Recognized as one of today's most gifted artists, and enjoying an active career as both pianist and conductor, Eduard Zilberkant has been received enthusiastically by audiences and press alike throughout Europe and the United States. He has performed in such halls as the Academy of Music and Curtis Hall at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, Artur Rubinstein Hall and Warsaw Philharmonic Hall in Poland, Volgograd Opera House in Russia, and Alaska Center for the Performing Arts in Anchorage. A grand prize winner of the Young Keyboard Artist International Piano Competition in the United States, and a prize winner at the Santander International Piano Competition in Spain, Eduard Zilberkant gained critical acclaim at the 1985 Chopin International Piano Competition in Warsaw, Poland. This resulted in concerts with the Lodz Philharmonic and recitals at the International Chopin Festival in Dusznicki, Poland. This past year Eduard Zilberkant was invited to conduct the Czech National Symphony Orchestra both in Prague, and on tour to Germany. He also played recitals at the Assisi International Piano Festival in Italy, and at the International Keyboard Institute and Festival in New York City.
Eduard Zilberkant was born in Russia and gave his first recital live on Russian Television at the age of seven. He made his American Debut at the age of twelve performing Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No.1, resulting in an invitation from conductor Robert Shaw to perform the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 2 with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Since then, he has returned to perform with that ensemble more than twenty times. Robert Shaw, Louis Lane, Robert Spano, Carl St. Clair, Peter Baberkof, and Mary Woodmansee Green, are just a few of the internationally renowned conductors with whom he has collaborated.
Eduard Zilberkant's recent CD, Zilberkant Plays Rachmaninoff, Tchaikovsky and Mussorgsky, was recorded on the ACA label and released to high critical acclaim. The American Record Guide stated, "...the artistic approach of this Russian pianist emphasizes a strongly colored rhetoric, supported by a passionate and sensitive temperament.... Zilberkant reveals a brilliant sense of the construction of the work while infusing it with a breath of recreation; Zilberkant's pianistic and musical qualities are found not only in his speed but also in his ability to distill the slow tempos by drawing them out to the extreme...Zilberkant offers a passionate interpretation...." Radio France, Polish Radio and Television and PBS Radio and Television in the United States have also broadcast his performances. Music critics have asserted that as pianist he "possesses a remarkable keyboard mastery; plays in the style of the old romantic masters; he knows how to extract quite a palette of colors from the piano; his playing is subtle and passionate at the same time; he has the equipment that makes for pianist greatness;" and as a conductor he "brought admirable intelligence to his reading of the piece...and sculpting the individual lines into a monumental and heroic structure; his weaving of the finale's awesome counterpoint show him to be a musician of significance whom we hope to hear again; he made an impression for feeling the nuances of tempo, pauses, and accents...; he brought out new colors and romantic feeling with full balance of the sound from the orchestra."
Eduard Zilberkant has studied with such renowned teachers as Vitally Margulis, Jerome Rose, Leon Fleisher, Theodore Lettvin, Harvey Wedeen and Irina Petrovna Penyayeva. He has collaborated in recitals with international artists such as Paul Rosenthal, Daniel Avshalomov, Andres Diaz, Erez Ofer, Samuel Mayes, Donald McInnes, Nitzan Haroz, Frederick Hemke, as well as Prague and Kairos String Quartets. Presently he is a member of the Alaska Trio, and the Alaska Chamber Players.
A Fulbright Scholar in Germany, Eduard Zilberkant received a Solisten Diploma from the Freiburg Musik Hochschule. He received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Temple University and served on faculty of Temple University, Villanova University, and Breisach Jugendmusikschule in Germany. He has been a guest artist at the International Keyboard Institute and Festival in New York City, Assisi International Piano Festival and Orazio Frugoni Music Institute in Italy, Icicle Creek Music Center in Washington, International Summer Music Festival in Switzerland, Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival and the University of Alaska Fairbanks Summer Fine Arts Camp. Presently, he is Associate Professor of Piano and Head of Keyboard Studies at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Music Director and Conductor of the Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra, the Arctic Chamber Orchestra, and the Fairbanks Youth Symphony.
Miko Kominami Piano
Hailed by the New York Concert Review as "both a virtuosic and a musicianly performer," pianist Miko Kominami gave her New York Solo Debut Recital at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall, as a result of winning the Artists International Award. Since then, she has concertized throughout North America, performing as a highly acclaimed soloist with symphony orchestras nationally.
Ms. Kominami is a member of the Murasaki Duo, a cello and piano ensemble, which released its debut CD on Centaur Records. She has won numerous awards including a Canada Council Arts Grant, and First Prize in the 1996 Concerto Soloists' Competition in New York. She holds multiple degrees from the famed Julliard School. Her performances continually garner high critical and audience acclaim and are heard frequently on radio.
Ms. Kominami currently serves on the piano faculty at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. She is principal keyboardist of the Cedar Rapids Symphony, and performs each summer in Grant Park, Chicago, and at the Malibu Coast Music Festival in Malibu, California.
Ms. Kominami has been integral in commissioning new works from living composers, and will perform the world premiere performances of Maria Newman's "Peccavi Duo" in 2009.
Delores Stevens Piano
Delores Stevens, piano, is recognized as an internationally distinguished concert soloist. In the United States, Ms. Stevens has performed with such renowned ensembles as the L.A. Chamber Orchestra, the L.A. Philharmonic, the Montagna Trio, the New Music Group, the Viklarbo Chamber Ensemble, the Debut Orchestra, and at the popular Ojai Festival. She is the Founding Director/Pianist of the famed Martha's Vineyard Chamber Music Society (MVCMS) and the popular Chamber Music Palisades, as well as a Trustee of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (Grammy). Ms. Stevens directs chamber music for the Young Musicians Foundation and Mount St. Mary's College, and is the Piano Department Chair at Cal State Dominguez Hills. Recent performances in Queensland, Australia, were by the invitation of the Second World Indigenous Pathways Conference, whose members included The Honorable Reverend Makhenkesi Stofile, Premier of Africa's Eastern Cape, and a representative of Nelson Mandela. Ms. Stevens gave the tributary premiere and critically hailed subsequent performances of Emma McChesney, a piano concerto composed for her by Maria Newman (composer of the acclaimed MVCMS commissioned work Chilmark). The Delores Wunsch Stevens New Music Foundation at the University of Kansas commissioned the concerto in Steven's Honor.
Hal Ott Flute
Hal Ott, flute, is on the faculty of Central Washington University and is well known as an innovative pedagogue, exciting flute and baroque flute soloist, and a beloved and respected clinician throughout the world, including Europe and the People's Republic of China.
He most recently recorded Maria Newman's Sonata for Flute and Piano, Pennipotenti, and the Pied Piper of Hamelin, for the Montgomery Arts House Modern Masterworks Label due for release this 2009. Ott has just completed an exciting recording for DVD release of Maria Newman's original score to the first "Tom Sawyer" ever put to film, commissioned by the Library of Moving Images. This rare silent classic stars the inimitable, Jack Pickford, and will be available this summer, 2009! Ott's CD of modern flute works, Flute for Thought, illustrates the mastery and unique skill that makes him famous among musicians around the world!
An active writer, Dr. Ott collaborated on the well-known textbook "Teaching Woodwinds" published by G. Schirmer. He is principal flute and soloist of the Malibu Coast Chamber Orchestra and the Yakima Symphony Orchestra.
Amanda Walker Clarinet
Amanda Walker, clarinetist, was born in London, England. After studies at the Royal Academy of Music, she was offered a scholarship to study at U.C.L.A.'s School of Music. She has made her home in the United States ever since.
A member of the award-winning chamber ensemble, VIKLARBO, since the early 1990's, Ms. Walker has won numerous accolades, including those from the National Endowment for the Arts and the California Arts Council. As a soloist, she has performed extensively on an international level.
A highly regarded pedagaogue, Ms. Walker teaches at the Idyllwild Arts Academy and maintains a huge private studio. Her students have gone on to win positions in major orchestras throughout the world.
Last year, Ms. Walker gave birth to a beautiful little boy whom she named London.
Paula Hochhalter Cello
Paula Hochhalter, cellist, graduated with honors from USC, where she coached with Aaron Copland and was a member of the USC String Quartet. In 1977, she became a member of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra. Hochhalter has since gone on to perform in countless motion pictures, television shows, radio programs, well-known concert series and music festivals around the globe (both classical and jazz), and is truly a delight on the concert stage. A cellist of great freedom and passion, she has been likened to the late great Jaqueline du Pre, establishing herself as a favorite among world-class chamber music collaborators, and as a soloist. A mother of four highly gifted children, Ms. Hochhalter is married to award-winning actor/screenwriter Geoffrey Lewis, who worked closely alongside Clint Eastwood for many years.
Andrew Shulman Cello
Celebrated cellist Andrew Shulman, first British winner of the 'Piatigorsky Artist Award," was born in London, England, and his career has taken him all over the world. As cello soloist, he has directed and performed all the major cello concertos with the Philharmonia Orchestra, the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, the City of Birmingham Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, the Utah Symphony, the Singapore Symphony and orchestras all over Europe, the United States and the Far East. His conducting credits range from the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields to the City of Birmingham Symphony.
Born into a family of professional musicians, Shulman studied at the Royal Academy and the Royal College of Music in London. He was subsequently appointed solo cello of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, before being offered the principal cello position with London's Philharmonia Orchestra at the age of 22. In 1999 he was appointed principal cello of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, but left that position at the end of 2002 in order to expand his solo, chamber music, teaching and conducting activities still further. In 2008 Andrew Shulman was appointed principal cello of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra.
Shulman has recorded over twenty-five CD's, both as a member of the Britten Quartet (EMI Records), and as soloist for the Vivaldi Cello Concertos (Virgin Classics). He was bestowed with an 'Honorary RCM' by The Queen Mother in 1986, and subsequently became a professor at the historic Royal College of Music. Shulman has led masterclasses all over the world. He makes his family's home in the beautiful Santa Monica Mountains of California, with his lovely wife, Janet Couch-Shulman (also a fine cellist) and his two beautiful and highly gifted children.
Eric Kutz Cello
Cellist Eric Kutz has captivated audiences across both North America and Europe. He has been on the Luther College faculty since 2002 as Assistant Professor of Music, and more recently as String Department Chair, where he maintains a large cello studio. He is active as a teacher, a chamber music musician, an orchestral musician, and a soloist. His diverse collaborations cut across musical styles, and have ranged from cellist Yo-Yo Ma, to jazz great Ornette Coleman. Mr. Kutz is also a founding member of the Murasaki Duo, a cello and piano ensemble that is residence at Luther College.
The Duo recently released its debut CD on the Centaur Records label. The Murasaki Duo has performed at leading festivals, such as the Niagara International Chamber Music Festival, the Icicle Creek Music Center, The Malibu Coast Music Festival and Lutheran Summer Music, and has been broadcast on public radio stations throughout the country.
As an orchestral musician, Mr. Kutz summers in Chicago as a member of the Grant Park Symphony's cello section. He has also appeared in the section of the New York Philharmonic.
In 1997 Mr. Kutz traveled to the Tchaikovsky Conservatory in Moscow as a visiting artist, performing new chamber works by American composers. He has premiered over two-dozen works, and has been broadcast live on WQXR and WNYC, both of New York City, as well as nationally on PBS television's Live from Lincoln Center. Mr. Kutz holds degrees from the Julliard School and Rice University
Brian Schuldt Cello
Brian Schuldt, a native of Seattle, has given recitals in Washington, California, Indiana, as well as Germany and Italy. Brian was the cellist of the Arcadia String Quartet, which twice won the prestigious Michael Kuttner String Quartet Scholarship and grand prize of the 1995 Yellow Springs Chamber Music Competition. He has soloed with the Owensboro Symphony, Eastern Sierra Symphony and the Chamber Orchestra "Cantelli" of Milan. He was principal cellist of the Owensboro Symphony and "Cantelli."
Brian studied with Toby Saks at the University of Washington and continued under Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi and Janos Starker at Indiana University, where he earned his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees. From 1994-1996, Brian held the appointment of Assistant Instructor of Cello at Indiana University.
Rebecca Hang was born in Germany and began her violin studies at the Peter-Cornelius-Conservatory in Mainz. From 1987 until 1990 she lived in Israel where she studied with the concertmaster of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Chaim Taub. Rebecca continued her musical education in the classes of Atar Arad and Paul Biss at Indiana University, Bloomington, where she received her Bachelors of Music "with high distinction" and a Masters of Music in violin performance. As member of the internationally renowned Felici String Quartet, she won first prize in the 1992 Michael Kuttner Competition at IU, the MTNA Competition in Indianapolis, the Russell Award of the 1993 Coleman Competition and was a prize winner of the International String Quartet Competition in Osaka, Japan, in the same year. In June of 1993 she gave her New York solo debut in Lincoln Center's Julliard Theater performing Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante. With her husband, Brian, Rebecca spent the 1997-98 concert season as member of the International "Guido Cantelli" Chamber Orchestra in Milan, Italy, before accepting a Chamber Music America rural residency grant with the Felici Piano Trio in Mammoth Lakes, California.
Kris Wildman Soprano
An eclectic performer in Southern California and beyond, Kris Wildman has had several roles in regional music theatre and operetta, including "The Mother Abbess" in The Sound of Music at the San Gabriel Valley Music Theater, as well as many years as principal soprano with Opera a la Carte, the nationally touring Gilbert and Sullivan opera company.
Wildman has performed choral and solo work with the Santa Fe Desert Chorale, the Los Angeles Opera, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and Southern Oregon Repertory Singers. In 2006, Wildman received her Master of Fine Arts in Vocal Performance at California Institute of the Arts, specializing in new song literature and chamber music, particularly the work of recent and living American composers. This led to roles in operatic premieres such as WET by Anne LeBaron in 2005 and SEXTUOR, L'Origine des espèces, by Georges Aperghis, North American Premiere, 2006.
Wildman is a founding member of the women's vocal trio "Elemental Harmony," performing a capella vocal harmony from throughout history and around the world. Wildman continues her work in modern song and chamber music with several colleagues from CalArts in their vocal ensemble, "Night Wanderers," and works frequently on the "Montgomery Arts House Presents..." series and the Malibu Coast Music Festival. Wildman lives in Burbank with her husband Jeff, a Disney Imagineer.
Duanna Ulyate Soprano
Duanna Ulyate, soprano, attended CSUN, graduating with degrees in Vocal Performance and Languages. She was offered a full scholarship to AIMS in Graz and an apprenticeship in the Strasbourg Opera. In 1988 she joined the Los Angeles Master Chorale and the Los Angeles Opera. She has appeared as soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and was the featured soprano soloist for Maria Newman's large scale mass, "Requiem for the Innocents," which she recorded to great critical acclaim for the Raptoria Caam record label. Ms. Ulyate is married to trumpeter Andrew Ulyate of the Los Angeles Opera Orchestra.
Terry Lieberstein Alto
Terry Lieberstein, alto, is a singer/songwriter and a cantorial soloist with an eclectic vocal background, including performance experience in classical, a cappella, folk, gospel, jazz, and music for children. Terry has produced two CD's of her original compositions: "Center of the Storm," a compilation of inspirational music; and "Turkey Burps and T-Ball," a collection of family songs.
Jaclyn Newman Piano
Jaclyn Newman, pianist and film music editor, graduated summa cum laude from California Lutheran University in 2007. In 2006 she heavily researched and produced concerts based on the symphonic film music of her late Academy Award-winning grandfather, Alfred Newman, in which she served as narrator and piano soloist.