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Abellimento to perform at Xavier Classics at Noon on April 20

Chicago's premier flute and harp duo perform at Saint Xavier University

Chicago (April 4, 2007) – The 2006-07 Xavier Classics at Noon concert series concludes with a performance by Abellimento, Chicago’s premier flute-and-harp duo featuring Gia Sastre on flute and AnnLaura Tapia on harp, on Friday, April 20, at Saint Xavier University’s McGuire Hall, 3700 W. 103rd St., Chicago.

The performance will include Bach’s Sonata in C Major, BWV 1033; Debussy’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun; Lynch’s Pajaros del Mar: Tango for flute and harp; Mozart’s Andante in C Major, K. 315; Ibert’s Entr’acte and others. This is the sixth and final Xavier Classics at Noon of the 2006-07 academic year at Saint Xavier. The concert is open to the public, and a $5 donation will be accepted at the door.

Long inspired by the classically beautiful pairing of the flute and harp, Sastre and Tapia formed Abellimento with a sincere commitment to exploring the possibilities offered by this duo. Abellimento is the Italian musical expression denoting “an embellishment, ornament or decoration to the music.”

The duo can be heard frequently in concert throughout Chicagoland. In addition to a distinguished record of highly praised recitals, special events and concerts, both women maintain private studios where they train and teach musicians of all levels. The duo’s debut CD, Abellimento, was released in January 2006 and has received much critical acclaim.

A renowned professional flutist, Sastre has been praised by teachers, colleagues and audiences for her beautiful sound, developed technique and natural sense of musicality. Sastre delights audiences with classical performances that display exceptional talent as well as her distinctive interpretation of musical styles.

Having studied with several of the world’s most illustrious and reputable flutists (Eva Amsler, Charles Delaney, Louise Dixon, Stephanie Jutt, Anita Rieder, Christina Smith and Mary Stolper), Sastre holds a master of music in flute performance from DePaul University and a bachelor of music degree from Florida State University. In 1999, she received the Jeanette Humphress Endowed Scholarship for International Flute Study and traveled to London to pursue a resident course of study with Paul Edmund-Davies, principal flutist of the London Symphony Orchestra. She has won several awards for her performances, including a 2006 Musicians Club of Women Farwell Award and the 2006 Suzuki Association of the Americas Scholarship Award for Flute. 

Described as “dazzling” and “elegant” by the Chicago Tribune, Tapia is a highly regarded professional harpist. With her rich sound and innate musicality, Tapia’s mastery of her instrument is rarely matched. While still a student in Toronto, Tapia had the honor of playing for Queen Elizabeth II of England, at the request of Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien. Lauded as an exquisite performer, Tapia entrances listeners with the beauty of her music.

Tapia attended the Interlochen Arts Academy. She studied with Alice Chalifoux at the Cleveland Institute of Music and continued her studies under the tutelage of Judy Loman at the University of Toronto and the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto, where she received her performance diploma. Tapia has also worked with many world-renowned conductors, including Pierre Boulez, Leon Fleisher and Peter Oundjian. 

Xavier Classics at Noon provides 50 minutes of fine classical music to the University and neighboring communities. Since 2005, the series has been supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council.

For more information, please contact the Saint Xavier University music department at (773) 298-3421, or view the concert schedule at www.sxu.edu/music/concerts.asp.


Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1846, Saint Xavier University was the first Mercy college in the United States and is Chicago’s oldest Catholic university. Serving approximately 5,700 students at its campuses in Chicago, Orland Park and its Loop location, the University offers 35 undergraduate majors; more than 40 graduate program options in arts and sciences, business, education and nursing; and a variety of program options in continuing and professional studies. Recognizing Saint Xavier’s excellence in education, U.S. News and World Report has ranked SXU consistently among the Best Colleges in the Midwest.

Saint Xavier University Media Relations: 773-298-3937
3700 West 103rd Street, Chicago Ill. 60655 * 18230 Orland Parkway, Orland Park, Ill. 60467
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