The Khasma Piano Duo was formed in 2012 by Ashlee Mack and Katherine Palumbo, who have been playing together since meeting as undergraduates at Bucknell University in 2000. Because they share a passion for contemporary music, the duo has dedicated themselves to the performance of works from the 20th and 21st centuries. Their concert tours have taken them to Illinois, Indiana, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. They recently performed at the SCI National Conference at Ball State University and were invited to give a program of American contemporary works for the Illinois College Fine Arts Series. In January 2015, Khasma presented the world premiere of Robert Morris’ Forty Fingers for eight hands at the Eastman School of Music. They have also premiered and recorded James Romig’s Time Seems to Pass (album is available at CD Baby, iTunes, and Amazon) and David Vayo’s Times and Places. Upcoming premieres include Matthew Heap's And the Earth Sang to Me Through the Wind and Lawrence Moss' De Profundis. Their debut album, Switchback, is available at CD Baby, Amazon, Google Play, and iTunes, among others.
Origin of the Khasma (pronouced \ˈkaz-mə\) name: Chasm Lake is a hike in Rocky Mountain National Park. Both pianists consider this trail to be one of their favorites in Colorado. Since they have each spent a significant amount of time in the Rockies, they decided to choose a name that encompasses their enthusiasm for nature. The Greek origin of the word ‘chasm’ is ‘khasma,’ which seemed like the appropriate choice, as it happens to include letters from their first names.