Kadisha Onalbayeva to Perform at Carnegie Hall

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MOBILE, Ala. – Steinway Artist and professor of piano at University of Mobile Dr. Kadisha Onalbayeva will make her Carnegie Hall debut June 6. She is the first pianist from Kazakhstan to be named Steinway Artist and spearheaded the 2016 campaign to make University of Mobile an All-Steinway School.

Onalbayeva will perform at 8 p.m. on June 6 in Weill Recital Hall in New York City. Tickets are available at carnegiehall.org. She also invites the public to a preview performance of her Carnegie Hall program June 1 at 5:30 p.m. at Steinway Piano Gallery, 11247 US-31, Spanish Fort.

Born in Kazakhstan, Dr. Onalbayeva began her musical training at the age of five and attended the Jubanov Special School for Talented Children in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Since that time, she has performed around the world from Central Asia and Europe, to South America. She completed two master’s of music degrees at the University of New Orleans in both composition and piano performance. She is an accomplished recitalist, chamber musician, composer, and orchestral soloist, and has won awards around the world.

She carefully selected pieces for her Carnegie Hall debut to showcase her range and expertise as one of the best pianists in the world. Beginning with her own arrangement of Amazing Grace, Dr. Onalbayeva will guide her audience through an evening that will include pieces by classic composers such as Beethoven and Tchaikovsky, as well as pieces by personal friends. She will perform Lawrence Moss’ Ligeti Light, which is dedicated to her, and a piece by her husband and composer, Michael Coleman. She will also include pieces that pay tribute to her home of Kazakhstan, like her original piece Think…Together and Russian composer Sofia Gubaidulina’s Chaconne.

This opportunity comes on the heels of Dr. Onalbayeva’s December performance on the Van Cliburn Steinway Piano. Texan and virtually unknown pianist Van Cliburn earned his status as a world-renowned musician in 1958 when he won the inaugural International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow, Russia – an event in which Onalbayeva’s late father was in attendance.

“My father always said he was the best pianist he ever heard – and encouraged me to be a pianist like Van Cliburn,” Onalbayeva says.

Making history as Kazakhstan’s first Steinway Artist, she credits much of her success to her father’s encouragement in her formative years – and Van Cliburn’s example was central to that encouragement.

“To perform on his piano,” she says, “was a dream come true, and this is another dream that I get to fulfill.”

University of Mobile is an All-Steinway School and offers a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and a Master of Music in Piano Performance. Additionally, there are numerous performing and visual arts degrees offered through the Alabama School of the Arts at University of Mobile.



About University of Mobile:
University of Mobile is a Christ-centered liberal arts and sciences institution with a vision of higher education for a higher purpose, founded to honor God by equipping students for their future professions through rigorous academic preparation and spiritual transformation. Core values are: Christ-Centered, Academically-Focused, Student-Devoted and Distinctively-Driven. The university offers on-campus and online bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in over 40 areas of study. Founded in 1961, University of Mobile is affiliated with the Alabama Baptist State Convention and is located 10 miles north of Mobile, Alabama on a campus of over 880 acres. For more information about University of Mobile, visit the website at www.umobile.edu or call Enrollment Services at 1.800.WIN.RAMS or 251.442.2222.

About the Author

Rivers Brunson

Rivers is an experienced writer and an alumna of University of Mobile. She graduated in 2015 and holds a Bachelor of Science in Communication. She returned to University of Mobile professionally as marketing communications specialist in 2017. She also hosts a podcast with Bellum Creative Group called Due South about Southern arts and culture. A Grove Hill, Alabama native, Rivers fell in love with the city of Mobile as an undergraduate student and now calls it home; however she takes frequent trips to see her family who are NAMB church planters in Livingston, Montana. She has a lovable golden retriever named Cooper.

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