88SQUARED, the piano duo of married pianists Jeffrey and Karen Savage, won the Ellis Piano Duo Competition and the Abild Prize for American Music. 88SQUARED has received critical praise from Singapore's The Straits Times, American Record Guide, and Fanfare magazine. Praised as "gifted pianists" by David DeBoor Canfield of Fanfare Magazine and "a composer's dream" by Lowell Lieberman, their performances have been called "fearless" (The Straits-Times) and "joyful and inspiring" (American Record Guide). The duo's performances have been broadcast on internationally syndicated programs, on National Public Radio stations across the US, and on Vietnamese Public Television.
88SQUARED premiered Lowell Liebermann's Sonata for Two Pianos (2012), written for the duo, in Singapore, New York City, Washington, and Canada. They were subsequently invited by the composer to record his complete two-piano works on Albany Records. Their recording of Daniel Ott's two-piano works was released on PARMA/Navona Records in 2019 and has been broadcast on national NPR stations. Advocates of new music, Karen and Jeff have given international premieres of new works by Daniel Ott, Heather Schmidt, Ryan Hare, and William Hirtz, and frequently work with living composers.
The duo won second prize and a Special Mention Award at Concours Grieg International Competition in Norway, where they performed with members of the Oslo Philharmonic. 88SQUARED has been featured at Carnegie Hall's Weill Hall, New York’s Lincoln Center, Yong Siew Toh Conservatory (Singapore), Ho Chi Minh Conservatory (Vietnam), MusiQuest National Piano Festival (India), Victoria Conservatory of Music (Canada), Chamber Music America Showcase (California), University of British Columbia Recital Series (Vancouver), and Music Teachers National Association and National Federation of Music Clubs national and state Conferences in Orlando, DC, Florida and Iowa, New York City, and Chicago.
Jeffrey and Karen both completed masters and doctoral degrees at Juilliard. Their major teachers include Yoheved Kaplinsky, Angela Cheng, Jonathan Feldman, Margo Garrett, Rudolph Barta, and Robin and Winifred Wood. Their students have won state and regional competitions, and enjoy diverse and successful careers in music. Jeff and Karen are frequently invited to adjudicate and give presentations for MTNA and have given masterclasses at such universities as Brigham Young University, Indiana University, University of Oregon, Wuhan Conservatory, and Eastman. After serving on WSU's piano faculty since 2005, Karen and Jeffrey recently joined the piano faculty at UMKC Conservatory (University of Missouri-Kansas City), where they live with their young son.
Fall 2021: (Karen) CD Release: Works by Women Composers for Oboe and Piano, with Celeste Johnson. Works by Dranishnikova, Fine, and Bacewitz.
Fall 2021: Premiere of Mathew Fuerst’s Piano Trio, with Hyeyung Yoon and Gregory Beaver, UMKC Conservatory. Date TBD
October 2021 (Karen): Recording premiere of Jim Stephenson’s Sonata for Oboe and Piano, with oboist Keri McCarthy and composer serving as producer. Washington State University Recording Studio
June 21-25, 2021 (Jeff and Karen): UMKC Summer Piano Festival. Lessons, masterclasses, workshops.
June 17-19, 2021 (Jeff and Karen): Featured Guest Artists: 2021 Virtual State Conference of WA State Music Teachings Association (WSMTA)
April 26-30, 2021 (Karen): Collaborative Piano Residency at Wichita State University. Collaborative piano workshops, cooachings, and masterclasses with School of Music piano students.
April 7, 2021, 7:30pm: (Jeff and Karen): Recital with TK Dewitt, KC Symphony Associate Principal Bassoon. White Recital Hall, UMKC Conservatory.
Spring 2021: (Jeff) Solo Piano Recital, Ruel Joyce Virtual Concert Series, Johnson County Community College, Kansas. Works by Debussy, Rachmaninoff, and Bach. Featuring artwork by Lakewood Elementary School fourth graders, inspired by the music
March and April 2021: Visiting Artists. WSMTA Music Artistry Program. Seattle Eastside and South King County, WA.
January 2021: UMKC Chopin Festival- Masterclasses, workshops and lessons with Karen and Jeff.
July 21, 2020. Young Artists Piano Camp, Wirth Center (Minneapolis and St. Cloud, MN) (Jeff, online workshop)
June 19-21, 2020. Washington State Music Teachers Association – State Conference Guest Artists (cancelled due to Covid-19)
June 8-10, 2020. UMKC Summer Piano Festival, UMKC (online in 2020)
April 5, 2020. Lincoln, NE, Friends of Chamber Music trio concert with Hyeyung Yoon, violin, and Gregory Beaver, cello (Karen, cancelled due to Covid-19)
April 2, 2020. University of Kansas, trio concert with Hyeyung Yoon, violin, and Gregory Beaver, cello (Karen, cancelled due to Covid-19)
April 1, 2020. UMKC, world premiere of Mathew Fuerst trio with Hyeyung Yoon, violin, and Gregory Beaver, cello (Karen, cancelled due to Covid-19)
March 19, 2020. Stowers Center, with KC Symphony violinist Kathy Berry (Karen, cancelled due to Covid-19)
February 12, 2020. Kansas City Symphony League (Karen, with Michael Mermagen, cello)
January 10, 2020. University of Oregon masterclass
January 9, 2020. Beall Concert Hall, University of Oregon
November 11, 2019. Ruel Joyce series, Johnson County Community College, with KC Symphony violinist Kathy Berry (Karen)
October 18, 2019. Horowitz Piano Celebration, UMKC Conservatory. Hirtz - Wizard of Oz Fantasy (duo), Rachmaninoff (Jeff), and piano ensemble pieces with UMKC faculty and students
June 23-28, 2019. WSU Summer Keyboard Explorations
Saturday, March 2, 2019, 8pm. Jeffrey Savage, piano: Three Sketches for Piano by Ryan Hare. Karen Savage with Keri McCarthy, oboe: Sonata for Oboe and Piano by Jim Stephenson
March 1, 2019, 8pm. Songs by Jim Stephenson. Karen Savage, piano with Julie Wieck, soprano
March 1-2, 2019. WSU Festival of Contemporary Art Music, Bryan Hall Theatre
February 19, 2019, 8pm. Karen Savage, piano with Shannon Scott, clarinet. Works by Kenji Bunch and Victor Babin
February 8, 2019, 8pm. Jeffrey Savage, piano and Solstice Wind Quintet. Tuille Sextet for piano and winds
October 24, 2018, 7:30 pm. Brigham Young University School of Music, Provo, Utah. 88 squared piano duo recital. Works by Brahms, Liebermann, and Saint-Saens
October 23, 2018, 7:30 pm. Utah Valley University, Orem, Utah. 88squared piano duo recital. Works by Brahms, Liebermann, and Saint-Saens
October 5, 2018, 8 pm. WSU Kimbrough Concert Hall. 88squared duo piano recital. Three sets of variations on Classical themes by Brahms, Liebermann, and Saint-Saens. https://events.wsu.edu/event/faculty-artist-series-88-squared/
September 21, 2018, 8pm. WSU Bryan Hall Theatre. Jeffrey Savage with Sophia Tegart, flute.
September 14, 2018, 8 pm. WSU Bryan Hall Theatre. Jeffrey and Karen Savage with Martin King, horn, and Chris Dickey, tuba and euphonium
September 16, 2018, 4pm. Wallowa Valley Festival of Arts Closing Concert. Josephy Center, Joseph, OR. Karen Savage with Leonard Garrison, flute; Shannon Scott, clarinet; Mark Eubanks, bassoon; and Lauren Nebel, oboe. https://wallowavalleyarts.org/arts-festival
June 10, 2018, 6pm. McCall Music Society Second Sundays at Six, Community Congregational Church, 901 N. 1st St, McCall, Idaho. Symphonic Works for Two Pianos, 88squared duo piano recital. Works by Debussy, Rachmaninoff, Brahms, Dvorak, Shostakovich, and William Hirtz. mccallmusicsociety.org/second-sunday-sounds/
April 13, 2018, 8pm. Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time. Jeffrey Savage, piano; Meredith Arksey, violin; Shannon Scott, clarinet; Ruth Boden, cello. Kimbrough Concert Hall, Washington State University.
March 3, 2018, 8pm. WSU Festival of Contemporary Art Music Guest Composer Concert: Jeffrey Savage, piano. Laura Schwendinger's Van Gogh Nocturnes.
March 1, 2018, 8pm. WSU Festival of Contemporary Art Music Faculty Composers Concert. Karen Savage, piano; Ann Yasinitsky, flute. Gregory Yasinitsky's Concertino.
February 25, 2018, 4pm. Palouse Piano Quartet Recital, University of Idaho Haddock Recital Hall. 88squared with Mauchley Duo.
February 17, 2018, 3pm. Steinway Gallery of Spokane, Palouse Piano Quartet Recital. 88squared with Mauchley Duo. steinwayspokane.com/news-events/
January 18, 2018, 8pm. WSU Faculty Artist Series, Bryan Hall Theatre. Karen Savage, piano; Keri McCarthy, oboe; Sophia Tegart, flute. Works by Laura Kaminsky and Ingrid Stoetzel.
November 14-19, 2017. MusiQuest National Piano Festival of India. 88squared: performance at Adjudicators Concert, workshop, and adjudicators for Ensemble Division. academyofmusicpune.com/MQ/2017/musiquest2017postfest.html
October 12, 2017, 8pm. Karen Savage, piano; Chris Dickey, tuba. WSU Faculty Artist Series: Hidden Gems for Tuba and Piano, Bryan Hall Theatre.
September 26, 2017, 8pm. Karen Savage, piano. Julie Wieck, voice. WSU Faculty Artist Series: We Are America. Bryan Hall Theatre.
June 11, 2017, 6pm. McCall Music Society Second Sundays at Six, Community Congregational Church, 901 N. 1st St, McCall, Idaho. Karen Savage, piano; Ann Yasinitsky, flute.
June 9, 2017, 7:30pm. Wuhan Conservatory, China. Jeffrey Savage, soloist, Liszt's Totentanz, conducted by Danh Pham. Jeffrey Savage piano masterclass with Wuhan Conservatory students
May 12, 2017, 7 pm, Ho Chih Minh City Conservatory Concert Hall, Vietnam. Featuring the Asian Premiere of Daniel Ott's Fantasy on a Falling Line and works by Saint-Saens, Liebermann, and Hirtz.
May 5, 2017, 7 pm, Portland Piano Company, 711 SW 14th Ave, Portland, OR. Featuring the West Coast Premiere of Daniel Ott's Fantasy on a Falling Line and works by Saint-Saens, Liebermann, and Hirtz.
April 5, 2017, 7:30 pm, Fordham University Lincoln Center Campus, 12th floor lounge, 113 W. 60th Street, NYC. Featuring the world premiere of Daniel Ott's Fantasy on a Falling Line and works by Saint-Saens, Liebermann, and Hirtz.
January 29, 2017, 3 pm, Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox. Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 9. Shostakovich Piano Quintet in G Minor. Karen Savage, Spokane String Quartet: Mateusz Wolski (first violin), Amanda Howard-Phillips(second violin), Jeannette Wee-Yang (viola), Helen Byrne (cello)
June 26-July 1, 2016 WSU Summer Keyboard Explorations, Pullman, WA
April 8-9, 2016, Beethoven Sonatas Recital, Workshop, and Masterclass with Jeffrey Savage, Kitsap Music Teachers Association, WA.
March 1, 2016, 8 pm, Bryan Hall Theatre. Martin King, horn and Karen Savage, piano
February 10, 2016, 8 pm. Bryan Hall Theatre. Liszt’s Totentanz. Jeffrey Savage, piano, with WSU Symphonic Banc conducted by Dr. Danh Pham
February 2, 2016, 8 pm, Bryan Hall Theatre. Sarah Miller, trombone and Karen Savage, piano
January 29, 2016, 8 pm, Bryan Hall Theatre. Cantiamo! WSU Faculty Voice Ensemble with Karen Savage
January 16. 2016. Snohomish County Music Teachers Association YAMS Workshop, Everett, WA. Karen Savage
Nov. 7, 2015, 10 am. Illinois State Music Teachers Association Conference, Piano Duo Masterclass
Nov. 6, 2015, 7:30 pm. Illinois State Music Teachers Association Conference Guest Artist Recital, Chicago, IL, Moody College.
Nov. 6, 2015, 10:45 am. Illinois State Music Teachers Association Workshop: Teaching Collaborative Piano, Chicago, IL.
October 29, 2015, 8 pm. Kimbrough Concert Hall. 88squared recital and Liebermann CD release. Recital program: Liebermann Lullaby no. 2, Saint-Saens Variations on a Theme by Beethoven, Poulenc Sonata for Two Pianos, Shostakovich Concertino, and Liebermann Daydream and Nightmare for 8 hands with Jerry Berthiaume and Michelle Mielke.
October 17, 2015, 10am. Snohomish County Music Teachers Association YAMS Workshop, Everett, WA. Karen Savage
September 25, 2015, 8 pm, Bryan Hall Theatre. Palouse Trio: Jeffrey Savage, piano; Meredith Arksey, violin; Ruth Boden, cello, Giselle Hillyer, viola. Shostakovich Trio no. 1, Piazzolla Four Seasons, Faure Piano Quartet in G minor.
September 17, 2015, 8 pm, Bryan Hall Theatre. Hindemith Sonata for Bassoon and Piano. Hindemith Sonata for English Horn and Piano. Poulenc Trio for Oboe, Bassoon, and Piano. Jeffrey Savage, Karen Savage, Keri McCarthy (oboe) and Ryan Hare (bassoon)
Bach-Vivaldi Concerto for Organ in a minor Benjamin, Arthur Jamaican Rhumba Bolcom, William The Serpent's Kiss Brahms, Johannes Sonata Op. 34b Variations on a Theme by Haydn, Op. 56b Debussy, Claude Prélude à l’aprés-midi d’une faune (arr. by composer) Grieg/Mozart Sonata in C minor, K. 457 Hsiao, Tyzen Fantasy-Waltz, Op. 38 Khatchaturian, Aram Ostinato Liebermann, Lowell Sonata for Two Pianos (2011) Lutoslawski, Witold Variations on a Theme of Paganini (1941) Milhaud, Darius Scaramouche (1945) Mozart, W. A. Sonata in D, K. 448 Ott, Daniel Pieces of Reich (2004, rev. 2008) premiere Rachmaninov, Sergei Fantasy, Op. 5 (Suite no. 1) Suite no. 2, Op. 17 Symphonic Dances, no. 1 Ravel, Maurice La Valse Rzewski, Frederic Winnsboro Cotton Mill Blues Schmidt, Heather Centaurus A (2008) premiere Shostakovich, Dmitri Concertino, Op. 94
Bach, J. S. Concerto in C major Bartok, Bela Concerto for Two Pianos, Percussion, and Orchestra Mozart, W. A. Concerto in Eb Major, K. 365 Mendelssohn, Felix Concerto in E Major Saint-Saens, Camille Carnival of the Animals
Bartok, Bela Sonata for Two Pianos and Percussion Brahms, Johannes Liebeslieder Waltzes, Op. 52, piano 4 hands w/ vocal q’tet Orff, Karl Carmina Burana (for piano 4 hands, percussion and choir)
Barber, Samuel Souvenirs Brahms, Johannes Hungarian Dances (selected) Liebeslieder Waltzes, Op. 52 Bizet, Georges Jeux d’Enfants (selected) Debussy, Claude Petite Suite Dvorak, Antonin Legends (selected) Slavonic Dances, Op. 46 and 72 (selected) Faure, Gabriel Dolly Suite, Op. 56 Hirtz, William Wizard of Oz Fantasy Mozart, W. A. Sonata in D Major, K. 381 Sonata in Bb Major, K. 358 Poulenc, Francis Sonata Ravel, Maurice Ma mere l’Oye Schubert, Franz Fantasy in F minor, D. 940 Schickele, Peter (PDQ Bach) Sonata Inamorata Stravinsky, Igor Five Easy Pieces Three Easy Pieces Tchaikovsky, Peter The Nutcracker Suite, Op. 71a (arr. Eduard Langer)