Dian Baker and Eckart Sellheim, 4 Hands|2 Hearts|1 Piano (4|2|1), have concertized together since 1998 in the United States and Europe. Their many years of international performing and collaboration merge in the perfect medium – the piano duo. Baker and Sellheim feel equally at home with mainstream repertoire, music “off-the-beaten path,” and contemporary works for piano four-hands. 4|2|1 has performed the complete four-hand works of Franz Schubert on a variety of pianos and fortepianos. These compositions, along with the complete works of Mozart, Mendelssohn Bartholdy, Schumann, Brahms, and Debussy, form the core of their extensive repertoire. In performances of 18th and early 19th century music, the Duo frequently features fortepianos from their own collection. Recent highlights of 4|2|1’s multifaceted activities include a recital on Clara Schumann's 1827 fortepiano at the Schumannhaus in Zwickau, Germany with a live recording of this concert published on the Figaro label; a performance in 2013 at the Arizona Bach Festival featuring J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concertos transcribed by Max Reger; and a first-ever recording of four-hand works by late-Romantic German composer Carl Reinecke, co-produced with Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Cologne, and released in 2011 on the ARS label to high critical acclaim.
Under the auspices of the U.S. State Department, internationally acclaimed pianist Dian Baker has toured as an Official Artistic Ambassador since 1989, and performed with cellist Roger Drinkall throughout Europe, Latin America, and Asia. Her concert appearances have been broadcast on radio and television in the United States, Germany, Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Japan, and China. Ms. Baker's piano studies were with renowned teachers Reid Nibley, Bruce Sutherland, Marilyn Neeley, Gladys Gladstone, Andrew Campbell, and Caio Pagano. She has been a staff pianist for AIMS (American Institute for Musical Studies) in Graz, Austria, and pursued post-Graduate studies in Collaborative Piano at the Zürich Conservatory in Switzerland. Dian Baker taught at Brigham Young University in the Collaborative Piano area for ten years and served as Principal Pianist for the Phoenix Boys Choir from 2002 until 2014. She holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts from Arizona State University. Ms. Baker has recordings on the Pyramid, Klavier, Sanctus, Tantara, and Wilson Audiophile labels. Her recording of the Piano Trio by Vincent d'Indy in collaboration with clarinetist Charles West and Roger Drinkall was selected by Fanfare magazine as one of the Top Ten recordings of 1998.
Pianist and fortepianist Eckart Sellheim received his musical training in Germany and Switzerland – Adolf Drescher, Gaspar Cassadó and Jakob Gimpel were among his teachers. He was an appointed faculty member at Cologne’s (Germany) two major conservatories, then continued his academic career as an Associate Professor of Piano and Chamber Music at the University of Michigan. From 1989 until 2008, Mr. Sellheim served as Professor and Director of Collaborative Piano at Arizona State University. He has also been Guest Lecturer of Fortepiano and Performance Practice at various music academies in Germany, most notably at the Conservatory in Trossingen, and taught numerous masterclasses in Europe and in the United States. Mr. Sellheim’s active performance schedule has included concert tours in the United States, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, and throughout Europe. He appears regularly on radio programs in Germany and the US. His more than 30 recordings feature him as a piano and fortepiano soloist or in collaboration with internationally known singers and instrumentalists. His recordings of the German Romantic violoncello-piano repertoire on the CBS-SONY label with his late brother Friedrich-Jürgen Sellheim won prestigious awards and widespread recognition, claiming the status of reference recordings.
Mezzo-Soprano Kate Tombaugh originally hails from Streator, Illinois. She has sung professionally with the Santa Fe Opera, Utah Opera/Symphony, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Winter Opera St. Louis, Opera Omaha, Performance Santa Fe, and with the Lexington Philharmonic, Jackson Symphony, Illinois Valley Symphony Orchestra. Upcoming engagements include Kate’s debuts with Indianapolis Opera, portraying lead “Fanny Price” in the American Premiere of Jonathan Dove’s Mansfield Park and with the Paducah Symphony Orchestra as the alto soloist in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. Her recent engagements include performing in Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris with Performance Santa Fe, as “Carrie Pipperidge” in the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel in St. John’s, Newfoundland with Opera-on-the-Avalon, and as the title role in Handel’s Ariodante with Cincinnati Chamber Opera. Kate’s experiences on the stage range musical theater to operetta and opera, from the title role in Massenet’s Cinderella, “Hansel” in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel, “Rosina” in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville, and “Meg Page” in Verdi’s Falstaff, to “Annie Oakley” in Irving Berlin’s Annie, Get your Gun, “Mad Margaret” in Gilbert and Sullivan’s Ruddigore, and Candelas in de Falla’s El Amor Brujo. Kate has premiered numerous works by living composers and is a frequent recitalist, with a strong background in oratorio and choral literature. Competitively, she has received recognition from the Metropolitan National Council Auditions as two-time district winner and third place regional finalist, winner of the Harold Haugh Light Opera Competition, Kurt Weill Foundation’s Grace Keagy award, and winner of the Barry Alexander International Vocal Competition, resulting in her Carnegie Hall debut in Jan 2013. Her one-woman show, “It Just Takes One,” available for future performances, is an entertaining musical that delves into the charming, roller-coaster story of a young woman in her twenties who is busy embarking on a career in opera while struggling to balance her social life. The gently humorous and at-times-poignant narrative is wonderfully woven throughout with apt musical selections that run the gamut from traditional Broadway, classical and opera, to works by contemporary composers. Kate holds a masters degree in voice from the College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) at the University of Cincinnati, and dual undergraduate degrees in English literature and vocal performance from Illinois Wesleyan University. She lives in Murray, KY with her husband, Dr. Steven Weimer, a composer and music professor at Murray State University. For more information, please visit: www.katetombaugh.com
Susanne Murphy holds a B.Mus. in Piano Performance from McGill University and a M.M. in Collaborative Piano from the University of Western Ontario. Susanne coaches and accompanies vocal and instrumental students at UWO and teaches a large studio of piano students at her home in London, Ontario, where she lives with her husband Paul and their four children.