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Scott Kirby Programs

Scott Kirby specializes in American and Pan-American musical genres, combining the worlds of classical, folk, and popular music.

Scott Kirby is available for:

  • Concerts
  • Art Exhibitions
  • School Performances
  • Workshops


  • Master Classes
  • Retirement Homes
  • Lecture-Concerts
  • Residencies

As a performer, Kirby is also an educator, providing historical context and musical insight as programs unfold. As a composer, he combines elements of romantic tradition with classic Americana and rural impressionism. His watercolor paintings draw from traditional American imagery, with their visionary depiction of the Great Plains of North America.


"Main Street Souvenirs"

In Search Of The American Heartland

A theatrical multi-media stage performance featuring live music, a narrative, and a visual component. This visual "projected" dimension of the program will accompany both the narrative and the music nearly throughout, and will consist of my own original artwork, my video footage, some of my photography, and archival photos. The narrative reflects a thematic progression, weaving different ideas about small town American life together with musical, visual and literary examples which illustrate these themes. The music in the first half will span 150 years of "Americana," starting with Louis Moreau Gottschalk, including Scott Joplin, Stephen Foster and John Philip Sousa, and continuing up to the present. The second half will feature original compositions, paintings, photography, literary excerpts and a narrative all exploring historical and visionary dimensions of the American Great Plains and Prairies.

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Traditions of North America, South America & the Caribbean

Scott Kirby specializes in American and Pan-American musical traditions that span 150 years. From the inventive compositions of New Orleans genius Louis Moreau Gottschalk, Classic Ragtime, Cuban Danzas, Brazilian Tangos of Ernesto Nazareth and Creole styles from the Caribbean, to contemporary works by Kirby himself, the Pan-American umbrella is full of color and variety. Kirby weaves these styles together with historical and cultural background that shows the connections and cross-influences that have been occurring in the Western Hemisphere for hundreds of years, and have influenced not only American Popular Music, but also American Classical and Art Music composers.

"Ace pianist."

- Time Magazine, August 1992


"Ragtime and Beyond"

Ragtime, Blues and Americana

Kirby has achieved a rarified status as a performer of ragtime and related American styles. Considered "Today's best player of Scott Joplin's music" (Trebor Tichenor, author of Rags and Ragtime), Kirby has appeared at every major ragtime festival in the U.S., plus events in Hungary, Norway, New Zealand, France, England and Belgium. His unique presentation highlights the worlds of Classic Ragtime, New Orleans Jazz, and Blues, then expands to include the marches of John Philip Sousa, the songs of Stephen Foster, Latin-American styles, Afro-Cuban rhythms, European Romanticism, Rock & Roll and Original works ranging from the syncopated to the impressionistic. Kirby's sense of Americana is enhanced by his historical commentary, and also by his art work, a series of watercolors entitled "Visions of the Great Plains," which he presents in either an accompanying exhibit or in a video presentation during the show.

"Critics call [Scott Kirby] one of the best interpreters of ragtime music on the scene today."

- Charles Osgood, CBS News Sunday Morning, 1988


"SCOTT JOPLIN: American Genius"

A lecture-concert, as presented at the Smithsonian Institute

This program consists of a two-hour lecture/concert (and optional master class) which combines live piano music, historical information, and insight into the life and the music of one of America's most important composers, Scott Joplin.

"Today's best player of Scott Joplin music."

- Trebor Tichenor, author of Rags and Ragtime

"In Scott Kirby's playing we encounter the very essence of ragtime. He is the embodiment of the Scott Joplin ideal."

- Edward A. Berlin, author of King of Ragtime: Scott Joplin and His Era

"Kirby is sensitive, without being self-indulgent. His technique is clear and eloquent, while retaining an earthy, down-home quality."

- Linda Kohanov, CD Review

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