The musical duo of Sara and Kenny may seem like an unlikely pairing of a classical guitarist from Italy with a classical pianist from Brookfield.
The result is not classical music, though. Instead, it’s a laid-back, distinctive collaboration that draws on both of their strengths and creates a sound that is their own. Plenty has happened in both the personal and professional lives of the two of musicians, Sara d'Ippolito and Kenny Reichart, in the last year, including a new album called Familiar Rhythms.
The title is of particular significance to the album, which incorporates a wide array of rhythmic variations. "We're starting to treat the voices as instruments too, right? We've always love polyrhythms... so we love introducing all of those things, especially because they have roots in traditional music, folk music," says d'Ippolito.
While working together as a duo comes with some challenges, Reichart says it allows them to explore more depth of rhythm.
"It's interesting doing this as a duo because in a lot of ways it can feel very restricting, but then in a lot of ways it's also very liberating in terms of like: what can we actually do with two guitars or two instruments and two voices," says Reichart. "We could, I guess, have up to four rhythms or more if we were able to do other things with the instruments happening at the same time... And how can we take advantage of this to make it not sound empty, to kind of take advantage of the space we're working with."
Sara and Kenny will play several concerts in the Milwaukee area over the next week in support of their new album Familiar Rhythms.