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Yara Gutkin, born in Madrid in 1986, is a Portuguese singer, pianist, composer, and choral conductor with a classical music education and world music influences. She studied at the EMNSC music school in Linda-a-Velha and ESART music school in Castelo Branco, finishing her studies with a Master's in Piano Performance with the highest classification at University of Kansas (KU) in the USA, where she studied with Sequeira Costa and Steven Spooner. At KU, she also studied composition, voice, and conducting with David Neely and Kip Haaheim, and served as teaching assistant in piano. She studied voice with Joana Levy and Maria João Sousa, choral conducting with Henrique Piloto and Paulo Lourenço, and piano with Lidia Lantos, Mariana Cruz, Caio Pagano, and Paulo Álvares.

As a singer, Yara started working professionally at a very young age, doing voice-over work for Disney, as well as myriad publicity spots. She's been a member of Júlio Pereira's band, Duo Gutkin & Queener, and Sunny Side Five. Other artists with which she has sung and recorded nationally and internationally include Mayra Andrade, António Zambujo, Luanda Cozetti, Norton Daiello, Rogério Charraz, Pedro Branco, Antonio Portanet, Diogo Picão, and João Afonso. "MAMA" is her debut album, having come out in March of 2019, a project of reimagined lullabies which she developed and directed with Kent Queener.

As a choral conductor, Yara has directed various choirs, including the Children's Choir of Santo Amaro de Oeiras (CISAO), which she has led since 2011, the Children's and Girl's choir of the Conservatori-Liceu of Barcelona, Oeiras International Choir, which she founded, as well as the ESART student choir. In 2012, she was distinguished with first prize in the Global Youth Music Contest, an initiative supported by the UN, with the piece "Meu Planeta Azul." In 2013, she was honored by the Oeiras Rotary Club for her high artistic merit and notable work with CISAO. She has directed two choir workshops at ESART.

As a pianist, Yara has performed many solo concerts in Europe, the US, and Brazil, as well as performing with orchestras under the direction of Henrique Piloto, Dagmar Kocman, Pedro Figueiredo, and Osvaldo Ferreira, as well as participating in numerous courses and festivals such as the Festival de la Música Española y Latino Americana, the American Liszt Society International Festival, Liszt-Garrison Festival, the Amalfi Coast Music and Arts Festival, the X Semana Internacional de Piano de Óbidos, Dias da Música do CCB, and Festival Búsica. A frequent participant in masterclasses, she has performed for Vitaly Margulis, Adriano Jordão, Filipe Pinto-Ribeiro, Oxana Yablonskaya, Tânia Achot, Tereza Berganza, Pedro Burmester, Jun Kano, Bryce Morrison, Luiz de Moura Castro, Ian Hobson, Elizabeth & Eugene Pridonoff, John Perry, Stanislav Potchekin, Tensy Krismant, and Aldo Ciccolini, among others. She won the ESART Soloist Competition in 2005, and the National Piano Competition of Ourém in 2006. She was a finalist in the Galego-Portuguese Piano Competition "Real Club Náutico de Vigo" and semi-finalist in the Liszt-Garrison Internacional Piano Competition. She's an active pedagogue, having taught in various conservatories as well as working at ESART as a visiting professor.

As a composer, Yara undertook a project to transcribe some of her father Carlos Gutkin's guitar works for solo piano, as well as material from Stravinsky's ballet works. She composes and arranges works for choir, including the notable arrangement of "Meu Planeta Azul," and the original works "O Boneco de Neve," Felipe o Tubarão," "Reefs," and "Deixa Ser a Mais."

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