Passion for Life fine arts ministry presents The Rice Brothers — Sunday, June 11 at 3:00 PM in the Sanctuary. A freewill offering will be received.
The Rice Brothers, Johnny and Chris, are young Polish-American musicians. Each is an accomplished artist as a pianist, and also as a cellist. They have performed extensively in the United States: in New York City, including their Carnegie Hall debut in 2014 (following each having been named a gold medalist at an international Chopin piano competition), as well as in Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, and in many parts of their native southwest region of the United States. Internationally they have performed in Warsaw, Poland, where they were the featured artists at the June 2014 World Music Day celebration; Vienna and Salzburg, Austria; Munich, Germany; and Budapest, Hungary. Between the two of them, Johnny and Chris have been soloists with The Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Mesa Symphonies, as well as The Symphony of the Southwest.
The Rice Brothers feature a unique blend of classical music, Gospel, jazz, ragtime and boogie-woogie, along with a historical perspective of the great composers and the times in which they lived. They have performed in the widest range of settings, including concert halls, churches, schools and house concerts. Their performances and presentations have been enthusiastically received by audiences of all ages and from all walks of life. They also greatly enjoy working with their piano, cello and violin students in their private teaching studio.
Johnny and Chris have released two CDs, entitled “The Road to Chopin… and Beyond” and “Chopin & Friends.” They have a long-standing love and commitment to Chopin’s music, and the history of which it is a part. In 2015, the Rice family was honored to receive the Polish Heritage Award from the Polish American Congress Arizona Division. Also in 2015, Johnny and Chris were named the Directors for Arizona of the Chopin Foundation of the United States Southwest Council.
Johnny and Chris have studied in the private studio of Robert Hamilton, Steinway Artist and Professor of Piano at Arizona State University. During the summer of 2014, they pursued advanced studies in Europe, working with Johannes Kropfitsch, Director of Piano at The Vienna Conservatory, and also with Stefan Wojtas of the Kraków Conservatory. They were also long-time students of Taki Atsumi, Professor of Cello at Arizona State University and, for 35 years, President of the American Cello Congress. They have also worked in master class and more extended settings with artists such as internationally acclaimed cellist Mstislav Rostropovich; Philip Kawin, Professor of Piano at the Manhattan School of Music; and Eugene Friesen, Grammy Award winning jazz cellist and Professor at the Berklee School of Music.
The Rice Brothers are committed to the expansion of the audience for classical music, and toward this end, spend a great deal of time reaching out to members of younger generations. Their first DVD, entitled “Classical Music and the Beautiful Music in You,” is an introduction to classical music for children. They are also in the process of founding a non-profit corporation, entitled Young Musicians in Service to America, which will emphasize musical excellence and service.
Johnny and Chris understand and are devoted to the profound benefits which the beauty and inspiration of excellently-played music can bring to individuals and to the broader community, with regard to such issues as health, education, and even the effective resolution of conflict. Toward these ends they have formed a corporation, The Beautiful Music Possibility, LLC.