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Bradley AikmanAs a performer, Bradley Aikman has experience in symphonic, opera, and ballet repertoires with NYC’s premier ensembles, including the Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and the New York City Ballet. Other orchestral appearances include the Minnesota and Sarasota Orchestras, and the Pittsburgh Symphony. He is also the principal bass of the Albany Symphony (NY), and a member of the American Ballet Theatre Orchestra. He can be heard on two Grammy winning recordings: the Met’s Ring Cycle from 2012 and The Albany Symphony’s Conjurer by John Corigliano. He has participated in the Albany Symphony’s tradition of recording American composers including John Harbison, Michael Torke, and George Tsontakis. Bradley has also recorded numerous television and film scores, including an episode for Mozart in the Jungle where he performed at the infamous Rikers Island. Most recently, he recorded Mahler’s Sixth Symphony with the Minnesota Orchestra. Mr. Aikman has recorded for Naxos, Bis, Albany Records, and Exton labels. Mr. Aikman has performed chamber music at Carnegie’s Weil Recital Hall, the Sarasota Music Festival, the Saratoga School of Dance, and Montauk’s Third House. When he was assistant principal bass with the New Haven Symphony, he performed the east coast premiere of Charles DeRamus’ Greta’s Dream for double bass quartet and narrator. He has performed in North and South America, Asia, and Europe, most notably on the Metropolitan Opera’s Japan tour of 2011. He is currently on the faculty at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, The Allen-Stevenson School (NY), and has a private studio in Westchester, NY. Bradley has taught and given coachings at The Orchestra Now (TŌN), S.U.N.Y. New Paltz, the Metro Bass Workshop, and the Empire State Youth Orchestra. He was awarded a full-tuition Whitaker Scholarship to attend the Manhattan School of Music. This allowed him to complete both a master’s and professional studies degree in Orchestral Performance while studying with Timothy Cobb. Previously, he earned a Bachelor’s of Music Education at Ithaca College.
Carl AlbachCarl Albach, trumpet, from Dallas, Texas, received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami, where he studied with Gilbert Johnson, and his master’s degree at the Juilliard School, where he studied with William Vacchiano. Mr. Albach is the principal trumpet of the American Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestra of St. Luke's and the American Ballet Theater Orchestra. He is also a member of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. He was a soloist with the American Symphony in June 2007, performing the Mieczyslaw Weinberg Trumpet Concerto at Avery Fisher Hall. In addition, he has performed as a soloist with Orpheus in Europe, Japan, and the United States. He has also performed the Bach Brandenburg Concerto No. 2 more than 45 times. Mr. Albach has also studied with Richard Giangiulio, the former principal trumpet of the Dallas Symphony, and Raymond Mase, of the American Brass Quintet.
Shmuel AshkenasiBorn in Tel Aviv, Israel, Shmuel Ashkenasi attended the Musical Academy of Tel Aviv and gave his first public performance at the age of eight. After studying with Ilona Feher, he came to the United States to study with Efrem Zimbalist at the Curtis Institute of Music.
He won the Merriweather Post Competition, was a finalist in Belgium's Queen Elisabeth competition, and received second prize in the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow.
Mr. Ashkenasi has toured the former Soviet Union twice and concertized extensively in Europe, Israel, the Far East, and the United States, and he has collaborated with Rudolf Serkin, Thomas Hampson, Murray Perahia, Peter Serkin, and Menahem Pressler. As first violin of the famed Vermeer Quartet, he has gained a reputation as one of the world's outstanding chamber musicians.
From 1969 until 2007, Mr. Ashkenasi was professor of music and artist-in-residence at Northern Illinois University. In addition to teaching at Bard, Mr. Ashkenasi is on the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music.
Nadine AsinNadine Asin leads a varied career as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral performer. She appears with many of the world's finest ensembles and conductors, including the New York Philharmonic and the Metropolitan Opera. As an active advocate for new music written for the flute, Ms. Asin's premiere performance of Enchanted Orbits, a concerto for flute and chamber orchestra written for her by Augusta Read Thomas, won praise for her "virtuosic playing." Ms. Asin also commissioned and premiered After Hours for flute and piano, written for her by David Schiff. She has recorded Aaron Avshalomov's Flute Concerto, available on the Naxos label. Ms. Asin is a founding member of the Aspen Ensemble, a mixed quintet comprised of Aspen Music Festival artist-faculty members that tours internationally. In addition to being on the faculty of the Bard College Conservatory Ms. Asin serves as an adjunct faculty member at the Juilliard School. She has served as the head of the flute department at the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music. She studied with Julius Baker at the Juilliard School, where she received her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees.
Demian AustinDemian Austin is principal trombonist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. He is also a member of the MET Chamber Ensemble, which performs regularly at Carnegie’s Weill and Zankel halls. He has performed with The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and in the Mostly Mozart festival at Lincoln Center. Mr. Austin has played on numerous recordings including the Metropolitan Opera Brass CDs, several movie soundtracks, Dialogues with Double Bass with Jeremy McCoy on Bridge Records, the GM Recordings issue of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and Brahms’ First Symphony conducted by Gunther Schuller, and many recordings with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, including Strauss’ Tod und Verklarung. He can also be heard regularly on Sirius Satellite Radio’s Live at the Met Broadcasts, the Saturday Matinee Broadcasts of the Met, and on The Met: Live in HD worldwide movie simulcasts. Mr. Austin is also on the faculty of Juilliard’s precollege division. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in 1992 from Oberlin College, where he studied with Raymond Premru, and his Masters of Music degree in 1995 from The Juilliard School, where he studied with Per Brevig. Aside from his career in music, Mr. Austin has a keen interest in film and has attended several intensive seminars on screenwriting.
Codirector, Graduate Conducting Program; Professor of Music; Director, Orchestral and Choral Music; Director, Music Program
James BagwellJames Bagwell maintains an active international schedule as a conductor of choral, operatic, and orchestral music. He was most recently named associate conductor of The Orchestra Now (TON) and in 2009 was appointed principal guest conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra. From 2009-2015 he served as music director of The Collegiate Chorale. Some of the highlights of his tenure with them include conducting a number of operas-in-concert at Carnegie Hall, including Bellini’s Beatrice di Tenda, Rossini’s Möise et Pharaon, and Boito’s Mefistofele. He conducted the New York premiere of Philip Glass’s Toltec Symphony and Golijov’s Oceana, both at Carnegie Hall. Since 2011 he has collaborated with singer and composer Natalie Merchant, conducting a number of major orchestras across the country, including the San Francisco and Seattle Symphonies.
He has trained choruses for a numerous American and international orchestras, including the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Budapest Festival Orchestra and the American Symphony Orchestra. He has worked numerous conductors including Charles Dutoit, Andris Nelsons, Gustavo Dudamel, Alan Gilbert, Gianandrea Noseda, Valery Gergiev, Yannik Nézet-Séguin, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Lorin Maazel, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Michael Tilson Thomas, Louis Langrée, Leon Botstein, Ivan Fischer, Jesús López-Cobos, and Robert Shaw.
Mr. Bagwell prepared The Collegiate Chorale for concerts at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland; in 2012 the Chorale traveled to Israel and the Salzburg Festival for four programs with The Israel Philharmonic. Since 2003 he has been director of choruses for the Bard Music Festival, conducting and preparing choral works during the summer festival at The Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts. He frequently appears as guest conductor for orchestras around the country and abroad, including the Cincinnati Symphony, Jerusalem Symphony, and the Interlochen Music Festival. He is Professor of Music at Bard College, and Director of Performance Studies and the Graduate Conducting Program at the Bard College Conservatory.
Edith BersEdith Bers received bachelor's and master's degrees from Columbia University and studied voice with Tourel, Callas, Popper, Berl, Guth, Faull, B. P. Johnson, Cuenod, Brown, Hotter, and Stader; and acting with Stella Adler. Among her performance credits are the United States premiere of Schumann's Des Sangers Fluch and the television production of Britten's The Turn of the Screw. She has presented master classes and served on juries throughout the world, including: Symposium on the Care of the Professional Voice, Aspen Music Festival, Metropolitan Opera Auditions, Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition (Brussels), Korean Broadcasting System, and the Bel Canto Institute (Florence). In addition to teaching at Bard, Edith Bers teaches at the Juilliard School (where she served as chair of the voice department from 1991 to 1995), Manhattan School of Music, and New York University.
Artistic Director, Graduate Vocal Arts Program
Stephanie BlytheA renowned opera singer and recitalist, mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe is considered one of the most highly respected and critically acclaimed artists of her generation. Her repertoire ranges from Handel to Wagner, German lieder to contemporary and classic American song. Ms. Blythe has performed on many of the world's great stages, such as Carnegie Hall, the Metropolitan Opera, Covent Garden, Paris National Opera and San Francisco, Chicago Lyric and Seattle Operas. Ms. Blythe was named Musical America's Vocalist of the Year in 2009, received an Opera News Award in 2007 and won the Tucker Award in 1999. Ms. Blythe recently released her first crossover recording on the Innova label with pianist Craig Terry. Ms. Blythe has sung in many of the renowned opera houses in the US and Europe including the Metropolitan Opera, San Francisco Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Seattle Opera, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, and the Opera National de Paris. Her many roles include the title roles in Carmen, Samson et Dalila , Orfeo ed Euridice, La Grande Duchesse, Tancredi, Mignon, and Giulio Cesare; Frugola, Principessa, and Zita in Il Trittico, Fricka in both Das Rheingold and Die Walküre, Waltraute in Götterdämmerung, Azucena in Il Trovatore, Ulrica in Un Ballo in Maschera, Baba the Turk in The Rake's Progress, Ježibaba in Rusalka, Jocasta in Oedipus Rex, Mere Marie in Dialogues des Carmélites; Mistress Quickly in Falstaff, and Ino/Juno in Semele. She also created the role of Gertrude Stein in Ricky Ian Gordon's 27 at the Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. Ms. Blythe has also appeared with many of the world's finest orchestras including the New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony, Philadelphia Orchestra, Opera Orchestra of New York, Minnesota Orchestra, Halle Orchestra, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the Ensemble Orchestre de Paris, and the Concertgerbouworkest. She has also appeared at the Tanglewood, Cincinnati May, and Ravinia festivals, and at the BBC Proms. The many conductors with whom she has worked include Harry Bicket, James Conlon, Charles Dutoit, Mark Elder, Christoph Eschenbach, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Alan Gilbert, James Levine, Fabio Luisi, Nicola Luisotti, Sir Charles Mackerras, John Nelson, Antonio Pappano, Mstislav Rostropovitch, Robert Spano, Patrick Summers, and Michael Tilson Thomas. A frequent recitalist, Ms. Blythe has been presented in recital in New York by Carnegie Hall in Stern Auditorium and Zankel Hall, Lincoln Center in both its Great Performers Series at Alice Tully Hall and its American Songbook Series at the Allen Room, Town Hall, the 92nd Street Y, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She has also been presenter by the Vocal Arts Society and at the Supreme Court in Washington, DC; the Cleveland Art Song Festival, the University Musical Society in Ann Arbor, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Shriver Hall in Baltimore, and San Francisco Performances. A champion of American song, Ms. Blythe has premiered several song cycles written for her including Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson by the late James Legg, Covered Wagon Woman by Alan Smith which was commissioned by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and recorded with the ensemble (CMS Studio Recordings); and Vignettes: Ellis Island, also by Alan Smith and featured in a special television program entitled Vignettes: An Evening with Stephanie Blythe and Warren Jones. Ms Blythe starred in the Metropolitan Opera’s live HD broadcasts of Orfeo ed Euridice, Il Trittico, Rodelinda, and the complete Ring Cycle. She also appeared in PBS's Live From Lincoln Center broadcasts of the New York Philharmonic's performance of Carousel and her acclaimed show, We'll Meet Again: The Songs of Kate Smith. Her recordings include her solo album, as long as there are songs (Innova), and works by Mahler, Brahms, Wagner, Handel and Bach (Virgin Classics). Ms. Blythe's many engagements have also included her return to the Metropolitan Opera for The Rake's Progress, the Lyric Opera of Chicago for Il Trovatore, the Seattle Opera for Semele, Samson et Dalilah with the Atlanta Symphony and Carnegie Hall for a recital in Stern Auditorium. Last season she performed with the San Francisco Opera as Mrs. Lovett in Sweeney Todd and the Houston Grand Opera as Nettie Fowler in Carousel. She also performed her new program, Sing, America! at Carnegie Hall. Next season she returns to Opera Philadelphia for the title role in Tancredi, brings her acclaimed performance of Gertrude Stein in Ricky Ian Gordon's 27 to New York's City Center, and returns to Palm Beach as Ruth in performances of The Pirates of Penzance. Ms. Blythe was named Musical America’s Vocalist of the Year for 2009. Her other awards include the 2007 Opera News Award and the 1999 Richard Tucker Award. She is also the Artistic Director of the Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar at the Crane School of Music.
Codirector, Graduate Conducting Program; Music Director, Bard Conservatory; President, Bard College
Leon BotsteinLeon Botstein has been music director and principal conductor of the American Symphony Orchestra since 1992. This year he becomes conductor laureate of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, where he had served as music director since 2003. He is also the founder and co-artistic director of the Bard Music Festival, now in its 21st year. He has been president of Bard College in New York since 1975.
Upcoming engagements include the Russian National Philharmonic, the Odessa Symphony, and the Budapest Opera Orchestra. Recent engagements have included the BBC Philharmonic, Bamberg Symphony; the Budapest Festival Orchestra; Düsseldorf Symphony; the London Philharmonic; NDR-Hamburg and Hannover; the Royal Scottish National Orchestra; the St. Petersburg Philharmonic; and Teatro Real Madrid, among others.
Among Leon Botstein’s recordings are operas by Strauss, Dukas, and Chausson, as well as works of Shostakovich, Dohnanyi, Liszt, Bruckner, Bartók, Hartmann, Reger, Glière, Szymanowski, Brahms, Copland, Sessions, Perle, and Rands. Many live recordings with the American Symphony Orchestra are now available to download on the Internet.
Mr. Botstein is the editor of The Musical Quarterly and the author of numerous articles and books. For his contributions to music he has received the award of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and Harvard University’s prestigious Centennial Award, as well as the Cross of Honor, First Class from the government of Austria. He is a 2009 recipient of the Carnegie Foundation’s Academic Leadership Award, and earlier this year he was inducted into the American Philosophical Society.
Artist in Residence
Teresa BuchholzMezzo-soprano. B.M., University of Northern Iowa; M.M., Indiana University; Artist Diploma, Vocal Performance, Yale University. Additional training as a Natchez Opera Festival Young Artist and as an apprentice artist at the Santa Fe Opera and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. In recent years, she has performed as a soloist at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, and Alice Tully Hall in New York; the OK Mozart Festival in Bartlesville, Oklahoma; and the Bard Music Festival; and with Voices of Ascension in New York City, Tulsa Symphony, Collegiate Chorale, and Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Zubin Mehta conducting; and in concerts in Tel Aviv, Salzburg, and Vienna. She has soloed regularly with the Stamford Symphony, New Jersey Choral Society, Gateway Chamber Orchestra, and American Symphony Orchestra. Recordings include With Peace in Mind: The Choral Music of Nancy Wertsch, New York Virtuoso Singers; Kurt Weill’s Knickerbocker Holiday, Collegiate Chorale, conducted by James Bagwell; and Richard Strauss’s Die ägyptische Helena, American Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Leon Botstein; among others. She previously taught voice at Yale University, Indiana University Bloomington, and the Brooklyn Youth Chorus Academy. At Bard since 2012.
Director, US-China Music Institute; Graduate Conducting Program, faculty
Jindong CaiConductor Jindong Cai is the director of the US-China Music Institute and professor of music and arts at Bard College. He is also academic director and associate conductor of The Orchestra Now (TON). Prior to joining Bard he was a professor of performance at Stanford University. Over the 30 years of his career in the United States, Cai has established himself as an active and dynamic conductor, scholar of Western classical music in China, and leading advocate of music from across Asia. Cai started his professional conducting career with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, where he held assistant conducting positions and worked closely with Music Director Jesús López-Cobos, Conductor Keith Lockhart, and Cincinnati Pops Conductor Erich Kunzel. He has worked with numerous orchestras throughout North America and Asia. Cai maintains strong ties to his homeland and has conducted most of the top orchestras in China. He has served as the principal guest conductor of the China Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra since 2012. In 2015, he led the Shenzhen Symphony on its first tour to the American West Coast, performing in Palo Alto, San Jose, Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Diego. The concerts included collaboration with the San Francisco Opera on the premiere of a scene from Bright Sheng’s much anticipated new opera, Dream of the Red Chamber. Cai is a three-time recipient of the ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music. He has recorded for the Centaur, Innova, and Vienna Modern Masters labels. He has close relationships with many Chinese composers and has premiered or performed new works by Tan Dun, Zhou Long, Chen Yi, Bright Sheng, Ye Xiaogang, and Wang Xilin, among others. In recent years, a number of professional orchestras have approached him to create special programs of works by Chinese and other Asian composers, including the “Celebration of Asia” concert with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra in 2016. Cai has received much critical acclaim for his opera performances. In 1992, his operatic conducting debut took place at Lincoln Center’s Mozart Bicentennial Festival in New York, when he appeared as a last-minute substitute for his mentor Gerhard Samuel in the world premiere of a new production of Mozart’s Zaide. The New York Times described the performance as “one of the more compelling theatrical experiences so far offered in the festival.” Cai serves as the principal guest conductor of the Mongolia State Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet in Ulaan Baatar. Since 2011, he has visited Mongolia a dozen times to conduct opera and ballet performances, and led the theater’s historical first tour to China in 2013. Cai joined the Stanford University faculty in 2004 as director of orchestral studies and conducted the Stanford Symphony Orchestra for 11 years. He led the Stanford Symphony Orchestra on three international tours—to Australia and New Zealand in 2005; China in 2008, as part of the Beijing Olympic Cultural Festival; and Europe in 2013. In 2013, Cai launched “The Beethoven Project,” for which the Stanford Symphony Orchestra performed all nine Beethoven symphonies and all five of the composer’s piano concerti—featuring Van Cliburn Gold Medal–winning pianist and Stanford alumnus Jon Nakamatsu—in one season. Cai is also the founder of the Stanford Pan-Asian Music Festival. Over its 11-year history, the festival—which is dedicated to promoting an appreciation of music in contemporary Asia through an annual series of concerts and academic activities—has become one of the most important platforms for the performance of Asian music in the United States. As a scholar and expert on music in contemporary China and Asia, Cai is frequently interviewed by news media around the world, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, BBC, and NPR. Together with his wife Sheila Melvin, Cai has coauthored several New York Times articles on the performing arts in China and the book Rhapsody in Red: How Western Classical Music Became Chinese. Their latest book, Beethoven in China: How the Great Composer Became an Icon in the People’s Republic, was published by Penguin in September 2015. Born in Beijing, Cai received his early musical training in China, where he learned to play violin and piano. He came to the United States for his graduate studies at the New England Conservatory and the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati. In 1989, he was selected to study with famed conductor Leonard Bernstein at the Tanglewood Music Center, and won the Conducting Fellowship Award at the Aspen Music Festival in 1990 and 1992.
Molly CarrPraised for her ”intoxicating” (New York Times) and “ravishing” (STRAD) performances of "silken finesse with gritty vibrancy" (Gramophone), violist Molly Carr enjoys a diverse musical career as recitalist, chamber musician, educator, and artistic director. She has been the recipient of numerous national and international prizes and awards, including the Primrose International Viola Competition, Chamber Music America, ProMusicis Foundation, Davidson Institute, Virtu Foundation, MAW Alumni Enterprise Awards, ASTA, and ARTS among many others. Her performances have taken her across North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia and been broadcast on CBS's Live from Lincoln Center, Good Morning America, and National Public Radio in the US, as well as on Canadian, Bulgarian, Israeli and Hungarian National Television and Radio. In October 2018, Ms. Carr was honored at the United Nations for her work with refugees around the globe through the Carr-Petrova Duo’s Novel Voices Refugee Aid Project; she was also chosen as one of America's leading "Creative Women" - subsequently appearing on the Sandi Klein Show "Conversations With Creative Women."
Ms. Carr is the violist of the award-winning Carr-Petrova Duo, as well as the Iris Trio, and the former violist of the Solera Quartet - the recipient of Chamber Music America's 2018 Guarneri Quartet Residency Award and the first and only American chamber ensemble chosen for the Pro Musicis International Award. She has appeared as both performer and guest faculty in festivals around the world, including the Marlboro Music Festival, Ravinia Festival, Mozartfest, Huberman Course, Hyderabad SOTA Music Festival, Yellow Barn Music Festival, Music@Menlo, the International Musicians Seminar and Open Chamber Music at Prussia Cove, and the Perlman Music Program. Ms. Carr has collaborated with such renowned artists as Itzhak Perlman, Carter Brey, Peter Wiley, Ida Kavafian, Donald and Alisa Weilerstein, Pamela Frank, and the Miro, Orion and American Quartets, performing such premier venues as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, Princeton’s McCarter Theatre, Chicago’s Symphony Center, and the Jerusalem Music Center.
In Fall of 2019, the Carr-Petrova Duo released its debut album entitled “Novel Voices” on the Melos label to critical acclaim. Spain’s Classical Music Magazine “Ritmo” chose the album as one of their “Top 10 CDs of the Month” hailing the duo’s performance of the Rebecca Clarke Sonata as “the best interpretation of this sonata to date.” Fanfare Magazine listed the album as “magical” and a “recording to have and hold dear, [...] one of the most compelling and successful viola and piano recitals - technically perfect and musically involving.”
Upcoming seasons will see the release of several more albums: the Iris Trio’s debut album “Homage and Inspiration,” as well as a multi-album recording project with Enescu Competition Grand Prize Winner, Josu de Solaun, recording the complete piano and string chamber music of George Enescu on the NAXOS label. Other discography includes the Solera Quartet’s debut studio album entitled "Every Moment Present" on Contact Point Records, as well as an album of the Viola Sonata and early chamber works of Jennifer Higdon on the NAXOS label in 2012.
Ms. Carr is on the Viola Faculties of both the Juilliard School's Precollege Program and the Alberto Jonas International School of Music in Valencia, Spain, and is also the Founding Director for the award-winning non-profit Project: Music Heals Us, an organization which brings free chamber music performances and interactive programming to marginalized populations with limited ability to access the Arts themselves. She holds a B.M. and M.M. from the Juilliard School, having studied with Heidi Castleman, Steven Tenenbom, Patinka Kopec, and Pinchas Zukerman.
Edward CarrollEdward Carroll’s long and distinguished career has taken many twists and turns. It began as an orchestral musician at age 21 with his appointment to the Houston Symphony, detoured back to Juilliard (BM, MM) and New York City as a trumpet soloist making over 20 recordings on the Sony, Vox, MHS, and Newport Classic labels and performing with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, matured as he conducted his first concerts, detoured once again as he fulfilled a lifelong dream of moving to Europe assuming the position of principal trumpet of the Rotterdam Philharmonic, eventually embarked on what has become a distinguished teaching career and now, in the final quarter of his musical journey, returned to his life-long passion of conducting.
Mr. Carroll has served on the faculties of the Rotterdam Conservatory, London’s Royal Academy of Music, McGill University, the Bard Conservatory, and the California Institute of the Arts. He has performed with conductors such as Leonard Bernstein, Bernard Haitink, Valery Gergiev, James Conlon, Esa-Pekka Salonen, and Simon Rattle in concert halls around the world, listing Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Vienna’s Grosser Musikvereinsaal, Moscow’s Tchaikovsky Hall, New York’s Carnegie Hall, Boston’s Symphony Hall, and Tokyo’s Suntory Hall amongst his favorites.
He has appeared as a soloist with the Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Netherlands Radio Chamber Orchestra, the London Sinfonietta, Virtuosi di Roma, the Gulbenkian Orchestra of Lisbon, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and a variety of North American orchestras. Edward Carroll’s recordings conducting the Metamorphosis Ensemble of London (Cantoris) and Chamber Soloists of Washington (Sony) have received critical acclaim, as have his many performances conducting the Peruvian National Symphony and National Youth Orchestras.
In addition to teaching and conducting, Edward Carroll is currently the director of the Center for Advanced Musical Studies (www.chosenvalemusic.org) where he presents the annual Chosen Vale International Seminars with friends such as Hakan Hardenberger, John Wallace, Markus Stockhausen, Mark Gould, Colin Currie, and Steve Reich.
Author Alexander McGrattan states in his book THE TRUMPET (Yale University Press) that “the work of Ed Carroll has been seminal to the creation of a new generation of adventurous young trumpet players since his work at the Rotterdam Conservatory and the establishment of the Lake Placid Music Seminars in the mid-1990s in New York State.” Mr. Carroll feels otherwise but perhaps that can be left for another biography.
Eric Cha-BeachA member of the ensemble So Percussion (proclaimed as "brilliant" and "consistently impressive" by the New York Times) since 2007, Eric has performed at Carnegie Hall, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Lincoln Center Festival, Stanford Lively Arts, and dozens of other venues in the United States. In that time, So Percussion has toured Russia, Spain, Australia, and other international destinations. He has had the opportunity to work closely with Steve Reich, Steve Mackey, Paul Lansky, David Lang, Matmos, Dan Deacon, and many others.
In addition to his work with So Percussion, Eric Beach is an active soloist, chamber musician, and composer. Studying with Robert van Sice, he received his Bachelor of Music and Graduate Performance Diploma at the Peabody Conservatory, where he won the Yale Gordon Concerto Competition, and his Master of Music at the Yale School of Music. He also received a Fulbright fellowship and pursued additional study with Bernhard Wulff in Freiburg, Germany. He has taught as Adjunct Professor of Percussion at the University of Bridgeport and in the Hearing and Undergraduate Percussion programs at the Yale School of Music. Eric's compositions for So Percussion are featured in Imaginary City, an evening length work that appeared on the Brooklyn Academy of Music's 2009 Next Wave Festival.
Eric is Co-Director and Principal Administrator of the So Percussion Summer Institute, an annual intensive course on the campus of Princeton University for college-aged percussionists. He joined the Bard Conservatory faculty in the fall of 2011.
Photo by Evan Chapman.
Director and Faculty, Bard College Conservatory of Music
Frank CorlissBefore coming to The Bard College Conservatory of Music, Frank Corliss was for many years the director of music at the Walnut Hill School and a staff pianist for the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus. A frequent performer on the Boston Symphony Prelude Concert series, he also performs throughout the United States as a chamber musician and collaborative pianist. In addition to his duties at the BSO and Walnut Hill, Corliss has worked as a musical assistant for Yo-Yo Ma and has assisted Ma in the musical preparation of many new works for performance and recording, including concertos by Elliot Carter, Richard Danielpour, Tan Dun, John Harbison, Leon Kirchner, Peter Lieberson, Christopher Rouse, and John Williams. Corliss can be heard in recording on Yo-Yo Ma's Grammy-winning Sony disc Soul of the Tango, as well as the Koch International disc of music by Elliott Carter for chorus and piano with the John Oliver Chorale.
Richard CoxAmerican tenor Richard Cox possesses a remarkable voice that combines lyric and heroic qualities, and is equally suited to opera, concert, and recitals.
His recent opera engagements have included Captain Ahab in Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer's Moby Dick with the Chicago Opera Theater and Opera San José; the title role of Siegfried in concert with the North Carolina Opera; Loge in Das Rheingold (Minnesota Opera and North Carolina Opera); Mitch in Andre Previn's A Streetcar Named Desire (Hawaii Opera Theatre); Laca in Jenůfa for Des Moines Metro Opera; Peter Grimes (Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía and the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra); his debut with the Washington National Opera for Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen (Das Rheingold and Die Walküre); Prinz Kalaf in Ferruccio Busoni's Turandot for the Bard SummerScape Festival, Bacchus in Ariadne auf Naxos, Sergei in Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, and Tichon in Káta Kabanová at the Teatro Municipal de Santiago de Chile; Froh in Das Rheingold, Malcom in Macbeth, First Armored Man in Die Zauberflöte (Live in HD) and the Celebrant in Nico Muhly's Two Boys at the Metropolitan Opera; Don José in Carmen at the Lyric Opera of Chicago; the title role in Samson et Dalila at the New Orleans Opera; Ruprecht in Viktor Ulmann's Der zerbrochene Krug at the Los Angeles Opera (released on DVD by Arthaus Musik); Larry Renault for the European Premiere of William Bolcom and Mark Campbell's Dinner at Eight at the Wexford Festival Opera; Adolar in Weber's Euryanthe at the Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden; and Claudio in the first fully-staged North American production of Wagner's Das Liebesverbot at the Glimmerglass Festival. A former ensemble member at Oper Frankfurt, Mr. Cox appeared in several new productions there, including The Tempest, Arabella, Owen Wingrave, and Das Rheingold (releaed on CD and DVD by Oehms Classics). He was also seen as Florestan in Fidelio, Peter Quint in The Turn of the Screw, the Bishop of Budoja in Palestrina (released on CD by Oehms Classics), and Aegisth in Elektra.
An accomplished concert singer and recitalist, Mr. Cox has appeared as the tenor soloist in Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, I Musici de Montréal Chamber Orchestra, the Phoenix Symphony, the Britt Festival, Colorado Music Festival, and the Tucson Symphony Orchestra; in Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 with the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, Corpus Christi Symphony, and Laredo Philharmonic; with the Collegiate Chorale and Orchestra of St. Luke's at Carnegie Hall; Mark in the America premiere of Ethel Smyth's The Wreckers, and Siegmund in a concert version of Act One of Die Walküre with the American Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Cox was on the roster of the Marilyn Horne Foundation and made his New York rectial debut in the On Wings of Song rectial series, and recently sang Schumann's Dichterliebe as part of the West End Collegiate Church Concert Series in New York.
The recipient of numerous awards and scholarships, Richard Cox has earned grants from the George London Foundation, Sullivan Foundation, Opera Index Inc., the Olga Forrai Foundation, Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation, and the Shoshana Foundation. He has been honored with a Lucrezia Bori Grant for foreign study, the Juilliard School Vocal Arts Honors Recital at Alice Tully Hall, and the Campbell Watcher Memorial Award for singers from Santa Fe Opera.
Mr. Cox holds degrees from Tennessee Technological University, Florida State University, and The Juilliard School. He is a member of the American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA), Opera America, and the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS).
Sara CutlerSara Cutler, whose playing was called “dazzling” by the Washington Post, is Principal Harp of both the American Symphony Orchestra and the New York City Ballet Orchestra and has appeared as concerto soloist at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., the Edinburgh Festival in Scotland and the Festival of Two Worlds in Italy. In addition to performing the standard concerto repertoire, she has premiered many contemporary works, including concertos by composers Elizabeth Larsen and Gian-Carlo Menotti. In 2012, she premiered composer Michael Torke’s concerto Wild Grass which was written for her. With flutist Linda Chesis in the Chesis/Cutler Duo, Ms. Cutler has appeared in recital at Tokyo’s Asahiseimei Hall, London’s Southbank Centre, Paris’ Comedie des Champs-Elysées, and New York’s Town Hall. She has recorded extensively; the Concertino for Harp and Chamber Orchestra by Ernö Dohnányi with the American Symphony Orchestra (Bridge Records); with Ms. Chesis, an all-Debussy CD (Masters/Carlton Classics, London); with soprano Jessye Norman, a Christmas CD (Phillips), with the Smithsonian Chamber Players (BMG Classics), and in the orchestra on recordings with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the Metropolitan Opera, and the American Symphony. She has recorded with many non-classical artists as well, including Pat Metheny, Paul Simon and Bjork. In 2012, Ms. Cutler’s method book, written as an homage to her late teacher, Lucile Lawrence, was published by Lyon and Healy. She was a founding member of the Carnegie Hall Solti Orchestral Project and has performed chamber music at the Tanglewood, Ravinia, Artpark, Cooperstown and Costa Rica music festivals, among others. She appears every summer at the Bard Music Festival. A Yale College graduate, Ms. Cutler is on the faculty of the Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music as well as the Bard College Conservatory of Music.
Ensemble In Residence
Da Capo Chamber PlayersWidely acclaimed for virtuosity and stimulating programs, Da Capo is synonymous with an exciting legacy of musical directions: openness to a wide spectrum of styles of new music, plus a special dedication to working with composers. Winner of the Naumburg Chamber Music Award in 1973, Da Capo has long been a leader in building a strong heritage of present-day American chamber music, pointing with pride to more than 90 chamber music works written especially for the group by such diverse composers as Joan Tower, Philip Glass, Harvey Sollberger, Philippe Bodin, and many others.
The members of Da Capo are Curtis Macomber, violin; André Emelianoff, cello; Blair McMillen, piano; Patricia Spencer, flute; and Meighan Stoops, clarinet. The group's recent major commissions include Chinary Ung's Oracle (commissioned by the Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust) and John Harbison's Songs America Loves to Sing (commissioned with an award from the Barlow Endowment for Music Composition). Future plans include a program featuring Russian composers, a new work by Richard Teitelbaum, a new work by Kyle Gann, a program of Pacific Rim composers, and a program specifically focusing on younger American composers. The group's recent CD, chamber music by Judith Shatin, was released on the Innova label.
Sebastian DanilaSebastian Danila is a composer and musicologist, and holds a Ph.D. in composition from New York University’s Steinhardt School, where he was part of the adjunct faculty. He is also manager of the libraries for The Orchestra Now, the Bard College Conservatory of Music, and the American Symphony Orchestra. His compositions have been performed throughout the United States. He has written extensively on the Romanian composer Anatol Vieru.
Professional Development Workshop
Lucy Dhegrae“Vocal versatility and an omnivorous curiosity” (New York Times) are the hallmarks of mezzo-soprano Lucy Dhegrae, a passionate vocalist with a flexible technique that fits a variety of styles. She has performed with the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), Talea Ensemble, the Albany Symphony, among others, at such venues as Miller Theatre, Lincoln Center, and the Kennedy Center.
Dhegrae, who is “everywhere new music is being sung” (New York Classical Review) regularly premieres new vocal works and operas, and has worked closely with such composers as Unsuk Chin, Jason Eckardt, Susan Botti, Alexandra Vrebalov, and Sky Macklay. Her opera premieres include Trillium J by Anthony Braxton, Andy: A Popera (Opera Philadelphia/Bearded Ladies Cabaret), A Marvelous Order by Judd Greenstein, and Ashley Fure’s The Force of Things. Dhegrae’s festival appearances include Darmstadt (Germany), Klangspuren (Austria), Mostly Mozart, Bard Music Festival, Gesher Music Festival (St. Louis), and Aldeburgh Music Festival (as a Britten-Pears Young Artist).
As “soprano and raconteur” (The New Yorker) she directs Resonant Bodies Festival, an annual festival of new and experimental vocal music, which she founded in 2013. She is on the faculty at the Bard College Conservatory Graduate Vocal Arts Program (where she graduated with an MM in Vocal Performance ’12), and is a core member of the new music ensemble Contemporaneous. She lives with her husband, composer Shawn Jaeger, in New York.
Photo by Ariadne Greif.
Elaine DouvasElaine Douvas, oboe, has been principal oboe of the Metropolitan Opera since 1977 and is on the oboe faculty of the Bard College Conservatory of Music. Since 1982 she has also served as oboe instructor at The Juilliard School and Woodwind Department Chairman there since 1997.
Her career highlights include the Strauss Oboe Concerto with the MET Orchestra in Carnegie Hall, James Levine conducting, and Dutilleux's Les Citations with the MET Chamber Ensemble. Her three CDs include a solo recital and her quartet project "Pleasure is the Law", issued by Boston Records, and "Oboe Divas" on the Oboe Classics label. One of the most influential teachers in the USA, her students hold important positions in more than a dozen major orchestras and university faculties. In the summers, Ms. Douvas is an artist faculty member of the Aspen Music Festival and School, and she teaches three intensive, one-week oboe seminars: Le Domaine Forget Academy in Quebec, Interlochen (MI) Arts Camp, and the Hidden Valley Music Seminars in Carmel, California. She has given master classes at the Curtis and Cleveland Institutes of Music, the Manhattan and Eastman Schools of Music, the New World Symphony, and the Conservatories of Beijing and Shanghai. Her three albums of demonstration and written commentary for Music Minus One are used by teachers and students across the country. Originally from Port Huron, Michigan, Ms. Douvas trained at the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with John Mack, at the Interlochen Arts Academy. Her first job was principal oboe of the Atlanta Symphony under Robert Shaw. For many years she has devoted her spare time to figure skating and earned her Gold Medal for Adult "Moves in the Field" in 2006.
Photo by John Abbott.
Dean of Bard Conservatory
Tan DunThe world-renowned artist and UNESCO Global Goodwill Ambassador Tan Dun, has made an indelible mark on the world’s music scene with a creative repertoire that spans the boundaries of classical music, multimedia performance, and Eastern and Western traditions. A winner of today’s most prestigious honors including the Grammy Award, Oscar/Academy Award, Grawemeyer Award, Bach Prize, Shostakovich Award, and most recently Italy’s Golden Lion Award for Lifetime Achievement, Tan Dun’s music has been played throughout the world by leading orchestras, opera houses, international festivals, and on radio and television. Most recently, Tan Dun was named as Dean of the Bard College Conservatory of Music. As dean, Tan Dun will further demonstrate music’s extraordinary ability to transform lives and guide the Conservatory in fulfilling its mission of understanding music’s connection to history, art, culture, and society.
As a conductor of innovative programs around the world, Tan Dun has led the China tours of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra and Japan’s NHK Symphony Orchestra. His current season includes leading the Orchestre National de Lyon in a six-city China tour, the Guangzhou Symphony Orchestra in a four-city tour of Switzerland and Belgium as well as engagements with the Rai National Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra where he was recently named Artistic Ambassador. Tan Dun currently serves as the Principle Guest Conductor of the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra. In 2016, Tan Dun conducted the grand opening celebration of Disneyland Shanghai which was broadcast to a record-breaking audience worldwide. Tan Dun has led the world’s most esteemed orchestras, including the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Orchestre National de France, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Filarmonica della Scala, Münchner Philharmoniker, the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, among others.
Tan Dun’s individual voice has been heard widely by international audiences. His first Internet Symphony, which was commissioned by Google/YouTube, has reached over 23 million people online. His Organic Music Trilogy of Water, Paper and Ceramic has frequented major concert halls and festivals. Paper Concerto was premiered with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the opening of the Walt Disney Hall. His multimedia work, The Map, premiered by YoYo Ma and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, has toured more than 30 countries worldwide. Its manuscript has been collected by the Carnegie Hall Composers Gallery. His Orchestral Theatre IV: The Gate was premiered by Japan’s NHK Symphony Orchestra and crosses the cultural boundaries of Peking Opera, Western Opera and puppet theatre traditions. Other important premieres include Four Secret Roads of Marco Polo for the Berlin Philharmonic, Piano Concerto “The Fire” for Lang Lang and the New York Philharmonic. In recent seasons, his percussion concerto, The Tears of Nature, for soloist Martin Grubinger premiered in 2012 with the NDR Symphony Orchestra and Nu Shu: The Secret Songs of Women Symphony for 13 Microfilms, Harp and Orchestra was co-commissioned by The Philadelphia Orchestra, NHK Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam. Most recently, Tan Dun conducted the premiere of his new oratorio epic Buddha Passion at the Dresden Festival with the Münchner Philharmoniker, the piece was co-commissioned by the New York Philharmonic, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and the Dresden Festival and will go on to have performances in Melbourne, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Rome, Hamburg, Paris, Singapore and London in the coming seasons.
As a visual artist, Tan Dun’s work has been featured at the opening of the China Pavilion at the 56th Venice Art Biennale. Other solo exhibitions include the New York’s Guggenheim Museum, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), Beijing’s Chambers Fine Art Gallery, and Shanghai Gallery of Art. Most recently, Tan Dun conducted The Juilliard Orchestra in the world premiere of his Symphony of Colors: Terracotta for the opening of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art’s epic exhibition The Age of Empires.
As a global cultural leader, Tan Dun uses his creativity to raise awareness of environmental issues and to protect cultural diversity. In 2010, as “Cultural Ambassador to the World” for the World EXPO Shanghai, Tan Dun envisioned, curated and composed two special site-specific performances that perform year-round and have since become cultural representations of Shanghai: Peony Pavilion, a Chinese opera set in a Ming Dynasty garden and his Water Heavens string quartet which promotes water conservation and environmental awareness. Tan Dun was also commissioned by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to write the Logo Music and Award Ceremony Music for the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Tan Dun currently serves as Honorary Chair of Carnegie Hall’s China Advisory Council, and has previously served as Creative Chair of the 2014 Philadelphia Orchestra China Tour, Associate Composer/Conductor of the BBC Scottish Symphony, and Artistic Director of the Festival Water Crossing Fire held at the Barbican Centre.
Tan Dun records for Sony Classical, Deutsche Grammophon, EMI, Opus Arte, BIS and Naxos. His recordings have garnered many accolades, including a Grammy Award (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) and nomination (The First Emperor; Marco Polo; Pipa Concerto), Japan’s Recording Academy Awards for Best Contemporary Music CD (Water Passion after St. Matthew) and the BBC’s Best Orchestral Album (Death and Fire). Tan Dun’s music is published by G. Schirmer, Inc. and represented worldwide by the Music Sales Group of Classical Companies.
Raymond EricksonRaymond Erickson, harpsichordist, pianist, and music historian, graduated with high honors from Whittier College and holds the Ph.D. in musicology from Yale. He is one of America’s most experienced teachers of historical performance practice, having taught the subject since the mid-1970s at Queens College’s Aaron Copland School of Music and the CUNY Graduate Center (DMA program), as well as Rutgers University. In his performances all over the US and Europe, on both harpsichord and piano, he has revived once-standard practices now largely forgotten, such as improvised preludizing and embellishments. In recent years, he has focused on Bach, and has given master classes and lectures on Bach interpretation at major conservatories and universities both here and abroad. He has published non-traditional but historically-based interpretive approaches to the Bach Ciaccona for solo violin and to the classic repertory, as well as on improvisation for classical musicians. His four books include Schubert’s Vienna (Yale, 1997) and The Worlds of Johann Sebastian Bach (Amadeus, 2009), both of which are outgrowths of the Aston Magna Academy program he directed, sponsored by the Aston Magna Foundation with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Erickson’s principal keyboard teachers were pianists Margaretha Lohmann and Nadia Reisenberg and harpsichordists Ralph Kirkpatrick and Albert Fuller.
Luosha FangViolinist and violist Luosha Fang brings her adventurous spirit to music ranging from canonical repertoire to world premieres. As a violinist, she has performed as soloist with the Albany Symphony, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Louisville Orchestra, American Symphony Orchestra, and the West Virginia Symphony, and she was a winner of Astral Artists’ 2013 National Auditions and the S&R Foundation’s 2015 Washington Award. As a violist, she won 1st Prize in the 2019 Classic Strings International Competition in Vienna, performing Bartok’s Viola Concerto with the Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra. She also won 1st Prize in the 2018 Tokyo International Viola Competition, performing Paul Hindemith's "Der Schwanendreher" concerto with the New Japan Philharmonic and subsequently touring in Japan with Antoine Tamestit and Nobuko Imai. She will return in 2019 for Bartok’s Viola Concerto with the Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra, in 2020 for Toshio Hosokawa’s Viola Concerto with the Hiroshima Symphony Orchestra, and will perform at the Tokyo "Viola Space" festivals in 2019 and 2020. In 2020, she will present a Violin/Viola recital at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art Concert Series followed by performances of the Bruch Double Concerto for Clarinet and Viola with the Israel Camerata Orchestra Jerusalem.
Other recent performance highlights include Bartok’s Viola Concerto with the Atlantic Symphony, Prokofiev’s Violin Concerto No. 2 with the Bay-Atlantic Symphony and appearances in the Mozart Sinfonia Concertante with the Suzhou Royal Chamber Orchestra in China (violin soloist) and at the Auditorio Nacional de Música in Madrid (viola soloist). She is a frequent performer at Bard Music West (San Francisco) and Krzy?owa-Music (Poland), and she worked most recently with Gidon Kremer, Christian Tetzlaff and Steven Isserlis at the Kronberg Academy's "Chamber Music Connects the World" project. In 2019, she appeared with the "Musicians from Marlboro" tour as both violinist and violist.
Ms. Fang has a strong interest in championing contemporary works. She recorded George Tsontakis’s double violin concerto "Unforgettable" with the Albany Symphony Orchestra for release on NAXOS Records, and she worked closely with composer Krzysztof Penderecki in preparation for a 2014 Carnegie Hall performance of his Sextet. She premiered Chinese composer Shen Yiwen’s violin concerto "Mulan" with the American Symphony Orchestra and has commissioned a solo violin work by Michael Djupstrom, "Lautar."
As a chamber musician, Ms. Fang was awarded the Silver Medal at the 2010 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition as the first violinist of the Chimeng Quartet, of which she was a founding member. She has appeared in leading venues including Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, and the Library of Congress, and her festival appearances include Marlboro, Ravinia, Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Caramoor Evnin Rising Stars, Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players, Norfolk, Aspen, Kneisel Hall, Music from Angel Fire, Incontri in Terra di Siena, and Bard. She has worked with such musicians as Mitsuko Uchida, Nobuko Imai, Viviane Hagner, Claudio Bohórquez, Matthias Kirschnereit, Pamela Frank, Timothy Eddy, Gilbert Kalish, Bruno Canino, Benita Valente, Marina Piccinini, Peter Wiley, Ida Kavafian, Steven Tenenbom, Paul Katz, Hsin-Yun Huang and members of the Guarneri and Juilliard string quartets. In addition, she has been a guest artist with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.
Ms. Fang made her debut at age eight in her native China with Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 3, and at sixteen moved to the USA on a scholarship to the Bard College Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Ida Kavafian and Arnold Steinhardt. After graduating from Bard with degrees in violin and Russian Studies, she attended the Curtis Institute of Music as a violin student of Ida Kavafian and Shmuel Ashkenasi. At this time, she began viola studies with Steven Tenenbom, and in 2016, she entered the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid as a viola student of Nobuko Imai. Starting in Fall 2019, she will be teaching at the Bard College Consevatory of Music as instructor of violin/viola.
Always in pursuit of new artistic frontiers, Ms. Fang has also collaborated with the Almanac Dance Circus Theatre and the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. She studied acting and theater at Bard College and the University of Pennsylvania. Fang plays on a Pietro Guarneri violin made in 1734 and a Dominique Peccatte bow kindly loaned by Dr. Ryuji Ueno. She will be lent the 'Josefowitz' 1690 Andrea Guarneri viola.
Alexander FarkasAlexander Farkas, qualified as a teacher of the Alexander Technique in 1998, trained in London with Shoshana Kaminitz and had prior and further study with Patrick Macdonald, Margaret Goldie, Marjorie Barlow and Elisabeth Walker. A musician as well, he received a MM in piano from the Manhattan School of Music and, with a focus on becoming a collaborative artist, had further study with Brooks Smith, John Wustmann and Paul Ulanowsky. His earlier piano studies were with Nadia Reisenberg. As a teacher Alex has been on the faculty of the Yale School of Music, the Hartt School, University of Hartford, and Vassar College. He was also the recipient of an IREX Grant for study in Hungary and has translated several books on music for Editio Musica, Budapest, most notably the Selected Writings of Lajos Bardos. As a pianist Alex has played for Jennie Tourel and served as accompanist for the class of Pierre Bernac. Applying the Alexander Technique to the vocal arts, Alex has presented workshops and masterclasses both here and abroad including the Royal College of Music, the Royal Academy of Music, Trinity College of Music, London, the Musikhochschule Luzern and the Musikschule Basel, Switzerland and as a guest teacher for Alexander students at training courses in the U. K., Australia and France. Alex has taught for the Bard Conservatory of Music since 2005.
Derek FenstermacherCurrently principal tubist with both the New Jersey and Chattanooga Symphony Orchestras, Derek Fenstermacher received his B.M. from the University of Alabama, an M.M. from the Cincinnati College/Conservatory of Music. His primary instructors have included Mark Barton, Timothy Northcut, Demondrae Thurman, Mike Dunn, and Philip Moore, with additional tutelage from Andrew Miller, Warren Deck, Gene Pokorny, Dan Perantoni, Dave Kirk, Cristian Ganicenco, Gil Long, Sam Pilafian, and Pat Sheridan.
Mr. Fenstermacher won his first orchestral position at the age of 20 and has since performed with the Nashville Symphony, New World Symphony, Houston Ballet, Alabama Symphony, Cincinnati Chamber, Huntsville Symphony, Dayton Philharmonic, West Virginia Symphony, Mobile Symphony, Tuscaloosa Symphony, and Meridian Symphony Orchestras. As a soloist, he has won many prestigious music competitions, including 1st place at the Leonard Falcone Artist Tuba Competition, and three 1st place awards at the 2008 International Tuba/Euphonium Conference. An avid chamber musician, he currently performs with the Boreas Tuba Quartet, and will be joining the New York Tuba Quartet in 2012. With over 10 years teaching experience, Mr. Fenstermacher has given masterclasses at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and Montclair State University, as well as numerous other schools in Alabama, Texas, Ohio, Kentucky, and New Jersey.
Artist in Residence, Acting Workshop
Jack FerverJack Ferver is a New York–based writer, choreographer, and director. His genre-defying performances, which have been called “so extreme that they sometimes look and feel like exorcisms” (New Yorker), explore the tragicomedy of the human psyche. Ferver’s “darkly humorous” (New York Times) works interrogate and indict an array of psychological and sociopolitical issues, particularly in the realms of sexual orientation, gender, and power struggles. His visionary direction blurs boundaries between fantastic theatrics and stark naturalism, character and self, humor and horror.
Ferver’s works have been presented in New York City at the New Museum; The Kitchen; The French Institute Alliance Française, as part of Crossing the Line; Abrons Arts Center; Gibney Dance; Performance Space 122; the Museum of Arts and Design, as part of Performa 11; Danspace Project; and Dixon Place. Domestically and internationally, Ferver has been presented by the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College; American Dance Institute (Maryland); Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (Illinois); Portland Institute of Contemporary Art (Oregon); Institute of Contemporary Art at MECA (Maine); Institute of Contemporary Art (Massachusetts); Contemporary Arts Museum of Houston (Texas); and Théâtre de Vanves (France).
His work has been critically acclaimed in the New York Times, La Monde, Artforum, New Yorker, Time Out NY, Modern Painters, Financial Times, Village Voice, and ArtsJournal. Ferver has received residencies and fellowships from the Maggie Allesee National Center of Choreography at Florida State (2012); Baryshnikov Arts Center (2013); Watermill Center (2014); Institute of Contemporary Art at Maine College of Art (2014); Live Arts Bard, the commissioning and residency program of The Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College (2014); and Abrons Art Center (2014-2015). He is a 2016 recipient of the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grant.
He teaches at Bard College and is guest faculty at New York University. He has also taught at SUNY Purchase, and has set choreography at The Juilliard School. As an actor he has appeared in numerous films and television series. In 2018, he had premieres at the Guggenheim and New York Live Arts.
Core Seminar III
Lucy Fitz GibbonNoted for her “dazzling, virtuoso singing” (Boston Globe), Lucy Fitz Gibbon is a dynamic musician whose repertoire spans the Renaissance to the present. She believes that creating new works and recreating those lost in centuries past makes room for the multiplicity and diversity of voices integral to classical music’s future. As such, Lucy has given U.S. premieres of rediscovered works by Baroque composers Francesco Sacrati, Barbara Strozzi, and Agostino Agazzari, as well by 20th century composers including Tadeusz Kassern, Roman Palester, and Jean Barraqué. She has also worked closely with numerous others, premiering works by John Harbison, Kate Soper, Sheila Silver, David Hertzberg, Reena Esmail, Roberto Sierra, Anna Lindemann, and Pauline Oliveros. In helping to realize the complexities of music beyond written notes, the experience of working with these composers translates to all music: the commitment to faithfully communicate not only the score, but also the underlying intentions of its creator.
As a recitalist Lucy has appeared with her collaborative partner, pianist Ryan McCullough, in such venues as London’s Wigmore Hall; New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, Park Avenue Armory, and Merkin Hall; and Toronto’s Koerner Hall. They have three forthcoming CDs: one of works by James Primosch and John Harbison on Albany Records; one alongside Dawn Upshaw and Stephanie Blythe of Sheila Silver’s Beauty Intolerable; and one featuring mid-20 th century Polish works on Acte Préalable. 2019-2020 season highlights include a fourth consecutive season with the Brooklyn Art Song Society; the premiere of Anna Lindemann’s multi-media theater work The Colony; the premiere of a new work by Indian-American composer Shirish Korde with Boston Musica Viva; the premiere of a new orchestration of Lukas Foss’ Time Cycle; two tours with the Musicians From Marlboro, performing works by Brett Dean, Kate Soper, and Handel in such venues as Carnegie Hall and the Kimmel Center; Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with the Kalamazoo Symphony; and Canteloube’s Chants d’Auvergne with the Eureka Symphony. In 2018-2019, Lucy joined the Brooklyn Art Song Society for a third consecutive season; premiered John Harbison’s IF, a monodrama for soprano and ensemble, in Boston Musica Viva’s 50 th Anniversary season; and performed works by Babbitt and Wuorinen with clarinetists Charles Neidich and Ayako Oshima, among numerous other chamber music concerts. She also appeared as a soloist with the Eureka Symphony, the Richmond Symphony, the Albany Symphony, the Cayuga Chamber Orchestra, Cornell’s Baroque Orchestra, and Harvard’s Dudley Orchestra, performing works ranging from Handel’s Messiah to world premieres.
A graduate of Yale University, Lucy is the recipient of numerous awards for her musical and academic achievements. Lucy holds an artist diploma from The Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory and a master’s degree from Bard College Conservatory’s Graduate Vocal Arts Program; her principal teachers include Monica Whicher, Edith Bers, and Dawn Upshaw. Lucy has spent summers at the Tanglewood Music Center (2014-2015) and Marlboro Music Festival (2016-2019). She is currently a Visiting Lecturer at Cornell University, and will join the faculty of Bard
College Conservatory’s Graduate Vocal Arts Program in the fall.
Taylor Hawver and Frances Bortle Hawver Professor of Music
Kyle GannB.Mus., Oberlin Conservatory of Music; M.Mus., D.Mus., Northwestern University. Recipient, National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist’s Grant (1996); Peabody Award (2003); American Music Center Letter of Distinction (2003). Music critic for the Village Voice, 1986–2005. Taught at Bucknell University, Columbia University, Northwestern University, Brooklyn College, and School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Books include The Arithmetic of Listening: Tuning Theory and History for the Impractical Musician (2018); Charles Ives’s Concord: Essays after a Sonata (2017); Robert Ashley (2012); No Such Thing as Silence: John Cage’s 4’33” (2010); Music Downtown: Writings from the Village Voice (2006); American Music in the 20th Century (1997); The Music of Conlon Nancarrow (1995); and, as coeditor, The Ashgate Research Companion to Minimalist and Postminimalist Music (2013). Vice president of the Charles Ives Society. Music on the Other Minds, New World, New Albion, Mode, Cold Blue, Lovely Music, and other record labels. At Bard since 1997.
Professor Emeritus and Visiting Professor of Music; Professor of Performance Studies, Bard College Conservatory of Music
Luis Garcia-RenartStudied at the Music School of the National University and the National Conservatory, Mexico; conservatories of Bern and Basel, Switzerland; and Trossingen, Germany. Pupil of Sándor Veress, Sándor Vegh, and Pablo Casals. Scholarship to Conservatory of Moscow with Rostropovich and Khachaturian (1960). Prizes: Casals International Contest, Paris (1956); Xalapa (1959); Israel (1961); Harriet Cohen Cello Prize, London (1959). Solo performances in North and South America, Europe, the Soviet Union, and Israel. Faculty of Vassar College; Yale Summer Graduate School of Music and Art; University of Southern California, Los Angeles. Former music director, Woodstock Chamber Orchestra. (1962–2004) Professor Emeritus and Visiting Professor of Music.
James H. Ottaway Jr. Professor of Music; Faculty, Bard College Conservatory of Music; Artistic Codirector, Bard Music Festival
Christopher H. GibbsChristopher H. Gibbs is executive editor of The Musical Quarterly; editor of The Cambridge Companion to Schubert (1997); author of The Life of Schubert (2000), which has been translated into five languages; coeditor of Franz Liszt and His World (2006) and Franz Schubert and His World (2014); and coauthor of The Oxford History of Western Music, College Edition (2013; 2nd ed., 2018). He is a contributor to New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 19th-Century Music, Schubert durch die Brille, Current Musicology, Opera Quarterly, and Chronicle of Higher Education. Additionally, he has served as program annotator and musicological consultant to the Philadelphia Orchestra (2000– ); musicological director of the Schubertiade at the 92nd Street Y in New York City; musicological adviser for the Schubert Festival at Carnegie Hall (1997); and artistic codirector of the Bard Music Festival (2003– ). Gibbs is the recipient of numerous honors, including the Dissertation Prize of the Austrian Cultural Institute (1992), ASCAP–Deems Taylor Award (1998), and American Council of Learned Societies fellowship (1999–2000). He previously taught at SUNY Buffalo (1993–2003).
BA, Haverford College; MA, MPhil, PhD, Columbia University. At Bard since 2002.
Marc GoldbergB.M., M.M., Juilliard School (studied with Harold Goltzer). Member, New York Woodwind Quintet; former associate principal bassoonist, New York Philharmonic; former acting principal bassoon, New York City Opera. Extensive freelance career includes numerous appearances with the Metropolitan Opera, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, New York City Opera, American Symphony Orchestra, others; has toured and recorded with most of the preceding groups. Active in commercial and movie recording in New York. Faculty, Bard College Conservatory, The Juilliard School, Mannes College, The Hartt School, Columbia University, NYU.
Richard GoodeStudied with Elvira Szigeti and Claude Frank, with Nadia Reisenberg at the Mannes College of Music, and with Rudolf Serkin at the Curtis Institute. Prizes include the Young Concert Artists Award, First Prize in the Clara Haskil Competition, the Avery Fisher Prize, and a Grammy Award (with clarinetist Richard Stoltzman). Performed all five Beethoven concerti with the Baltimore Symphony and the complete cycle of Beethoven sonatas at New Yorkï¿½s 92nd Street Y and Kansas Cityï¿½s Folly Theater. Has made more than two dozen recordings. Artistic co-director of the Marlboro Music School and Festival, Marlboro, Vermont.
Associate Director, Bard Conservatory; Viola
Marka GustavssonA dedicated chamber musician, violist Marka Gustavsson, has performed across Europe, Canada, and the U.S., as well as in China, the Philippines, Japan and Israel. She has been a frequent guest artist of chamber music festivals including Bard, Mostly Mozart, Skaneateles, Portland, Bennington, Vancouver’s Music in the Morning, and Newport. She has appeared as a guest of the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society, on WQXR’s Showcase Concerts, with the Yale Faculty Artists’ Series, at Banff, and in Wall-to-wall festivals at Symphony Space. Performing and recording contemporary solo and chamber repertoire, Marka has worked with composers John Halle, Joan Tower, Kyle Gann, George Tsontakis, Yinam Leef, Katherine Hoover, Martin Bresnick, Richard Wernick, Tania Leon, and Tan Dun. Highlights of recent seasons include premiering a viola concerto by Harold Farberman, teaching in the YAP program at Yellow Barn, completing a Beethoven Quartet cycle at Virginia Tech, performing a Bartok cycle in Banff, and collaborating with Tamar Muskal and Lucy Shelton on Music of Our Time at Symphony Space in New York City. In 1999, Marka joined the Colorado Quartet, with whom she played numerous concerts that included complete cycles of Bartok, Schubert and Beethoven. The Colorado Quartet recorded both traditional and contemporary repertoire, from Beethoven’s Complete Quartets on Parnassus Records, to Laura Kaminsky’s Transformations. Additionally, Marka Gustavsson has given performance classes at Yale, Eastman, Hartt, and Oberlin, as well as adjudicated competitions at Juilliard, Hartt, Yale, and Banff. A graduate of Indiana University, Mannes College, and CUNY, her formative teachers include Joseph Gingold, Mimi Zweig, Felix Galimir, and Daniel Phillips. Additionally, Marka studied at the CNSM in Paris with Michele Auclair, and in Utrecht with Viktor Lieberman. Ms. Gustavsson serves as faculty at Yellowbarn’s YAP sessions in Putney, Vt, and holds a teaching position at Bard College and Conservatory, where she oversees the chamber music program and performs as a member of the Bardian Ensemble; with the Colorado Quartet she served fourteen seasons as faculty and co-artistic director at Soundfest Chamber Music Festival and Quartet Institute.
Jason HaaheimJason Haaheim was appointed a Principal Timpanist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in 2013. In addition to performances at New York's Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall, Mr. Haaheim can be seen and heard performing with the MET Orchestra on television, international radio, and Live in HD movie theater broadcasts. Guest principal timpanist engagements have included the Seoul Philharmonic, the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, and the Milwaukee Symphony. Mr. Haaheim has also been principal timpanist of the Lakes Area Music Festival, and a resident artist of the Twickenham Festival. A sought-after clinician, Mr. Haaheim gives masterclasses both nationally and internationally, and is a founder of the multi-day Northland Timpani Summit. He is an adjunct faculty member of the NYU Steinhardt School of Music, and a frequent coach for the National Youth Orchestra (NYO) and the New York Youth Symphonies (NYYS).
Prior to the Met, Mr. Haaheim was principal timpanist of the Southwest Michigan Symphony and the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and he performed regularly as timpanist with the Madison Symphony, Illinois Symphony, Peoria Symphony, and the Illinois Philharmonic. Mr. Haaheim has also been invited to perform as guest principal timpanist with the Chicago Symphony, the Detroit Symphony, the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), the Glimmerglass Festival, the Auckland Philharmonia, the Fort Wayne Philharmonic, and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.
Mr. Haaheim began studying piano in 4th grade, adding percussion studies in 5th grade. He holds a bachelor of arts degree with a double major in honors-music-performance and physics from Gustavus Adolphus College (St. Peter, MN); he also holds a master’s degree in electrical engineering from UC-Santa Barbara. Influential teachers have included John Tafoya (Indiana University, National Symphony), Dean Borghesani (Milwaukee Symphony), Jonathan Haas (Aspen Music Festival, NYU), and Robert Adney (Gustavus Adolphus College, MacPhail Music School). While auditioning and freelancing, Mr. Haaheim worked as “Senior Research and Development Engineer” at NanoInk, a Chicago-area tech company. In this capacity, he gave invited talks on nanotechnology, authored multiple peer-reviewed publications, and was granted numerous patents. In 2017, this dual-career path was highlighted in an interview with Melissa Block on NPR’s Weekend Edition.
Active in all musical areas, Mr. Haaheim has also performed extensively as a chamber musician and jazz drummer. He collaborated with Yo-Yo Ma in a Civic Orchestra / Silk Road Ensemble performance, and recorded the premiere of Augusta Read Thomas’s “Terpsichore’s Dream” with members of the Chicago Symphony. Mr. Haaheim has performed with Chicago’s ensemble dal niente, and premiered Ryosuke Yagi’s “Mirrors…for timpani” with the UCSB Ensemble of Contemporary Music. Other projects have included drumming for the jazz-fusion quartet “The J3 Intent” and the alt-country band “The Lost Cartographers.” At Gustavus, Mr. Haaheim was selected for the honors recital and won first place in the orchestra’s concerto competition. Extra-musical interests include backpacking and hiking, rock climbing, and both downhill and cross-country skiing.
Benjamin HochmanWinner of 2011's prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant, pianist Benjamin Hochman has been described by the New York Times as a “gifted, fast-rising artist”. His eloquent and virtuosic performances have earned him critical acclaim and his rare combination of bravura and poetry has excited audiences and critics alike. His engagements have brought him to major cities as orchestral soloist, recitalist and chamber music collaborator with celebrated conductors and colleagues. A passionate interpreter of diverse composers from Bach and Mozart to Berg and Kurtag with a penchant for juxtaposing familiar works with the unfamiliar, Mr. Hochman has proven to be adept in expressing the essential heart of each composer.
After his successful recital debut in 2006 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he became a strong musical presence in New York through his concerts with the New York Philharmonic and the American Symphony Orchestra, his Carnegie Hall debut with the Israel Philharmonic and his continuous presence at 92nd Street Y. Mr. Hochman has performed with the Chicago, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Houston, Seattle, San Francisco, Vancouver, New Jersey and Portland Symphonies, the New York String Orchestra, Prague Philharmonia, Istanbul State Orchestra and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Canada under eminent conductors such as Kazuyoshi Akiyama, Leon Botstein, Nir Kabaretti, Jaime Laredo, Jun Märkl, Daniel Meyer, Lucas Richman, Bramwell Tovey, Joshua Weilerstein, Kaspar Zehnder and Pinchas Zukerman. He has appeared in his native Israel with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Tel Aviv Soloists, the Raanana and Jerusalem Symphonies. Following his debut with the Chicago Symphony in a Mozart Piano Concerto project with Pinchas Zukerman and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, he returned at the invitation of Emanuel Ax to participate in the 2012 “Keys to the City” Festival. During the festival he performed with the CSO, David Robertson, Trevor Pinnock, Orli Shaham, Kristian Bezuidenhout and Orion Weiss in two Mozart concertos and a recital of two-piano works by Ravel and Rachmaninoff.
Highlights of Mr. Hochman's 2012-2013 season include solo recitals in Boston and Tel Aviv and a tour of Mexico performing the music of Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Schumann, Janacek and Ravel. He returns for his third subscription series engagement with the Pittsburgh Symphony in performances of Ravel’s Concerto for the Left Hand Alone, conducted by Gianandrea Noseda and performs Saint-Saëns’s Carnival of the Animals in his debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Vancouver Symphony and Ravel's Piano Concerto in G Major with the Phoenix Symphony. He takes part in two chamber performances of Stravinsky, Beethoven and Fauré at New York's 92nd Street Y with Jaime Laredo, Steven Tenenbom and Sharon Robinson and collaborates with the Escher String Quartet in Buffalo and Bethlehem, Efe Baltacigil at the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, the Orchestra of St. Luke’s in Brooklyn and Manhattan and at the Schubert Club’s “Accordo” series with members of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra.
In 2009, he released his first album on Artek entitled Introducing Benjamin Hochman, featuring Bach's Partita No. 4 in D and Partita No. 6 in E minor, Berg's Sonata, Op. 1 and Webern's Variations Op. 27. He recorded Insects and Paper Airplanes: The Chamber Music of Lawrence Dillon in 2010 for Bridge Records. His forthcoming recording, entitled Hommage to Schubert featuring Schubert’s Sonata in A, D. 664 and Sonata in D, D. 850 alongside Jorg Widmann’s Idyll und Abgrund: Six Schubert Reminiscences and Kurtag’s Hommage to Schubert will be released by Avie Records in 2013.
Past festival highlights include Marlboro, Ravinia, Caramoor, Santa Fe, Bard, Gilmore, Vail and Vancouver in North America, as well as international festivals such as Lucerne, Spoleto, Verbier, Ruhr, Israel Festival and Prussia Cove. Mr. Hochman has performed internationally at such major halls as the Concertgebouw, the Louvre, Tivoli Theatre, l'Auditori de Barcelona, Suntory Hall in Tokyo and Kumho Art Hall in Seoul. A masterful collaborator, Benjamin Hochman has worked with the Tokyo, Mendelssohn, Casals, Prazak and Daedalus Quartets, Zukerman Chamber Players, members of the Guarneri, Juilliard and Orion Quartets, Jonathan Biss, Jaime Laredo, Cho-Liang Lin and Ani Kavafian, Miklós Perényi, Ralph Kirshbaum and Sharon Robinson. A dedicated advocate for contemporary music, he has performed works by Kurtág, Carter, Lutoslawski and Andriessen, and has worked closely with such notable composers as Krzysztof Penderecki, Philippe Hurel, Osvaldo Golijov, Lawrence Dillon and Tania Leon, among others.
Benjamin Hochman has previously been selected to participate in prestigious residencies around the world such as CMS Two at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Isaac Stern's International Chamber Music Encounters in Israel and Carnegie Hall's Professional Training Workshops with Osvaldo Golijov and Dawn Upshaw.
In addition to the 2011 Avery Fisher Career Grant, Mr. Hochman received the "Outstanding Pianist" citation at the Verbier Academy, the Festorazzi Award from the Curtis Institute of Music, second prize at the Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, the "Partosh Prize" awarded by the Israeli Minister of Culture for best performance of an Israeli work and first prize at the National Piano Competition of the Rubin Academy of Music in Jerusalem. His performances have been broadcast on National Public Radio's Young Artist Showcase and Performance Today, WNET’s Sunday Arts, WQXR, CBC (Canada), ABC (Australia), Radio France and Israel's Voice of Music radio station, as well as on the European television network Mezzo.
Born in Jerusalem, Benjamin Hochman began his studies with Esther Narkiss at the Conservatory of the Rubin Academy in Jerusalem and Emanuel Krasovsky in Tel Aviv. He is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and the Mannes College of Music where his principal teachers were Claude Frank and Richard Goode. His studies were supported by the America-Israel Cultural Foundation. In addition to being on the faculty at Bard Conservatory he is currently on the piano faculty of the Longy School of Music of Bard College. Benjamin Hochman is a Steinway Artist and lives in New York City with his wife, violinist Jennifer Koh.
Yu HongmeiA graduate of the Central Conservatory of Music (CCOM), Yu Hongmei is one of the most brilliant erhu virtuosos as well as the most influential erhu educator in contemporary China. She currently serves as the Dean of the Chinese Music Department in CCOM, and is the designated guest erhu soloist for the China National Traditional Orchestra.
Yu Hongmei maintains an active solo career in erhu performing. She has toured Europe, America, Africa, and many regions in Asia, and has successfully held hundreds of recitals in the United States, France, Canada, Japan, Hong Kong and mainland China. Her album String Glamour won the Best Traditional World Music award by Indie Music in the United States. She was the first Chinese recipient honored for this award in its 30-year history.
Yu Hongmei has premiered many classic erhu works and core repertoires, and has produced exemplary works embodying different times in Chinese history: Dreams of Jinghua, Eight Banners, Tianxiang, West Rhapsody. She has appeared in many world class concert halls: Musikverein (Golden Hall in Vienna), Carnegie Hall in New York, Avery Fisher Hall of Lincoln Center, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C., Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris, Lucerne Concert Hall at KKL Luzern. She participated in many major performance events such as American Culture in China, New Culture in Australia with Chinese Culture, Spring Prague in the Czech Republic, Chinese Arts Festival, Beijing International Music Festival, Shanghai International Arts Festival, German Music Festival, and the Macao Arts Festival.
As an educator, Yu Hongmei recorded Erhu by Maestros, and edited and published Collections of Erhu Works presented by China Central Television, the most predominant state television broadcaster. Her publications, such as Dynamics in Erhu Performance and How to play A Flower (an erhu piece by Song Fei) are well recognized and widely cited in Chinese music journals. Yu Hongmei has been invited to lecture at various institutions including California Institute of the Arts and the City University of Hong Kong.
New York Concert Journal complimented her on her exquisite touching sounds as she “represents the contemporary spirit of Chinese musical culture.” Joining the US-China Music Institute of Bard Conservatory of Music, Yu Hongmei continues committing herself to preserving cultural heritage, promoting and developing Chinese music in America.
Melissa HooperMelissa Hooper was named assistant principal oboe of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in 2014. She has performed as a guest musician with the Metropolitan Opera, the National Symphony Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Hawaii and San Antonio. Ms. Hooper received a Bachelor of Music degree from The Juilliard School, where she was a student of Elaine Douvas. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, serving as a teaching assistant for Rebecca Henderson. During recent summers, Ms. Hooper has performed at the Aspen Music Festival and School, where she was a recipient of the New Horizons Fellowship.
Associate Director, Graduate Vocal Arts Program
Kayo IwamaAmerican pianist Kayo Iwama is the associate director of the Graduate Vocal Arts Program at the Bard College Conservatory of Music, working in tandem with the artistic director, the internationally acclaimed American soprano Dawn Upshaw. Other collaborations with Dawn Upshaw include master classes and a recital at the Britten-Pears Young Artist Program at the Aldeburgh Music Festival, and appearances at the International Vocal Arts Institute in Virginia, the University of Wyoming, Edward Pickman Hall at the Longy School of Music and the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College. In addition, Kayo Iwama has concertized extensively with singers including Kendra Colton, William Hite, Rufus Müller, Christòpheren Nomura and Lucy Shelton throughout North America, Europe and Japan, performing at venues such as the Walter Reade Theater at Lincoln Center, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, The Morgan Library, Boston’s Jordan Hall, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Seiji Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood, the Kennedy Center, the Token Creek Music Festival, Tokyo’s Yamaha Hall and the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris. The Washington Post has called her a pianist “with unusual skill and sensitivty to the music and the singer” and the Boston Globe has praised her “virtuoso accompaniment…super-saturated with gorgeuos colors”. For over two decades she taught at the Tanglewood Music Center, where she also served as the coordinator of the Vocal Studies Program for fifteen years. There she has worked with some of today’s most promising young singers and collaborative pianists, and assisted Maestros James Levine, Seiji Ozawa and Robert Spano in major operatic and concert productions. In addition her teaching has taken her to some of the foremost universities of the United States and Taiwan to give master classes and performances. She is currently on the faculty of Songfest.
A former resident of the Boston, Massachusetts area, Kayo Iwama was a frequent performer on WGBH radio, and performed with such groups as the Florestan Recital Project, the Handel and Haydn Society and Emmanuel Music. In addition she was the pianist and music director of the critically acclaimed Cantata Singers Chamber Series, creating programs devoted to rarely-heard works of art song and vocal chamber music. She was formerly on the faculties of the Hartt School of Music, the New England Conservatory of Music and Boston Conservatory.
Ms. Iwama earned a bachelor of music degree at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and a master’s degree at the State University of New York at Stony Brook where she studied with Gilbert Kalish. She also attended the Salzburg Music Festival, the Banff Music Center, the Music Academy of the West and the Tanglewood Music Center, where she worked with such artists as Margo Garrett, Martin Isepp, Graham Johnson, Martin Katz and Erik Werba. She has served previously on the music staffs of the Steans Institute at the Ravinia Festival and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. She can be heard in recording on the Well-Tempered label, with baritone Christópheren Nomura in Schubert’s Die Schöne Müllerin, two ISMM discs devoted to French mélodies and the songs of Schumann with tenor Ingul Ivan Oak, and on the recently released The Reckless Heart with soprano Kendra Colton, a collection of 20th century American and British song.
Yi-Wen JiangViolinist Yi-Wen Jiang was born into a musical family in Beijing where both parents were professional musicians in the Chinese Navy Orchestra. Having been immersed in such a musical family – his father a Concertmaster for over 35 years and his mother a solo soprano – Jiang was most intrigued by the violin. After hearing Beethoven's violin concerto (the family's only owned piece of recorded music) at the age of three, Jiang was committed to becoming a world-class violinist. This western influence framed Jiang's passion for composition and performance, and still follows him today in performances by the Shanghai Quartet.
As is the story of many Chinese string players from his generation, Jiang is a true product of the Chinese Cultural Revolution in the 1960s and 70s. One particular memory for Jiang from this period happened when he was 11 years old. Chaperoned by his father, Jiang auditioned for a prominent violin professor at the Central Conservatory of Music. With the hidden intention for his son to be selected for training, Jiang's father was taking his chances that day that no one would find out. As Jiang began to play the Mozart A Major Concerto, the Professor abruptly stopped him and swiftly left the room. The Professor returned with a heavy metal mute which he placed on Jiang's violin with great caution for fear any one outside would hear the non-Chinese music. At a time when families could be severely punished with imprisonment or sentencing to hard labor for such a bold act, this behavior was considered as rebellious and kept secret from Chinese governmental authorities. Though the Professor was delighted at Jiang's obvious ability and talent, he candidly advised Jiang and his father that no such performance could be admissible at the Conservatory. After a couple more years of practicing only Chinese repertoire strongly influenced by his smoldering passion for western influences in classical music, China had reached a time when censorship of the arts was being phased out, Jiang was finally able to make his debut at the Conservatory.
Jiang made his concerto debut at the age of 17 with the Central Opera House Orchestra in Beijing where he played the Prokofiev D Major Concerto Opus 19. In 1981, after winning top prize at the first China Youth Violin Competition, Jiang was accepted to study with Professor Han Li at the Central Conservatory of Music. After receiving a full scholarship from McDonnell-Douglas at the St. Louis Conservatory, Jiang came to the U.S. in 1985 to study with Taras Gabora and Michael Tree. Other teachers in the U.S. included Arnold Steinhardt and Pinchas Zuckerman. As a prizewinner at the Montreal International Competitions, he appeared as a soloist with the Victoria Symphony and Montreal Symphony. Jiang had appeared at many international music festivals by the age of 22.
Jiang joined The Shanghai Quartet in 1994. As a composer, Jiang has arranged over 50 pieces for string quartet and other instruments, many pieces composed with Eastern repertoire and Western influence. In addition to his extensive touring and recordings schedule, Jiang maintains a close relationships with his students. Jiang teaches at Montclair State University and The Bard College Conservatory of Music. He is also guest
professor at the Shanghai Conservatory and the Central Conservatory in Beijing. He plays on a 1800 Giovanni Gagliano violin made in Naples, Italy. When not performing, composing or teaching, Jiang enjoys photography, film & audio editing, and food & wine. Jiang lives with his family in New Jersey.
Zhao JiazhenZhao Jiazhen is a professor of guqin in the Traditional Music Department at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China. She studied at the Central Conservatory, graduating in 1984. Zhao has performed with the Chinese Symphony Orchestra, Film Orchestra of China, Beijing Symphony Orchestra, Brussels Symphony Orchestra of Belgium, and National Orchestra of Taipei City. In 2001 and 2002 she performed in the “World Renowned Musicians and Instruments Concert” at Zhong Shan Hall inside the Forbidden City in Beijing, featuring three priceless guqins from the Tang Dynasty and five Guarneri and Antonio Stradivari violins. Zhao has performed in films such as The History of the Three Kingdoms, Dream of the Red Chamber, Swordsman, Fire on Yuanming Yuan, and Wu Ze Tian. She has also produced more than 10 albums of guqin music. At the 10th annual Independent Music Awards, her album Qin: Masterpieces of Chinese Qin from the Tang Dynasty to Today won best album in the World Traditional Music category.
Barbara Jöstlein CurrieBarbara Jöstlein Currie joined the Met Orchestra in 1998, as assistant horn. A year later, she won the 4th horn position which she has held since. Growing up in Chicago and studying with former Chicago Symphony Orchestra musicians Phil Farkas and Nancy Fako, she left for New York to study with former Met principal horn, Julie Landsman at the Juilliard school with a full scholarship. During her studies, she took a year off to play third and associate horn with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra in Israel.
She has performed frequently at the Hollywood Bowl with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and with the San Diego Symphony during the summer. Along with teaching at the Bard Conservatory, she also teaches at Manhattan School of Music pre-college, and has given master classes at many universities such as Colburn and Cincinnati Conservatory, as well as in Japan.
Barbara is also active in the recording industry, playing on movies such as True Grit and Contagion, and with musicians such as Tony Bennett and Sting, and has also recorded soundtracks in Los Angeles during her time off.
During her summers, Barbara lives in Southern California with her husband and three children, and make frequent trips to Disneyland and the beach. Barbara's brother Thomas is the associate principal horn of the St. Louis Symphony and played for two years with the NY Philharmonic.
Ani KavafianAni Kavafian was born in Istanbul, Turkey, and began her musical studies with piano lessons at age three. At nine, shortly after her family moved to the United States, she began studying the violin and, at 16, won first prize in both the piano and violin competitions at the National Music Camp in Interlochen, Michigan. Two years later she began violin studies at the Juilliard School with Ivan Galamian, eventually receiving a master's degree with top honors. She has performed with virtually all of America's leading orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, and the symphony orchestras of Detroit, San Francisco, Atlanta, Seattle, Minneapolis, Phoenix, and Rochester. Her numerous recital engagements include performances at New York's Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall, Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, and the Krannert Center in Illinois.
As a chamber musician, Kavafian appears frequently as an artist member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, touring throughout the United States and Canada, in addition to performing in the group's regular series at Alice Tully Hall. She is also a member of the Walden Horn Trio with pianist Anne-Marie McDermott and hornist Robert Routch, with whom she performs regularly. She is in demand at numerous festivals, including the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, and Bridgehampton Chamber Music Festival. Her list of prestigious awards includes the Avery Fisher Prize and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions. She has appeared at the White House on three occasions and has been featured on many network and PBS television music specials. Her recordings can be heard on the Nonesuch, RCA, Columbia, and Musical Heritage Society labels.
Director, Chamber Music & Arts Advocacy; Harp
Bridget KibbeyIn demand as a soloist and chamber musician alongside today’s top artists, harpist Bridget Kibbey is a recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant, the Classical Recording Foundation's Young Artist Award, a Salon de Virtuosi Grant, the only harpist to win a position with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society II, a winner of Concert Artist Guild's International Competition, Astral Artist Auditions, and Premiere Prix at the Journées de les Harpes Competition in Arles, France.
Ms. Kibbey's solo performances have been broadcast on NPR's Performance Today, on New York's WQXR and Q2 Radio, WNYC's Soundcheck, WETA’s Front Row Washington, WRTI’s Crossover, and A&E's Breakfast with the Arts. She has toured and recorded with Dawn Upshaw and Placido Domingo for SONY Records and Deutsche Grammaphon; and, her own solo debut album, Love is Come Again, was named one of the Top Ten Releases by Time Out New York. Bridget is featured annually with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Knights Chamber Orchestra, and Camerata Pacifica. She has appeared as featured soloist and chamber artist at the Bravo!Vail, Santa Fe, Spoleto, Chamber Music Northwest, Bridgehampton, Aspen, Bay Chamber, Pelotas, Savannah Music Festival, Music@Menlo Festivals, among others.
With a passion for expanding the scope and platform of the harp, Bridget spearheads and tours cross-genre collaborations that reignite an ancient instrument. This season Bridget presents J.S. Bach’s most iconic keyboard works adapted on the harp alongside the Sebastians, “New York’s leading early music ensemble (New York Times).” She travels across the country with a special appearance at the Colombian Embassy with Chalaca, a new trio exploring the cross-pollination of folk music in South America, alongside Colombian clarinetist Benito Meza, and percussionist Samuel Torres.
Bridget recently spear-headed a five orchestra concerto-commissioning consortium with Juno-Award winning composer Vivian Fung. Bridget performed five world-premiere performances with The Karlsruhe Badische Symphoniker (Germany), The Phillips Camerata in Washington, DC, The Alabama Symphony, The San José Chamber Orchestra, and the Metropolis Ensemble. This season Bridget announces a new concerto consortium, with participating orchestras launching performance in 2019/2020, featuring a new harp concerto by Brazilian-born João Luiz Rezende.
In addition to teaching at Bard Conservatory, Bridget maintains harp studios at The Juilliard School Pre-College Program, and The Curtis Young Artist Institute.
Visiting Associate Professor of Music; Associate Conductor for the Bard College Community Orchestra
Erica KiesewetterFormer Concertmaster, American Symphony Orchestra, Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, Opera Orchestra of New York, New York Pops, Stamford Symphony, Long Island Philharmonic, and Amici New York. Former first violinist, Colorado Quartet, former member, Leonardo Trio; toured internationally and recorded with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra Studies at the The Juilliard School, where she studied with Ivan Galamian; also studied with Charles Castleman, Joyce Robbins, Emanuel Vardi, and Robert Mann... Faculty, Bard College Conservatory of Music. Continuing Associate Professor of Music and Director of Orchestral Studies since 2010.
Alexandra KnollAlexandra was born in Zimbabwe and emigrated to South Africa at age ten. After graduating from high school, she worked professionally for two years in the Natal Philharmonic Orchestra before moving to the States. She is an alumna of the Curtis Institute of Music and The Juilliard School. Alex enjoys a multifaceted freelance career. She is a member of the American Symphony Orchestra and the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic and plays frequently with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Ballet, New Jersey Symphony and Orpheus. She is the oboist for the Broadway show Mary Poppins and has been featured on recordings by Rufus Wainwright, Lenny Kravitz and Antony and the Johnsons. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband Maxim and daughter Vera.
David KrakauerInternationally acclaimed clarinetist David Krakauer redefines the notion of a concert artist. Known for his mastery of myriad styles, he occupies the unique position of being one of the world’s leading exponents of Eastern European Jewish klezmer music, and at the same time is a major voice in classical music. As one of the foremost musicians of the vital new wave of klezmer, David Krakauer tours the globe with his celebrated Klezmer Madness! ensemble. While firmly rooted in traditional klezmer folk tunes, the band “hurls the tradition of klezmer music into the rock era” (Jon Pareles, The New York Times).
In addition to his annual European tours to major international festivals and jazz clubs, recent seasons brought Krakauer and his band to the Library of Congress, Stanford Lively Arts, San Francisco Performances, the Krannert Center, Carnegie’s Zankel Hall, the Venice Biennale, Krakow Jewish Culture Festival, BBC Proms, Saalfelden Jazz Festival, Transmusicales de Rennes, La Cigale, New Morning in Paris, and many others. His newest project, The Big Picture, re-imagines familiar themes by such renowned film music composers as John Williams, Marvin Hamlisch, Randy Newman, Wojciech Kilar and Vangelis, and interprets melodic gems by the likes of Sidney Bechet, Sergei Prokofiev, Mel Brooks, Ralph Burns, John Kander & Fred Ebb and Jerry Bock that have appeared in popular films.
In addition, Krakauer is in demand worldwide as a guest soloist with the finest ensembles including the Emerson, Orion and Kronos String Quartets, as well as orchestras including the Amsterdam Sinfonietta, the Detroit Symphony, the Weimar Staatskapelle, the Phoenix Symphony, the Dresdener Philharmonie, and the Seattle Symphony. Krakauer’s discography contains some of the most important klezmer recordings of the past decade including six CDs under his own name: two on John Zorn's Tzadik Label and four on Label Bleu; plus collaborations with the Klezmatics, Itzak Perlman, the Kronos Quartet/Osvaldo Golijov and Socalled. Abraham Inc’s "Tweet-Tweet" on his own label, Table Pounding Records (and Label Bleu in Europe) was released in early 2010.
Composers who have written major pieces for him include David del Tredici, Paul Moravec, Ofer Ben-Amots, Jean Philippe Calvin, George Tsontakis, Anthony Coleman and Wlad Marhulets.
David Krakauer is on the clarinet and chamber music faculties of Mannes College of Music, the Manhattan School of Music, NYU and the Bard College Conservatory of Music. His unique sound can be heard as soloist in Danny Elfman's score for the film "Taking Woodstock" and throughout "The Tango Lesson".
Garry KvistadGarry Kvistad joins the Bard Conservatory faculty in the fall of 2011 as an advisor to its newly founded percussion program.
Garry attended the Interlochen Arts Academy where he studied with Jack McKenzie and Michael Ranta. He earned his BM from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music where he studied with Cloyd Duff and Richard Weiner and his MM from Northern Illinois University, where he studied music, art and physics in the pursuit of musical instrument building. In 1993 Northern Illinois University honored him with its Distinguished Alumni Award.
In the 1970s, Garry worked with composer/conductor Lucas Foss as a Creative Associate in Buffalo, New York, after which he joined the faculties of Northern Illinois University and the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music. During that time he co-founded the Blackearth Percussion Group which recorded and toured in the US, Canada, and Europe. Kvistad has served as the timpanist and percussionist with the Chicago Grant Park Symphony, was a summer Tanglewood Fellow, and a percussionist with the Cabrillo Music Festival Orchestra, California.
He joined the percussion ensemble Nexus in the Fall of 2002 when John Wyre, one of the group's original members, retired. He has been performing and recording with Nexus co-founders Bob Becker and Russell Hartenberger since joining Steve Reich and Musicians in 1980. Garry is one of 18 musicians to win a Grammy award for the 1998 recording of Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians.
He has been featured in performances with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Israel Philharmonic, as well as many others in North America and Europe. The Balinese Gong Kebyar Gamelan ensemble, Giri Mekar, which he formed in 1987, is currently in residence at Bard College. Garry is the founder and CEO of Woodstock Percussion, Inc., makers of Woodstock Chimes® and musical instruments for children. He is a 1995 winner of Ernst & Young/Inc. Magazine's Entrepreneur of the Year Award for the Southern New England Region and served as a New York state delegate to the 1995 White House Conference on Small Business.
Garry served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Woodstock Guild, Woodstock, NY until 2008; and as a member of the Board of Advisors of The Catskill Center for Conservation and Development, Arkville, NY. Garry lives in beautiful upstate New York with his wife Diane, lots of pets and houseplants. They have two daughters, Tasa and Maya, both following artistic paths.
Visiting Associate Professor of Music
Peter LakiDiploma in Musicology, Franz Liszt Academy of Music, Budapest; Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania. Program annotator, Cleveland Orchestra (1990– ); editor, Bartók and His World (Princeton University Press, 1995); contributor, Cambridge Companion to the Orchestra and Cambridge Companion to Bartók; articles in Orbis Musicae, International Journal of Musicology, Institute for Canadian Music Newsletter, Hungarian Quarterly, others. Visiting assistant professor, Oberlin College (2003– ); has also taught at Case Western Reserve University, Franz Liszt Academy of Music, John Carroll University, Kent State University. At Bard since 2007.
Julie LandsmanRecently retired from the Principal Horn chair with the Metropolitan Opera, a position she held for 25 years, Julie Landsman is now enjoying playing chamber music and chamber orchestra repertoire. Prior to her appointment with the MET Orchestra, Ms. Landsman was co-principal horn with the Houston Symphony. She has toured throughout the world with the New York Philharmonic and Orpheus. Ms. Landsman's recording credits include the Ring Cycle with the Metropolitan Opera, conducted by James Levine, where she is the featured horn soloist. Julie's summers have included The Marlboro Music Festival, Sarasota Music Festival, Mainly Mozart Orchestra, La Jolla Summerfest, Chamber Music Northwest, and the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. In addition to being on the faculty at Bard Conservatory she teaches at The Juilliard School. Many of her students are in prominent positions throughout the United States. A graduate of Juilliard, her teachers have included James Chambers, Howard Howard, and Carmine Caruso. She currently resides in Nyack, New York.
Jeffrey LangJeffrey Lang is the Associate Principal Horn of the Philadelphia Orchestra. In addition to being on the faculty of the The Bard College Conservatory of Music he is also currently on the faculties Temple University and the Curtis Institute of Music. Formerly principal horn of the Israel Philharmonic and the American Symphony Orchestra, he has also performed as guest principal horn of the Bavarian Radio Orchestra, the New York City Opera and the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra.
Jeffrey studied at The Juilliard School and Temple University, and has given masterclasses in Israel, Finland, Korea, China and the USA. He is a frequent soloist and has appeared with the conductors Zubin Mehta, Mung-Whun Chung, Kurt Masur, Leon Botstein, and Rossen Milanov. Chamber music performances at home and abroad have included concerts with Bella Davidovitch, Diane Walsh, Simone Dinnerstein, The Israel Piano Trio, Wister Quartet, Melvin Chen, Canadian Brass, and members of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has participated in the Kingston Chamber Music Festival, Bard Summerscape, OK Mozart and the Spoleto Festival.
Jeffrey records for several TV, film, and commercial artists in the New york metropolitan area and was principal horn of Disney's long running Broadway hit, Beauty and the Beast. He is an active member of the Recording Academy, the International Horn Society and the American Federation of Musicians. Jeffrey has recently released a solo horn album One World Horn, a charitable project of unaccompanied horn works from various countries.
He lives in New Jersey with his wife, Finnish cellist Elina Snellman-Lang, and their two sons, Johannes and Markus.
Photo: Jessica Griffin
Honggang LiHonggang Li is the founding member of the Shanghai Quartet, now in it’s 30th season, has performed over two thousand concerts in 30 countries, and can be heard on more than 30 CD albums.
Mr. Li began studying the violin with his parents at age seven. When the Central Conservatory of music in Beijing reopened in 1977 after the Cultural Revolution, Mr. Li was selected to attend from a group of over five hundred applicants.
He continued his training at the Shanghai Conservatory and co- founded the Shanghai Quartet with his brother Weigang while in his senior year in the conservatory. The quartet soon became the first Chinese quartet to win a major international chamber music competition (the London International) and came to the US in 1985. He received MM of North Illinois University and served as a teaching assistant at the Juilliard School in New York. In 1987, he won the special prize (a 1757 DeCable violin) given by Elisa Pegreffi of Quartetto Italiano at the First Paolo Borciani International Competition in Italy.
In addition to his work at the Bard Conservatory of Music Mr. Li is currently also an artist-in-residence and faculty at Montclair State University. He also held the title of artist in residence at University of Richmond in Virginia from 1989 to 2003. He has been the guest professor of both conservatories of Shanghai and Beijing. Mr. Li is also the guest principal violist of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra since 2009.
Weigang LiBorn into a family of well-known musicians in Shanghai, Weigang Li began studying the violin with his parents when he was 5 and went on to attend the Shanghai Conservatory at age 14. Three years later, in 1981, he was selected to go to study for one year at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music through the first cultural exchange program between the sister cities of Shanghai and San Francisco. In 1985, upon graduating from the Shanghai Conservatory, Weigang Li left China again to continue his studies at Northern Illinois University and later studied and taught at the Juilliard School as teaching assistant to the Juilliard Quartet. His teachers have included Shmuel Ashkenasi, Isadore Tinkleman, and Tan Shu-Chen.
Mr. Li was featured in the 1980 Oscar winning documentary film From Mao to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China. He made his solo debut at 17 with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and has appeared as soloist with Shanghai Symphony, China Philharmonic, BBC Scottish Symphony and Asian Youth Orchestra.
Weigang Li is a founding member and first violinist of the world-renowned Shanghai Quartet since 1983. Now in its 32nd season, the Shanghai Quartet has performed well over 2000 concerts in 30 countries and recorded 35 CD albums, including the complete Beethoven string quartets on the Camerata label.
Weigang Li is on the faculty at the Bard College Conservatory of Music in New York and Montclair State University in New Jersey. He also holds the title of guest concert-master of Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and guest professor at Shanghai Conservatory of Music and Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing.
Mr. Li plays on the 1600 Giovanni Paolo Maggini violin (ex-Burmester), which is on a generous loan from Mr. Rin Kei Mei.
Visiting Assistant Professor of Music
Ilka LoMonacoIlka LoMonaco was born in Germany and studied at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst in Hamburg, where she won first prize in one of Germany’s most important voice competitions, the VdMK Wettbewerb. During that time she established a flourishing career in oratorio, and also began her pedagogic career by teaching at two music schools in Hamburg. In 1991 she moved to New York to continue studying with renowned teacher Thomas LoMonaco and expanded her repertoire to include more opera. Some of the roles she has performed are Composer (Ariadne auf Naxos), Amelia (Un Ballo in Maschera), and Elvira (Don Giovanni).
In 2000, while running a thriving private vocal studio in Manhattan, LoMonaco began teaching at the Lee Strasberg Institute as well as New York University. In 2006 she completed her training as a Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner, and the method has informed her vocal teaching ever since. She joined the Bard College faculty in 2007 and moved to the Hudson Valley while maintaining her vocal studio in Manhattan. Besides individual voice lessons, Professor LoMonaco coproduces the Opera Workshop, which is taught jointly with other vocal faculty and culminates annually in a fully staged production with orchestra. She also teaches Feldenkrais and the Voice and Vocal Pedagogy to undergraduate students and graduate choral conductors.
Sondra LoringSondra Loring has been dancing in New York since 1982, and received a 1996 Dance and Performance Award (Bessie) as an improviser, writer, teacher and performer, specifically with David Rousseve and Neil Greenberg. Her own work has been produced in NYC, notably Danspace Project, DTW, BAM, Movement Research at the Judson Church, Joyce Soho and PS122, as well as in Mexico, Venezuela and other venues throughout the United States. Loring received the prestigious Meet the Composer commission, along with a grant from the US/Mexico Fund for Culture for El Puente/The Bridge.
In 1992, Loring co-founded the annual Improvisation Festival/NY, a two-week program of workshops, classes, ‘jams’ and performances by both national and international improvisers. She also founded and edited JUICE, an underground dance journal in NYC. She was an artist-in-residence for Movement Research (MR) and on the Artists Advisory Board for MR and for Danspace Project.
After moving to the Hudson Valley, Loring rocked the dance scene, organizing performance and educational experiences for the local community, with infusions from the NYC dance world. Her work as a director includes site-specific events, concert performances and collaborations with artists spanning the disciplines of music and art. Her recent piece, CRUSH, with Maria Simpson, was performed in NYC and the northeast region.
Early in the 2000’s, Loring opened two yoga studios, Sadhana Center for Yoga and Meditation in Hudson, and Satya Yoga Center in Rhinebeck, and continues to teach yoga and direct teacher training programs at Sadhana. She founded the Sadhana Service Project, bringing trauma-informed and mindfulness-based yoga to those impacted by trauma, addiction and incarceration. Her creative work includes choreographing, teaching, designing one-of-a-kind coveralls, disrupting sexual stereotypes through photography, mothering her son, tending her small farm, and working for peace and justice in her community.
Pipa, Master Classes
Wu ManRecognized as the world’s premier pipa virtuoso and leading ambassador of Chinese music, Wu Man has carved out a career as a soloist, educator, and composer, giving her lute-like instrument—which has a history of over 2,000 years in China—a new role in both traditional and contemporary music. Through numerous concert tours Wu Man has premiered hundreds of new works for the pipa, while spearheading multimedia projects to both preserve and create awareness of China’s ancient musical traditions.
Pascual Martínez-FortezaA native of Mallorca, Spain, Acting Associate Principal and E-flat Clarinet Pascual Martínez Forteza joined the New York Philharmonic in 2001, the first and only Spanish musician in the Orchestra’s history. Prior to his appointment with the Philharmonic, he held tenure with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, and at age 18 he was assistant principal and later acting principal of the Baleares Symphony Orchestra in Spain. He is regularly invited as guest principal clarinet or e-flat with some of the most important orchestras in USA including the MET, Philadelphia, Cincinnati, Dallas, St Louis... He has performed as guest principal clarinet with the Berlin Philharmonic under Sir Simon Rattle.
Mr. Martínez Forteza appears regularly as a soloist, recitalist, and master-class teacher at international festivals and conservatories. Past and future engagements include solo performances of Copland’s Clarinet Concerto, Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, Weber’s Clarinet Concertos, Krommer’s Concerto for Two Clarinets, Rossini’s Introduction, Theme and Variations for Clarinet and Orchestra, and Luigi Bassi’s Fantasy on Themes from Verdi’s Rigoletto. He frequently collaborates with Philharmonic colleagues in New York City venues such as Avery Fisher Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, and Carnegie Hall.
Since 2003 Mr. Martínez Forteza and Spanish pianist Gema Nieto have played throughout Asia, Europe, and the United States as Duo Forteza-Nieto. Together they founded the Benifaio Music Festival in Spain, where Philharmonic colleagues have joined them for a week of master classes and concerts. The Duo Forteza-Nieto recently received the 2016 Sunshine Award for Outstanding Performing Arts Classical and Latin Music.
Pascual Martínez Forteza started playing clarinet at age ten with his father, Pascual V. Martínez, principal clarinet of the Baleares Symphony Orchestra for 30 years and teacher at the Baleares Conservatory of Music in Spain. Mr. Martínez Forteza earned his master’s degree from the Baleares and Liceo de Barcelona Music Conservatories in Spain and pursued advanced studies with Yehuda Gilad at the University of Southern California, where he won first prize in the university’s 1998 Concerto Competition.
Mr. Martínez Forteza is currently a faculty member at Manhattan School of Music, New York University and auxiliary teacher at Juilliard School.
A Buffet Crampon Artist and Vandoren Artist, he plays Green Line Tosca Buffet clarinets and uses Vandoren reeds and M30D mouthpieces.
Anthony McGillAnthony McGill, principal clarinetist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, has quickly earned the reputation of being one of classical music's finest solo, chamber and orchestral musicians. Before joining the MET Orchestra in 2004, he served as associate principal clarinet of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra for four years. With the MET Orchestra, McGill frequently performs in Carnegie Hall's Isaac Stern Auditorium, as well as Zankel and Weill Halls with the MET Chamber Ensemble. He can also be seen and heard on the Live in HD broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera.
In addition to his orchestral career, McGill was a winner of the highly prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2000 and has appeared as a soloist with orchestras including the Baltimore Symphony, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Hilton Head Orchestra, Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra, and The Curtis Orchestra. This season he will appear with the Peabody Orchestra, The New Amsterdam Symphony Orchestra and the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra.
As a distinguished chamber musician, McGill has performed at the Marlboro Music Festival, Sarasota Festival, La Musica, Tanglewood, Music @ Menlo, the Grand Teton Music Festival, Music from Angel Fire , Martha's Vineyard Chamber Music Festival, the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival, Bridgehampton Chamber Festival and the Interlochen Music Festival. He is also a member of the newly formed Schumann Trio with violist Michael Tree and pianist Anna Polonsky.
McGill has collaborated with artists such as Yo-Yo Ma, Midori, Lang Lang, Yefim Bronfman and Gil Shaham, as well as world-renowned string quartets including the Guarneri, Tokyo, Shanghai, Miami, Miró and Daedalus quartets. He has performed throughout the United States, Europe and Asia as a chamber and orchestral musician with artists including the Brentano String Quartet, Musicians from Marlboro, The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Mitsuko Uchida, Marina Piccinini and Barbara Sukova. McGill has appeared on Performance Today, NPR's St. Paul Sunday, Ravinia's Rising Star Series, on the Mr. Roger's Neighborhood television show and at Lincoln Center as a member of Chamber Music Society Two.
McGill attended the Interlochen Arts Academy and the Curtis Institute of Music. His former teachers include Donald Montanaro, Richard Hawkins, Larry Combs, Julie DeRoche, David Tuttle and Sidney Forrest. In addition to being on the faculty of the Bard Conservatory of Music, McGill currently serves on the faculties of the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University, Mannes College of Music and the Manhattan School of Music Precollege. In addition he has given masterclasses at the Curtis Institute of Music, University of Michigan, Stony Brook University, Temple University, UCLA, University of New Mexico and the Manhattan School of Music.
McGill is a Leblanc and Rico Artist.
Photo by David Finlayson.
Artist in Residence; Visiting Assistant Professor of Music
Blair McMillenB.A., B.M., Oberlin College; M.M., The Juilliard School; D.M.A., Manhattan School of Music. Pianist, chamber musician, improviser, concert series curator. Appearances as soloist at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, le Poisson Rouge, Moscow Conservatory, Casals Hall (Tokyo), Miller Theatre. Has performed with American Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of St. Luke's, Albany Symphony, Juilliard Orchestra (Lincoln Center and tour of Japan). Profiled by New York Times, Washington Post, Accent, others. Member, Da Capo Chamber Players, American Modern Ensemble, Avian Orchestra. Pianist for St. Paul Chamber Orchestra (spring 2011). Solo recordings include Soundings (Midnight Productions), Concert Music of Fred Hersch (Naxos), Multiplicities '38 (Centaur). At Bard since 2006.
Leigh MeshLeigh Mesh, associate principal double bass, joined the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in 1993. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, he began his professional career with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra and later played with the Indianapolis and Chicago Symphony Orchestras.
He has taught master classes at the New World Symphony in Miami, Cincinnati Conservatory, Juilliard School, and Manhattan School of Music. Mr. Mesh is the double bass coach of the UBS Verbier Festival Youth Orchestra in Verbier, Switzerland. He has been a guest artist with the Verbier Festival, Linton Chamber Music Series, Pensacola Classicfest, Chamber Music Society of Martha’s Vineyard,Mainly Mozart Festival in San Diego, and the Salt Bay Chamberfest. Mr. Mesh has performed with the MET Chamber Ensemble, the Caramoor Virtuosi, and the Brentano and Tokyo String Quartets.
Mr. Mesh was a faculty member of the Colburn School of Music in Los Angeles during the 2009–2010 school year. He joined the faculty of the Bard College Conservatory of Music in the fall of 2010. He lives with his wife, Nancy Wu, associate concertmaster of the MET Opera Orchestra, and their two children, Guinevere and Wolfram, in Pleasantville, New York. He pursues cycling and skiing whenever he can. Mr. Mesh is an exclusive artist for Thomastik-Infeld Strings.
Associate Professor of Music; Faculty, Bard College Conservatory of Music
Rufus MüllerRufus Müller is a sought-after tenor who was acclaimed by the New York Times, following a performance at Carnegie Hall, as “easily the best tenor I have heard in a live Messiah.” He has performed internationally in operas, oratorios, and recitals. He performed the world premiere of Jonathan Miller’s acclaimed production of the St. Matthew Passion, which was broadcast on BBC TV and recorded for the United label; he repeated the role in three revivals of the production at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Müller is also a leading recitalist, performing worldwide with pianist Maria João Pires, notably in an extended Schubertiade in London’s Wigmore Hall, and on tour in Spain, Germany, and Japan with Schubert’s Winterreise. Recent performances also include Bach’s Passions and Handel’s Messiah in New York, Princeton, Toronto, Montreal, Washington, D.C., Carmel Bach Festival, Royal Albert Hall, and Canterbury Cathedral; Monteverdi’s Vespers, Schubert’s Winterreise, and Mozart’s Don Giovanni (Ottavio) in Tokyo; Beethoven’s Choral Symphony in Pennsylvania; the title role in Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo in St. Petersburg, Russia; and Haydn’s Creation in London, as well as recitals and master classes in Japan, Germany, and the United States. Born in Kent, England, Müller was a choral scholar at New College, Oxford, and studied in New York with the late Thomas LoMonaco. In 1985 he won first prize in the English Song Award in Brighton and, in 1999, was a prize winner in the Oratorio Society of New York Singing Competition. A list of performances and recordings can be found at his website, rufusmuller.com.
BA, MA, University of Oxford. At Bard since 2006.
Lorraine NubarVocalist. B.A., M.A., The Juilliard School. Studied with Jennie Tourel, William Vennard, Daniel Ferro, Martial Singher, Frank Corsaro, Gerard Souzay, Elly Ameling, Jeanine Reiss, and pianist Dalton Baldwin, with whom she conducts annual master classes at Vermont Opera Theater’s “Foliage Art Song” festival. First American to be appointed to the voice faculty of the Paris Conservatory; has prepared singers for the Paris and Lyon Operas and regularly conducts summer master classes at Foundation Royaumont in Val d’Oise, Centre International de Formation Musicale in Nice, and summer vocal chamber music program at Les Azuriales Opera. Has served as juror for Young Concert Artists International competition, Paris Concours, and Marseille Concours. Teaches at Bard College Conservatory, Juilliard, and New England Conservatory.
Visiting Instructor in Music; Faculty, Bard College Conservatory of Music
Isabelle O'ConnellDublin native Isabelle O’Connell is a pianist who has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland, and in solo/chamber concerts at venues such as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Merkin Hall, and Symphony Space in New York; Princeton University; Chicago Cultural Center; Cleveland Museum of Art; Detroit Institute of the Arts; Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center; Millennium Hall in Tokyo; National Gallery of Ireland; and Sydney Conservatoire. Guest performances with Alarm Will Sound, Crash Ensemble, Da Capo Chamber Players, ConTempo String Quartet, Meredith Monk, American Symphony Orchestra, and others. O’Connell, a Fulbright Scholar, previously taught at Diller-Quaile School of Music, Lucy Moses School, and Manhattan School of Music Preparatory Division, in New York City; Masters School, Dobbs Ferry, New York; and Royal Irish Academy of Music, Dublin. She has given master classes and workshops at, among others, Queen’s University, Belfast; European Piano Teachers’ Association, New Zealand School of Music; Dublin Institute of Technology; and Cork School of Music. She is cofounder of Grand Band, which has recorded live on WQXR; has served as artistic codirector of “New Music, New Ireland, New York” at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall; and was collaborative pianist and artist in residence at Banff Centre for the Arts. Recordings on Diatribe, Innova, and Lyric labels. BA, Royal Irish Academy of Music; MM, Manhattan School of Music. At Bard since 2014.
Tara Helen O'ConnorTara Helen O’Connor is a charismatic performer sought after for her unusual artistic depth, brilliant technique and colorful tone in music of every era. A current artist member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Tara is also a member of the woodwind quintet Windscape, the Naumburg Award winning New Millennium Ensemble, Talea Ensemble and is the flute soloist of the world renowned Bach Aria Group. Tara performs regularly with the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Spoleto USA, Chamber Music Northwest and Music from Angel Fire. A 2001 Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient and two time Grammy nominee, Tara has appeared on A&E’s Breakfast for the Arts and Live from Lincoln Center. She has recorded for Deutsche Gramophon, EMI Classics, Koch International and Bridge Records. Tara recently made her Mainly Mozart debut in a concerto with the Mainly Mozart Festival Orchestra under David Atherton. She has collaborated with the Orion String Quartet, the Saint Lawrence Quartet, Dawn Upshaw, Ida Kavavian, Jaime Laredo, Peter Serkin, Arnold Steinhardt, David Shifrin, Ransom Wilson, Paula Robison and Eliot Fisk. In addition to teaching at the Bard Conservatory, Tara is professor of flute at Purchase College Conservatory of Music, Manhattan School of Music Contemporary Music Program, and teaches summer master classes at the Banff Centre in Canada. An avid photographer, she has photo credits in Time Out, Strad and Chamber Music America magazines. Tara lives with her violinist husband Daniel Phillips on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.
Joan Patenaude-YarnellFollowing her debut with the Canadian Opera Company as Micaela in Carmen, this Canadian-born soprano joined both the New York City and San Francisco Operas. She has also sung with opera companies throughout North America and Europe. Her roles have included Violetta in La Traviata, Alice Ford in Falstaff, Gilda in Rigoletto, Nedda in I Pagliacci, the title role in Suor Angelica, Mimì in La Bohème, Juliette in Roméo et Juliette, Elle in La Voix Humaine, and Héro in Béatrice et Bénédict.
As a recitalist she performed internationally under the auspices of the Canadian Government, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Les Jeunesses musicales, and the United States Department of State. With orchestra she sang under the batons of Sir Charles Mackerras, Charles Dutoit, Seiji Ozawa, Julius Rudel, and James De Preist. Her recordings include Songs of the Great Opera Composers with Mikael Eliasen, pianist, on the Musical Heritage Society label, as well as releases on the C.B.C. International Series and Vanguard labels.
In addition to her position at Bard Conservatory, Miss Patenaude-Yarnell also serves on the voice faculties of Manhattan School of Music and the Curtis Institute of Music.
Her students perform with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, San Francisco Opera, Royal Opera Covent Garden, Paris Opéra, Chicago Lyric Opera, and Stuttgart Opera and are participants in the young artists programs at Santa Fe Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Seattle Opera, Opera Center (Zurich, Switzerland), and Volksoper (Vienna). Several of her students are current winners of the George London Foundation Awards, Marilyn Horne Foundation Awards, and Puccini Foundation Awards, as well as the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions First Prize Winner, 2004.
She has presented her master class “The Principals of Bel Canto” throughout the U.S. and Canada. In the 2014-15 season Miss Patenaude-Yarnell has given master classes in the Art of Bel Canto at the Royal Opera House (Covent Garden) Young Artists Program, Princeton University, and the University of Southern Ontario (Canada). She is presenting classes in spring 2015 at Guild Hall (London, England), the Royal Welsh College of Music/Drama (Cardiff, Wales), and Oberlin in Italy (Arezzo, Italy).
Daniel PhillipsViolinist Daniel Phillips enjoys a versatile career as an established chamber musician, solo artist and teacher. He is a founding member of the 29-year-old Orion String Quartet, in residence at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Available on recording are the complete quartets of Beethoven and the four quartets of the great recently deceased American composer, Leon Kirchner. Mr. Phillips has performed as soloist with many of the country’s leading symphonies, including Pittsburgh, Houston, New Jersey, Phoenix, San Antonio and Yakima. He appears regularly at the Spoleto USA, Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, Chesapeake Music Festival, and the International Musicians Seminar in Cornwall, England. He has also been serving on the summer faculties of the Banff Centre, Heifetz Institute, and the St Lawrence String Quartet Seminar. He is a member of the renowned Bach Aria Group, and has toured and recorded in a string quartet for SONY, with Gidon Kremer, Kim Kashkashian, and Yo-Yo Ma.
He teaches at the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College CUNY, Bard College Conservatory, Mannes College of Music, and the Juilliard School. Danny lives with his wife, flutist Tara O’Connor, on Manhattan’s upper west side.
Todd PhillipsTodd Phillips has performed as guest soloist with leading orchestras throughout North America, Europe and Japan including the Pittsburgh Symphony, New York String Orchestra, and Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, with whom he made a critically acclaimed recording of Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante for Deutsche Grammophon. Mr. Phillips has appeared at the Mostly Mozart, Ravinia, Santa Fe, Marlboro and Spoleto Festivals, and with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Chamber Music at the 92nd St Y and New York Philomusica. His experience as a frequent leader of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra has led to guest appearances as conductor/leader with chamber orchestras worldwide including the New World Symphony in Florida, Mannes Sinfonietta in NY, Camerata Nordica of Sweden, Tapiola Sinfonietta of Finland, the Brandenburg Ensemble and the Risor Festival Strings in Norway. He has collaborated with such renowned artists as Rudolf Serkin, Jaime Laredo, Richard Stoltzman, Peter Serkin and Pinchas Zukerman and has participated in eighteen "Musicians from Marlboro" tours. In addition to teaching at the Bard Conservatory, he serves on the violin and chamber music faculties of New York's Mannes College of Music and Rutgers University. He has recorded for the Arabesque, Delos, Deutsche Grammophon, Finlandia, Marlboro Recording Society, New York Philomusica, RCA Red Seal and Sony Classical labels.
Julia PilantOriginally from Springfield, Missouri, Julia Pilant is the Assistant Principal Horn for the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and a horn instructor at Bard College. Before joining the Met, Ms. Pilant was principal horn with the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra for 10 years. She then returned to New York City where she performed frequently with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, New York City Opera, Orchestra of St. Luke’s, American Symphony Orchestra, Stamford Symphony, and various Broadway shows. In addition, she has played principal horn for the Saito Kinen and Tokyo Opera Nomori music festivals and the Mito Chamber Orchestra in Japan (Seiji Ozawa, music director), and has been a principal horn and participant in the Festivale di Due Mondi (Spoleto, Italy), Bard, OK Mozart and Santa Fe Chamber music festivals. In 1994, she won the American Horn Competition. Ms. Pilant received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music as a student of Verne Reynolds, and her Master’s and Doctoral degrees from The Juilliard School where she studied with Julie Landsman.
Chamber Music, Bard Conservatory of Music; Artist in Residence, Bard College
Raman RamakrishnanRaman Ramakrishnan, cello, holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Harvard University and a master’s degree in music from The Juilliard School. His principal teachers have been Fred Sherry, Andrés Díaz, and André Emelianoff. Mr. Ramakrishnan was a founding member of the Daedalus Quartet, winners of the grand prize at the 2001 Banff International String Quartet Competition. During his eleven years with the quartet, he performed coast-to-coast in the United States and Canada, in Japan, Hong Kong, and Panama, and across Europe. The quartet has been in residence at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the University of Pennsylvania, and Columbia University, where he also teaches cello. In 2011, he formed the Horszowski Trio with violinist Jesse Mills and pianist Rieko Aizawa.
Mr. Ramakrishnan has given solo recitals in New York, Boston, Seattle, and Washington, D.C., and has performed chamber music at Caramoor, at Bargemusic, with the Boston Chamber Music Society and Chicago Chamber Musicians, and at the Aspen, Bard, Charlottesville, Four Seasons, Lincolnshire (UK), Marlboro, Mehli Mehta (India), Oklahoma Mozart, and Vail Music Festivals. He has toured with Musicians from Marlboro and has performed, as guest principal cellist, with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. As a guest member of Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, he has performed in New Delhi and Agra, India, and in Cairo, Egypt.
Mr. Ramakrishnan was born in Athens, Ohio, and grew up in East Patchogue, New York. His father is a molecular biologist and his mother is the children's book author and illustrator Vera Rosenberry. He lives in New York City with his wife, the violist Melissa Reardon. He plays a Neapolitan cello made by Vincenzo Jorio in 1837. Mr. Ramakrishnan joined the Bard Conservatory faculty in the fall of 2012.
Melissa ReardonGrammy-nominated violist Melissa Reardon is an internationally renowned performer whose solo and chamber playing spans all musical genres. Melissa is the new Artistic Director of the Portland Chamber Music Festival in Portland, ME and a founding member and the Executive Director of the East Coast Chamber Orchestra (ECCO). As a member of the Enso String Quartet from 2006 until its final season in 2018, Melissa toured both nationally and internationally, with highlight performances in Sydney, Melbourne, Rio de Janeiro, New York’s Carnegie Hall, and Washington, DC’s Kennedy Center to name a few. Lauded by Classical Voice for her “elegant” and “virtuosic” performances, the Massachusetts-born musician won first prize at the Washington International Competition, and is the only violist to win top prizes in consecutive HAMS International viola competitions. A sought-after collaborative musician and teacher, Melissa has appeared in numerous festivals across the United States and around the world, and has toured with Yo-Yo Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble, and with Musicians from Marlboro. She held the post of Associate Professor of Viola at East Carolina University from 2007 -2013, and earned degrees from the Curtis Institute of Music and the New England Conservatory. Melissa is married to the cellist Raman Ramakrishnan and they live in NYC with their six-year-old son Linus.
Elizabeth ReeseElizabeth Reese (AmSAT, M.Ed, LMHC), began studying the Alexander Technique in 1981 and considered the work as a core part of her training as a choreographer/performer in NYC. She certified as an Alexander teacher in 1994 at the American Center for the Alexander Technique and, in 2006, as a teacher of Breathing Coordination with Jessica Wolf. Elizabeth was senior faculty for ten years at AT-NYC, a certification course for AT teachers, and is a founder and instructor at Postural Rehabilitation, a continuing education program for veterinarians. In 1999, she created and established The Warwick Summer Arts Festival, producing performance events at farms, parks and lakes around the town of Warwick, NY, which continues today. Her interest in the embodied experience of trauma led her to her masters work in mental health counseling and, in 2014, her work as a research associate on a study exploring the significance of posture in performance, injury, relationship and emotional regulation, using horses as models, funded by the American Holistic Veterinary Foundation. Elizabeth has presented workshops and seminars throughout the US as well as Ireland and Denmark and has presented at numerous national conferences for the American Society of the Alexander Technique. She is currently on faculty at Neighborhood Playhouse and maintains a private practice at her farm in Sugar Loaf, New York and in New York City.
Ryan RobertsNoted for his “beautiful”, “eloquent” and “exquisite” playing by the New York Times, RYAN ROBERTS is the newly appointed English horn/Oboe of the New York Philharmonic. Ryan has performed with many of the country's leading orchestras, including the Chicago Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the San Francisco Symphony, the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, and the Ft. Worth Symphony. An award-winning oboist, Ryan received first prize at the International Double Reed Society's 2018 Young Artist Competition and the National Society of Arts and Letters' 2018 Woodwind Competition. Before joining the Philharmonic, Ryan spent one season as a member of the New World Symphony under the direction of Michael Tilson-Thomas. Ryan recently premiered Michael Torke’s Oboe Concertino with the Albany Symphony and recorded the work for Albany Records. An avid chamber musician, Ryan performs at the Marlboro Music Festival during the summer under artistic directors Mitsuko Uchida and Jonathan Biss; he has also collaborated in recitals with the Pacifica Quartet and Emanuel Ax.
Marcus RojasTubist Marcus Rojas has performed with such diverse groups as The Metropolitan Opera, The American Ballet Theatre, American Symphony Orchestra, Radio City Music Hall, and ensembles led by Lionel Hampton, David Byrne and P.D.Q. Bach.
An avid proponent of contemporary, improvised and classical music, he has performed the premieres of such notable composers as LaMonte Young, Gunther Schuller, and Peter Schickele. He has recorded with CBS Records, Sony Records, A&M Records and has been heard on countless film scores, including Interview With A Vampire and Sleepless in Seattle.
John RomeroJohn Romero is the Principal Trombonist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, beginning in 2018, and is an S.E. Shires Performing Artist. He previously held the same position in the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra. A local of Longview, Texas, he has a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Performance from Baylor University studying with Brent Phillips and a Master of Music degree from Rice University studying under Allen Barnhill.
Romero is an active soloist and clinician, presenting recitals and masterclasses at the International Trombone Festival, the Blast of Brass Festival, the Juilliard School, and other universities. As a student, he was a successful solo and chamber music competitor, winning the Larry Wiehe competition in 2012 at the annual International Trombone Festival in Paris, France, as well as ITF's Marstallar competition in 2013, the Big XII Trombone Conference Tenor Competition, Eastern Trombone Workshop's Division II Tenor Competition, the ETW Quartet competition, the TCU Quartet Competition, and Baylor University's Concerto competition.
Nicholas SchwartzNicholas Schwartz, Principal Bass Trombone of the New York City Ballet, has a diverse career performing across North America, Europe, and Asia. Beginning his trombone studies at the Interlochen Arts Academy, he went on to study at The Juilliard School with then New York Philharmonic bass trombonist Don Harwood. From there, he moved to San Francisco where he began freelancing throughout the Bay Area. He was also a member of the Sarasota Opera in Florida for two seasons. He has also performed with the Pittsburgh Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, The Metropolitan Opera, The Philadelphia Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, San Francisco Ballet, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, St. Lukes Chamber Orchestra, the New York City Opera, Atlanta Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, The Malaysia Philharmonic, Mostly Mozart Festival, Festival Maribor (Slovenia), and the Festival Lyrique-en-Mer in France. He has recorded with Joe Alessi, principal trombone of the New York Philharmonic, the American Brass Quintet, has played for multiple video game soundtrack recordings at Skywalker Ranch in Northern California, and has recorded multiple movie soundtracks in New York.
Weston SprottWeston Sprott enjoys an exciting career that includes orchestral, chamber, and solo performances, as well as numerous educational and outreach efforts. A member of New York’s Metropolitan Opera Orchestra since 2005, he has been recognized as “an excellent trombonist” with a “sense of style and phrasing takes a backseat to no one”.
In addition to his regular work at the Met Opera, Sprott has performed frequently with the Philadelphia Orchestra and has appeared with numerous other major orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Atlanta Symphony, and Oslo Philharmonic. Previously, he held principal positions with the Pennsylvania Ballet Orchestra and the Delaware Symphony Orchestra. His chamber music engagements include performances with the Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival (SICMF), 92nd Street Y, Great Mountains Music Festival, and numerous others.
As a soloist, Sprott has been featured regularly throughout the United States, Europe, South Africa, and Asia. He made his Carnegie solo debut performing Lars-Erik Larsson’s Concertino for Trombone in 2007. Sprott’s debut album, Act I, was released in 2010 and hailed by the American Record Guide as “an outstanding recording” that “feels the emotion of every note and phrase”.
A dedicated and tireless teacher, Sprott maintains teaching studios at several New York area institutions. During the summers, he serves on the faculty of SICMF and the Curtis Institute of Music’s Summerfest.
He recently appeared in Ben Niles’ documentary film Some Kind of Spark, which highlights the impact of music education in the lives of students as they attend Juilliard’s Music Advancement Program. Other documentary film credits include A Wayfarer's Journey:Listening to Mahler, and Rittenhouse Square. His opinions are also quoted in Rhythms of the Game, a book by former New York Yankees star Bernie Williams. He has worked regularly with organizations like Play On Philly and Music Kitchen, and has sponsored educational opportunities and solicited instrument donations for disadvantaged students. His philanthropic spirit was recently recognized in an article by the Wall Street Journal.
Weston Sprott is an artist/clinician for the Antoine Courtois Instrument Company. He performs exclusively on Courtois trombones and plays the Legend AC420BHW "Weston Sprott Model" trombone. Performances and interviews with Mr. Sprott have been seen and heard on PBS' Great Performances, NPR's Performance Today, MSNBC, and Sirius Satellite Radio.
Arnold SteinhardtArnold Steinhardt began his studies in Los Angeles with Peter Meremblum and Toscha Seidel. At the Curtis Institute of Music he studied with Ivan Galamian and later, under the sponsorship of George Szell, with Josef Szigeti in Switzerland. Bronze medalist of the Queen Elisabeth Competition in Brussels, Steinhardt also won the Leventritt Competition in 1958. At age 14 he had his debut with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and he has subsequently appeared with many major orchestras and in recital. Steinhardt's memoir, Indivisible by Four: A String Quartet in Pursuit of Harmony, was published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in 1998. Arnold Steinhardt is a member of the Guarneri String Quartet.
Artist in Residence; Director, Postgraduate Collaborative Piano Fellowship, and faculty, Bard College Conservatory of Music
Erika SwitzerErika Switzer is an internationally active pianist, teacher, and arts administrator. She has performed on the stages of New York’s Weill Recital Hall (Carnegie Hall), David Geffen Hall (Lincoln Center), Frick Collection, and Bargemusic, and at the Kennedy Center, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society Spoleto Festival, Mostly Mozart, Bard Music Festival, and Stanford Live. She has also appeared at concert series throughout North America, Europe, and Africa. During a seven-year sojourn in Germany, she performed at the Festspielhaus Baden-Baden and the Munich Winners & Masters series, and won numerous awards, including best pianist prizes at the Robert Schumann, Hugo Wolf, and Wigmore Hall International Song Competitions. European appearances also include recitals for Pro Musicis at the Salle Cortot in Paris, Académie Francis Poulenc at the L’Hôtel de ville de Tours, and Göppingen Meisterkonzerte. Recent premieres include the 5 Boroughs Music Festival Songbook II (Matthew Aucoin, Jonathan Dawe, Evan Fein, Whitney George, Laura Kaminsky, Missy Mazzoli, Paola Prestini, Kamala Sankaram); Brooklyn Art Song Society (Andrew Staniland); and Vancouver’s Music on Main (Jocelyn Morlock, Caroline Shaw). Switzer has been recorded by the CBC, Dutch Radio (Radio 4), SWR and the Bayerische Rundfunk in Germany, WQXR New York, and WGBH Boston. An upcoming recording release, English Songs à la française, features her long-standing duo partnership with baritone Tyler Duncan. Together with soprano Martha Guth, she cofounded Sparks & Wiry Cries (sparksandwirycries.org), which contributes to the future of art song performance through publication of The Art Song Magazine, presentation of the songSLAM festival in New York City, and the commission of new works. In addition to teaching in Bard’s undergraduate Music Program, Switzer works with the Graduate Vocal Arts Program on diction for singers, vocal coaching, and chamber music. BM, MM (solo piano), University of British Columbia; MM, Hochschule für Musik und Theater München, Germany; DM (collaborative piano), The Juilliard School. At Bard since 2010.
Chen TaoChen Tao is an internationally acclaimed Chinese flutist, music educator, composer, and conductor of Chinese orchestra; founder and director of Melody of Dragon, Inc., and of Melody of Dragon & the Youth; artistic director and conductor of the Chinese Music Ensemble of New York and conductor of New Jersey Buddha’s Light Youth Chinese Orchestra; artistic director of New York Guqin Association; and executive chairman of the New York Chinese Music Instruments International Competition since 2015. He is also a 27th-generation musician of Zhi-Hua Buddhism music. The New York Times called Chen Tao a “poet in music” and his playing “a miracle of the oriental flute.” Conductor Herbert von Karajan praised him as an artist who “performs with his soul.”
A graduate of the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, Chen Tao was the winner of the 1989 National Folk Instrument Competition in China and has toured the United States, Germany, Italy, France, England, Holland, Singapore, and elsewhere. He has collaborated with the BBC Philharmonic and National Orchestra of Lyon. His playing can be heard on soundtracks of Hollywood movies including Seven Years in Tibet, Corrupter (with the New York Philharmonic) and on the PBS documentary Under the Red Flag. Since coming to the United States in 1993, Chen Tao has been invited to perform and lecture throughout the country. His second Flute Recital was performed in Carnegie Hall by the New York Flute Club in 2001. He has performed at Lincoln Center and the New Jersey Performing Arts Center with groups such as the Manhattan School of Music’s Chamber Orchestra, Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company, and H. T. Chen Dancers. China Institute in America has invited him to perform and lecture on the Chinese flute since 1995. The World Journal and Tsingtao Daily have called him “king of the flute.”
As a music educator, Chen Tao has been leading Melody of Dragon in collaboration with the Midori & Friends Foundation to develop Chinese music culture in elementary schools and high schools throughout the New York metropolitan area.
Steven TenenbomSteven Tenenbom is a member of the Orion String Quartet. He has worked with composer Lukas Foss and jazz artist Chick Corea and appeared as a guest artist with the Guarneri and Emerson String Quartets, the Beaux Arts and Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trios, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. He has performed as a soloist with the Utah Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, and Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra and toured with the Brandenburg Ensemble throughout the United States and Japan. His festival credits include Mostly Mozart, Aspen, Ravinia, Marlboro, June Music Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, Music from Angel Fire, and Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival. He is also a member of TASHI and the piano quartet Opus One. In addition to teaching at The Bard College Conservatory of Music, Tenenbom is on the faculties of New York's Mannes College of Music and the Curtis Institute of Music. He has recorded on RCA Records with TASHI and the Guarneri String Quartet, and he can also be heard on the Arabesque, Delos, ECM, Marlboro Recording Society, and Sony Classical labels.
Asher B. Edelman Professor in the Arts; Composition, Bard College Conservatory of Music
Joan TowerJoan Tower is widely regarded as one of the most important American composers living today. During a career spanning more than 50 years, she has made lasting contributions to musical life in the United States as composer, performer, conductor, and educator. Her works have been commissioned by major ensembles, soloists, and orchestras, including the Emerson, Tokyo, and Muir quartets; soloists Evelyn Glennie, Carol Wincenc, David Shifrin, and John Browning; and the orchestras of Chicago, New York, St. Louis, Pittsburgh, and Washington, D.C., among others.
In 1990, Tower became the first woman to win the prestigious Grawemeyer Award for her composition Silver Ladders. She was the first composer chosen for a Ford Made in America consortium commission of 65 orchestras. The Nashville Symphony and conductor Leonard Slatkin recorded that work, Made in America, with Tambor and Concerto for Orchestra for the Naxos label. The top-selling recording won three 2008 Grammy awards: Best Classical Contemporary Composition, Best Classical Album, and Best Orchestral Performance.
From 1969 to 1984, she was pianist and founding member of the Naumburg Award-winning Da Capo Chamber Players, which commissioned and premiered many of her most popular works. Her first orchestral work, Sequoia, quickly entered the repertory. Tower's tremendously popular five Fanfares for the Uncommon Woman have been played by over 500 different ensembles. She is currently Asher Edelman Professor of Music at Bard College, where she has taught since 1972.
Her composer-residencies with orchestras and festivals include a decade with the Orchestra of St. Luke's, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s Composer of the Year for their 2010-2011 season, as well as the St. Louis Symphony, the Deer Valley Music Festival, and the Yale/Norfolk Chamber Music Festival.
Among her recent premieres: White Water (2012), commissioned by Chamber Music Monterey Bay and premiered by the Daedalus Quartet; Stroke (2011), commissioned by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra; White Granite (2009), commissioned by St. Timothy's Summer Music Festival, Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival, and La Jolla Music Society for SummerFest; Angels(2008), her fourth string quartet, commissioned by Music for Angel Fire and premiered by the Miami String Quartet; Dumbarton Quintet (2008), a piano quintet commissioned by the Dumbarton Oaks Estate (their third commission after Stravinsky and Copland) and premiered by Tower and the Enso String Quartet; Chamber Dance (2006), commissioned, premiered, and toured by Orpheus; and Copperwave (2006), written for the American Brass Quintet and commissioned by The Juilliard School of Music. A Gift (2007), for winds and piano, was commissioned by Chamber Music Northwest and premiered by The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (CMS). Other CMS premieres included Trio Cavany (2007) and Simply Purple (2008) for viola, performed by Paul Neubauer.
Her compositions cross many genres: Can I (2007) for youth chorus and percussionist; Copperwave (2006), written for brass quintet; DNA (2003), a percussion quintet commissioned for Frank Epstein and the New England Conservatory Percussion Ensemble; Fascinating Ribbons (2001), her foray into the world of band music, premiered at the annual conference of College Band Directors; Vast Antique Cubes/Throbbing Still (2000), a solo piano piece for John Browning; Tambor (1998), for the Pittsburgh Symphony under the baton of Mariss Jansons; and her ballet Stepping Stones (1993), commissioned by choreographer Kathryn Posin for the Milwaukee Ballet and revisited by Posin with the Bulgarian Ballet in June 2011.
Joan Tower's music is published by Associated Music Publishers.
Photo by Cynthia Del Conte.
Jason TreutingJason Treuting has performed and recorded in venues as diverse as the Brooklyn Academy of Music, the Walker Art Center, the Knitting Factory, the Andy Warhol Museum, Zankel Hall, Lincoln Center, DOM (Moscow) and Le National (Montreal). As a member of So Percussion, he has collaborated with artists and composers including Steve Reich, David Lang, John Zorn, Dan Trueman, tabla master Zakir Hussain, the electronic music duo Matmos and choreographer Eliot Feld. In addition to his work with So, Jason performs improvised music with Simpl, a group with laptop artist/composer Cenk Ergun; Alligator Eats Fish with guitarist Grey McMurray; Little Farm, with guitarist/composer Steve Mackey; QQQ (a quartet consisting of hardinger fiddle, viola, guitar and drums); and Big Farm (a foursome led by Rinde Eckert and Steve Mackey).
Jason also composes music. His many compositions for So Percussion include So's third album Amid the Noise, and contributions to Imaginary City, an evening length work that appeared on the Brooklyn Academy of Music's 2009 Next Wave Festival. Recent commissions for other ensembles have included Oblique Music for 4 plus (blank), a concerto for So Percussion and string orchestra for the League of Composers Orchestra; Circus of One, music for a video installation in collaboration with Alison Crocetta; and Diorama, an evening length collaboration with the French choreographers in Project Situ.
Jason received his Bachelors in Music and the Performer's Certificate at the Eastman School of Music where he studied percussion with John Beck and drum set and improvisation with Steve Gadd, Ralph Alessi and Michael Cain. He received his Masters in Music along with an Artist Diploma from Yale University where he studied percussion with Robert Van Sice. Jason has also traveled to Japan to study marimba with Keiko Abe and to Bali to study gamelan with Pac I Nyoman Suadin. He joins the Bard Conservatory faculty in the fall of 2011.
Distinguished Composer in Residence; Composition, Bard College Conservatory of Music
George TsontakisGeorge Tsontakis has been the recipient of the two richest prizes awarded in all of classical music; the international Grawemeyer Award, in 2005, for his Second Violin Concerto and the 2007 Ives Living, awarded every three years by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He studied with Roger Sessions at Juilliard and, in Rome, with Franco Donatoni. Born in Astoria, New York, into a strongly Cretan heritage, he has, in recent years, become an important figure in the music of Greece, and his music is increasingly performed abroad, with dozens of performances in Europe every season. Most of his music, including eleven major orchestral works and four concertos have been recorded by Hyperion and Koch, leading to two Grammy Nominations for Best Classical Composition, in 2009 and 1999. He is Distinguished Composer in Residence at Bard and artist-faculty emeritus with the Aspen Music Festival, where he was founding director of the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble from 1991 to 1999. He served three years as composer in residence with the Oxford (England) Philomusica; was the featured composer in residence with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center for the 2008-09 season; and is continuing a six-year Music Alive residency with the Albany Symphony. He lives in New York State’s Catskill Mountains, in Shokan.
Ira WellerIra Weller received B.Music and M.Music degrees from the Juilliard School of Music, where he studied violin with Ivan Galamian. Now a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Weller has a wide range of performing experience and is highly regarded as a soloist and chamber musician. He plays regularly in New York with the Festival Chamber Players at their series in Merkin Hall, on the "Collection in Concert" series at the Morgan Library & Museum, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and with the Bard Music Festival Quartet.
A regular guest with Da Camera of Houston and at the Bard Music Festival and Kneisel Hall, Weller has also been an invited artist with Bargemusic, Da Capo, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, New York Chamber Soloists, Music From Marlboro, and Chamber Music Northwest. He has collaborated with many distinguished artists, including James Levine, Menahem Pressler, Dawn Upshaw, Rudolf Firkusny, Evelyn Lear, Robert Mann, Janos Starker, and Richard Stoltzman. His vital interest in contemporary music has led to premieres of works by Rorem, Laderman, Dello Joio, Picker, Ran, and Zwilich.
He is artistic director of the "Collection in Concert," which presents "aural exhibitions" of the collection of music manuscripts in the Morgan Library. Research at the library has also led to the discovery of a rare 18th-century original viola sonata by Felice Giardini. This work, edited by Weller and Ken Cooper, was published by International Music. As a founding member and violist for the first ten years of the Mendelssohn String Quartet, Weller has recorded works by Dvorák, Mendelssohn, Mozart, Schoenberg, Weber, and Ran.
Eric WenEric Wen is a specialist in the theory and analysis of tonal music. He has written a textbook on Schenkerian Analysis entitled Graphic Music Analysis (Rowman & Littlefield), as well as a compilation of seven in-depth analyses of works by Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, and Brahms entitled Structurally Sound (Dover). In addition to contributing numerous articles to scholarly journals and essay collections, he has presented papers at many universities and conferences.Wen has taught at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and the doctoral program at the Graduate Center (CUNY) in New York, as well as the Juilliard School and Mannes College of Music. Before then he taught at the King’s College (University of London), the Guildhall School and Royal Academy of Music in London, where he also served as editor of The Musical Times and The Strad magazine.In addition to his work in academia, Wen is actively engaged in the practical application of theory and analysis to performance. He has been invited by Murray Perahia and András Schiff to present lectures alongside their master classes for pianists, and has edited numerous performing editions for Carl Fischer Music.
Wen is also an independent record producer, and has produced recordings by many distinguished soloists, including Edward Aldwell, Benjamin Hochman, Ruggiero Ricci, Aaron Rosand, Gil Shaham, Hagai Shaham, Oscar Shumsky, Arnold Steinhardt, Maxim Vengerov, Pinchas Zukerman, and the Guarneri String Quartet.
Peter WileyPeter Wiley attended the Curtis Institute at just 13 years of age, under the tutelage of David Soyer. He continued his impressive youthful accomplishments with his appointment as principal cellist of the Cincinnati Symphony at age 20, after one year in the Pittsburgh Symphony. He has been awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant and was nominated with the Beaux Arts Trio for a Grammy Award in 1998. As a member of the Beaux Arts Trio, Wiley performed over a thousand concerts, including appearances with many of the world's greatest orchestras. He continues his association with the Marlboro Music Festival, dating from 1971. He has also been a faculty artist at Caramoor's "Rising Stars" program and has taught at the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music, Mannes College of Music, and Manhattan School of Music. He is also on the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music and a member of the Guarneri String Quartet.
Jan WilliamsJan Williams is a percussion soloist and conductor, who has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe, New Zealand, and Australia. Composers such as Lukas Foss, John Cage, Elliott Carter, Joel Chadabe, Morton Feldman, Orlando Garcia, Gustavo Matamoros, Luis de Pablo, Frederic Rzewski, Nils Vigeland, and Iannis Xenakis have all written music expressly for Jan Williams.
Born in Utica, New York on July 17, 1939, Williams later earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music at Manhattan School of Music, where he studied percussion with Paul Price and performed as a member of the American Symphony Orchestra from 1962-1964 under conductor Leopold Stokowski. He was invited to Buffalo as one of the first class of Creative Associates for the Center of the Creative and Performing Arts in 1964 at the University at Buffalo.
While at the University at Buffalo, he created the University at Buffalo Percussion Ensemble in 1964. Later, in 1967, he was appointed to the Music Faculty, and served as Chair of the Music Department from 1981-1984. Prior to his retirement in 1996, he also served as artistic director of the Center of the Creative and Performing arts from 1974-1979 and as resident conductor from 1979-1980.
He is Professor emeritus at the University at Buffalo where he and John Bergamo founded the University at Buffalo Percussion Ensemble in 1964. He was the ensemble’s director until his retirement in 1996. He is Trustee of the Yvar Mikhashoff Trust for New Music. He has recorded for Columbia, Vox/Turnabout, Desto, Lovely Music, Spectrum, Wergo, DGG, Orion, Hat-Art, OO, New World, Deep Listening, EMF Media, and Mode Records. With Yvar Mikhashoff, he was Co-Artistic Director of the North American New Music Festival from 1983-1993.
Shai WosnerPianist Shai Wosner has attracted international recognition for his exceptional artistry, musical integrity, and creative insight. His performances of a broad range of repertoire—from Beethoven and Schubert to Ligeti and the music of today—reflect a degree of virtuosity and intellectual curiosity that has made him a favorite among audiences and critics, who note his “keen musical mind and deep musical soul” (NPR’s All Things Considered).
In North America, Mr. Wosner has appeared with the major orchestras of Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Ottawa, San Francisco, and Toronto, among others. He has also performed with the ECCO, Orpheus, Los Angeles, and St. Paul chamber orchestras. Overseas, he has been heard with ensembles ranging from the BBC orchestras to the Vienna Philharmonic to the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra under Daniel Barenboim. Also a committed chamber musician, Mr. Wosner has collaborated with Martha Argerich, Martin Fröst, Lynn Harrell, Dietrich Henschel, Steven Isserlis, Ralph Kirshbaum, Jennifer Koh, Cho-Liang Lin, Christian Tetzlaff, and Pinchas Zukerman, among others.
Mr. Wosner records for Onyx Classics, and his recordings have been widely praised for their inventive pairings of classical and modern masters. Described as a “Schubertian of unfaltering authority and character” by Gramophone, he has recorded two all-Schubert albums for the label, and his catalog also includes Impromptu, featuring an eclectic mix of improvisationally inspired works by composers from Beethoven and Schubert to Gershwin and Ives; concertos and capriccios by Haydn and Ligeti with the Danish National Symphony conducted by Nicholas Collon; solo works by Brahms and Schoenberg; and works by Schubert paired with newly commissioned music by Missy Mazzoli. As a chamber musician, Mr. Wosner has recorded Beethoven’s complete sonatas and variations for cello and piano with Ralph Kirshbaum and—for Cedille Records—works by Bartók, Janáček, and Kurtág with his duo partner of many years, violinist Jennifer Koh.
Born in Israel, Mr. Wosner enjoyed a broad musical education from a very early age, studying piano with Opher Brayer and Emanuel Krasovsky, as well as composition, theory, and improvisation with André Hajdu. He later studied at The Juilliard School with Emanuel Ax. He is a recipient of Lincoln Center’s Martin E. Segal Award, an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award, which he used to commission Michael Hersch’s concerto Along the Ravines for performance with the Seattle Symphony and Deutsche Radio Philharmonie. He is also a former BBC New Generation Artist and alumnus of Lincoln Center’s Bowers Program (formerly CMS Two). He resides in New York with his wife and two children.
Chen YanChen Yan is a young professor of erhu in the Central Conservatory of Music’s Traditional Instruments Department. A performer in the Shanghai Chinese Orchestra, she graduated from Shanghai Conservatory of Music with a bachelor’s degree, and received her master’s degree at the Central Conservatory of Music. Chen Yan has won many awards, such as the Silver Award of the Youth Group in National Erhu Competition; the Silver Award of the Youth Group in the Second CCTV National Instrumental Music Competition; Second Prize of the Youth Group in the “Wenhua Cup”; and the Excellent Professional Prize from Shanghai Art Talents. She has performed as an Erhu soloist in the Opening Ceremony of the Shanghai Spring International Music Festival many times. In 2009, she premiered a Carmen Fantasia adaptation arranged for Chen by Franz Waxman. In 2011, she premiered Zhang Chao’s concerto Tribute to the Sun at the Beijing Concert Hall, winning “Best New Artist Prize” of the Fourth Ethnic Art Exhibition and the “Best New Artist Performance Prize” of the Shanghai Spring International Music Festival. In recent years she has visited the United States, Germany, and Australia on tour with the Shanghai Chinese Orchestra.
Xu YangXu Yang, the leader of contemporary ruan scholars in China, performer, educator, professor and doctoral supervisor at Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, China.
Ms. Xu is the associate director of ruan profession committee in China Nationalities Orchestra Society (CNOS), the committee of the national professional skill appraisal expert association, the executive director of Chinese Music Instrument Society, the committee of Chinese Music Instrument Qualification Exam Council, artist director of Ruan Family Orchestra at Central Conservatory of Music, the founder and executive director of Ruan Family at The Ocean of Music instrument company, the director of Xu Yang Ruan Family International Cultural Research Institute. She had studied with Pang Yuzhang, Lin Jiliang, Ning Yong. Yang has published few ruan text books and ruan recordings, such as "The best way to learn is learn from the best - Ruan Tutorial" Book 1 and 2, "Central Conservatory Ruan Qualification Exam Repertoire", "Chinese National Ruan Qualification Exam Repertoire", "Happy Learning Ruan - Study with Famous Teacher!", "The Rhythm of the mountain", etc. Over more than 40 Xu's students were winning in different national and international Chinese Music competitions, and many of the students have became ruan professor in different schools and also professional ruan players in the professional orchestras. In view of her outstanding artistic innovation ability and teaching achievements, Ms. Xu has won several awards, including selected into the ministry of education's program called "Outstanding Backbone Teacher Supporting Program" in 2009; the "Excellent Gardener Award" from the youth vanguard team of the central league and the foreign exchange center of the ministry of culture, the "Excellent Instructor Award" from "The Talented Musicians Raising Program" in 2016, central conservatory BOB excellent instructor, the title of "Outstanding Performer" in 2018.
Chinese Music History
Mingmei YipMingmei Yip received her PhD in musicology from the University of Paris (Sorbonne) on a full scholarship from the French Government. A master performer on the Qin, she has given lectures and performances at venues such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Carnegie Hall, the New York Philharmonic, Columbia University, Oxford University, Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Beijing University, the University of Paris, Amsterdam University, Oberlin Conservatory, the Cleveland Museum of Art, and the China Institute in New York. Dr. Yip has served as consultant for Beijing’s Chinese Qin Association 北京中国古琴会, director for Chinese Kun Opera and Guqin Research Association 中国古琴昆剧研究会理事, artistic consultant for New York Cultural Art Association, as well as on the academic board of the Chengdu International Qin Conference.
Also a writer, Dr. Yip has published fourteen books, with two on the qin. Her latest and 7th novel The Witch’s Market (Kensington Books) which received a glowing review from the New York Times. She wrote columns for seven major newspapers and has appeared on over 50 television and radio programs in Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, and the United States.
She is also accomplished as a painter and calligrapher. A one-person show of her paintings of Guan Yin (the Chinese Goddess of Compassion) and calligraphy was held at the New York Open Center Gallery in SoHo in 2002. Dr. Yip was lecturer and senior lecturer (associate professor) of music at Chinese University of Hong Kong and Baptist University respectively, and in 2005, an International Institute of Asian Studies fellow in Holland researching on the qin. She has taught qin playing and calligraphy at two major Hong Kong Universities.
Qiang ZhangA world-famous pipa virtuoso, Professor Zhang Qiang is the Director of the String Instrument Division of the Chinese Music Department at the China Central Conservatory of Music (CCMO).
After graduating from CCMO in 1987, Professor Zhang had devoted himself to teaching at CCMO as a pipa instructor for almost three decades. He has been a judge at major domestic and international instrumental music competitions and has been invited to give lectures at many educational institutions. In addition to his traditional approach in systematic technique training, Professor Zhang focuses on the cultivation of students' music awareness and strongly urges his students to explore and display personal character in performing. Many of his students stand out as national winners of China’s highest-level competitions.
Professor Zhang is an active performer throughout China and abroad. He has regularly appeared in international music festivals: the Edinburgh International Festival, Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, Tanglewood Music Center Festival of Contemporary Music, Berlin Art Week, Torino Art Festival, and other festivals held in mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao. His musical collaborations also include the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra and China National Symphony Orchestra, Dutch New Orchestra, China Symphony Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, China Radio National Orchestra, Shanghai National Orchestra, Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra, Taipei National Orchestra, Guangdong National Orchestra, Macau Chinese Orchestra and Singapore Chinese Orchestra. He was invited to perform at Carnegie Hall, Berlin Philharmonic Concert Hall, Musikverein (Golden Hall in Vienna), Lincoln Center in New York City. His work features solo pieces for pipa, concertos, traditional repertoires, and he actively engages in contemporary chamber music.
Professor Zhang maintains a lifelong devotion to academic research. Together with three professors from CCMO, he has been working on a historical preservation project, Xian Suo Bei Kao, imparing, performing and eventually completing the full-scale (1814 manuscripts) music on the ancient spectrum of the Qing Dynasty.
Wang ZhouA respected performer of the Shanxi Zheng genre, Zhou Wang is a Professor of Guzheng at the China Central Conservatory of Music, and the Director of the Chinese Music Department of CCOM. She also serves as Vice President of the China Guzheng Society.
Zhou Wang learned from her father, the world class musician in the Qin Zheng Shanxi genre Zhou Yanjia. She then studied with Maestros Zicheng Gao, Zheng Cao, Sihua Xiang, Xiuming Yang, Shange Fan, and Zhaoyuan Shi, combining north-south flavors and inheriting the true art of Zheng playing from different genres. Joining the Central Song and Dance Troupe in 1977, Zhou Wang has been an active performer in China and abroad. She was invited by the National Record Association to record The Tune of Qin Mulberry, a classical masterpiece of Shanxi genre.
As a musical ambassador and a soloist, she has toured internationally on behalf of the Ministry of Culture on many occasions. As a scholar of musical exchange, she has given lectures at institutions including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 2014, she held a Zheng recital at Carnegie Hall.
Zhou Wang has served as judge and chairperson for many national and international competitions: the Golden Bell Award, Mandarin Award, Central China Television, National Chinese Instrument Competition, and Hong Kong International Zheng Competition. In over forty years of teaching, she has been dedicated to fostering many outstanding young guzheng players, who have won prizes in major competitions around the world. Many of them continue careers as educators to teach the younger generations.
In promoting Chinese music, Professor Zhou Wang has published recordings of many core classical repertoires such as High Mountain and Running River and albums featuring traditional guzheng solo works of several traditional genre classic pieces: Famous Melody of the North, Geniuses Traditional Zheng as well as many internal course teaching materials for the China Central Conservatory of Music. Her publication, Qin Zheng Qin Ren Qin Sheng, has been widely cited in Chinese musical journals.
Zhou Wang also arranges and composes traditional and contemporary Zheng musical works. She arranged the Shanxi genre Zheng pieces Huan Music, Lao Long Cries the Sea and Ming Fei’s Resentment (a guzheng and erhu duet). Together with Professor Zhenyu Huang, she has composed the contemporary Zheng pieces Fantasia in the West, Reflection, and Slowly Voice