Mihaela Martin, Romania
Romanian-born Mihaela Martin has achieved the reputation of being one of the most outstanding violin virtuosos of her generation. She began studying the violin with her father at the age of five, and later went to study with Prof. Stefan Gheorghiu, a pupil of George Enescu and David Oistrach.
Ms. Martin has won numerous international competitions, beginning with the Second Prize at the Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow when she was 19 and followed by top prizes in Montreal, Sion and Brussels. Her First Prize win at the First International Violin Competition in Indianapolis led to a steady international career.
Her debut in Carnegie Hall, New York was described by the New York Times as "one of the most exciting debut concerts of the year", and after her recital at the Library of Congress, the Washington Post wrote "Mihaela Martin remains to ornament the music world for years...[She] played with the energy and virtuosity that are prerequisites for success. Her concentration is absolute, she is sure of herself and, above all, has imagination."
Ms. Martin is a sought-after soloist with a very large repertoire. The orchestras she has performed with include the BBC Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, Montreal Symphony, Mozarteum Salzburg, Gewandhaus Orchestra of Leipzig, and Hollywood Bowl, with conductors such as Kurt Masur, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Charles Dutoit and Neeme Järvi. Known for her intellectual and musical qualities, she is constantly invited to chamber music festivals worldwide where she collaborates with musicians such as Martha Argerich, Yuri Bashmet, Elisabeth Leonskaja, Nobuko Imai, Leon Fleisher and Menahem Pressler, to name just a few.
Ms. Martin's most recent recording, Impressions..., was released by BIS in January 2002 and presents her together with pianist Roland Pöntinen in music by George Enescu. She has also performed for radio and television.
Recent highlights include an Australian tour, performances with the Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, National Orchestra of the Ukraine, Boulder Symphony (Colorado), Prague Chamber Orchestra, Bucharest Philharmonic, Beethovenhalle Orchestra, performances and a European tour with the Bucharest Radio Orchestra, participation in chamber music festivals in Ravinia, Sarasota, Verbier, Naantali and Korsholm, and concerts in Paris, Tokyo, Townsville, Prades and New York.
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Ida Kavafian, United States
Ida Kavafian enjoys an international reputation as one of the most versatile musicians performing today. With a repertoire as diverse as her talents, Ms. Kavafian has electrified recital stages throughout North America, Asia and Europe. She has also appeared as soloist with major orchestras around the globe. For 20 years, Ms. Kavafian has been the artistic director of the highly successful festival, Music from Angel Fire, in New Mexico. She also founded Bravo!Colorado in Vail, and, as its music director for 10 years, built it into one of the country's leading festivals.
Ida Kavafian's 2007-08 season includes several performances as part of her ongoing participation as artist-member of Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, an appearance with the Pacific Symphony in Michael Daugherty's Fire and Blood, and a solo appearance with the Idaho State Civic Symphony in Dvorak's Concerto in A Minor. In 2006-07, she performed as violin soloist with the symphony orchestras of New Mexico, Midland (Michigan), and Chattanooga; with Florida West Coast Symphony, as violist in Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante; and was guest artist in several performances of Mozart's String Quintet with the Orion String Quartet.
Ms. Kavafian's commitment to contemporary music has led to many world premieres by composers such as Toru Takemitsu, who wrote a concerto for her, and to tours and recordings with jazz greats Chick Corea and Wynton Marsalis. She gave the world premiere of Daugherty's concerto, Fire and Blood, with the Detroit Symphony under the direction of Neeme Järvi, and went on to perform it in Carnegie Hall with the American Composers' Orchestra and with the National Symphony of Mexico. In past seasons she performed Fire and Blood at the Interlochen Arts Academy, where she spent much of her musical youth, and from which she recently received the coveted Alumni Award.
Since her founding membership in the innovative group TASHI, Ida Kavafian's chamber music appearances have included many renowned festivals and series throughout the world. She has toured and recorded as violist with the Guarneri String Quartet. During her six-year tenure as the violinist of the legendary Beaux Arts Trio, it was named "Ensemble of the Year" by Musical America and received a Grammy nomination. She formed the ensemble Opus One with pianist Anne-Marie McDermott, violist Steven Tenenbom and cellist Peter Wiley, which recently premiered a new work by George Tsontakis. She is a frequent guest artist with ensembles such as the Orion, American and Shanghai String Quartets.
As the Kavafian Duo, Ida and Ani perform together regularly in recital and with major orchestras. Their television credits together include features on CBS Sunday Morning and NBC's Today Show, and they have recorded for Nonesuch. Ms. Kavafian has also appeared in a solo feature on CBS Sunday Morning.
Born in Istanbul, of Armenian descent, Ms. Kavafian immigrated to the United States with her family when she was three. She began her studies at age six with Ara Zerounian, continued with Mischa Mischakoff, and ultimately earned her master's degree, with honors, from the Juilliard School, where she was a student of Oscar Shumsky. She is on the faculty of the Curtis Institute, and has served on numerous competition juries and boards, including Chamber Music America.
Ida Kavafian made her New York debut with pianist Peter Serkin, as a winner of the Young Concert Artists International Auditions, and also received the coveted Avery Fisher Career Grant. Her violin is a J.B. Guadagnini, made in Milan in 1751, and her viola was made in 1987 by Peter and Wendela Moes.
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Yuval Yaron, Israel
Yuval Yaron, one of today's great violinists, joined the music faculty at UCSB after over two decades at the Indiana University School of Music. From his first prize-winning performances at the 1975 Sibelius Competition in Helsinki, he has thrilled audiences on three continents in recital, in recording and as soloist with major orchestras. Yaron has performed as guest soloist with distinguished symphony and radio orchestras such as Tokyo, Israel, Munich, Berlin, Mexico City, Frankfurt, Stockholm, Helsinki, Detroit, Cleveland, Baltimore, St. Louis, Montreal and Indianapolis. He has collaborated with conductors Zubin Mehta, Lorin Maazel, Klaus Tennstedt and James De Priest, among others. His recording on Accord of the Six Sonatas and Partitas of Bach on two CDs received international praise. The Six Solo Sonatas of Eugene Ysaye, followed by the 10 Jewish Melodies were also recorded on the same label. Reviews of his recent CD of Baroque sonatas, including Tartini's famous Devil's Trill, remark that "Yaron's superlative command of every aspect of violin technique is obvious in his virtuosic approach to the works on the disc. Unabashed in his adherence to the grand school of violin playing advanced by his pedagogues, Josef Gingold and Jascha Heifetz, Yaron's renditions are as sonorous as they are virtuosic." (The Strad, London, May 1999). Yuval Yaron has been heard in recital in his native Tel-Aviv, Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, Toronto, Basel, Hannover, Helsinki, and Reykjavik to great critical acclaim. In addition to the standard recital repertoire, he has performed extraordinary one-evening solo concerts of the complete solo Sonatas and Partitas of Bach.
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Olivier Charlier, France
A First Prize winner at the age of 14 Olivier Charlier continued his studies at the Paris Conservatoire with Pierre Doukan (violin) and Jean Hubeau (chamber music). His talent caught the attention of various artists such as Nadia Boulanger, Yehudi Menuhin and Henryk Szeryng. Olivier has been a top prize-winner at several international violin competitions in Munich, Montreal, the Sibelius Competition, the Jacques Thibaud and the SACEM George Enesco Competitions, "the Indianapolis" and at the Young Concert Artists International Audition in New York in 1989.
As a soloist Olivier has given recitals with major orchestras including the Orchestre National de France, Orchestre de Paris, Zurich's Tonhalle Orchestra, The Hague Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, Hallé Orchestra, Berlin Symphony, Hamburg and Saarbrücken Radio Orchestras, Württemberg Chamber Orchestra, the Monte Carlo, Prague and Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestras, Montreal Symphony, Yomiuri Nippon and Sydney Symphony Orchestras.
Over the last year Olivier has worked throughout the world including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand and St. Petersburg; touring South Africa with the Orchestre National de France and Charles Dutoit; as well as performing in France, Great Britain, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland and Italy.
Olivier pursues an active recording career, most recently championing contemporary composers. His Chandos recordings of the Dutilleux Violin Concerto "L'arbre des songes," with the BBC Philharmonic and Yan Pascal Tortelier, and the Roberto Gerhard Concerto, with the BBC Symphony conducted by Matthias Bamert, were both nominated for the French Victoires de la Musique Awards in 1998 and 1999. He has also recorded the Mendelssohn concertos with the Monte Carlo Philharmonic and Lawrence Foster (Erato); the Saint-Saëns concerto with the Ensemble Orchestral de Paris and Jean-Jacques Kantorow (EMI France); as well as a collection of sonatas by the French composers Franck, Saint-Saëns, Pierné and Vierne with pianist Jean Hubeau (Erato). A recording of the violin and piano sonatas by John McEwen is due to be released later this year.
Olivier Charlier is dedicated to chamber music and has given recitals with the pianist Brigitte Engerer. Together they have also recorded sonatas by Schumann, Grieg and Beethoven (Nos. 7, 8 and 9 "Kreutzer").
Olivier Charlier has been a Professor of Violin at the Paris Conservatoire since 1981.
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Nai-Yuan Hu, Taiwan
Since winning the First Prize in the prestigious Queen Elisabeth International Competition in 1985, violinist Nai-Yuan Hu has appeared on many of the world's stages, including the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Avery Fisher Hall in New York and major venues in London, Paris, Munich, Tokyo and other cities in Europe, North and South Americas and Asia. In praise of his playing, BBC Music Magazine wrote, "Taiwanese violinist Nai-Yuan Hu is an awesomely capable performer whose technical facility, musical intelligence and unfaltering verve place him among the higher echelons of today's string virtuosi."
Mr. Hu's solo engagements include appearances with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra of London, Toronto Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Netherlands and Rotterdam Philharmonic orchestras, Liège Philharmonic, Orchestre National de Lille in France, Haifa Symphony, Austro-Hungarian Haydn Chamber Orchestra, Tokyo Philharmonic and Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, the National Symphony Orchestra of Taiwan, Taipei City Symphony, Hong Kong Philharmonic and others. With the Belgian National Orchestra, he toured throughout Germany in such cities as Munich, Hannover and Dortmund. He has collaborated with such conductors as George Cleve, Adam Fischer, Leon Fleisher, Gunther Herbig, Jahja Ling, Gerard Schwarz and Maxim Shostakovich, among others.
Mr. Hu has given recitals in such venues as Alice Tully Hall and Weill Recital Hall in New York, Cité de la Musique in Paris, Purcell Room in London, Casal Hall in Tokyo, and Jordan Hall in Boston where he premiered Bright Sheng's "The Stream Flows" in 1990. Other engagements include appearances in Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Dallas, Montreal, Toronto, Brussels, Antwerp, Rotterdam, The Hague, Toledo (Spain), Bergen (Norway), Seoul, Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai. In Taiwan, he was the featured soloist in the 1987 Inaugural Concert of the National Concert Hall and played for two successive presidents Lee Teng-hui and Chen Shui-bien in the Presidential Palace concerts.
In summer seasons, Mr. Hu has appeared either as a guest soloist or chamber music artist in such festivals as Mostly Mozart, Marlboro, Grand Teton, Waterloo, Seattle, and Newport. A chamber music enthusiast, he has collaborated with such musicians as Fou Ts'ong, Martha Argerich, and Misha Maisky in the 1999 Beijing Music Festival and participated in the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society concerts and Brooklyn's Bargemusic series. Mr. Hu's performances have been broadcast on WQXR (the radio station of The New York Times), National Public Radio and PBS in the United States; and Belgian, Dutch and French radio and television stations as well as National Public Television in Taiwan.
Released by Delos International, Mr. Hu's recording of Goldmark's Concerto and Bruch's Concerto No. 2 with Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony garnered "Critics' Choice" from Gramophone as well as praises from many publications including BBC Music Magazine, The Times of London, and The Washington Post. His solo violin album Unaccompanied… on EMI label (with cover and art work by cartoonist Jimmy) received two Golden Melody Awards in Taiwan for best classical album and best instrumentalist. His latest EMI recording Vienna Revisited, containing much beloved music from that fin-de siècle city, was just released late in 2003. In addition to EMI and Delos, Mr. Hu has made recordings for Koch and Sunrise. And for Taiwan's Chi-Mei Foundation, he recorded a series of CDs with violins by Stradivari and Guarneri del Gesù from Chi-Mei's priceless collection.
In 2001, Mr. Hu appeared in a cameo role as the rooftop violinist serenading Meg Ryan and Hugh Jackman in the Miramax romantic comedy, Kate & Leopold. In that same year, he collaborated with Lin Hwai-min and his Cloud Gate Dance Theater, performing Taiwanese composer Hsu Tsang-Houei's Five Preludes for Solo Violin in an outdoor presentation that was attended by over ten thousand people.
Born in Taiwan, Mr. Hu began studying the violin at age five and was soloist with the National Youth Orchestra of Taiwan three years later. He came to the United States in 1972 to continue his studies, first with Broadus Erle and later with Joseph Silverstein. At Indiana University, he studied with Josef Gingold and also served as Gingold's assistant after graduation. Mr. Hu has often given master classes in conjunction with concertizing. He plays on the "ex-Hubay" Stradivari dated 1726.
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Yuriko Naganuma, Japan
Born in Japan, Yuriko Naganuma began her musical studies in Tokyo. She later went to France to study at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique in Paris with Michelle Auclair, where she received first prize with superior distinction. She has won prizes at several international violin competitions including the Paganini, Long-Thibaud, Montreal, and the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis. She currently splits her time between France and Japan where she annually gives a series of concerts. Ms. Naganuma performs as a soloist and as first violinist of the chamber ensemble Octour de France. She has recorded Jean Françaix' Violin Concerto with the Philharmonic Orchestra of Monte Carlo.
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Kyoko Takezawa, Japan
Emotional power, musical sensitivity, flawless technique, and a tone remarkable for its haunting beauty are the qualities that have established Kyoko Takezawa as one of today's foremost violinists. Ms. Takezawa's interpretive insight and virtuosity have made her a sought-after soloist with many of the world's leading orchestras.
Ms. Takezawa has performed as soloist with many of the world's leading orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Chicago Symphony, and the symphony orchestras of San Francisco, Cleveland, Baltimore, Saint Louis, Houston, Toronto, Dallas, Montreal, Detroit and Cincinnati. Abroad, she has been heard with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, the London Symphony, the Tonhalle Orchestra of Zurich, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the NHK Symphony and the New Japan Philharmonic. She has collaborated with many distinguished conductors, including Seiji Ozawa, Sir Colin Davis, Michael Tilson Thomas, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Kurt Masur, Sir Neville Marriner, Leonard Slatkin, Charles Dutoit and Andrew Davis.
A prolific recording artist, Ms. Takezawa can be heard on BMG's RCA Victor Red Seal label. Her most recent recording is a performance of the Concerto for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 14, by Samuel Barber with Leonard Slatkin and the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra. Her other recordings include the Elgar Violin Concerto with Sir Colin Davis and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra; the Violin Concerto No. 2 by Bartók with Michael Tilson Thomas and the London Symphony; and the Mendelssohn Concertos Nos. 1 & 2 with Klaus Peter Flor and the Bamberg Symphony. Ms. Takezawa's CD of French violin sonatas was selected as one of the best recordings of 1993 by Stereo Review.
Ms. Takezawa's chamber music performances have also drawn high praise, and as co-director of the Suntory Festival Soloists of Suntory Hall in Tokyo, she has collaborated with Isaac Stern, Yo-Yo Ma, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Joseph Suk and many other distinguished artists. In recent seasons, she has performed at the Aspen Festival and at the first Taipei International Chamber Music Festival with Cho-Liang Lin.
Ms. Takezawa began violin studies at the age of 3 and at 7 toured the United States, Canada and Switzerland as a member of the Suzuki Method Association. In 1982 she placed first in the 51st Annual Japan Music Competition, and at 17 she entered the Aspen Music School to study with Dorothy DeLay, with whom Ms. Takezawa continued to study at The Juilliard School until graduating in 1989. In 1986 she was awarded the Gold Medal at the Second Quadrennial International Violin Competition in Indianapolis and, most recently, she received the prestigious Idemitsu Award for outstanding musicianship. Ms. Takezawa, who performs on the 'Hammer' Stradivari dated 1707, lives in New York.
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Leonidas Kavakos, Greece
Leonidas Kavakos is one of today's most sought after virtuoso violinists. Born in Athens to a musical family, Kavakos began studying violin aged five with his father, continuing his studies at the Greek Conservatory with Stelios Kafantaris. An Onassis Foundation scholarship enabled him to attend master classes with Joseph Gingold at Indiana University, and he made his concert debut at the Athens Festival in 1984.
Kavakos' European reputation spread rapidly following his winning of both the Sibelius Competition in 1985 and the Paganini competition in 1988. He has now made debuts at many international festivals and played with most of the world's leading orchestras, working with many celebrated conductors.
An active chamber musician, Kavakos has been the Artistic Director of his own chamber music cycle in the Megaron, Athens since 1992. He also regularly appears at some of the world's foremost chamber music festivals, collaborating with many distinguished partners.
Kavakos' ability in diverse repertoire is reflected in the exciting projects in which he has been involved and the critical acclaim they have received. These range from the 1990 Gramophone Award-winning world premiere recording of the original version of the Sibelius Concerto (BIS) to a recent release of the Hindemith Concerto (Chandos), CDs of solo sonatas by Ysale and music by Kreisler (BIS), and documentaries on both Korngold (ARTE TV) and Berg (BBC TV).
Kavakos plays the "Falmouth" Stradivarius of 1692 and was recently appointed the first ever Principal Guest Artist of the Camerata Salzburg, with whom he performs as both soloist and director.
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Andrés Cárdenes, United States
Concertmaster, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
Recognized worldwide as a musical phenomenon, Grammy-nominated Andrés Cárdenes parlays his myriad talents into one of classical music’s most versatile careers. An intensely passionate and personally charismatic artist, Cuban-born Cárdenes has garnered international acclaim from critics and audiences alike for his compelling performances as a violinist, conductor, violist, chamber musician, concertmaster, and recording artist.
Since capturing Second Prize in the 1982 Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition in Moscow, Mr. Cárdenes has appeared as a soloist on four continents with over 100 orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, St. Louis Symphony, Moscow Philharmonic, Dallas Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, Shanghai Symphony, SinfonicaNacional de Caracas, Sinfonica de Barcelona, and the Bavarian Radio Orchestra. He has collaborated with many of today’s greatest conductors, including LorinMaazel, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, MarissJansons, Charles Dutoit, ChristophEschenbach, Sir André Previn, Leonard Slatkin, Jaap van Zweden, David Zinman and Manfred Honeck.
This year and next Mr. Cárdenes continues his project to record many standard and contemporary concerti. Released in 2009 are recordings of concerti by Brahms, Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Barber and David Stock on the Artek and Albany labels. Plans to record Bartok’s Second Violin Concerto and the new version of the Viola Concerto are slated for 2012, along with other sonata recordings with pianist Ian Hobson. A recording of the complete works for violin by Leonardo Balada was released on Naxos in January 2011, with the complete Sonatas by Hindemith and the Beethoven Violin Concerto on Artek, to be released in the fall of 2011. Cárdenes’s discography includes over two dozen recordings of concerti, sonatas, short works, orchestral and chamber music on the Ocean, Naxos, Sony, Arabesque, RCA, ProArte, Telarc, Artek, Melodya and Enharmonic labels.
As an ambassador for music of our time, Mr. Cárdenes has commissioned and premiered over 65 works by American and Latin American composers such as David Stock, Leonardo Balada, Ricardo Lorenz, Eduardo Alonso-Crespo, Roberto Sierra, and Marilyn Taft Thomas. His concerto repertoire includes over 100 works, ranging from the Baroque era to the present.
Mr. Cárdenes has twice served as President of the Jury of the Stradivarius International Violin Competition and was on the jury of the 2011 Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition in St. Petersburg, Russia.
A Cultural Ambassador for UNICEF from 1980-1991 and an indefatigable spokesperson for the arts, Mr. Cárdenes has received numerous awards for his teaching, performances, recordings and humanitarian efforts, most notably from the cities of Los Angeles and Shanghai and the Mexican Red Cross. He was named Pittsburgh Magazine’s 1997 Classical Artist of the Year and received the 2001 “Shalom” Award from Kollell’s International Jewish Center for promoting world harmony and peace through music.
Mr. Cárdenes was appointed Concertmaster of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra by Maestro LorinMaazel in 1989 and departed after the 2010 season to concentrate on his conducting, solo and chamber music careers.
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Chin Kim, South Korea
Acclaimed for his deep musicality and virtuosity, Chin Kim has been concertizing extensively throughout North America, Asia and Europe as guest artist with the orchestras of Philadelphia, St. Louis, Montréal, and Atlanta collaborating with conductors such as Leonard Slatkin, John Nelson, Myung Whun Chung, and Sixten Ehrling. As recitalist, Mr. Kim appears in major halls in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, Chicago, Montréal, Toronto, Brussels, and Seoul.
Top prizewinner in several of the most prestigious international violin competitions including the Concours International de Musique de Montréal, the Queen Elisabeth Competition, the Paganini Competition, and the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, Mr. Kim's debut recording of Prokofiev's Violin Concerto No. 2 with the St. Petersburg Philharmonic (Russia), under the baton of Paul Freeman, and the Prokofiev Sonata No. 2 in D Major with pianist David Oei, was released on the ProArte/Fanfare label. His second CD consisting of the Mendelssohn C minor, and the Tchaikovsky piano trios with the "Starr-Kim-Boeckheler Piano Trio" was released on the Mastersound label. His CD of the Glazunov and Tchaikovsky violin concertos was recorded and released by Intersound/Fanfare label following performances with the Moscow Philharmonic in Tchaikovsky Hall in Moscow to high critical acclaim.
Mr. Kim is the recipient of the Nan-Pa Prize awarded by the Nan-Pa Foundation in Korea, which is one of the highest honors given to a Korean-born musician. He graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music and, subsequently from the Juilliard School. With his busy performing schedule, he also teaches at the Mannes College of Music in New York. His major teachers include Dorothy DeLay, Ivan Galamian, and Josef Gingold.
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Sungsic Yang, South Korea
The first grand prize winner of the 1988 Carl Flesch International Violin Competition in London, Sungsic Yang's international career includes performances with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra under Sir Yehudi Menuhin, the Scottish National Symphony, the London Mozart Players, the National Philharmonic Orchestra of Ireland, the Leningrad Chamber Orchestra, the Warsaw Chamber Orchestra, the Gavleborgs Symphony Orchestra in Sweden, the Stavanger Philharmonic in Norway, the Monte Carlo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Orchestra Symphonique Français, and the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra under Dmitri Kitayenko, with whom a live recording of the Mendelssohn and Tchaikovsky concertos have subsequently been released under the label CBS Korea. Following the success of this first collaboration, he was subsequently engaged to perform and record the Brahms and Sibelius violin concertos for Sony Classical Korea in Moscow.
At the request of Lorin Maazel, Sungsic Yang made his Paris concerto debut in 1988 with the Orchestre National de France at the occasion of the conductor's first subscription concert as the music director of the orchestra. In addition to several studio recordings with the BBC Concert Orchestra and for Radio France, Mr. Yang's European tour with the Seoul Philharmonic, the Scottish National Youth Orchestra, and the Gulbenkian Philharmony of Portugal has taken him to Barcelona, Frankfurt, Amsterdam (Concertgebouw Hall), Rotterdam, Glasgow, Dublin, Budapest and throughout England.
His recitals in prestigious Halls such as Salle Gaveau in Paris, Wigmore Hall in London, Merkin Hall in New York were unanimously acclaimed both by the critics and the audiences. Other notable recent appearances were with l'Orchestre Symphonique Français at the Salle Pleyel in Paris, and a concert tour of Korea performing the Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Brahms, and Paganini Concertos.
Engagements in recent seasons include performances in Japan, Slovakia, Italy, Germany, South Africa, and Korea, where he will be performed the Sibelius Concerto with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Andrew Davis. During the summer seasons he is regularly invited to the Flaines Musique Festival in France where he gives master classes and chamber music performances.
Sungsic Yang was born in Seoul, Korea and started playing the violin at the age of four.
While still only eleven he performed in recital and made his concerto debut performing the Mendelssohn concerto with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra. Upon his graduation from the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris, he was awarded a full scholarship to study with Yfrah Neaman at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, England until graduation in 1987. At the age of seventeen, he was awarded the third prize at the Paganini International Competition, and other international prizes were awarded from the Long-Thibaud, Lipizer, and Indianapolis Competitions.
In 1999, he was invited to represent Korea as a member of the jury at the prestigious Long-Thibaud violin competition in Paris. His new recording "The streghe," works by Paganini for violin and guitar, is experiencing record setting success in Korea and is now becoming very popular abroad as well.
Sungsic Yang plays on a Joseph Guarneri del Gesu 1727.
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Annick Roussin, France
Violinist Annick Roussin combines a fulfilling career performing and teaching. She has been Professor of Violin for several years at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris and in Lyon. As a violin soloist and member of Quintetto Gallois, a chamber ensemble which includes violin, viola, cello, harp and flute, she regularly performs on tour throughout Western Europe, Russia and the United States appearing on concert series and chamber music festivals. Ms. Roussin can be heard on the Calliope label with the ensemble La Follia. Classical Music Web wrote of her 2003 release of the Debussy Violin Sonata, "Neither does Annick Roussin disappoint in the Violin Sonata. This is impassioned violin playing. The second movement is marked 'fantasque et léger' and Roussin's delicacy is entirely in this spirit. Roussin and the ever-sensitive pianist Elisabeth Rigollet provide a finale which, in its agility and sheer life-affirming spirit, seems an ideal way to end the disc."
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Pavel Berman, Russia
Pavel Berman entered the international concert stage after winning the Second Prize at the 1987 Paganini Violin Competition. His international career had broader development after he won the Gold Medal and special prizes at the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis in 1990. Since then, Mr. Berman has toured Europe, Asia and both Americas as a recitalist, performing in major concert halls in Paris, Milan, Munich and at New York's Carnegie Hall, and as a soloist, making appearances with the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Atlanta and Dallas Symphony Orchestras, and the Prague Philharmonic. He has participated in chamber music festivals around the world and has been the Artistic Director of the International Chamber Music Festival in Rome and Milan.
In December 1997, Mr. Berman became the Artistic Director of the Kaunas Chamber Orchestra in Lithuania, expanding his musical horizons to include conducting. During his tenure, the orchestra has acquired a wide range of repertoire from baroque to contemporary music. While gaining popularity and respect in their home country, the orchestra is already establishing a European renommé with successful performances in Italy, Belgium, Croatia and Austria. In April 2001 Mr. Berman recorded Paganini's 24 Caprices with accompaniment composed by Lithuanian composer G. Kuprevicius performed by the Kaunas Chamber Orchestra.
Mr. Berman studied at the Moscow Conservatory with Igor Bezrodniy and at the Juilliard School with Dorothy Delay. His discography includes releases on Audiophon, Supraphon Discover, Koch International, and Phoenix Classics. He currently resides in Madrid.
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Marco Rizzi, Italy
Prize-winner in the most prestigious international violin competitions - the Tchaikovsky in Moscow, the Queen Elisabeth in Brussels, "the Indianapolis" and various others - Marco Rizzi is particularly appreciated for the quality and the strength of his interpretation; in 1991 he was awarded the Europäischen Musikförderpreis as one of the most interesting young violinists.
Marco Rizzi regularly appears in the most important concert halls like Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Salle Gaveau and Salle Pleyel in Paris, Lincoln Center in New York, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Great Hall of Moscow Conservatory, Hamburger Musikhalle, Tivoli of Copenhagen, Konzerthaus in Berlin, with leading conductors including A. Ceccato, R. Chailly, V. Jurowski and H. Vonk. He has appeared as a soloist with such prestigious orchestras as Staatskapelle Dresden, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Orchestre des Concerts Lamoureux, Rotterdams Philharmonisch, Madrid Orquesta RTVE, BBC Scottish and many others.
In recent seasons Marco Rizzi has been extremely active playing the Bartok Concerto No. 2, Shostakovich Concerto No. 1, Beethoven, Brahms, Berg, Hindemith, Mendelssohn, Schnittke, and Tchaikovsky concertos in the major venues of Italy, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands and United States. Deeply involved in chamber music, he is regularly invited to take part in prestigious European chamber music festivals.
His recordings dedicated to Italian music for violin and piano of the 20th century were received with enthusiasm by the international press: "…brilliant technique, absolute purity of intonation, fascinating and moving touch, unmistakable musical intuition..." (Amadeus); "...a first-rate violinist with a rich tonal palette, fine technique and a lovely singing vibrato.... a musician of surprising honesty and maturity" (The STRAD). Most recently the Symposium label released his last recording, with R. Strauss and B. Walter Sonatas for violin and piano, and in March 2002 the magazine Amadeus dedicated a selection on their CD to his performance of Bach Sonatas and Partitas, that won great accolades from the Italian critics.
Marco Rizzi studied with G. Magnani, S. Accardo and W. Liberman, graduating from the Milan Conservatoire with special mention and obtained his Soloist Diploma with distinction at the Utrechts Conservatorium. Since 1999, Marco Rizzi has been teaching an international violin class at the Hochschule für Musik, in Detmold, Germany. He plays a Carlo Bergonzi violin (1739), on loan from the Foundation "Il Canale."
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Ivan Chan, United States
Ivan Chan was born in Hong Kong, where he received his early training with Thomas Wang. He made his debut with the Hong Kong Philharmonic at the age of 13. Shortly thereafter, he continued his studies in the United States with Jascha Brodsky, David Cerone, Felix Galimir and Jaime Laredo at the Curtis Institute of Music, and with Miriam Fried at Indiana University.
Winner of the Julius Stulberg Auditions in 1985, Radio Television Hong Kong Young String Player of the Year award in 1985, Ima Hogg Young Artists Auditions in 1990, Bronze Medalist of the Indianapolis International Violin Competition in 1990 and Second Prize as well as Audience Prize winner at the Washington International Competition in 1991, Mr. Chan has appeared as soloist with orchestras including the Detroit Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, New World Symphony, Houston Symphony and the Hong Kong Sinfonietta. As a chamber musician, he toured regularly with "Musicians from Marlboro" and has collaborated with artists such as Jaime Laredo, Gil Shaham, Joshua Bell, Pamela Frank, Garrick Ohlsson, Jeremy Denk, Cho-Liang Lin, Robert Chen and with members from ensembles including the Guarneri String Quartet, Orion String Quartet, Emerson String Quartet, Johannes String Quartet, Kalichstien-Laredo-Robinson Trio, Beaux Art Trio, Opus 1, TASHI and Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society.
As a visiting artist, Mr. Chan has given masterclasses, individual lessons and chamber music coachings at the Curtis Institute of Music, Settlement Music School, Temple University, Cleveland Institute of Music, University of Missouri in Kansas, Western Michigan University and Encore School for Strings. Currently, he holds the post of Senior Lecturer in String Chamber Music at the Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts. Previously, he served as artist in residence at the Hartt School, Florida International University, New World School of the Arts and the Hugh Glauser School of Music at Kent State University. In 2008, Mr. Chan was appointed Chairman of the String Division at the Kent/Blossom Music Festival and in the summer of 2010, he also assumed the role of Artistic Coordinator. Mr. Chan has served on the jury panel of competitions including Julius Stulberg Auditions and Annual Concerto Competition of the New World Symphony. Most recently, he was a member of the screening committee for the 2010 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis.
From 1995 to 2011, Mr. Chan was a member of the acclaimed Miami String Quartet. The Cleveland Plain Dealer stated"In Ivan Chan, the group (Miami String Quartet) has a prodigious first violinist whose tonal sweetness is matched by impeccable taste, purposeful energy and an unerring sense of phrasing." With the Miami String Quartet, Mr. Chan toured extensively in North America and Europe. Regularly featured on the nation's premier chamber music series, their performances have been heard from the stages of Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, Verizon Hall, Severance Hall, Kennedy Center, among others. The Miami Quartet made numerous appearances on premier live radio programs including National Public Radio's "St. Paul Sunday Morning" and "Performance Today."
Mr. Chan and the Miami String Quartet have recorded for the BMG/Conifer, Music Heritage and CRI labels. His instrument is a Antonio Stradivarius violin dated 1723, the "Spanish."
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Virginie Robilliard, France
Laureate of the 1987 Long-Thibaud International Competition and the 1990 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, including special prizes for best performances of Bach's Chaconne and Rochberg's Rhapsody and Prayer, violinist Virginie Robilliard has performed extensively throughout her native France and the world in recital, in chamber music, and as a concerto soloist with many orchestras. Her New York debut, at the age of nineteen, received critical acclaim from The New York Times for her performance of Bartók's Violin Concerto No. 2 conducted by Stanislaw Skrowaczewski at Avery Fisher Hall.
Miss Robilliard's international career has included appearances in Asia, South America, Europe, Canada, and the United States, in major halls such as Carnegie Hall, Salle Pleyel, Teresa Carreño Theater, and the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées. She has performed as soloist with ensembles such as the St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Philarmonique de Radio-France, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Simon Bolivar Orchestra, and Orchestre du Capitôle de Toulouse. She has collaborated with the conductors Yuri Temirkanov, Raymond Leppard, Olivier Grangean, Yutaka Sado, Michel Plasson, and Pierre Dervaux, among others.
A live recording of her performances of the Saint-Saëns Rondo Capriccioso and the Chausson Poème with the Franco-Quebec Orchestra have been produced on compact disc. She can also be heard on the XCP label in the sonatas of Schumann, Fauré, and Robilliard with her brother, pianist Bruno Robilliard. With the support of the Beracasa Foundation, she commissioned Venezuelan composer Paul Desenne to write a Sonata for Solo Violin. She gave the premiere performances of the work in Caracas in 1998 and in London in 1999.
Born in 1970 in Lyon to a family of musicians, Miss Robilliard gave her first public concert at the age of five. Her first radio concert with orchestra was broadcast from Paris when she was twelve. At seventeen, she was awarded First Prize by the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Lyon as a student of Jacques Ghestem. She graduated from the Juilliard School in 1993 where she was a scholarship student of Dorothy Delay. Regularly invited to give master classes around the world, Miss Robilliard makes her home in Caracas, Venezuela where she created a community school of music for violin with the support of the Cisneros Foundation of The Mozarteum Center.
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David Kim, United States
Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra since 1999, David Kim was born in Carbondale, Illinois, started playing the violin at the age of three, began studies with the famed pedagogue Dorothy DeLay at the age of eight and later received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the Juilliard School. In 1986 he was the only American violinist to win a prize at the International Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow.
Mr. Kim is founder and artistic director of the Kingston Chamber Music Festival at the University of Rhode Island (founded in 1989). He also holds the position of Special Guest Artist there and in 2001, was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Arts. Mr. Kim devotes a portion of his schedule each year to bringing classical music to children. In conjunction with the Kingston Chamber Music Festival, Mr. Kim founded an annual outreach program that takes him to elementary schools, performing and speaking about classical music in an effort to cultivate future audiences. In the past 12 years, Mr. Kim has performed for well over 10,000 young people in the State of Rhode Island.
Mr. Kim gives annual master classes at the Manhattan School of Music and the Curtis Institute as well as many other institutions. Kalmus Music Publishers has released new editions of the Saint-Säens Violin Concerto in B minor, Havanaise, and Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, edited by Mr. Kim.
Mr. Kim's numerous solo engagements around the world have included the orchestras of Dallas, Pittsburgh, Capetown, KBS (Korea), and Moscow, as well as the Buffalo, Rhode Island, and Seoul Philharmonics, the Polish National Radio Orchestra, and numerous orchestras across Central and South America. Mr. Kim appears as soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra every season. Before coming to Philadelphia, Mr. Kim served as Senior Associate Concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
He is a frequent guest at summer events such as the Seattle and Kuhmo (Finland) chamber music festivals. From 1991 to 1996, Mr. Kim was a member of the Diaz Trio with which he toured the United States, Europe, Central and South America.
At age 12 he appeared with Itzhak Perlman as the subject of "Prodigy", a WNEW-TV (New York) production, and has since been featured nationally in specials on the CBS, NBC, and PBS networks. He has also been featured prominently on National Public Radio and in "Newsweek" magazine. Mr. Kim's recordings can be heard on the Dorian (Diaz Trio), Warner, Musical Heritage Society and SKC labels. He is Artistic Advisor for the Ocean State Chamber Orchestra in Providence, RI. Mr. Kim resides in a suburb of Philadelphia with his wife Jane and daughters Natalie and Margaret.
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Martin Beaver, Canada
Martin Beaver became first violin of the Tokyo String Quartet in 2002. In great demand as a soloist, chamber musician and teacher, he has quickly risen to prominence as an artist of great versatility and integrity.
Mr. Beaver has appeared with orchestras around the globe such as the San Francisco Symphony, the National Orchestra of Belgium, the Portuguese Radio Orchestra, the Indianapolis Symphony, the Orquesta Banco Mayo of Argentina, the OFUNAM in Mexico City and all major Canadian orchestras in a wide variety of repertoire. Appearances with the Toronto Symphony include Bach's Concerto for two violins with Pinchas Zukerman. He has collaborated with such eminent conductors as Kazuyoshi Akiyama, Leon Fleisher, Raymond Leppard and Charles
An avid recitalist, he has delighted audiences in cities such as Toronto, Montreal, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Seattle, Honolulu, Brussels, London, Tokyo and Osaka. Equally at home in chamber music, he has appeared at Ravinia (Rising Stars Series), Concerts Under the Dome (Chicago), Seattle Chamber Music Festival, Guelph Spring Festival, Festival of the Sound, Scotia
Festival, Music at Speedside, OstBelgien Festival (Belgium) and Music in Blair Atholl (Scotland). He has been a guest artist with the Reizend Muziekgezelschap in Amsterdam and the Boston Chamber Music Society. Mr. Beaver has made recordings for the René Gailly, Naim Audio, Naxos, SM5000 and Musica Viva labels.
Martin Beaver was a founding member of two Canadian ensembles, the Toronto String Quartet and Triskelion. The Toronto String Quartet is one of the Ensembles-in-Residence at Music Toronto, where Mr. Beaver also serves as Artistic Advisor. Triskelion's recording of J.S. Bach's Goldberg Variations arranged for string trio by D. Sitkovetsky for CBC's Musica Viva Label was
released in 1999 to critical and public acclaim.
In 1993, he received the Canada Council's prestigious Virginia P. Moore Award ("most promising young classical artist") and a Silver Medal at the Queen Elizabeth Competition in Belgium. He won top prizes at the 1991 Montreal International Music Competition and the 1990 International Violin Competition of Indianapolis.
In October 1998, Mr. Beaver was chosen as recipient of the generous loan of a 1729 Guarnerius del Gesù violin, the 'ex-Heath', from the Canada Council for the Arts' Instrument Bank and an Anonymous Donor.
Mr. Beaver studied with Victor Danchenko, Henryk Szeryng and Josef Gingold. A dedicated teacher, he has served on the faculties of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and the University of British Columbia. He formerly served on the faculty of the Peabody Conservatory of Music of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Mr. Beaver is in great demand for masterclasses throughout Canada, the United States and Japan.
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