their audience's enthusiasm convinced the two, already married though pursuing separate careers, to continue their collaboration. They made their European debut at the Officina Musicale Scotese in Abruzzo, Italy, and have since performed widely in France, Bulgaria, Nigeria, China, Thailand, Russia and Israel. Hirsch and Pinkas were the only Americans invited to participate at the notable piano festivals of the St. Petersburg Conservatory (2001) and the Ho Chi Minh City Conservatory (2013). In 2015 they performed at the prestigious Cultural Center of the Philippines in Manila and presented masterclasses at the University of the Philippines and the University of Santo Tomas. Other credits include performances for the Apple Hill Chamber Music Center and Monadnock Music in New Hampshire, Music Ninety Eight at the Cincinnati Conservatory, Kfar Blum (Israel), Pontlevoy (France), and PpIANISSIMO (Bulgaria).
Sally and Evan bring to their collaborations virtuosity, passion, and irresistible warmth. They have performed most of the masterpieces for the genre, including works by Mozart, Schubert, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, Debussy, Ravel, and Bartók. Adventurous in their musical explorations, their repertoire also includes rarely-heard works such as Messiaen’s Visions de l’amen and Milhaud’s La création du monde. The Duo has collaborated with, and recorded the works of American composers Daniel Pinkham, Peter Child, Thomas Oboe Lee and Kui Dong for the Arsis, Albany and Otherminds labels. Their close friendship with George Rochberg (1918-2005) culminated in the commission of his monumental Circles of Fire for two pianos, which the two premiered and recorded for Naxos, along with three more discs featuring Rochberg's solo piano works. The Wall Street Journal praised their “exquisite performance” in their recording of Harold Shapero’s Four-hand Sonata, recently released on the UK label Toccata Classics.
Popular with young musicians, Pinkas and Hirsch enjoy interacting with their audience and encourage presenters to schedule Masterclasses and Open rehearsals in conjunction with their concerts. They hold teaching positions at Dartmouth College and Brandeis University, and reside in Medford, Massachusetts.
SALLY PINKAS is Professor of Music and Pianist-in-Residence at Dartmouth College (NH). She holds degrees from Indiana University and the New England Conservatory, and a PhD in Composition from Brandeis University. Pinkas has recorded solo works by Schumann, Fauré, Debussy and Christian Wolff for the MSR, Musica Omnia, Centaur, and Mode labels. Chamber music releases include works by Gaubert and Martinu (Naxos) and Piano Quartets by Mozart and Fauré (MSR). Other recent chamber music collaborators include the Adaskin String Trio, The Villiers and Apple Hill String Quartets, and Ensemble Schumann.
EVAN HIRSCH, an active recitalist and chamber player, holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from SUNY Purchase and a Master of Music from New England Conservatory. In addition to teaching piano and chamber music at Brandeis University (MA), he teaches regularly at Dartmouth College, and has been on the Adult Education faculty at the New England Conservatory. Hirsch has performed with many contemporary ensembles throughout New England, and has recorded for New Albion, MSR and Arsis. His release of Selections from Vingt Regards by Olivier Messiaen (MSR) has garnered significant critical acclaim.