New classical concert series curated by GVSU faculty member showcases piano-based chamber music on campus and throughout West Michigan

A new classical concert series curated by a Grand Valley State University piano faculty member will present chamber music in venues both on campus and at locations throughout West Michigan.

The inaugural GV Piano Chamber Series will showcase more than a dozen musicians, including several GVSU faculty members, in a series of free, open-to-the-public concerts. The performances start September 20 at the Haas Center for Performing Arts on GVSU's Allendale Campus and extend into 2022.

The series will feature the totality of German composer Johannes Brahms' chamber music work written for piano and other instruments, segmented into six programs, said Sookkyung Cho, the associate professor of piano for GVSU who curated the series. Besides the on-campus location, the off-campus concert venues include locations in Grand Rapids as well as along the lakeshore.

Sookkyung Cho stands next to a piano, which also reflects her image.
Sookkyung Cho said she wants to present beautiful music to the community using some of the most beautiful pianos in West Michigan.
Image Credit: Kendra Stanley-Mills

Cho will be joined by musicians playing violin, viola, cello, clarinet and horn. These acclaimed musicians have vast experience performing at venues across the globe; many also are current members of, or have appeared, with symphony orchestras in West Michigan.

BrahmsFest, as the series is called, is an opportunity to present piano-based chamber music on some of the most beautiful pianos in the West Michigan area, Cho said.

"This will give us a rare opportunity to explore one composer's musical world throughout the year, and Brahms' chamber works are some of the most beautiful music ever written," Cho said. "The timing also just seemed perfect to me -- chamber music is all about coming together, being in harmony with one another, and conversing with each other. 

"Most of all, I would just love for audiences to indulge in and enjoy beautiful music."

Find out more about the series and schedule by visiting the GV Piano Chamber Series website.

Watch Sookkyung Cho talk about her love for both playing and teaching piano