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Leslie Lemke to perform benefit concert at Marian University

March 15, 2011

FOND DU LAC, Wis. — Leslie Lemke, a musically gifted prodigious savant, will be performing a benefit concert “And Sings My Soul” on Friday, April 15 at 6:30 p.m. in Marian University’s Stayer Center Auditorium.

“Savant syndrome is rare. But even more rare are the so-called prodigious savants – handicapped persons who have skills that would be remarkable even if they were to occur in a normal person,” said Darold Treffert, M.D., a member of the Marian University Board of Trustees. “There are less than 100 prodigious savants described in this last century. Leslie Lemke is one in a billion.”

Born prematurely in early 1952 and given up immediately for adoption, mentally handicapped Leslie Lemke entered the world with cerebral palsy and severe retinal problems that led to the surgical removal of his eyes.

Though never having music lessons, Leslie learned to mimic others’ voices and songs, and even to play simple piano tunes. However, 14 year old Leslie was discovered perfectly playing Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 after hearing it once on the CBS Sunday Night Movie Sincerely Yours.

Since the late 1970’s, Leslie has shared his amazing gifts throughout the United States and around the world. In recent years, however, his concert performances have become fewer, making his performance at Marian University all the more special.

Leslie Lemke’s “And Sings My Soul” performance at Marian University will raise funds to support his continued care and health needs so that the wish of his mother May, that Leslie will never be institutionalized, continues to be realized.

The concert is hosted by the Marian University Kappa Delta Pi Chapter, the International Education Honor Society. Tickets go on sale on Monday, March 14. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased in advance by contacting Kathy Gellings at kgellings@marianuniversity.edu. For more information about the benefit concert, please visit www.marianuniversity.edu/lemke.

For more information about Leslie Lemke, visit www.savantsyndrome.com.

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