Director of Media Relations
AMHERST, Mass. — On Tuesday, April 18, at 8 p.m., Alissa Leiser and John Van Buskirk will present a recital of two-piano and four-hand music by Ravel, McPhee, Britten and Rachmaninoff. The concert is free and open to the public.
Pianist Alissa Leiser currently teaches at Smith and Amherst Colleges. She has performed at the Ravinia Festival, Alice Tully Hall, the Brooklyn Academy of Music and the Dame Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago, and appeared with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, the New Orchestra of Boston and Orchestra New England.
Critics have described Leiser’s playing as having "technical command to spare," "crystalline articulation," and "maturity of communication." She has received prizes in the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra Competition, the Portland Symphony Competition and the Washington, D.C. International Competition.
John Van Buskirk, who was a member of the music department at Smith College from 1986 to 1999, has a special interest in Classical and early Romantic performance practices. He has performed on the fortepiano at the Mostly Mozart Festival, at Carnegie Hall and Merkin Hall in New York City, as well as on National Public Radio.
Van Buskirk was an original member of the Music Today Ensemble in New York City, which programmed music by current composers. The keyboard player for the New York Chamber Symphony, he has performed with the Mohawk Trail Concerts, the Aspen Music Festival and the Lake Winnepesaukee Festival. Van Buskirk is the program director of Art in Avila-Curaçao, in the Netherlands Antilles.