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Internationally renowned pianist coming to EIU’s Doudna Fine Arts Center


Ralph Votapek to present free concert at EIU Nov. 1

(Charleston, IL) – International acclaimed pianist Ralph Votapek will present a free concert at Eastern Illinois University. The concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday, November 1 in the Dvorak Concert Hall in the university’s Doudna Fine Arts Center—presented free of charge and without a ticket required. Votapek’s performance is presented in conjunction with the 2019 Illinois State Music Teachers Association Conference being held at the university.

As the first winner of the prestigious Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, Votapek’s remarkable career has taken him literally around the world performing with the leading orchestras and conductors. Featured no less than sixteen times as the Chicago Symphony’s guest soloist, Votapek has frequently played with the Boston Pops, also concertizing with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony, and leading orchestras around the globe.

Votapek was the soloist on Arthur Fiedler’s last Boston Pops recording, a Gershwin program released on CD by London Records, and most recently available as part of the Deutsche Grammophon CD titled “The Arthur Fiedler Legacy.” In recent years, Votapek has recorded prolifically for the Ivory Classics and Blue Griffin labels.

Born in Milwaukee, Votapek began his musical education at age nine, when he enrolled in the Wisconsin Conservatory. Continuing his studies at Northwestern University, he subsequently attended the Manhattan School of Music and The Juilliard School. He has served as Artist-in-Residence at Michigan State University, where he is currently Professor Emeritus of Piano at the College of Music. Votapek’s compelling keyboard style embodies all that is best in twentieth-century piano traditions, combining the fire, poetry and tonal warmed of the grand-manner prewar era with the modern-day virtues of clarity and electrifying rhythmic flair.

In addition to presenting the free concert, Votapek will be presenting a masterclass November 2 for ISMTA conference participants.

The Doudna Fine Arts Center is located at 1860 South 7th Street in Charleston on the campus of Eastern Illinois University. Convenient free parking is located near the fine arts center. To arrange accommodations for those needing special assistance, contact Doudna Fine Arts Patron Services at (217) 581-3110 or email

For more information about EIU, or to learn more about its growing assortment of programs and services, visit the university’s website at, or call EIU’s public information office at (217) 581-7400.



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Media Relations
Josh Reinhart, Public Information Coordinator

2142 Old Main
Eastern Illinois University
600 Lincoln Ave.
Charleston, IL 61920
Fax: 217-581-8444

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