Ara Gregorian - Artistic Director, violin and viola
Founder and artistic director of the Four Seasons Chamber Music Festival, Gregorian made his New York recital debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall and his debut as soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra. He has appeared in cities throughout the world including Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Vancouver, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tel Aviv and Helsinki, and has performed as a member of the Daedalus Quartet and Concertante. Gregorian is Professor of Violin at East Carolina University.
A Presidential Scholar in the Arts, Aznavoorian has won the Bunkamura Orchard Hall Award, the Chicago Cello Society Competition, and was a top prize winner in the 1996 International Paulo Competition in Finland. She has performed as soloist with the Chicago Symphony, Boston Pops, Finnish Radio Symphony, Tokyo Philharmonic, Belgrade Philharmonic and the Helsinki Philharmonic. Aznavoorian is principal cellist of Camerata Pacifica.
Winner of the Naumburg International Competition, Carr has appeared as soloist with orchestras worldwide including the Royal Concertgebouw, the Royal Philharmonic and the BBC Symphony, as well as with the major orchestras of Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington, Philadelphia and Montreal. He was a member of the Golub-Kaplan-Carr trio for twenty years, has performed with the Guarneri and Emerson quartets, and has appeared at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Carr is on the cello faculty at Stony Brook University in New York.
A member of the Belcea Quartet, Chorzelski performs regularly on the world’s most prestigious stages, including those in London, Vienna, Amsterdam, Paris and New York. He conducted Ittai Shapira’s Violin Concerto “Concierto Latino” with the London Serenata Orchestra, which was released by Champs Records in May 2011, and recently recorded a recital disc with pianist Katya Apekisheva. Chorzelski is a viola professor at London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Top prize winner of the 1993 ARD International Music Competition in Munich and the Bunkamura Orchard Hall Award, Huang has appeared as soloist with the Bavarian Radio Orchestra, the Tokyo Philharmonic, the Berlin Radio Symphony and the National Symphony of Taiwan. She has performed at the Marlboro, Spoleto, Aspen, Santa Fe, and Music@Menlo festivals, and is on the faculty at The Juilliard School and the Curtis Institute.
A founding member of the award-winning Brentano String Quartet, Kannen performs chamber music as a member of the Apollo Trio, on period instruments with the Houston-based group Context, and at many major music festivals. He is currently the Director of Chamber Music at the Peabody Conservatory of Music where he holds the Sidney Friedberg Chair in Chamber Music. He has recorded for the CRI label.
Winner of the Yehudi Menuhin International Competition and the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, Hye-Jin Kim has performed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, New Jersey Symphony, BBC Concert Orchestra and the Seoul Philharmonic. She made her Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall debut in 2011 and has appeared at the Marlboro, Ravinia, Music@Menlo, Music from Angel Fire and Seoul Spring festivals. Kim is Assistant Professor of Violin at East Carolina University.
A former member of the Mendelssohn Quartet, the Grammy Award nominated Ridge Quartet and the Naumburg Award-winning Meliora Quartet, Lambros has appeared at the Aspen, Helsinki, Santa Fe, Yellow Barn and Spoleto festivals; collaborated with the Guarneri, Cleveland, Brentano, Orion and Juilliard quartets; and performed with the Lincoln Center Chamber Music Society. Lambros is a member of the chamber music faculty at the Peabody Conservatory.
First prize winner of the 2010 Naumburg International Piano Competition, Soyeon Kate Lee has performed as soloist with numerous orchestras worldwide including the Clevelend Orchestra and London Symphony, and has given critically-acclaimed solo recitals at Carnegie Hall’s Zankel Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center and Leipzig’s Gewandhaus. She is a member of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society Two, a recording artist for Naxos, and a winner of the Concert Artists Guild Competition.
A lead mentor for the Fellows of the Julliard-Carnegie Hall Academy, Mannoia maintains a deep commitment to education, consulting, and performing outreach concerts for the New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Carnegie Hall and the Guggenheim Museum, and hosts the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Saturday Pre-Concert Adventures in the Kimmel Center. He has performed abroad in countries such as South Africa, Nepal, Serbia and Paraguay, and has lead workshops for Venezuela’s renowned El Sistema program.
McDonald has performed internationally as a solo recitalist and as a recital partner to Midori and Isaac Stern. He has appeared with the San Francisco, Baltimore, Milwaukee and Curtis symphony orchestras, as well as with the Orquestra Sinfonica Nacional in Costa Rica and the Orchestra Sinfonica Haydn di Bolzano e Trento in Italy. He has performed with the Juilliard, Takacs, American, Muir and Brentano string quartets.
Nominated for a Grammy Award, Neiman has performed as soloist with the Chicago, San Francisco, St. Louis, Houston, Dallas, Minnesota and the National Symphony orchestras. He has appeared in the PBS documentary film “Playing for Real” which aired worldwide, was a winner of the Gilmore Young Artist Award, and a recipient of the Avery Fisher Career Grant. He has appeared at the Seattle, Moritzburg, Belgrade, Vancouver and Vail festivals.
A featured artist at the world’s premier halls, Peled has appeared in London, New York, Paris, Berlin and Tel Aviv. He has recently performed as soloist with the Baltimore Symphony, European Philharmonic, Jerusalem Symphony and the Radio Symphony Saarbrucken, and has appeared at the Newport, Seattle and Marlboro music festivals. His performances have been broadcast on NPR, Radio France and Swedish National Radio. A highlight of 2012-13 is a 19 city tour of the US and Germany with the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie. He is on the cello faculty at the Peabody Conservatory.
Plesser has performed to critical acclaim throughout North and Central America, Europe and Israel. He has performed with the Israel Philharmonic, the National Symphony Orchestra and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, and has participated at the Marlboro, Cervantino (Mexico), Lapland (Sweden), and the Montpellier (France) festivals. Plesser is on the cello faculty at the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance.
Ramakrishnan was a founding member of the Daedalus Quartet, winners of the grand prize at the 2001 Banff International String Quartet Competition. During his eleven years with the quartet, he performed coast-to-coast in the United States and Canada, in Japan, Hong Kong and Panama, and across Europe. He has given recitals in New York, Boston and Washington, D.C., and has performed at the Marlboro, Caramoor and Vail festivals. In 2011 he formed the Horszowski Trio with violinist Jesse Mills and pianist Rieko Aizawa.
Director of the Mannes Beethoven Institute, Sauer is highly sought-after as a soloist, chamber musician and teacher. He has performed at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Philharmonie in Berlin, Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels and at the Wolf Trap Center, and has appeared at the Marlboro, Seattle, Portland, El Paso Pro Musica and Salt Bay festivals. Sauer has recorded for the MSR Classics, Musical Heritage Society, Centaur and Arabesque labels and is on the piano faculty at Vassar College and the Mannes College of Music.
A 2001 Presser Music Award recipient, Sekino has performed with members of the Peabody Trio, the Los Angeles Piano Quartet and the Mendelssohn Quartet. She has appeared at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall, Parsimmon Hall (Tokyo), Palacio de Festivales de Cantabria (Spain), Castello Caetani (Italy), and at festivals such as Ravinia, Kuhmo, Santander and Norfolk. Sekino is Associate Professor of Piano at East Carolina University.
First prize winner of the 1990 Munich ARD International Music Competition, Shaham has performed as soloist with the English Chamber Orchestra, BBC Philharmonic, Belgian National Orchestra, Taiwan National Symphony Orchestra, Singapore Symphony and the Israel Philharmonic. He has recorded for the Decca International, Chandos, Biddulph, Naxos and Hyperion labels; appeared at Carnegie Hall, Royal Festival Hall, the Vienna Musikverein and Théâtre des Champs Elysées; and has performed at the Schleswig-Holstein, Montpellier, Kuhmo, Pablo-Casals and Isreal festivals. Shaham is a member of the faculty at the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music at Tel Aviv University.
Winner of the 1998 Naumburg Violin Award, Strauss has performed as soloist with the Hamburg Symphony, the Seoul, Budapest and Bucharest Philharmonics, and the New York Chamber Symphony. He has appeared at the Library of Congress and Alice Tully Hall, at the Marlboro, Moab and the Kammermusiktage Mettlach (Germany) festivals, and with the Philharmonic Violins Berlin on tour in Japan. Strauss is on the violin faculty at McGill University in Montreal.
Vähälä made her concerto debut at the age of twelve with the Sinfonia Lahti in Finland. She is a first prize winner of the Young Concert Artists International Auditions and has performed as soloist with the English Chamber Orchestra, Minnesota Orchestra, Finnish Radio Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, Simon Bolivar Orchestra and the Israel Camerata. Vähälä is a professor of violin at the Hochschule für Musik in Karlsruhe, Germany.
Artistic director of Concertante, Wang entered the Shanghai Conservatory of Music at the age of ten and won the Menuhin International Violin Competition and the Wieniawski-Lipinski International Violin Competition by the age of fifteen. He has performed as soloist with the Royal Philharmonic, London Mozart Players and the Shanghai Symphony Orchestras, and has appeared as a chamber musician at Lincoln Center, the Kennedy Center, and the Aspen and Ravinia festivals.