Affordable, high-quality, cultural and music programs in San Francisco; classical music, chamber music, opera, broadway, piano, jazz, theater

2020 Season: Beethoven and more

The 2020 season will continue our strong tradition of concerts of chamber music, solo instrumental and jazz concerts, and vocal and choral music. In addition to celebrate the 250th birth anniversary of the composer Ludwig van Beethoven, we are launching the Beethoven 2020 project.

The Beethoven2020 Project

In 2020, Sunset Music and Arts is celebrating Beethoven’s 250th birth anniversary with a series of concerts featuring various works by the composer. The project will feature major compositions by the composer for solo instruments, violin-piano, chamber music and the monumental oratorio Christus am Ölberge ( Christ on the Mount of Olives), Op. 85. For the full list of the works of Beethoven featured in our 2020 season, please visit our dedicated Beethoven2020 Project page.

The 2020 season will also feature concerts of music from other composers, plus jazz, choral music, and opera. Check out our full calendar below.

Eric Tran, pianist and composer: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday January 11, 4:30 p.m.

Pianist-composer Eric Tran is known for his friendly stage manner, thoughtful programming, and bold risk-taking. He has appeared in music festivals such as PianoTexas, Aspen, Art of the Piano, as well as festivals in Europe. His principal studies were with pianists Sharon Mann, Thomas Schultz, and composer Jaroslaw Kapuscinski.

​Eric is a graduate of Stanford University and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. During his studies, he was the winner of the concerto competitions of both institutions, and he was awarded the prestigious Robert M. Golden Medal for outstanding contributions to the arts. As a composer, he won the Pacific Musical Society Composition Prize, and his sets of children’s music have been programmed for over six years on the syllabus of the US Open Music Competition. His music has been performed by the St. Lawrence String Quartet, the Friction Quartet, his generous friends, and his charming piano students.

​Eric also comprises one half of the notorious “Happy Dog” piano duo, with his piano partner, Nathan Cheung. They won both the 1st Prize and the Abild American Music Award at the 2017 Ellis Duo-Piano Competition, hosted by the National Federation of Music Clubs. For over a decade, they have performed four-hands originals, transcriptions, and classics alike with a focus on bringing humor and joy to the classical music world.

​Eric is currently pursuing a DMA in piano at UW-Madison with Christopher Taylor.

Jack Cimo, guitar

Date: Saturday January 25, 7:30 p.m.

Jack Cimo is a classically-trained Spanish guitarist known for his powerful presence, beautiful tone, and exciting renditions. Having played the guitar since he was a toddler, his devotion to the instrument has directed the course of his life. He has over 20 years of performing experience, and now calls San Luis Obispo, California home.

He has worked with Grammy-award winning musicians such as Steve Suvada, William Kanengiser, and Pepe Romero; and has captivated audiences in Chicago, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Houston, Costa Rica, and Ireland to name a few. He has been a finalist or prizewinner in various competitions, including winning USC’s Presser Award and taking 3rd in the Sierra Nevada Guitar Festival. He was recently one of two Americans to be invited to the prestigious Joann Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition in Buffalo, NY.

Halvcirkel String Quartet

Date: Thursday February 6, 7:30 p.m.

Halvcirkel is a string quartet, formed in 2015 in Copenhagen. We came together as a musical collective, to embark on a creative journey. With our background deeply rooted in the classical institution and tradition, we are on a continous search for musical expansion. Through different approaches and techniques, we are challenging ourselves and others in the way we usually frame classical music. Through improvisation, electronics, new spaces and collaborations with other art forms, we are broadening the context and narrative of what a string quartet is and can be. In this light we are constantly reinventing ourselves, being the best embassodors for the great composers of the past and present that we can be.

Program:
Terry Riley Salome dances for peace
Anders Lauge Meldgaard Fragment 94 (2018)

Angela Kraft Cross

Date: Saturday February 8, 7:30 p.m.

Angela Kraft Cross, San Francisco Bay Area organist, pianist and composer, graduated from Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music in 1980 with bachelor’s degrees in Physics and Organ Performance. She then earned her Doctor of Medicine degree at Loma Linda University, where she subsequently completed her residency in ophthalmology. In 1993, she completed her Master of Music degree in Piano Performance at the College of Notre Dame with Thomas LaRatta. Her organ teachers have included Louis Robilliard, Marie-Louise Langlais, Sandra Soderlund, S. Leslie Grow, William Porter and Garth Peacock. In 2001, she was awarded the Associateship credential of the American Guild of Organists (AAGO) after passing rigorous playing and written examinations. She has studied composition with Pamela Decker.  Dr. Kraft Cross has performed extensively on both organ and piano, having given over five hundred concerts across the United States, in Canada, England, Holland, France, Hungary, Korea, Lesotho and Guam, including such venues as Notre Dame Cathedral, St. Sulpice and the Madeleine in Paris, Washington National Cathedral in Washington, D.C., St. Patrick’s Cathedral and St. Thomas Church in New York City, Methuen Memorial Music Hall and Trinity Church in Boston, E. Power Biggs’ organ at Harvard, Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral and Southwark Cathedral in London, and the Mormon Tabernacle. She has been featured soloist with local Bay Area ensembles; Master Sinfonia Orchestra, Soli Deo Gloria, Sine Nomine, Masterworks Chorale, Viva la Musica, The Choral Project, and the San Jose Symphonic Choir as well as Seattle’s Philharmonia Northwest Chamber Orchestra and the Skagit Symphony in northern Washington.

Patrick Galvin and Jung-eun Kim in concert: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday February 15, 7:30 p.m.

Patrick Galvin is a graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Camilla Wicks and Wei He.  Patrick also spent two years studying violin with Barbara Gorzynska at the Prayner Konservatorium in Vienna, Austria. Patrick made his solo debut at age 11 with the Oakland East Bay Symphony playing the Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1. He was winner of the East Bay Young Artist Competition in 2000, the Yehudi Menuhin/Helen Dowling award in 2002 and the Kensington Young Artist Competition in 2003. In April 2004 he was the soloist with the Kensington Symphony playing the Vieuxtemps Violin Concerto No 5. He has also performed at the Junior Bach Festival. In 2013 and 2015, Patrick competed in the Johannes Brahms International Competition in Pörtschach, Austria.

Born in Changwon, Korea, Jung-eun Kim studied at the Busan High School of Arts and Konkuk University under Hyeyoung Moon, Jaemi Kim, and Jihyun Lee. She made her debut with the Changwon Philharmonic Orchestra in 2003.

Ms. Kim participated in master classes with Eugene and Elisabeth Pridonoff from the University of Cincinnati, Edward Auer from Indiana University, Lei Weng from the University of Northern Colorado, and Jonghwa Park from Seoul National University. She received first prize in the Eumaksekye Piano Competition and the Gyeongnam Education Music Competition, second prize in the Ceramic Palace Hall Concours and the Music Education News Concours, and third prize in the Beethoven Concours. She also performed with the Konkuk Symphony Orchestra and accompanied the choir at Konkuk University. Also, she participated in the 2015 Distinguished Performers Debut Concert sponsored by The Music Journal. She also attended the Eumyeon Summer Music Festival. She is currently pursuing her M.M. at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music with Yoshikazu Nagai. She also accompanies pre-college students and the choir at the music school.

Adam Flowers, tenor: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday February 22, 7 p.m.

Adam Flowers has performed principal tenor roles in opera houses throughout North America, Hawaii, and Japan. In July 2006 he completed a five-year artist-in-residency for Opera San Jose, performing over 32 roles. He is currently a member of the San Francisco Opera Chorus and the tenor section leader at San Francisco’s St. Ignatius Church Choir. Adam is a certified Music Together™ teacher, teaching music to infants and toddlers in Marin County and San Francisco. He is a teaching artist for Pacific Actors & Singers Workshop, the San Francisco Opera Guild’s Book To Bravo and Opera A La Carte educational programs with students in the 5th-12th grades. He is a voice student of Sheri Greenawald and Deborah Benedict.

Patrick Galvin and Jung-eun Kim in concert : Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday February 29, 7:30 p.m.

Patrick Galvin is a graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Camilla Wicks and Wei He.  Patrick also spent two years studying violin with Barbara Gorzynska at the Prayner Konservatorium in Vienna, Austria. Patrick made his solo debut at age 11 with the Oakland East Bay Symphony playing the Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1. He was winner of the East Bay Young Artist Competition in 2000, the Yehudi Menuhin/Helen Dowling award in 2002 and the Kensington Young Artist Competition in 2003. In April 2004 he was the soloist with the Kensington Symphony playing the Vieuxtemps Violin Concerto No 5. He has also performed at the Junior Bach Festival. In 2013 and 2015, Patrick competed in the Johannes Brahms International Competition in Pörtschach, Austria.

Born in Changwon, Korea, Jung-eun Kim studied at the Busan High School of Arts and Konkuk University under Hyeyoung Moon, Jaemi Kim, and Jihyun Lee. She made her debut with the Changwon Philharmonic Orchestra in 2003.

Ms. Kim participated in master classes with Eugene and Elisabeth Pridonoff from the University of Cincinnati, Edward Auer from Indiana University, Lei Weng from the University of Northern Colorado, and Jonghwa Park from Seoul National University. She received first prize in the Eumaksekye Piano Competition and the Gyeongnam Education Music Competition, second prize in the Ceramic Palace Hall Concours and the Music Education News Concours, and third prize in the Beethoven Concours. She also performed with the Konkuk Symphony Orchestra and accompanied the choir at Konkuk University. Also, she participated in the 2015 Distinguished Performers Debut Concert sponsored by The Music Journal. She also attended the Eumyeon Summer Music Festival. She is currently pursuing her M.M. at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music with Yoshikazu Nagai. She also accompanies pre-college students and the choir at the music school.

Klezmer-Jazz Project: Alon Nechushtan Jazz Quartet

Date: Friday March 6, 7:30 p.m.

Alon Nechushtan’s music adventures has brought him to various far corners of the globe such as the Yokohama ‘Rejoicing Sounds’ Festival in Japan with his contemporary orchestral compositions, The Manila Cultural Center of the Arts, with his Clarinet Concerto for the Philippines Philharmonic Orchestra, The Sao-Paolo Brazil Jewish Music Festival with his groove based Quintet Talat, Toronto and Montreal with his words beyond Jazz Trio and Tel Aviv New Music Biannale with his Compositions for Large Ensemble.

Resident of New York City, Alon has performed in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Jazz @ Lincoln Center, Central Park Summer Stage, The Blue Note Jazz Club and the Kennedy Center with his projects as a band leader of various groups or as an in demand sideman. in October 2015 the kennedy Center has comissioned from Alon Nechushtan a new piece for Billy Strayhorn Centennial Celebration, following by a Far East tour in China and Phillipines, along with Jazz Festivals in Belo Horizonte-Brazil, Israel. In 2017 the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C has commissioned from Alon Nechushtan a new program of Thelonious Monk’s less known compositions.
All About Jazz magazine called him “A fantastic pianist-composer with abundant chemistry and boundless eclectisism”, while DownBeat Magazine recognizes “A talent to watch, with a surfeit of ideas, an unbridled spirit and bold,two-fisted sense of Architecture”.

Duo SF

Date: Saturday March 7, 7:30 p.m.

DuoSF is quickly becoming recognized as one of America’s most promising young guitar ensembles. In a review of their debut CD, Classical Guitar Magazine wrote, “effortlessly played”, and “this interpretation is one of the very best I have heard…an outstanding recording of some lovely music in superb performances beautifully captured. One to hunt for!” Recent concerts have taken their exciting and engaging programs on tours of Southeast Asia with appearances in Indonesia, Malayisa and Thailand to the Kravis Center’s young artist’s series, the Musikfest Festival in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and to many guitar and chamber music series throughout California.

With a deep belief in the power of the arts and the need for artists to rise up as entrepreneurs and advocates for their craft, Robert and Christopher co-founded The California Conservatory of Music in 2011. The school currently enriches and empowers the lives of over 400 students and families in the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2012, DuoSF founded The Peninsula Guitar Series, a concert series that brings international talent to the Bay Area to present concerts and masterclasses.

Oliver Brett (organ) and Dan Hivley (horn): Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Friday March 13, 7:30 p.m.

Born in Kent in the UK in 1985, Oliver Brett was educated as a music and academic scholar at Tonbridge School and then as organ scholar of King’s College, Cambridge from where he graduated in 2007 with a degree in music. Since then, he has held positions at Westminster Cathedral, Durham Cathedral and St Mary’s Cathedral, Sydney. He is currently a doctoral student at the Eastman School of Music, studying the organ with Prof David Higgs. He also serves as Director of Music at St Anne’s RC Church and plays the organ for Christ Church’s Schola Cantorum. He is in demand as a choral accompanist and continuo player, regularly collaborating with many of Eastman’s choral ensembles.

As a recitalist, Oliver has performed across five continents. Whilst organ scholar of King’s College, Cambridge, he was heard by millions worldwide when he played for the 2006 Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols. He has performed in venues such as the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam; the Royal Albert Hall, London; the Seoul Arts Centre in South Korea; the Esplanade Concert Hall in Singapore; the Istanbul International Music Festival; concerts in Scandinavia and the Baltic States. He has performed with orchestras such as the Philharmonia, Britten Sinfonia, Florilegium, the Armonico Consort and the Academy of Ancient Music. In October 2017, Oliver was awarded second prize and the Royal Canadian College of Organists’ Prize at the Canadian International Organ Competition.

Dan Hively is a horn player based out of New York. Focusing mainly on solo and orchestral repertoire, his performance career has taken him all over North America and Europe. Orchestrally, he has performed in some of America’s greatest concert halls, including Alice Tully Hall with internationally renowned soprano, Renee Flemming, and Carnegie Hall. He has attended several summer music festivals as a festival artist, including the Aspen Music Festival, Chautauqua Institute, Banff Music Festival, Aurora Chamber Festival, and Orford Arts Academy. Dan earned his Bachelor of Music at the University of Wisconsin, Madison School of Music while studying with Daniel Grabois, where he gained experience playing with professional orchestras such as the La Crosse Symphony Orchestra and Beloit Janesville Symphony Orchestra. Dan recently made his contemporary music debut playing with the award-winning group, Ensemble Signal. In his free time, Dan enjoys playing basketball, running, and spending time with his loved ones. Dan is a recent graduate of the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester, where he earned his Master of Music in Horn Performance and Literature under the tutelage of W. Peter Kurau.

John Smalley (baritone) and Janis Mercer (piano)

Schoenberg and his Students:  Music by Schoenberg, Webern, Berg, Eisler, Ullmann and Wellesz

Date: Friday March 20, 7:30 p.m.

John Smalley, baritone, is a native of San Francisco. He received his B.A. in Classics from Santa Clara University and holds an M.A. and M.Phil. in Historical Musicology from Columbia University in New York, where he taught for six years.  He has lectured and performed as soloist throughout the Bay Area, including Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, numerous Bach cantatas, and Frederic Rzewski’s Coming Together. He was awarded a prestigious 2009 Shenson Performing Arts Fellowship.

Janis Mercer is an American composer/pianist living in San Francisco. Her musical activities as composer, and pianist are closely interwoven. Her compositions range in size from 8-piece chamber ensemble to digitally realized fixed electronics; utilize timbres from voice to drum set; and employ styles from 12-tone technique to structured improvisation, microtonality to field recordings.  Ms. Mercer holds artist residencies at Villa Montalvo Center for the Arts, Ragdale, Centrum, Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts, and Hypatia-in-the-Woods.

Laura Klein Trio

Date: Saturday March 21, 7:30 p.m.

Laura Klein (pianist/composer) classically trained but deeply steeped in the jazz tradition, has been influenced by the writing of Thelonius Monk, Wayne Shorter, Fred Hersch and Joanne Brackeen. She has recorded her own compositions with FivePlay Jazz Quintet, Triceratops, and vibraphonist Ted Wolff. Laura has appeared with her trio at numerous venues including SF Jazz and Piedmont Piano Company, and was featured on KCSM’s “In the Moment” and “Desert Island Jazz”.  She co-leads FivePlay Jazz Quintet, and leads a busy performing schedule appearing with numerous Bay Area luminaries.

American Voices3 – Ensemble LudeCanta

Date: Saturday March 28, 7:30 p.m.

Ensemble LudeCanta is an ever-changing consortium of musicians committed to presenting new and rarely-performed chamber works.

Amy Likar, piccolo, flute, and alto flute
Lori Hennessy, cello
Linli Wang, piano
Nicholas Chase, composer and electronics
C.A. Jordan, soprano & artistic director

Praised by San Francisco Classical Voice as a “strikingly appealing, outstanding, accomplished performer,” and by Performing Arts Monterey Bay as a ”gifted vocal artist who sings with an unfettered authority…”, Soprano Carolyne Anne Jordan has sung roles with West Edge Opera, Mission City Opera, Open Opera, Livermore Valley Opera, and Goat Hall Productions, showcasing her versatility in roles by Britten, Mozart, and Puccini, among others. Miss Jordan has also performed with the San Francisco Opera Chorus, BASOTI program, the West Coast Opera Workshop, and the Opera Scenes Program at Holy Names College. Equally in demand as a concert artist, she has performed in such far-flung locations as Yosemite National Park and Antigua, Guatemala.

Duo Art

DuoArt

Date: Friday April 3, 7:30 p.m.

DuoArt is an ensemble formed by two musicians – Sasha Burdin and Leonid Iogansen.

Sasha Burdin is a concert and jazz pianist, composer, bandleader, and music educator. He performed concert programs in Russia, Europe, and the US. He received MM from Bowling Green State University and Maymonid Moscow State Classical Academy, and DMA from the University of Iowa, where he studied with Uriel Tsachor. In the summer of 2014 Sasha Burdin has served as a fellow at Tanglewood Music Festival in Lenox, MA. At the festival he performed solo, chamber, and orchestra pieces and worked under the baton of conductors Charles Dotuit and Andris Nelsons. In 2015 -2016 season Sasha Burdin participated in Johnson County Landmark jazz band as a principal pianist. The concert schedule included performances with notable guest artists Carmen Bradford former singer at Count Basie’s Jazz Band and a saxophonist Melvin Butler, a member of Brian Blade Fellowship band. Inspired and influenced by jazz music in the summer of 2016, Sasha Burdin has formed The Sasha Burdin Quartet – a jazz group, focusing on his original compositions and pieces from standard jazz repertoire, written by Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, Herbie Hancock, John Coltrane and others.

Born in Russia, Leonid Iogansen started his violin studies at 7. He has premiered many new chamber and solo works, including his own Violin Concerto. He has won several competitions, such as the Young Virtuosos International Competition in 1999, which resulted in his performance in Carnegie Hall the same year. As a composer, Leonid has written many solo, chamber, and orchestral pieces, much of which were performed by notable ensembles, such as JACK Quartet. In the Summer of 2006, Shuang Yin International Music Festival commissioned Leonid for a number of humorous pieces for various chamber ensembles. The performances were broadcast on Taiwan’s National Television. Leonid is also a visual artist and has won many competitions, including Gold Key Award for at the Boston Globe competition in 1997.

Monica Chew, piano

Date: Saturday April 4, 4:30 p.m.

Monica Chew is an Oakland pianist. In 2017 she released her first solo album, Tender and Strange, featuring works by Bartók, Janácek, Messiaen, Takemitsu, and Scriabin. A “gifted player with an affinity for deeply sensitive expression” (Whole Note, June/July/August 2018), her playing is “wonderfully delicate, like tissue” (International Pianist, July/August 2018). She started composing in 2017 and couldn’t be happier about it. She premiered her first songs for soprano and piano in 2018 and completed her first commission for Left Coast Chamber Ensemble’s Intersection 2019 workshop. She loves playing chamber music and received a Zellerbach Family Foundation award for her work with Minsky Duo, which she co-founded in 2016. Prior to 2015, she neglected piano for nearly a decade to work as a principal software engineer on security and privacy at Mozilla and Google after receiving her Master of Music from SF Conservatory of Music and a PhD in computer science from UC Berkeley. She lives in Oakland with her husband, an 1899 Steinway B, a clavichord, and a disused violin.

San Francisco Girls Chorus Level III and Soloist Intensive Program

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Date: Friday April 17, 7:30 p.m.

Founded in 1978, the San Francisco Girls Chorus is a leading voice in music in the Bay Area and across the nation. Led by Artistic Director Lisa Bielawa and Music Director and Principal Conductor Valérie Sainte-Agathe, the Girls Chorus produces and collab­orates in concerts, recordings and tours that empower young women, expand the field of music for treble voice, and set the standard for the highest level of performance and education. Hundreds of singers ages 5-18 from over 45 Bay Area cities participate in this program, which has won honors including 3 ASCAP awards for Adventurous Programming and five Grammy awards.

Circadian String Quartet

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Date: Saturday April 18, 7:30 p.m.

Bay Area based Circadian String Quartet was founded in 2013 to promote the classical and contemporary string quartet repertoire, in particular music of cultural and folkloric significance. Since then, the group has been featured through Mt. Shasta’s Music By the Mountain, Sunset Music | Arts Chamber Music Series in San Francisco, and the Merced Symphony Association. In 2014, the CSQ were invited to collaborate with the St. Petersburg-based Rimsky Korsakov String Quartet during their North American tour. They have also given U.S. premieres of pieces by world-renowned British composer Ian Venables in collaboration with mezzo-soprano Sally Munro of the San Francisco Opera and Natalie Parker, Principal Clarinetist of the San Francisco Ballet

Frank Huang, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Friday April 24, 7:30 p.m.

Frank Huang is an Assistant Professor of Piano at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. Previously, he served as a faculty member at The College of Wooster and The Cleveland Institute of Music.

Described by New York Concert Review as a “thoughtful and accomplished performer” and that his playing was “impressive for its maturity and refinement,” Mr. Huang has gained international recognition for his artistry and technical command. Others have also acknowledged his talents, as the Chopin Foundation of the United States, Northwest Chapter has commented that “Huang plays with authority and panache” while El Comerico of Lima, Peru praised his interpretation of Mozart’s Piano Concerto, K.482 “with the utmost sensitivity.” Mr. Huang’s performances have led him throughout North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. Such notable venues include Weill Hall, Carnegie Hall, Benaroya Hall (Seattle), US Embassy in Warsaw, Zelazowa Wola (Warsaw), Gijon International Piano Festival (Spain), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Holland Music Sessions, Kennedy Center (Washington DC), Dame Myra Recital Series at Chicago’s Cultural Center, Lincoln Center in New York, and St. Martin in the Fields, London, UK. Mr. Huang’s concerts have also been featured on radio and television broadcasts in various cities across the United States and abroad. Most recently, his performances were aired on “Primo Movimento,” a popular classical music program on RaiRadio 3 in Rome, Italy. An avid chamber musician, he also enjoys performing with others as he has collaborated with members of the Cleveland Orchestra and Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra in recitals. Equally active as a soloist with orchestra, he has performed with the Sammamish Symphony, Northwest Philharmonia, Peru National Symphony, and Wooster Symphony Orchestra. Recent engagements included a tour in South Korea and China, where Mr. Huang performed at the University of Ulsan (South Korea) and Sichuan Normal University, as well as soloist with the Sichuan Symphony Orchestra.

A native of Seattle, WA, Frank Huang studied extensively with Willard Schultz at the Academy of Music Northwest before obtaining Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School, where he continued his studies with Julian Martin. Following his training at Juilliard, he earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at The Cleveland Institute of Music under the direction of Antonio Pompa-Baldi. Other influential teachers included Lee Kum-Sing, Robert McDonald, Daniel Shapiro, and Dominique Weber. Huang has also participated in masterclasses with eminent musicians of our time including Nelita True, Byron Janis, Jon Kimura Parker, Richard Goode, and Murray Perahia.

José López, piano: “The Judaic Muse”

JoseLopez

Date: Saturday April 25, 7:30 p.m.

José López is Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Keyboard Studies Program at Florida International University in Miami, Florida, President of the South Florida Chapter of the American Liszt Society, and Honorary Secretary of the United Kingdom’s Alkan Society. He has performed throughout the United States, Italy and Central and South America with orchestras, solo recitals, and chamber groups in concert halls, summer festivals such as the Music Festival of the Hamptons in New York and the Killington Music Festival in Vermont. Active throughout South Florida, he has been a featured performer in the Florida International University’s Music Festival; ISCM New Music Miami Festival, the Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival, Coral Gables’ Mainly Mozart Series, University of Miami’s Miami Festival, and as founder and co-director of the Deering Estate at Cutler’s “Chamber Music Series.”

José López and William Wellborn, piano 4-hands: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Sunday April 26, 7 p.m.

William Wellborn enjoys an active career as a pianist, teacher and lecturer, and has performed and lectured widely over four continents. He received a MM (New England Conservatory) and DMA (University of Texas) in Performance, and a BM in Piano Pedagogy (University of Texas), where his teachers included Gregory Allen, Patricia Zander, and Nancy Garrett, and two leaders in the field of piano pedagogy- Amanda Vick Lethco and Martha Hilley. He has also received coaching from John Perry, Leon Fleisher, Karl-Heinz Kämmerling, Adam Wibrowski, Andrzej Jasinski, and Jerome Lowenthal. Guest artist appearances include the New Orleans Institute for the Performing Arts, the Paderewski Festival, the American Liszt Society, the Great Romantics Festival in Hamilton, Canada, the Chopin chez George Sand festival de piano in La Châtre, France, the Três Séculos de Piano series in Rio de Janeiro, and the Festival du Chablisien in Chablis, France. In 2004 he had the honor of presenting an all-Liszt program on Liszt’s piano at Hofgärtnerei Museum in Weimar, and in 2009 he presented a Haydn program at the composer’s birthplace in Rohrau, Austria. Orchestral appearances include the Austin Symphony, the Austin Chamber Ensemble, the Laredo Philharmonic, the San Antonio Symphony, the Redwoods Symphony, the Monterey Symphony, and the Sudeten Philharmonie in Walbrzych, Poland.

José López is Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Keyboard Studies Program at Florida International University in Miami, Florida, President of the South Florida Chapter of the American Liszt Society, and Honorary Secretary of the United Kingdom’s Alkan Society. He has performed throughout the United States, Italy and Central and South America with orchestras, solo recitals, and chamber groups in concert halls, summer festivals such as the Music Festival of the Hamptons in New York and the Killington Music Festival in Vermont. Active throughout South Florida, he has been a featured performer in the Florida International University’s Music Festival; ISCM New Music Miami Festival, the Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival, Coral Gables’ Mainly Mozart Series, University of Miami’s Miami Festival, and as founder and co-director of the Deering Estate at Cutler’s “Chamber Music Series.”

Duo Art

DuoArt

Date: Saturday May 2, 7:30 p.m.

DuoArt is an ensemble formed by two musicians – Sasha Burdin and Leonid Iogansen.

Sasha Burdin is a concert and jazz pianist, composer, bandleader, and music educator. He performed concert programs in Russia, Europe, and the US. He received MM from Bowling Green State University and Maymonid Moscow State Classical Academy, and DMA from the University of Iowa, where he studied with Uriel Tsachor. In the summer of 2014 Sasha Burdin has served as a fellow at Tanglewood Music Festival in Lenox, MA. At the festival he performed solo, chamber, and orchestra pieces and worked under the baton of conductors Charles Dotuit and Andris Nelsons. In 2015 -2016 season Sasha Burdin participated in Johnson County Landmark jazz band as a principal pianist. The concert schedule included performances with notable guest artists Carmen Bradford former singer at Count Basie’s Jazz Band and a saxophonist Melvin Butler, a member of Brian Blade Fellowship band. Inspired and influenced by jazz music in the summer of 2016, Sasha Burdin has formed The Sasha Burdin Quartet – a jazz group, focusing on his original compositions and pieces from standard jazz repertoire, written by Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins, Herbie Hancock, John Coltrane and others.

Born in Russia, Leonid Iogansen started his violin studies at 7. He has premiered many new chamber and solo works, including his own Violin Concerto. He has won several competitions, such as the Young Virtuosos International Competition in 1999, which resulted in his performance in Carnegie Hall the same year. As a composer, Leonid has written many solo, chamber, and orchestral pieces, much of which were performed by notable ensembles, such as JACK Quartet. In the Summer of 2006, Shuang Yin International Music Festival commissioned Leonid for a number of humorous pieces for various chamber ensembles. The performances were broadcast on Taiwan’s National Television. Leonid is also a visual artist and has won many competitions, including Gold Key Award for at the Boston Globe competition in 1997.

Trio 180

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Date: Sunday May 3, 7 p.m.

Trio 180, the faculty piano trio-in-residence at the University of the Pacific’s Conservatory of Music, is dedicated to its roles as performer, proponent of new music, and educator. In addition to giving concerts and master classes throughout the United States, the trio has been featured on concert series in Mexico and Canada. This talented ensemble includes celebrated concert violinist Ann Miller, renowned cellist Vicky Wang, and award-winning pianist Sonia Leong.

Trio 180 performs a wide range of music from the Classical era to the present and is an active advocate of new music. The trio was awarded a Barlow Grant in 2006 to commission eminent composer Chen Yi’s first piano trio, Tibetan Tunes (Theodore Presser). Continuing its tradition of commissioning new works, the trio premiered composer Robert Greenberg’s 180 Shift in 2013 and Reinaldo Moya’s Gothic Sea in 2011 in honor of Trio 180’s tenth anniversary. The trio has premiered works by Allan Crossman (Icarus), Jorge Liderman (Suite del Sur; Sidewalk recorded on Albany Records), Derek Jacoby (Trio No. 2), Francois Rose (Gently, Wild Rose Petals) and Cindy Cox (Wave, recorded in summer, 2010 and winter of 2014).

Clare Longendyke, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

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Date: Saturday May 9, 7:30 p.m.

Clare Longendyke is a passionate soloist and chamber musician recognized for her colorful musicality, technical fluency, and ability to interpret repertoires across the musical spectrum. She has performed solo and chamber music recitals across Europe and North America and has won 1st place prizes in the Philharmonic Society of Arlington’s Young Artist Competition, the Schubert Club of Minnesota’s Scholarship Competition, the National Society of Arts & Letters Instrumental Competition, and 2nd place in the SIYAO Instrumental Competition. She made her orchestral debut in 2012 performing Bartók’s 3rd Piano Concerto as the winner of the Indiana University Piano Concerto Competition and in 2017, she performed Chopin’s Piano Concerto in E minor with the Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra (Massachusetts) and Orlando Cela, conductor.

Matt Renzi Quartet

Date: Friday May 15, 7:30 p.m.

Multi-reedist Matt Renzi has been performing professionally for the past 20 years at international jazz festivals and music venues worldwide. For the past decade, he has been recognized multiple times by jazz organizations in Italy, Spain, Belgium, India and Israel as well as in the United States for his advanced concepts in spontaneous group composition and collective improvisation with The Matt Renzi Trio. He holds a Bachelor’s in Music (Performance) from the Berklee College of Music and Master’s in Arts (Classical Composition) from San Francisco State University. Some of his teachers include Joe Henderson and South Indian Vocalist R.A. Ramamani.

Matt can be heard on a variety of recordings including the award winning “Lines and Ballads” (Fresh Sound Records) as well as his latest release entitled “Lunch Special” (Three P’s Records) which features his trio. Matt has been leading his NY based trio for over 13 years now and continues to use this formation to push the limits of group improvisation and composition. He also leads another project, which combines contemporary classical composition techniques and spontaneous improvisation. As a sideman, Matt has performed and recorded with Marc Johnson, Michael Formanek, Eddie Marshall, Herbie Lewis, Ben Monder, Eberhard Weber, and Bobo Stenson.

Trio Teneramente: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday May 16, 7:30 p.m.

KISHAN CHOUHAN
Multi-instrumentalist, conductor, music director and music educator Kishan Chouhan received his B.Mus. in Clarinet Performance from the University of Toronto, and his MA in Music with research in multiple woodwind performance from York University. Notable and accomplished teachers he has studied with include: clarinet with Miles Jaques, David Bourque, Steve Pierre and Peter Stoll, flute with Peg Albrecht, Nina Martini-Dorey and Sara Hahn, oboe with Wendy Bornstein, Monica Fosnaugh and David Sussman.

JELENA CINGARA
Jelena Cingara is an active performer and artist in US, Canada, and European countries such as Italy, and Czhech Republic. She has performed in concert venues such as: Libby Gardner, Dumke, Abravanel hall, and Kenley amphitheatre in Utah, as well as Arts and Letters Club, Walter Hall, and Ettore Mazzoleni Halls in Toronto. She has played in masterclasses for Nicholas Angelich (Virginia Classics), Rebecca Penneys (Eastman School of Music), Dr. Joel Hastings (Florida State University), and Steven Doane (Eastman School of Music) just to name a few. As a collaborative and chamber musician she has played recitals in Italy, Serbia, US and Canada, and for masterclasses for famous quartets such as: The Bennewitz, Faure, Doric as well as Philip Seltzer from the Emerson Quartet.

STUART MUTCH
Stuart Mutch began cello studies in Calgary at the age of 13 with John Kadz. He received additional training in the Calgary Youth Orchestra, the National Youth Orchestra of Canada and the AFM Congress of Strings at the University of Washington. He has been a member of the Calgary Philharmonic, the Windsor Symphony, the Toronto Philharmonia and the North York Concert Orchestra and continued his studies in Toronto with David Miller and Winona Zelenka. He was a member of the Sunrise String Quartet for 14 years and has had extensive chamber music experience in a variety of ensembles. Mr. Mutch is a lawyer and mediator and is presently is an adjudicator with the Immigration and Refugee Board.

Robyn Carmichael, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday May 23, 7:30 p.m.

Robyn Carmichael’s distinctive style has earned praise from audiences and critics alike, describing her performances as “lush, thrilling and intensely personal” with “extraordinary poetry.” Previous seasons have included a 6-state East/West Coast tour, radio interviews on NPR and Berkeley’s KPFA-FM Piano program, and a CD release with music of Scarlatti, Mendelssohn, Chopin, Schumann, Falla, Rameau-Godowsky, and Rachmaninoff.

Her exciting 2019-20 season features an all-Beethoven recital to celebrate the composer’s 250th anniversary, and an all-Russian program with the virtuosic Tchaikovsky-Pletnev Nutcracker Suite. Her highly popular Romantic Masters Series and a newly added Strokes of Genius Series continues with educational concerts combining music, commentary and visuals for schools, libraries and grassroots organizations. A unique multi-disciplinary Chopin project entitled ForbiddenConcert is planned for 2020.

Three tours of Poland connected Carmichael more closely to the great Polish composer Chopin and his historical impact. A unique multi-disciplinary Chopin project entitled ForbiddenConcert is planned for 2020.
Carmichael has appeared at the Aspen Music Festival, the Grand Concert Hall at City Halls (Glasgow, Scotland), Ostrogski Palace Concert Hall (Warsaw, Poland), CAMI Hall in New York City, the Salk Institute, Portland’s “Art for the Ears,” Chicago’s PianoForte Series, New York’s Ridotto Series, the Aptos Keyboard Series, the Idyllwild Summer Music Festival, Radziejowice Palace (Poland), Denver Municipal Auditorium, and many other national and international concert venues.

Divisa Ensemble

Date: Saturday May 30, 7:30 p.m.

The Divisa Ensemble is recognized for its engaging performances and eclectic programming. The ensemble’s unconventional instrumentation (flute, oboe, violin, viola, and cello) and “mix-and-match” approach allow for a wide variety of repertoire comprising all traditional and contemporary styles. Since its premiere concert in 2009, the Divisa Ensemble has performed throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

On every program the Divisa Ensemble showcases its diverse repertoire of the Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Contemporary genres in a variety of wind and string ensemble combinations. The Divisa Ensemble has given formal concert appearances at venues including the Del Valle Fine Arts Series, St. Bede’s Performing Arts Series, Manteca Kindred Arts Series, Old First Concerts, Trinity Chamber Concerts, and UC Berkeley Noon Concert Series. They have appeared as featured artists of the Vallejo Symphony and the San Francisco Chapter of the National Association of Composers. The Divisa Ensemble has been the Ensemble-in-Residence of the acclaimed Golden State Youth Orchestra (formerly El Camino Youth Symphony) since 2010. Student chamber groups are mentored through masterclasses and weekly coachings led by the Divisa Ensemble in the Divisa Honors Program. Each year, the program selects exemplary student groups to perform in a concert with the Divisa Ensemble.

Duo Smirnov, piano 4-hands

Date: Saturday June 6, 7:30 p.m.

Duo Smirnov is a Piano Show by the family couple of musicians, Angelika and Anton. They perform original, classical, jazz, and crossover works. Their repertoire ranges from classical and romantic era to modern pop with a comedy twist. Duo Smirnov carefully choose pieces for their show to keep listener’s attention until the very last note of the concert! Previously successful soloists, they have decided to unite and expand their style into something new, adding more creativity and positive energy to the piano recital. Together with an extensive performer’s career, the couple working on the album in crossover genre which they plan to release in 2019. Duo leaning towards the quality of music and show regardless music styles they perform in!

Daniel Lewin (violin) and Dmitriy Cogan (piano): Beethoven2020 Project

Daniel Lewin, violin

Date: Saturday June 13, 7:30 p.m.

Daniel Lewin has performed extensively throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe. He has had an unusually diverse career as a soloist, chamber musician, concertmaster and teacher. Mr. Lewin began his musical training at the age of six, studying piano with Edmund Arkus and violin with Benno Rabinof. For three years he studied with Giorgio Ciompi at Duke University before receiving his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School as a scholarship student of Joseph Fuchs. He made his European recital debut at the Festival de Boulogne-sur-Gesse in Southern France. Daniel Lewin has held the position of Concertmaster with the Symphony of the United Nations, Solisti New York, the Concerto Soloists of Philadelphia, Charleston Symphony, Nevada Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, and Cedar Rapids Symphony. He made his Carnegie Hall concerto debut with the New York Youth Symphony. He has also played with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, the Brooklyn Philharmonic, the Houston Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, the Spoleto Festival in both Charleston, S.C. and Spoleto Italy and toured Greece as a member of the American Symphony Orchestra. In addition, he has performed at the festivals of Cabrillo (California), Casals (Puerto Rico), Grand Tetons (Wyoming), Lancaster (Ohio), Chautauqua (N.Y.), Skaneateles (N.Y.), Bear Lake (Idaho), and Deer Valley (Utah). Daniel Lewin was Professor of Violin and Viola at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and in addition to teaching both undergraduates and graduate music students, he also served as the Concertmaster of the Nevada Symphony and was a founding member of the Nevada Fine Arts Trio. He also spent a season as Visiting Artist in Residence of Violin at the University of Memphis where he was also a member of the Pyramid String Trio. Mr. Lewin was also the Concertmaster of the West Virgina Symphony and first violinist of the Montclaire String Quartet. His teaching credentials also include the College of Charleston, S.C., and the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, N.C. Mr. Lewin currently resides in the East Bay, where he teaches privately, performs in various chamber ensembles, and is the Director of the Trinity Chamber Concert Series.

Dmitriy Cogan began music studies at the age of six at the Central Music School before moving to the U.S. and settling in San Francisco in 1974. He studied conducting at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and continued piano studies with Vladimir Pleshakov and Maria Cysic. In 1979, he moved to New York to study with Martin Canin at the Juilliard School, where he received Bachelor and Master of Music degrees. Mr. Cogan has performed publicly since age nine in Moscow. His American debut was in 1975 with the Peninsula Symphony in San Mateo, California. In 1981-1983, he was a prizewinner in competitions in New York, Cincinnati and Cleveland. In 1988, Mr. Cogan gave his New York recital debut at Carnegie Hall to favorable reviews and has since appeared in recitals throughout the Northeast and California.

Ensemble 1828

SchubertProject

Date: Friday June 12, 7:30 p.m.

Nicole Oswald recently received an Artist Diploma from the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami, studying under renowned concert violinist and pedagogue Charles Castleman as a graduate teaching assistant and Henry Mancini Institute fellow.  Prior to attending Frost, Nicole studied violin at the Utrechts Conservatory, Netherlands and the Eastman School of Music.

Alison Lee recently completed the Doctor of Musical Arts in piano performance at the University of Minnesota, where she studied with Lydia Artymiw. She received her MM degree from Rice University under Jon Kimura Parker, and BM degree from Oberlin Conservatory under Angela Cheng.

Isaac Pastor-Chermak is Principal Cellist of Portland Opera and Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony; Associate Principal Cellist of Stockton Symphony; and a member of Santa Barbara Symphony, Monterey Symphony, Santa Cruz Symphony, and Dayton Philharmonic.

Phillip Dyson, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Friday June 19, 7:30 p.m.

Born in Lancashire he began musical studies at an early stage and by the age of twelve had given a performance at London’s Royal Albert Hall, which was to launch a busy and most successful performing career. He studied at the Royal College of Music with distinguished pianists Colin Horsley and John Lill, and also with Dr William Lloyd Webber. At the early age of 27 he was appointed Professor of Piano at the London College of Music.

Phillip Dyson has performed with many of the UK’s finest symphony orchestras, including: the Royal Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, BBC Concert Orchestra, National Symphony and the Ulster Orchestra; and at most of the major festivals, including: Salisbury, Lichfield, Bury St. Edmunds, Ludlow, Fishguard, Newbury, Buxton, Worcester Three Choirs, Gloucester Three Choirs, Belfast and Chester. Most frequently he appears in London, including the South Bank Centre and St John’s, Smith Square. He tours overseas every year, particularly in the USA and Europe. Also in Africa, where he has toured several times in Tanzania and given a number of recitals at the Official Residence of the British High Commissioner in Dar es Salaam. On disc he records for the ASV/Sanctuary, Chandos, Naxos and Marigold labels.

Kimberly Hou, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

KimberlyHou

Date: Saturday July 11, 7:30 p.m.

Kimberly Hou began piano at 4 years old with Marjorie Lee and has since developed a lifelong love for music. A graduate of the Columbia University-Juilliard School Exchange Program, Kimberly has studied with Matti Raekallio and Hung-Kuan Chen. She was named a 2012 U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts as well as a 2012 NFAA YoungArts Silver Award Winner. She won First Prize in the 2011 Lee University International Piano Competition, the 2009 Music Teachers National Association Junior Piano Competition, the 23rd, 25th, and 27th International Young Artist Piano Competitions, the Connecticut International Piano Competition, and over 25 other regional and national competitions. Kimberly is also the 2nd Prize Winner of the 2012 William Kapell Young Artist Piano Competition, and a winner of the 2010 Chopin Scholarship by the Chopin Foundation of the United States.

She has been chosen to participate in several additional international competitions including the 2008 Gina Bachauer International Young Artists Piano Competition, the 2009 Liszt-Garrison International Piano Competition (Finalist and Honorable Mention), the 2011 Virginia Waring International Piano Competition (Semifinalist and Honorable Mention), and the 2011 Minnesota International e-Piano Junior Competition (advanced to final 12) among others.

Kimberly has appeared on NPR’s From the Top as well as Richmond CBS Virginia This Morning for a live TV interview. She has performed at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Hall; Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Millennium Stage, and Terrace Theatre; U.S. Department of State; Hungarian and Bulgarian Embassies; the 2nd Washington International Piano Festival; the 2012 William Kapell International Piano Festival; the 2011 Kids In Need Foundation Annual Gala; and the 2009 National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy. In addition, she performed in concerts with the Richmond, New River Valley, and VCU Symphony Orchestras as the winner of concerto competitions.

William Beatty and Brooke Aird in concert

William Beatty

Date: Saturday July 18, 7:30 p.m.

Pianist and composer William Beatty is a native of Berkeley, California where he currently resides. He began to play piano at eight years, learning from his father and older brother, and composed his first original pieces soon after. He studied theory and improvisation with Bill Bell, Don Haas, and Dick Whittington, and classical piano with concert pianist Jeanne Stark. Beatty enjoys teaching classical, jazz, and popular styles of piano to all ages, and he performs both as a solo pianist and in jazz ensembles and chamber music groups.

Brooke Aird, violinist, attended the Manhattan School of Music where he studied violin with Raphael Bronstein. His other teachers have included Catherine Van Hoesen and Felix Khuner. Currently a member of the Marin Symphony, Brooke has played with many local musical organizations including the SF Opera, SF Ballet, and the Oakland, Sacramento, San Jose, and Santa Rosa Symphonies. For fifteen years he was a member of the new music group Sounds New, which performed music by living American composers. Along with his wife, Cathy Allen Aird, he runs a small catering company called “For The Love Of Food”.

Zēlos Quartet

Date: Saturday August 1, 7:30 p.m.

Julian Salazar, Soprano
Johnny Selmer, Alto
Robin Lacey, Tenor
David Cortez, Baritone

The Zēlos Quartet is dedicated to performing a wide array of repertoire ranging from underrepresented contemporary works to transcriptions from the baroque, classical, and romantic eras. Committed to performing on saxophones that fit the acoustical specifications of its inventor Adolphe Sax, the Zelos Quartet looks to connect with a variety of audiences to show the wide range of sounds and colors of the saxophone.

Zēlos has participated in summer music festivals such as Festival South (Hattiesburg, MS) and the National Music Festival (Chestertown, MD), where they connected with local audiences through public performances in retirement homes, farmers markets, and house concerts. They have also been extensively coached by Dr. Michael Hernandez of the critically acclaimed Mana Quartet and participated in masterclasses by the award winning Verona String Quartet and Amethyst Quartet.

Kevin Navarro, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday August 15, 7:30 p.m.

Kevin Navarro, classical pianist and vocal accompanist is a native of Seattle, Washington and has resided in San Francisco for nine years. Kevin earned his Bachelor’s of Music in Piano Performance from Pacific Lutheran University School of Music, where he studied under Dr. Calvin Knapp of the Julliard School, Dr. Richard Nance, Director of Choral Activities and Mira Frohnmayer, Chair of Vocal Studies at PLU School of Music. During his tenure at PLU, Kevin served as the choral accompanist for both University Choral, and internationally renowned Choir of the West. Kevin was very active in musical theatre and opera productions in the Seattle/Tacoma region, and has served as a principle/stage accompanist for PLU Opera Workshop, Tacoma Opera, Seattle Opera and the Tacoma Musical Playhouse including productions such as Madame Butterfly, Marriage of Figaro, Magic Flute, and West Side Story.

Fantastic Landscape: Benji Kaplan and Rita Figueiredo transfix with bright, nuanced portraits of a hidden Brazil

Date: Saturday September 12, 7:30 p.m

Benji & Rita: Brazilian music has a keen ability to tie the magical and surreal with the grounded and historical. New York-based composer Benji Kaplan and Brazilian singer and songwriter Rita Figueiredo pick up that vibrating, multicolored thread and weave it into fantastical new portraits of Brazil and New York on Benji & Rita (release: May 10, 2019), their album-length debut as a duo.

Cinematic and refined, Benji & Rita channels the scents and sounds, the flora and fauna of the couple’s homelands, drawing on everything from samba and baião, to waltzes and pop catchiness, much as Brazilian popular composers have over the last five decades.

Ensemble ARI: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: Saturday September 26, 7:30 p.m.

Ari” is a Korean word with multiple meanings: big river, wisdom and beauty. Ensemble Ari is a group of musicians in the Bay Area who share this quality with the community. The ensemble gave its debut concert in October 2014 as a Korean War Memorial Concert and has been given concerts at UC Berkeley, UC Davis, Old First Concert Series, Maybeck House, OSLC Concert Series among others. Sound recordings can be found at https://www.facebook.com/EnsembleAri

Native of South Korea, Heeguen Song is the assistant concert master of the SF Ballet. She has held positions at Santa Rosa Symphony, Oakland Symphony and Berkeley Symphony Orchestra. Dr. Song performs regularly in South Korea and throughout the Bay Area in venues such as Seoul Arts Center, Sejong Arts Center, Old First Concerts, Herbst Theater, Bing Concert Hall, and many more. She is an active chamber musician and is a member of Beaubliss Quartet and Ensemble Ari. She has performed at Yale Chamber Music Society, Yellowbarn Music Festival, Taos Music Festival, and Banff Chamber Music Residency. Heeguen was invited to play at Osaka City Hall, Daejeon Chamber Music Festival, Beethoven institute at New School and City University of NY. Additionally Heeguen gave a solo debut recital at Weil Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and had solo appearances with many orchestras such as SF Ballet Orchestra, Oberlin Orchestra, Rutgers Symphony Orchestra, Ensemble 212, and Camerata Academica de Merida. She was a prize winner at the Henryk Szeryng International Competition, Irving M Klein Competition, and Kingsville International Competition among others. Heeguen studied at Oberlin Conservatory, the Juilliard School, Yale School of music and Rutgers University under the direction of Almita Vamos, Masao Kawasaki, Peter Oundjian, and Arnold Steinhardt.

Violinist Jiwon Evelyn Kwark holds a bachelor’s degree from The Juilliard School, a master’s from Yale School of Music, and Professional Studies from Manhattan School of Music in the Orchestral Performance Program. Her primary teachers were Glenn Dicterow, Ani Kavafian, Masao Kawasaki, and Alexander Treger. Since making her solo debut with the Amabile Orchestra in Korea at the age of 9, Ms. Kwark has performed with numerous orchestras in the U.S. and Korea. She has toured Canada with the Young Orchestra of Americas as the associate concertmistress and toured the cities of Germany with the Penderecki Musik Academie Orchestra as the concertmistress and soloist of the orchestra under the baton of renowned composer, Maestro Penderecki. Ms. Kwark performs regularly as the Associate Principal Second Violinist of the Marin Symphony and violinist of Symphony Silicon Valley. She has also performed with the San Francisco Symphony, New World Symphony, and New Century Chamber Orchestra. (www.jiwonevelynkwark.com)

Acclaimed by music critics as “free, warm and a very expressive” performer, cellist, Sarah Hong was born in Seoul Korea. She began studying cello at the age of six and was selected as most promising young cellist in the nation at the age of 16, her performance broadcasted nationwide by KBS. She made her New York debut at Carnegie Hall as a winner of Artists International. Ms. Hong studied at the Juilliard School with Zara Nelsova and Joel Krosnick while receiving both of the BM and MM degrees. She finished her artist certificate in chamber music at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music under the direction of Bonnie Hampton. Ms. Hong lives in Los Altos where she balances a busy career as a soloist, collaborative artist, and teacher. Currently, she is a cellist of Le Due Muse with a pianist Makiko Ooka, Ensemble Ari, and San Francisco Cello Quartet. She teaches string orchestra at the King’s Academy and cello sections at CYS and KAMSA youth orchestras. She has started the ‘Phos (φῶς)’ Benefit Concert Series to help support various non-profit organizations serving children all over the world in 2014. (www.cellistsarahhong.com)

Native to the Bay Area, pianist Sharon Lee Kim actively performs as solo and chamber pianist, vocal coach, music director, choral and vocal accompanist, and is a highly demanded piano instructor. She is a frequent recitalist, collaborating with the top instrumentalists and opera singers in the world. Ms. Kim joined the Saint Mary’s College Music Faculty in 2008. As Adjunct Associate Professor her roles include: Asst. Director/Accompanist of the choral program, Lecturer in piano, chamber music, and music history, and Director of the Faculty Concert Series. Aside from her roles at the college, Sharon is the pianist of Ensemble Ari, the co-founding member of Duo Camaraderie together with flutist Laura Scarlata, a collegiate staff pianist at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, freelances as a solo, vocal, and chamber pianist, and maintains a thriving private studio teaching piano and vocal coaching singers. Sharon is a member of the Music Teachers Association of California (MTAC) and adjudicator for local competitions. Sharon holds degrees from UC Berkeley (BA) and New England Conservatory (MM and GD). Her primary teachers were Irma Vallecillo, Kayo Iwama, John Greer, Barbara Shearer, and Margret Elson. (www.sharonleekim.com)

Director/Conductor Jean Ahn finished her B.A. and M.M. at Seoul National University and Ph.D. at UC Berkeley. Her music was featured at Aspen Music Festival, IAWM Beijing, American Composers Orchestra’s Earshot, SEAMUS, NY Electronic Music Festival, Spark Festival among others. Commissions include works for the Leftcoast Chamber Ensemble, Volti, Duo Camaraderie, Gayaguem Soloist JUL, Locrian Chamber Players, and Pianissimo among others. She is the composer-in-residence for SF Choral Artist and adjunct Lecturer at UC Berkeley. She also recently joined hum-on.com, AI music company. (www.jeanahn.com)

Olson/De Cari Duo

Date: Saturday October 3, 7:30 p.m.

The Olson/De Cari Duo, a husband-and-wife ensemble, is dedicated to expanding the repertoire for classical guitar and voice, deriving inspiration from their eclectic backgrounds in both science and the arts.

The Duo’s unique approach to song performance draws on Gioia’s expertise as both a classical singer and a theatre artist, and John’s diverse musical background and affinity for ensemble performance. Their innovative repertoire includes many pieces written for them, including compositions from their Science/Music Commissioning Project, which seeks to celebrate the science-informed worldview and illuminate the human side of science through song.

NYlon Review described their performance as “superb . . . served up with style and elegance,” and the Science Friday Initiative noted that “the Olson/De Cari Duo straddle science and art gloriously.”

Their new CD, Eve’s Diary, released in Fall 2018, features new compositions and arrangements commissioned by the Duo, including song cycles by David Leisner and Frank Wallace, arrangements of Jobim songs by João Luiz, and arrangements of theatre songs by Clarice Assad.

Brazzissimo!

Date: Saturday October 10, 7:30 p.m.

BRAZZISSIMO is a ten-piece brass chamber music ensemble.  You may well ask, “What exactly is a brass chamber ensemble?”  Well, it’s a fascinating combination of four trumpets (including piccolo trumpet, various pitched trumpets and flugelhorn), four trombones (including euphonium), French horn and a tuba which comprise this captivating and exciting music ensemble. 

We perform a variety of music especially arranged or composed for this brass ensemble medium, all of which include arrangements of classical, jazz, Latin and contemporary works. 

​Our musicians, past and present, represent some of the finest brass players in the San Francisco Bay Area region.  In addition to our ensemble’s responsibilities, individually we perform in orchestras, bands, smaller chamber groups, and often freelance.  Our continuing goal is to present the most enjoyable and memorable concert experiences possible.

Janis Mercer, piano

Concert commemorating the 75th anniversary of the death of Anton Webern

Date: Saturday October 17, 7:30 p.m.

Janis Mercer is an American composer/pianist living in San Francisco. Her musical activities as composer, and pianist are closely interwoven. Her compositions range in size from 8-piece chamber ensemble to digitally realized fixed electronics; utilize timbres from voice to drum set; and employ styles from 12-tone technique to structured improvisation, microtonality to field recordings. Ms. Mercer holds artist residencies at Villa Montalvo Center for the Arts, Ragdale, Centrum, Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts, and Hypatia-in-the-Woods.

As a solo pianist and accompanist, Ms. Mercer has a keen interest in the music of the Second Viennese School but also performs music by living composers and commissions solo and chamber works. She has performed music by such diverse composers as Anthony Braxton, Anton Webern, Bela Bartók, Leos Janacek, Brian Belét, Pablo Furman, Paul Rudy and Sever Tipei, and has commissioned works from Zack Browning, Erik Lund, and Donivan Johnson, among others. Ms. Mercer’s current discography includes recordings on Capstone, Ravello, Centaur, and New Music Circle, of music by Belét, Mercer, and Rudy. A CD of Anton Webern’s music is due for a 2020 release on Centaur.

Frank Huang, piano and Lin He, violin in concert: Beethoven2020 Project

FrangHuangLinHe

Date: Saturday October 24, 7:30 p.m.

Frank Huang is an Assistant Professor of Piano at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio. Previously, he served as a faculty member at The College of Wooster and The Cleveland Institute of Music. Described by New York Concert Review as a “thoughtful and accomplished performer” and that his playing was “impressive for its maturity and refinement,” Mr. Huang has gained international recognition for his artistry and technical command. Others have also acknowledged his talents, as the Chopin Foundation of the United States, Northwest Chapter has commented that “Huang plays with authority and panache” while El Comerico of Lima, Peru praised his interpretation of Mozart’s Piano Concerto, K.482 “with the utmost sensitivity.” Mr. Huang’s performances have led him throughout North America, South America, Europe, and Asia. Such notable venues include Weill Hall, Carnegie Hall, Benaroya Hall (Seattle), US Embassy in Warsaw, Zelazowa Wola (Warsaw), Gijon International Piano Festival (Spain), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Holland Music Sessions, Kennedy Center (Washington DC), Dame Myra Recital Series at Chicago’s Cultural Center, Lincoln Center in New York, and St. Martin in the Fields, London, UK. Mr. Huang’s concerts have also been featured on radio and television broadcasts in various cities across the United States and abroad.

Violinist Lin He made his Carnegie Hall solo debut in November 2014, after a performance there earlier that year with principal players from the Metropolitan Opera, New York Philharmonic and Philadelphia Orchestra in orchestral setting. Over the past seasons, he performed the Korngold Concerto with the Rapides Symphony Orchestra, Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Shippensburg Symphony and the Sibelius Concerto with the Lake Charles Symphony. Inspired by the complete Beethoven Sonatas and complete Mozart Sonatas for Violin and Piano in the past two season, 2018-2019 season of concerts will include Schubert Complete Music for Violin and Piano and complete Brahms Sonatas for Violin and Piano in multiple venues including the PianoForte Foundation Concert Series in Chicago; chamber recitals as the violinist of Caladium Piano Trio; violin soloist of the Bruch Scottish Fantasy with the Sonoma Philharmonic Orchestra; solo recital and masterclass at University of Oklahoma and Northern Illinois University; series of concerts and masterclasses in mainland China and Taiwan. He has presented recitals at universities across the United States and China. Most recently, he shared stage with Shanghai String Quartet and violinist Charles Castleman; performed solo recitals and gave master classes at Arizona State University, Florida State University, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, University of Houston, University of Las Vegas, University of North Texas and University Alberta, Edmonton, Canada.

Liana Paniyeva, piano: Beethoven2020 Project

Liana Paniyeva

Date: Saturday December 5, 7:30 p.m.

Award winning pianist Liana Paniyeva has performed at international festivals in Norway, Hungary, Canada, Italy, South Africa and Israel. Liana performed three times at Carnegie Hall in New York City . Her solo recital in 2016 at the Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago was broadcast live on WFMT Radio. Ms. Paniyeva is the winner of the American Protégé International Competition of Romantic Music; Grand Prize at the Metropolitan International Piano Competition; and the winner of the AFAF Golden Era of Romantic Music International Competition. Liana Paniyeva was also awarded the Cargill Foundation Prize in the 2014 Scottish International Piano Competition in Glasgow, and became a prizewinner at the Iowa International Piano Competition in 2015 . In 2013-2015, Ms. Paniyeva was awarded the E.B. Storrs Piano Scholarship from the Musical Club of Hartford. Liana earned Third Prize at the International Competitions in Memory of E. Gilels, First Prize at the International Competition in Memory of Prokofiev, and Second Prize at the International Competition in Memory of A. Karamanov. In 2008, Liana won First Prize in the “Music World” International Competition in Italy. In Israel Ms. Paniyeva won a prize in memory of Bracha Eden for a most impressive performance during the competition ” The Voice of Music ” Jerusalem . Liana graduated from the Donetsk Music Academy in Ukraine, and went on to earn her Professional Studies Certificate from the Manhattan School of Music in 2011. Her career continues with recitals in Hungary, Israel, Ukraine, USA, England, Syria , Canada , South Africa and Norway. Ms. Paniyeva finished her Artist Diploma at The Hartt School of the University of Hartford . Most recently, Liana played in concert halls of Scotland, South Africa, and in multiple states of the USA including Mechanics Hall in Worcester, Chicago Cultural Center , Epiphany Church in Downtown of Washington DC , Chicago Public Library , Grand Country Concert Series in Colorado , Jamestown Piano association and many more.

Carlos Pavan, guitar

CarolsPavan

Date: Sunday December 20, 7 p.m.

“Striking music-great originality”   – Classical Guitar Magazine

Argentine born/Brooklyn (Park Slope) based concert guitarist & composer Carlos Pavan arrived to New York in 2000 to pursue musical studies under Jesse Henserkiefken (conducting) , Jorge Morel (classical guitar/composition) , Dave Smey ( Brooklyn Conservatory) and Pablo Ziegler (Astor Piazzolla’s piano player, composition/orchestration/arranging) . Since then, he’s performed at well-renowned venues such as Lincoln Center, New York City Center, Tango USA (Canada) , New England Conservatory Jordan Hall (Boston), Brooklyn Borough Hall, Merkin Hall at Kaufman Center, Philadelphia Museum, Connecticut Festival Guitars of the world , Tribute to Astor Piazzolla (New Jersey), Tango trio (Washington DC) , Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture, Hudson River Museum, New England Guitar Society, Public Libraries all around USA and internationally in France, Ireland, Portugal and Japan. His second CD “Suite del Interior” (original compositions for guitar and string quartet) is a blend of argentine tango/folk dances, jazz harmonies and classical forms and recorded with special guest PUBLIQuartet .When not performing, he offers private guitar/composition lessons and is also an instructor at Noel Pointer Foundation. At the present he is the composer/guitarist/artistic director of the Park Slope Chamber Players with upcoming album of his originals works.

Ben Capps (cello) and Vassily Primakov (piano)

Date: TBD

Exciting young American cellist Ben Capps enjoys a versatile performing career as a soloist and chamber musician. His artistry has been praised as “most appealing” by the New York Times, “virtuosic and impassioned” by the Barre Montpelier Times, the Holland Times hailed Capps as a “young cello phenomenon from New York” with “dazzling technique and a fearsomely meaty tone”, and the Epoch Times proclaimed that “Capps has it all . . . cello playing of the very highest standard.”  He has performed in varying capacities at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium, Weill and Zankel Halls, Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C., Mann Hall in Tel Aviv, Meyerson Hall in Dallas, and the Auditorio Nacional, the Palace of Fine Arts and Sala Nezahualcoytl in Mexico City.

In recent years, Vassily Primakov has been hailed as a pianist of world class importance. Gramophone wrote that “Primakov’s empathy with Chopin’s spirit could hardly be more complete,” and the American Record Guide stated: “Since Gilels, how many pianists have the right touch? In Chopin, no one currently playing sounds as good as this! This is a great Chopin pianist.” Music Web-International called Primakov’s Chopin concertos CD “one of the great Chopin recordings of recent times. These are performances of extraordinary power and beauty.” In 1999, as a teen-aged prizewinner of the Cleveland International Piano Competition, Primakov was praised by Donald Rosenberg of the Cleveland Plain Dealer: “How many pianists can make a line sing as the Moscow native did on this occasion? Every poignant phrase took ethereal wing. Elsewhere the music soared with all of the turbulence and poetic vibrancy it possesses. We will be hearing much from this remarkable musician.

Christ on the Mount of Olives: Beethoven2020 Project

Date: TBD

San Francisco Renaissance Voices made their debut in 2004 with a “standing room only” performance of Victoria’s Requiem and quickly became a favorite of San Francisco Bay Area Early Music audiences. SFRV is the San Francisco Bay Area’s professional mixed-voice ensemble dedicated to performing and exploring the a cappella choral music of the Renaissance particularly lesser-known and rarely-performed works, as well as exploring music from this period outside of the traditional European canon.

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