Classical pianist to perform hometown concert at UMPI

6 years ago

PRESQUE ISLE, Maine — Classical pianist Duncan J. Cumming returns home for a concert at the University of Maine at Presque Isle on Tuesday, Nov. 27, at 7 p.m. in the Campus Center.

This event is free and open to the public; donations will be accepted at the door for future cultural events.

Cumming will perform musical works by Beethoven, Joplin, and Chopin, among others. While in Presque Isle, Cumming will also deliver a children’s musical workshop titled “From Bangkok to Bangor” at several area schools.

Cumming has served on the faculty of the University at Albany for more than a decade. He has performed concertos, recitals, and chamber music concerts across the United States and around the world, from England, France, and Denmark to the Czech Republic, Russia and Africa. He has appeared in renowned concert halls including the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., Carnegie Recital Hall in New York City, and the Wallenstein Palace in Prague.

Born in Presque Isle, Cumming graduated Phi Beta Kappa with highest honors from Bates College, where he studied with Frank Glazer. He later received a full scholarship from the European Mozart Foundation and participated in intense chamber music study and performance at the European Mozart Academy in Prague. Upon his return to America, he studied with Patricia Zander at the New England Conservatory, where he received his master of music degree. In May 2003, he graduated with his doctor of music degree from Boston University.

From 2002-2008, Cumming was on the faculty of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute as a teacher, chamber music coach and performer in the position of assistant director and later director of the Young Artists Piano Program. His book “The Fountain of Youth: The Artistry of Frank Glazer,” was published in 2009. In 2010, he received the University at Albany’s College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Award for Outstanding Teaching.

Two recordings came out in 2011, including a solo recording with music of Brahms, Debussy, Satie and Chopin and the chamber music recording “A Book of Hours.” More recently, two new recordings were released: “Threads of the Heart,” a chamber recording, and a historical instrument recording with Christopher Hogwood of the music of Carl Maria von Weber on Weber’s own 1815 Brodmann fortepiano.

In 2018, Cummings’ festival, Youth Movements, received the President’s Award for Exemplary Public Engagement at the University at Albany. He is the pianist of the Capital Trio, that university’s ensemble-in-residence. The trio has performed, lectured, and taught master classes in residencies at Williams College, Crane School of Music, Hartwick College, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, SUNY Oswego, Long Island University, Bates College, Clark University, Marshall University and Cambridge University in England.

Cumming lives in New York with his wife, violinist Hilary Walther Cumming, and his children, Lucy, Mairi and Bear.

For more information, contact UMPI’s Community and Media Relations Office at 207-768-9452 or email

Submitted by the Community and Media Relations Office of the University of Maine at Presque Isle.