Prunty and Gray to perform at USD

Prunty and Gray to perform at USD New York soprano Patricia Prunty and University of South Dakota pianist Susan Keith Gray will present a guest recital Monday, Feb. 1 at 8 p.m. in the Colton Recital Hall of the Warren M. Lee Center for the Fine Arts on the USD campus.

The recital, which is a part of a residency sponsored by a Visiting Scholar grant from USD's Office of Research, will include songs and arias by Purcell, Strauss, Schubert, Faure, Ives and several contemporary American composers. There is no admission charge.

Prunty, who will make her Carnegie Hall debut next year, recently received national attention when she appeared in a highly acclaimed Nissan television commercial. One of California's most popular young artists, Prunty has been affiliated with the Los Angeles Opera since 1990. She will present a recital at Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall as a result of her second place award with The Center for Contemporary Opera.

She toured Africa and the Middle East with "Ambassadors of Opera" in 1997. Prunty will return to the L.A. Opera in 1999 for their production of La Rondine. She has been an apprentice for the Santa Fe Opera, a Fellow at the Tanglewood Summer Music Festival and twice an award recipient at the Music Academy of the West.

On the concert stage, Prunty has performed as a featured soloist with the William Hall Chorale, the Irvine Camerata, the American Chamber Symphony, the Fairfield Chamber Orchestra, and the Carmel Bach Festival, among others.

She has also appeared on television as Mother May in The Glory of Easter at the Crystal Cathedral on cable. She was the voice of Carol Lawrence in an episode of the television program Murder She Wrote.

Gray, a member of the popular Rawlin's Piano Trio, teaches solo piano, class piano, pedagogy and collaborative piano at USD. With the trio, she recently recorded four American piano trios for release on CD in 1998 and during the 1996-97 concert season, played the complete cycle of Beethoven piano trios. She has performed with the Spartanburg and Savannah Symphony Orchestras, the Virginia Highlands Chamber Orchestra, and as a professional collaborative pianist with artists.

Gray has served on the Instrumental Accompanying Faculty at the Music Academy of the West and on the staff of national competitions including the American Horn Competition and the Seventeen magazine/General Motors National Concerto Competition.

Gray has received the Accompanist Prize at the Matinee Musicale Richardson Voice Competition and won prizes in the Music Teachers National Association Wurlitzer Collegiate Artist Competition. Gray has degrees in piano performance from Converse College and the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. She earned her doctorate of musical arts in chamber music and accompanying from the University of Michigan.

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