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Two Harbors pianists perform in 'Monster Concert'

From left: Grace Swanson, 13; Olivia Hendren, 13; and Eli Symons, 10, performed in the University of Minnesota Duluth's "Monster Concert." Courtesy photo

Three piano students from Two Harbors performed in the 1st Annual University of Minnesota Duluth Piano Monster Concert on Tuesday, Jan. 23.

A "monster" piano concert is a large, multi-piano event — an ensemble of pianos rather than band or orchestral instruments. Two grand pianos and six upright pianos were arranged in a semi-circle on stage.

Eli Symons, 10; Grace Swanson, 13; and Olivia Hendren, 13; were among the 31

performers on the program. Each pianist prepared in advance two duets from the event repertoire list.

The participants had one dress rehearsal with their ensemble on the evening before the concert. Piano teachers from Duluth and surrounding areas received an invitation from the UMD Piano

Monster Concert director, Tracy Lipke-Perry, welcoming all ages and abilities. Each ensemble

consisted of K-12 students as well as college students and piano professionals. From "Chopsticks" to Gershwin's "Prelude No. 1," the program included a wide variety of genres and composers.

The purpose of this event was to help students hone their ensemble skills, to hear new pieces, to play with friends and to perform in Weber Music Hall.

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