The Kennedy Center

Janel and Anthony


Sharing the inclusive spirit of jazz and 21st century classical music,

elegant experimentalism is the hallmark of Janel and Anthony's lush, orchestral sound. While they began in the D.C. suburbs, Janel and Anthony have captivated live audiences around the world by blending styles to create a unique aural experience, unconstrained by genre. Sophisticated, yet accessible, their music is wholly evocative of Washington D.C.'s rich and eclectic culture.

Janel and Anthony is the collaborative venture of two of the fastest rising stars in DC's burgeoning experiential music scene: Anthony Pirog, an omnivorous guitarist, with influences ranging from surf to experimentalism; and Janel Leppin, a conservatory trained cellist steeped in North Indian and Persian classical music, free improvisation, experimentalism, and jazz. Acclaimed performers in their own right, the duo came together to form Janel and Anthony in 2005 and the result has been sonically spectacular.

Given the many facets of its members’ tastes and interests, Janel and Anthony's music is difficult to categorize. The textures and tones create a sound both timely and timeless. The elements of electronica, looping and lo-fi timbres mingle intimately and majestically with acoustic instruments and melodies reminiscent of folk tunes and blues. Their music is global in its sonic, instrumental, and emotional reach, while somehow remaining intimate.

The performance features compositions alternating with brief improvisational encounters, artfully employing the use of loops and electronics. The duo features Mr. Pirog on electric guitar and Ms. Leppin on cello. While exploring themes of restlessness, homesickness, and feelings of disorientation, the music is deft and focused, shimmering with vivid professionalism.

Mr. Leppin and Ms. Pirog each grew up in Vienna, Virginia. While they attended the same high school, they did not begin playing music together until college.

They have collaborated on two albums, 2006's Janel and Anthony, available on Cricket Cemetery Records and 2012's Where is Home, available on Cuneiform Records. Janel and Anthony toured the East and West Coasts in the summer of 2012 and are excited to hit the road again in support of Where is Home, which continues to receive accolades and attention worldwide.

Anthony Pirog is a studied yet unorthodox guitarist with a degree in guitar performance from NYU. Mr. Pirog has played in bands ranging from surf and roots rock to hard rock to experimentalism and jazz. He leads his own jazz and classical ensembles and has played shows all over the country. Janel Leppin studied cello performance at GMU with a minor in World Music with a focus in classical Indian and Persian music. Also working in experimentalism, she led her contemporary chamber group Ensemble Volcanic Ash in a performance at this year's Washington Women in Jazz Festival. In June, Ms. Leppin will perform selections from her upcoming solo record at San Francisco's Museum of Modern Art.

Janel and Anthony