​Pianist, Dr. Stephen Cook has dedicated his life to building culture through musical performance, education, and nonprofit leadership. Cook studied under luminary pianists Ursula Oppens, Robert Hamilton, and Eteri Andjaparidze, at DePaul University, Northwestern University, and Arizona State University where he earned his Doctor of Musical Arts Degree. A visionary pianist, Dr. Cook expands the traditional piano recital format with distinctive elements of artistic fusion. His innovative performance projects harmoniously merge music with visual arts, literature and film. Dedicated to cultural development, Dr. Cook founded Oracle Piano Society in 2012. As the organization’s Artistic Director, he has brought together an impressive Artist Advisory Committee, empowered a passionate Board of Directors, and inspired an outpouring of local support. 

Dr. Alyssa Dinega Gillespie is a poet, translator, and literary scholar. She has won top prizes in several international 

competitions for the translation of Russian poetry into English, and her translations have been featured in New England Review, Atlantic Review, Cardinal Points Journal, and Pushkin Review,among others. She recently collaborated with composer Mark Abel on the first-ever solo song cycle of Marina Tsvetaeva’s poems in English (Delos, The Cave of Wondrous Voice, 2020). Gillespie is the author of the scholarly books A Russian Psyche: The Poetic Mind of Marina Tsvetaeva (2001; Russian translation, 2015) and Pushkin’s Poetic Imagination (in Russian, 2021), and the editor of Taboo Pushkin: Topics, Texts, Interpretations (2012). She has worked as a professor of Russian language and literature at the University of Notre Dame and Bowdoin College. Her collection of Tsvetaeva’s poems is forthcoming in the Russian Library series of Columbia University Press.