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Flutist Seetha Shivaswamy and Canadian pianist Graham Yates once again team up to present a unique and exciting twist on the typical classical music concert. Building on the success of their previous program, Cliches and Contrasts, they now present a lighthearted program that showcases the elegance of traditional European composers paired with an adventurous exploration of pop music, improvisation... and some surprises! Seetha & Graham delight audiences with their playful interaction and virtuosic technique. With a warm, personal approach to performing, these musicians create a friendly atmosphere that engages listeners and sends them home with a sense of fun and wonder.
Seetha Shivaswamy, flute
Seetha performs as a soloist and chamber musician in concerts throughout Europe, Asia, and North America. She has toured the USA with Global Rhythms World Music Ensemble, performed as a guest flutist with the Orquesta Sinfonica in Monterrey, Mexico, and performed a solo flute recital at the Hong Kong City Centre.
She has toured internationally with and recorded for Grammy/Oscar winning composer A.R. Rahman, and is the featured flutist on his single 'Pray for Me Brother' written for the United Nations. Her flute playing can also be heard on NYC-based experimental artist DJ Spooky's album 'The Secret Song', the soundtrack to 2012 film 'Bernie' starring Jack Black and Shirley MacClaine, the UK feature 'Bombil and Beatrice', released at the Cannes Film Festival in 2007, and on the soundtrack for Terrence Malick's film 'To The Wonder', starring Ben Affleck and Rachel McAdams. She has been a featured performer at South by Southwest Music Festival, Fusebox Festival, SAARANG at IIT Madras, and Austin Chamber Music Festival. Seetha's flute playing can also be heard on several recordings for PBS documentaries, TV commercials, and video games.
Seetha holds a Master's Degree from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor's Degree from Ball State University, where she studied classical flute performance with Karl Kraber and Julia Larson Mattern. She has a certificate in contemporary flute technique and improvisation from her studies in Europe with the Dutch Flute Virtuoso Wil Offermans. Other mentors include Emmanuel Pahud of the Berlin Philharmonic, Ransom Wilson of Yale University, Edward Beckett of London Symphony Orchestra, and many other esteemed flute pedagogues. Seetha has done research and practice in yoga, Alexander Technique, Indonesian gamelan, Indian classical music, and various other modalities related to performance and education.
Seetha is a faculty artist with Austin Chamber Music Center, mentors students at the El-Sistema inspired program Austin Soundwaves, and maintains an active private flute studio. She is proud to be a resident of Austin, Texas, the live music capital of the world.
Graham Yates, piano
Graham Yates entertains audiences from the west coast to the third coast. Hailing from British Columbia, Canada, Graham hit the ground running in Texas in 2014. He performs for operas, choirs, churches, and – most importantly – house concerts that he hosts in West Lake and Wells Branch.
As a collaborative pianist, Graham gives concerts alongside his esteemed colleagues who are vocalists, string players or other instrumentalists. Their performances range from profoundly moving (such as Arvo Pärt's Spiegel im Spiegel) to worthy of a stand-up comedy routine (his own Spam Songs). He can weave together a program that is traditional or contemporary and always entertaining, as in the words of one attendee: his concerts are “a truly magical experience that stay with you long after the concert is over."
Graham Yates holds a BA in piano performance from Trinity Western University in Langley, British Columbia, and a Master of Music with an emphasis in piano accompaniment from Brandon University in Manitoba, Canada. He owns North Austin Piano Studio and teaches upwards of 30 students per week, ranging from age 4 to senior citizen. He is highly in demand as a pianist for professionals and students alike. He has judged regional and provincial competitions in his native British Columbia, and has recently booked tours in South Texas and Louisiana.