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Irene Panagakos Lafharis made her New York City piano recital debut in a sold out performance at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall on June 21, 1997. She is a graduate of Manhattan School of Music where she received Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees in piano performance in 1987 and 1992, respectively, under the tutelage of Solomon Mikowsky and Ada Kopetz-Korf. In addition, she studied at The Juilliard School with Olegna Fuschi and Beveridge Webster from 1980 through 1983. 

A certified teacher in the Yamaha method, Irene was on the faculty of Bergen Yamaha Music School from 1988 - 1992.  She is a member of the National Guild of Piano Teachers, as well as the New Jersey Music Teachers Association.  A native of New Jersey, Irene has been a private teacher in Bergen County for more than twenty years with exemplary results.   Her students have successfully performed in recitals, NJMTA festivals and competitions, consistently placing at the top, and receiving the highest honors from eminent judges.  Many have excelled and obtained scholarships for piano performance, or other related music fields, as their chosen major / minor in college.

She has performed as a soloist, accompanist, and chamber musician in engagements from coast to coast. In the New York metropolitan area, Irene  has had recitals at the Claudia Boettcher Theater at The Masters School, Hubbard Hall at Manhattan School of Music, Armor Hall at Wave Hill, Becton Hall at Fairleigh Dickinson University, Fort Lee Historic Park Auditorium, Ridgewood Public Library, The Fort Lee Library, and the Eric Brown Theater at the JCC on the Palisades. In addition, she has performed for the AARP, Women’s American ORT, the UJA, Haddassah, and other organizations.  Irene appeared as the guest artist at the Hellenic American Women’s Council’s 1997-1998 Conference and Gala held at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel attended by the Honorable Geraldine Ferraro, as keynote speaker. In April 1999, she performed at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral of St. John the Theologian in Tenafly, New Jersey at the Enthronement Ceremony of his Grace, the late Bishop George of New Jersey. In May of 2010, the cathedral presented Irene, in concert, at the Eric Brown Theater. Proceeds benefited children's charities sponsored by the church. She was joined by long standing friends and renowned artists/teachers, Karen Beardsley (soprano), and Noelle Perrin, (flute).

On May 16th, 2002, Ms. Panagakos Lafharis performed a solo piano concert at the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, New Jersey. A live CD of that performance, entitled “Unbridled”, was recently released.

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© Irene Lafharis, 2009-2016