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Meet Professor Malinee Jayasinghe-Peris

 

Open Strings NWA

Sri Lankan-born Malinee Peris, Coordinator for Keyboard Studies, teaches at The George Washington University as an Adjunct Professor of Music. In addition to teaching piano, she coaches Chamber Ensembles. Professor Peris began her formal music training at the age of 4 and gave her first solo public recital at the age of 12. She studied at the Royal College of Music, London, as an Associated Board Scholar, where her teachers were Lance Dossor (piano), Isolde Menges (violin), Dr. Ivor James (chamber ensemble) and Dr. Herbert Howells (harmony and composition). The musician who had the most influence on her performance and musical education was Hungarian-born virtuoso Louis Kentner, who was her teacher and mentor for over 20 years.

Prof. Peris was a prize winner at the International Chopin Competition in Warsaw, Poland, and her career as a concert pianist has encompassed recitals in London, Amsterdam, Brussels, Cologne, Lisbon, Mexico City and Montreal. Ms. Peris was invited by the Secretary General of the United Nations to play at the concert marking the 22nd anniversary of Human Rights Day in the General Assembly Hall of The UN.

She has toured the People’s Republic of China, the former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia and has played extensively in Asia and Australia. Her tours in 1996 and 1997 included concerts in England, Belgium, and Germany; both solo recitals, and concerts with an European piano quartet which she had formed. Her invitations to music festivals have included the 1983 Prague Spring Festival in Czechoslovakia. She has played with major American orchestras including appearances at Lincoln Centre and Wolf Trap as well as with orchestras in Europe, Israel, and Australia.

Prof. Peris conducted a program of lectures on Britain’s independent television station ITV entitled “Music as an International Language” and has recorded for the British Broadcasting Corporation and Germany’s radio and television network. She has been a frequent performer on Belgium’s “Radio Three” program.

In February 1993, Prof. Peris was honored by the country of her birth when the President of Sri Lanka bestowed on her the title of “Kala Keerthi,” the country’s highest award for excellence in the arts. The Sri Lanka Foundation of America has presented Ms. Peris with a Lifetime Achievement Award in November 2007.

Among her other activities, Professior Peris has reviewed for the Washington Post and is on the board of “Dumbarton Concerts,” which, in addition to its chamber music series operates the “Inner City-Inner Child” program for the benefit of disadvantaged children in the city.

Ms. Peris has produced 5 CD recordings of her work. Her first CD, “Ravel/Debussy” was released in 2002. Her second, “From Portugal to Brazil” was released in 2003 featuring Portuguese and Brazilian piano music. Regarding this CD, the American Record Guide says “she plays with a refinement and depth of sonority beyond the grasp of the recent competition.” A CD of Spanish and Mexican works entitled “From Spain to Mexico” was released in 2005. Her fourth CD featuring special musical pieces for children; entitled “A Child’s Garland of Music” was released in September 2007. These CDs are managed by Brioso Records.

As a breast cancer survivor, Ms. Peris found that playing some of Chopin’s works became especially meaningful to her during her treatment. And so a fifth CD was created featuring these works, entitled “A Journey from Darkness to Light with Chopin” produced by Amico Artists in 2010.

Ms Peris is a Steinway Artist.

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