Sotto Amore Duo

Stepan Rudenko, piano, and Sheena Gutierrez, violin, are two virtuosos from San Francisco, CA and Miami, FL respectively. They met in Boston, MA while completing their studies at New England Conservatory and Boston Conservatory. Since then, Stepan and Sheena have dreamed of inspiring people with their love and passion for music.

Can you both give us a brief bio?

SG: Well originally I’m from Bolivia, but I live in Miami Florida. And afterwards I went to college in Boston at the Boston Conservatory and that’s where I met Stephan who went to the New England Conservatory.
We met thru a friend of mine Grace Kwan who was another violinist and he became my accompanist. Then this past summer we decided we should take it to the next level and start performing as a duo.

SR: I was born in Kyiv, Ukraine, and at 11 years old I moved to California. After graduating high school I felt my math and science skills weren’t my strongest areas of study so I decided to keep my piano playing going. That’s also when I decided to audition for New England Conservatory had some really great amazing teachers there that nourished and encouraged me. I hadn’t done much accompanying until I met Sheena, plus there’s a lot of repertoire for Violin and Piano so we set off from there.

An American in Paris – for two pianos – George Gershwin

How did you get introduced into music?

SG: Out of my whole family I was the only one pursuing a career in music, my introduction to music was thru the public school systems here in Miami, Florida. I started in 4th grade playing the violin: I remember when I was around that age that I saw many kids with violin cases walking around, and I said to myself I want to do that.

SR: When I was 6 years old my mother applied me to the same school my older sister went to. She had majored in Piano, Guitar and Voice. So I kind of followed in her footsteps. My mother wanted us to be musical but not necessarily do it as a career.

Do you have any musical or artistic inspirations?

SG: Well I think there’s one personally, Grace Kwan who I met at the Boston Conservatory and found on facebook earlier on and saw she was going to the Conservatory. So when we met I found out she was a totally different character than anyone else which I liked, the way she expresses the music, it’s something I wanted to do and am still slowly working up to that.

SR: I’m really inspired by my family and my mother, she never had any musical background but had danced a little bit when she was young but nothing professional.  The courage and the interest she has for things and the drive never made me doubt myself, and made me realize that in music you don’t need talent, you just need to have that pure drive.

Could you both describe yourself in 5 words?

SR: Driven, Overly-Optimistic, Sensitive, Adaptable, Fighter

SG: Realistic, Prepared, Social, Hard-Worker, Believer

Currently there are rehearsing in SF for May and June Tour Dates in the Tri-City Area and beyond.

You can visit there website, facebook and twitter accounts to find out more about there upcoming tour and musical adventures.

Sotto Amore Duo Website
Sotto Amore Facebook
Sotto Amore Twitter

What Next?

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