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Love Is In the Air... and KPR's Live Performance Studio

Destiny Ann Mermagen (violin), Hyunsoon Whang (piano) and Michael Mermagen (cello) perform their Valentine's Day arrangement for KPR Members.
Chuck Smith
Kansas Public Radio
Destiny Ann Mermagen (violin), Hyunsoon Whang (piano) and Michael Mermagen (cello) perform their Valentine's Day arrangement for KPR Members.

KPR Members were recently invited to the KPR Live Performance Studio for a very special (and romantic) occasion: a small concert with Evening Classical's Destiny Ann Mermagen and guests, pianist Hyunsoon Whang and cellist Michael Mermagen.

A curated Valentine's Day arrangement left guests swooning and allowed Destiny to showcase her talents on the other side of the radio microphone. Listen in to the afternoon's performance here and in the videos below.

When she isn't hosting KPR Evening Classical program, Destiny Ann Mermagen, also known as the Classical Cowgirl, offers a unique combination of the classical tradition alongside American folk music.

As the winner of international competitions and performance awards, Destiny Ann has appeared as violin soloist and chamber musician in many prestigious venues across the United States, in Russia, Prague, and elsewhere in Europe. Regional performance concert halls include Kennedy Center stages, Strathmore Hall, and New York City’s Carnegie Hall. A native of Rapid City, South Dakota, Destiny Ann performed regularly with the Black Hills Symphony and Chamber Orchestras. During the summer of 2002, Destiny Ann was selected on full-scholarship to participate in the National Symphony Orchestra’s Summer Music Institute.

In 2003, she was a featured soloist at the American String Teachers Association Convention in Columbus, Ohio. Throughout the last two decades, Destiny Ann has been involved in various musical and educational productions around the world, including those with the National Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, and many more.

Born in Seoul, South Korea, Hyunsoon Whang began her piano studies at the age of four and started playing public concerts at age twelve. Since then she has delighted audiences in hundreds of concerts across the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia. Critics have praised her as “the kind of player who appears to immerse her entire being in the music,” and as one who has “always delivered with grace and beauty.”

Her recent engagements have included solo recitals, appearances with orchestra, chamber music concerts and master classes in California, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Utah and Reykjavik, Iceland. As an educator, she has nurtured and inspired generations of students of all ages. Her piano students have garnered top prizes at regional and national competitions and received scholarships and fellowships from prestigious institutions. She has been on the faculty at Cameron University since 1993.

Cellist Michael Mermagen (M.M. The Juilliard School, B.M. The Peabody Conservatory of Music) is Professor of Cello at UMKC Conservatory of Music and Dance. For over 25 years, he has served as Artist Faculty and Chamber Symphony Principal Cellist of the Aspen Music Festival and School.

Michael has toured and given recitals, concerto performances, master classes and chamber music performances around the world, including the Grand Canyon Music Festival and Prince Albert Music Festival in Kauai. He currently lives in Prairie Village with his wife, Destiny Ann Mermagen.

All biographies courtesy of the artists.

Enjoy more of the performance in the videos below.

Additional content from the KPR Live Performance Studio can be found on our YouTube channel.

Interested in being invited to future events like this? Become a KPR Member for exclusive access to private events at the link here.

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