Jessie Montgomery Named Artistic Partner of Orpheus Chamber Orchestra

We’re excited to announce that in the 2019-20 season, the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra will welcome the composer, violinist, and educator Jessie Montgomery as its first-ever Artistic Partner. Her post includes taking part in Orpheus' educational initiatives throughout the season and having two works premiered by Orpheus in concert: the world-premiere of Shift, Change, Turn, and Variations on the season-opening concert September 26 at Carnegie Hall, and a reimagining of Tchaikovsky’s The Seasons, Op. 37a, co-arranged with Jannina Norpoth, to be performed in January 2020.

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Parker Quartet at Banff Centre and Bard Festival

Renowned for its dynamic interpretations and polished, expansive colors, the Parker Quartet has rapidly distinguished itself as one of the preeminent ensembles of its generation, dedicated purely to the sound and depth of their music. Their luminous sound and exceptional musicianship set them apart, along with their fearless approach to repertoire. This summer, the Parker completed its second summer in residence at the Banff Centre in Canada coaching top young ensembles and explored Erich Korngold works for ensemble at the Bard Festival. The two works – his sextet and piano quintet – are orchestral and even cinematic in scope, perfect for the Parker.

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Miró Quartet Premieres Kevin Puts' "Home"

This summer the Miró Quartet’s longtime friend Kevin Puts completed his fantastically unusual second quartet for the group, “Home”; the work had its premiere at the Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival. The work was inspired and informed by the refugee crisis in Europe, and raises questions of who belongs where and what the idea of ‘home’ means to all of us.

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MKI Artists Welcomes Jessie Montgomery

I’m delighted to welcome the composer Jessie Montgomery to the roster at MKI Artists. One of the most unique artistic voices of our time, her profoundly impactful music overflows with energy, color, and life. We are thrilled to begin work as the exclusive representative for Jessie’s commissions and appearances as a composer. Just a few of her upcoming commissions include major works for the New York Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra, Carnegie Hall, and the Imani Winds.

Welcome aboard, Jessie!

– John Zion | Managing Director

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Andrei Ioniță and William Hagen Team Up in Aspen

Two of the hottest young artists performing today – cellist Andrei Ioniță and violinist William Hagen – teamed up at the Aspen Music Festival to play the Brahms Double Concerto with conductor Scott Terrell and the Aspen Philharmonic Orchestra, followed by stunning trios with the elegant pianist Anton Nel which was "one of the most invigorating half-hours of the season." In their free time they hung out, hiked in the perfect weather, and played with Will’s hysterically violin-hating dog Zuzu.

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Gryphon Trio Performs in Arizona and Montana

The irrepressible Gryphon Trio performed from the southern border of the United States to the northern border during July, first offering a barnburner of a program at Arizona State University and then a series of collaborative and trio performances at the jaw-dropping Tippet Rise in Montana. The performances perfectly encapsulated the Gryphon’s repertoire, with both the genre-defining Ravel Piano Trio and a new work by a fellow Canadian. On the way from Arizona to Montana the Trio took a detour to the Grand Canyon; once at Tippet Rise they found other kinds of beauty in the Art Center’s stunning sculptures and eight pristine Steinway Ds to choose from.

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Ariel Quartet and Alexander Fiterstein Premiere Theofanidis Quintet

The charismatic Ariel Quartet premiered the renowned composer Christopher Theofanidis’s new clarinet quintet in an exciting program featuring the clarinetist Alexander Fiterstein. On a sultry summer evening at the Manchester Music Festival in southern Vermont, a rapt audience listened to the evocative and colorful music. The Quartet will be touring the new work in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 seasons.

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Dover Quartet Performs at Emanuel Ax Birthday Celebration

Never one to miss a great party, the Dover Quartet took a three-day break from annual duties at the Artosphere Festival – one of their longest-standing supporters – and jetted to London last weekend, where they took part in the Wigmore Hall’s 70th-birthday celebration of their dear friend and collaborator Emanuel Ax. It’s not just any string quartet that a legend like Ax invites to play with him: he first heard the Dover at Tanglewood and was so taken by what he heard that he invited them to perform with him first at Northwestern, now at Wigmore, and in the fall at Carnegie’s Zankel Hall.

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Orion Weiss Captures Audiences in Detroit and Minneapolis

The exceptional pianist Orion Weiss was the featured soloist on Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21 with the Detroit Symphony in late June, with Ankush Kumar Bahl conducting the all-Mozart program. Earlier in the month Orion performed Gershwin’s Piano Concerto in F major, which was greeted with raves: “Thursday’s explosive midday performance of it by pianist Orion Weiss was Gershwin par excellence — jaunty and jazz-flavored yet with arresting moments of melancholy and earnest cries of individuality amid a work full of big-city bustle. It was unquestionably the climax of a concert with four distinctly different views of what ‘modernism’ means.”

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Pacifica Quartet "Astounding" in Summer Performances

The summer of 2019 is shaping up to be a typically whirlwind summer for the Pacifica Quartet, starting first with a visit to the Sarasota Music Festival and a collaboration with Jeffrey Kahane, then off to a four-week residency at Aspen, where it was their recital that started the whole celebration. Next they’ll take a quick visit to the Eastern Music Festival to play the Schoenberg Concerto for String Quartet and Orchestra with Gerard Schwarz, and then will travel to the Victoria Music Festival, the Interlochen Center for the Arts, the Montreal International String Quartet Academy, and Music in the Vineyards before taking a well-deserved break before their 2019-20 season begins.

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Hermitage Piano Trio Releases Debut Album

After much anticipation from fans and audiophiles alike, the Hermitage Piano Trio released its first CD on Reference Records in May. The album is comprised of the piano trios of Sergei Rachmaninoff: Trio élégiaque No. 1 in G minor; Trio élégiaque No. 2 in D minor, Op. 9; and Vocalise. Descending from the great Russian musical tradition, the Hermitage is distinguished by its exuberant musicality, interpretative range, and sumptuous sound, and this gorgeous recording does justice both to the group’s sound and that of Rachmaninoff.

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MKI Artists Welcomes the Shanghai Quartet

“I’m so happy to welcome the Shanghai Quartet to MKI Artists. As you know, it’s an absolute joy to hear them perform, and we look forward to helping them build on their rich history as an ensemble. We’re especially excited about what’s coming next: a fascinating full-length documentary film that tells the story of their origin in Cultural Revolution-era China, their journey to America, and the growth of the Quartet’s international career; a new work from the legendary Krzysztof Penderecki; and close collaborations with Tan Dun, Wu Man, and many of the other leading musical figures and organizations in China.” – John Zion | Managing Director

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Andrei Ioniță Receives Rave Reviews

The astonishing young cellist Andrei Ioniță continues to amaze critics and audiences alike. The release of his first album on Orchid Classics, Oblique Strategies, is “…a vivid portrait of Ioniță’s virtuosity and imaginative command of colour.” (Gramophone); The Strad calls the recording “superb” and raves that Andre’s playing “demands attention: the sinewy depth and richness of the tones he’s drawing from his 1671 Rogeri, the fluid technique…his power and lyricism.”

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Ying Quartet Partners with PUSH Physical Theatre

The extraordinary Ying Quartet has partnered with PUSH Physical Theatre to create a genre-bending, utterly engaging project. PUSH – fully deserving of its international reputation as one of the U.S.’s leading physical theatre companies – is defined by intense athleticism, gravity-defying acrobatics, and soulful artistry, created out of a desire to “push” the boundaries of conventional theatre. The Ying Quartet, greatly respected for its role in the hierarchy of string quartets, here shows a side that is both tongue-in-cheek and deeply skilled.

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Simon Trpceski Wraps Up "Thrilling" American Season

As the Macedonian pianist Simon Trpceski wraps up his ‘American season’ we’re thrilled that he’s continued his very regular presence in North America, having performed with another six this spring bringing his total appearances with major U.S. orchestras to 15 of the top orchestras: the Chicago, Nashville, Houston, Milwaukee, San Diego, and Utah Symphonies. The Chicago Tribune called Trpceski “an artist of remarkable subtlety and craft” while the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel found him “thrilling.” Performances last fall and summer included appearances performances with the New York Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, National Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, and more.

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Miró Quartet in La Jolla Grand Opening

The globe-trotting Miró Quartet made some room in its busy schedule to take part in the La Jolla Music Society’s grand opening of The Conrad – officially the Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center – which featured star-studded performers including Hilary Hahn, Jake Shimabukuro, Lil Buck, Inon Barnatan, Seal, Jean-Yves Thibaudet, and many more.

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Quatuor Danel "Achingly Beautiful" in Weinberg Cycle

The Quatuor Danel undertook one of its most ambitious projects recently: the first performance of the complete string quartet cycle of Mieczysław Weinberg in the United States. The Washington Post declared the cycle “one of the greatest music events in Washington this year” and described how “the four players of the Quatuor threw themselves into each piece with a life-or-death, seize-you-by-the-throat approach that demanded the attention and thrilled the senses, whether in searingly fierce unison chords in the Third Quartet or in the achingly beautiful melodic phrases rising from the first violin in the Second.” Taking place over three consecutive weekends, the cycle represents a significant moment for the Quartet as well as for the music world.

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Rachel Barton Pine Records and Performs Bach

Rachel Barton Pine just joined her longtime friend and colleague Jory Vinikour for an all-Bach program on the esteemed series at the University of Chicago. The Chicago Classical Review raved, “Pine possesses not only the chops but also favors an honesty and directness of approach to Bach’s towering musical conception.” Rachel’s latest CD release is a compendium of Bach’s Sonatas for Violin and Harpsichord, recorded for Cedille Records together with Jory.

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Arod Quartet Performs at Carnegie Hall

There aren’t many young European quartets that can boast they made their Carnegie Hall debut on their very first trip to the United States, while in their young 20s, but that’s exactly what the spectacular Arod Quartet just did. A quick mental rundown of the very best European quartets doesn’t result in one name who matched this feat. To say we’re bursting with pride would be an understatement of how we feel about this group that has catapulted onto the scene.

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Dover Quartet Makes Australian Debut

The intrepid Dover Quartet made its Australian debut in April, a trip that was made complete by the feeding of kangaroos in Tasmania! The four-day Musica Viva spectacular in Sydney featured dozens of fabulous musicians, including the Dover’s longtime collaborator Edgar Meyer.

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