Muneyoshi Takahashi, violin

Muneyoshi Takahashi, violin

Violinist Muneyoshi Takahashi is an active freelancer in New York area. He is currently a member of Albany Symphony Orchestra and Iris String Quartet. He has been concertmaster of Ensemble du Monde, Nova Philharmonic, One World Symphony, Toho Gakuen Orchestra Academy, and guest concertmaster of the Japan Philharmonic. He has also played with orchestras such as the American Symphony, Charleston Symphony, Izmir Symphony(Turkey), New Japan Philharmonic, NHK Symphony, and the Rochester Philharmonic.

A graduate of Eastman School and the top honor recipient from Toho Gakuen School of Music in Tokyo, he has studied violin with Koichiro Harada, founder of the Tokyo String Quartet and Mikhail Kopelman, former leader of the Borodin String Quartet. He was semi-finalist of Japan Music Competition and Grand-Prix winner of Toho Transcendental Technique Competition.

He had master classes with Thomas Brandis, Zakhar Bron, Vadim Gluzman, Rainer Küchl, Philippe Quint, Shinichi Suzuki and Zvi Zeitlin. He has participated in renowned festivals such as Pacific Music Festival, Takefu International Music Festival and Miyazaki International Music Festival, where he had opportunities to work with artists such as Charles Dutoit, Valery Gergiev, Bernard Haitink, and Toshio Hosokawa.

Mr. Takahashi is also devoted in education. He has been Director of Hamilton-Madison House Music School. He also coaches Trinity-Florentine Orchestra of Inter School Orchestras of New York.

Arkady Leytush, guest conductor

Arkady Leytush, guest conductor

One of Russia’s most gifted conductors, Leytush has directed orchestras in Europe and the United States to great acclaim. Critics as have described him as “a conductor in the Grand Russian Tradition” and his dynamic interpretations have made him an audience favourite. Leytush’s artistry is known throughout the former Soviet Union, but it was not until 1994 that he gained recognition in the United States when he, on a week’s notice, made a stunning debut with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, replacing Yuri Temirkanov.

Since 1980 Leytush has worked with a wide variety of Orchestras including Novosibirsk Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre (Russia), New World Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, New York Chamber Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra, Orquestra Filarmonic De Buenos Aires, Orquestra Nacional Do Porto, Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra, St. Petersburg Philharmonic Academic Symphony Orchestra, Plovdiv Philharmonic, Kremlin Orchestra, Varna and Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra. Mr. Leytush is Artistic Director/Conductor of The New Symphony Orchestra of Israel and Artistic Director/Conductor of Ridgewood Symphony Orchestra, Principal Guest Conductor of National Orchestra of Ukraine, Music Director of Interfaith Committee of Remembrance (Brooklyn Philharmonic)

Arkady Leytush made numerous transcriptions and orchestrations of music by composers such as Bach, Buxtehude, Mussorgsky, Rachmaninoff, Chopin, Albeniz, Sisler, Czerny, Guastavino, Shostakovich, Borodin, Liadov, Cui, Rimsky-Korsakov, Glazunov, Dargomyzhski, Artsibushev, Sokolov, Mayer.

Douglas Townsend, composer

Douglas Townsend, composer

Douglas Townsend was actively composing, teaching, coaching ensembles and producing concerts until shortly before his death, on August 1, 2012, at the age of 90. Townsend was a native New Yorker. After graduating on the eve of WWII from Manhattan’s High School of Music and Art, he studied composition with a succession of well-known composers: Aaron Copland (on a scholarship to Tanglewood), Stefan Wolpe (for five years), Otto Luening (on two scholarships to the Middlebury Composers’ Conference), Tibor Serly (a friend of Béla Bartók’s) and Felix Greissle (Arnold Schoenberg’s son-in-law).

When Townsend was 17, his Contra Dances won a nationwide contest for student composers and was performed by the CBS Symphony on a national radio broadcast, with the film composer Bernard Herrmann conducting. His professional career began one day after he turned 24, when his Sonatina No. 1 for Piano Solo was premiered at Carnegie Hall by the internationally known concert pianist Ray Lev. Thereafter, Townsend composed and premiered over 100 works, including several symphonies and concertos, chamber and ballet music, film scores and incidental music for theatrical productions.

His vocal works include operas, operettas and choral music, and he wrote extensively for wind ensembles and symphonic bands. In the last five years of his life, he oversaw 65 performances of his orchestral, band, chamber and choral works in the U.S., Europe and Asia. Through grants for his work as a musicologist, Townsend brought to light, edited and prepared for performance over 60 compositions from the 18th and 19th centuries. Townsend enjoyed having his own YouTube channel and over 2,500 friends on Facebook.

Olivier Fluchaire, violin

Olivier Fluchaire, violin

Hailed by the New York press as “a spectacular virtuoso, [playing] with effortless brilliance, unbridled passion, and a remarkable flair,” violinist Olivier Fluchaire has established himself as one of today’s most exciting new violinists.

Performing extensively as featured soloist and chamber musician, he has been concertizing throughout the United States, Austria, Belgium, England, Germany, South Korea, Lithuania, Russia, and his native France.

Mr. Fluchaire was invited to solo with the Camerata Lysy Orchestra, Jupiter Symphony, Hunter Symphony, New York Repertory Orchestra, Manhattanville College Orchestra, The Orchestra of the Bronx, The French Philharmonia Orchestra, Bachanalia Orchestra, Arctic Chamber Orchestra, University of Alaska-Anchorage Sinfonia Orchestra and the Affetti Chamber Orchestra. His most recent concerto tour, performing the Mendelssohn violin concerto throughout Alaska, was reviewed as “a world-class performance […] technical and artistic perfection.”

Olivier Fluchaire was fortunate to perform on many occasions alongside his mentor, Lord Yehudi Menuhin, notably in J.S. Bach’s concerto for two violins and with members of the Guarneri, American, and Emerson string quartets. He has recorded for VOX label and his performances were broadcasted on France 3 Television, Bronxnet Television, the BBC Television, National Educational Television, Radio France, MDR Leipzig, “The Listening Room with Robert Sherman” WQXR-FM and National Public Radio.

Highlights for Mr. Fluchaire’s 2012-13 season include performances of the Sibelius, Mendelssohn and Beethoven violin concerti as well as Bill Whelan’s double concerto for violin and fiddle. He will also perform chamber music on numerous concert series and record for MSR Classics label.

As an avid teacher, Olivier Fluchaire serves on the violin, viola and chamber music faculty at Hunter College, CUNY (New York, NY), Manhattanville College (Purchase, NY) and the College of Staten Island, CUNY (Staten Island, NY). During the summer, he teaches and performs at Summit Music Festival (Purchase, NY) and the Affetti Festival (Anchorage, AK) where he also serves as Associate Music Director.

Olivier Fluchaire studied with Daniel Phillips, Patinka Kopec, Lord Yehudi Menuhin, Guen En Shen and Jacques Ghesthem. He is graduate of the prestigious Yehudi Menuhin School in London UK, completed his bachelors and masters degrees, on a merit scholarship, at the Manhattan School of Music and his doctor of musical arts degree, as a recipient of a New York Times Fellowship, at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center.

Olivier Fluchaire performs on a rare violin by Andreas Gisalberti made in 1720 in Parma, Italy.

Christopher Hisey, guest conductor

Christopher Hisey, guest conductor

Christopher James Hisey has conducted throughout the United States, Europe and in Mexico. He has appeared with the Ruse Philharmonic, and the Plevin Philharmonic in Bulgaria as well as the St. Petersburg “Klassika” Symphony, formerly the Leningrad State Philharmonic Orchestra, in Russia.

Mr. Hisey is the Music Director and founder of the American Chamber Orchestra. The Orchestra’s mission is to bring high quality music to the people of the community, as well as promote local artists through featuring them as soloists or premiering their work. The Orchestra has given three successful concert tours through Austria, the Czech Republic, Italy and Scotland, with a scheduled concert tour of Spain in the summer of 2012. The American Chamber Orchestra also sponsors a concerto competition every year, in which three young people are given the opportunity to play with an orchestra.

In addition to his duties with the American Chamber Orchestra, Mr. Hisey is the Music Director of the Civic Orchestra of New Haven. The Civic Orchestra was founded over 70 years ago and Mr. Hisey is only the 3rd person to be named as it’s Music Director.

A respected and sought after music educator Mr. Hisey’s is Music Director of the Greater Bridgeport Youth Orchestras and conductor of their Principal Orchestra. The Youth Orchestras program consists of five ensembles and more than 250 young musicians ranging in ages from 4th grade to seniors in high school.

Mr. Hisey is in his second season as Music Director of the Orchestra and Professor of Conducting, and Orchestration at Manhattanville College, in Purchase, NY.

Committed to community service and out reach, Mr. Hisey just completed a project to raise money for the Pilot House, a non-profit organization that helps children with special needs by providing occupational, physical, and music therapy at affordable costs. This joint fundraising effort involved the Greater Bridgeport Youth Orchestras, and the Fairfield County Children’s Choirs and over 400 kids from around Connecticut performed together. Concert costs were covered by a grant from the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

Mr Hisey also serves on the String Faculties of Greens Farms Academy, and the Westport School of Music.

Jacqueline Choi, ‘cellist

Jacqueline Choi, ‘cellist

“An emerging star.”
— Richard Dyer, The Boston Globe

Cellist Jacqueline Choi, the 1st place winner of the 2010 Edwin H. & Leigh W. Schadt String Competition, is an active soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician sought after in the United States and abroad. Having made her concerto debut at age 12 in Seoul, Korea, Ms. Choi was invited to solo with the Boston Symphony, Bucheon Philharmonic, Boston Landmarks, Allentown Symphony, and New England Conservatory’s Chamber Orchestras, and toured Brazil and Venezuela as a soloist with NEC’s Youth Philharmonic Orchestra. She recently made her Paris debut with an all-French program at the Musée du Louvre in France, and played in the Kumho-Asiana Rising Star Series in Seoul, Korea. One of the staples of her recital programming is the inclusion of her own transcriptions of 19th century songs, such as those of Brahms, Liszt, Schubert, Schumann, and Strauss.

Ms. Choi is a recipient of the prestigious Kumho Prodigy Concert Award. She won first place in numerous concerto competitions including those held by the Boston Symphony Orchestra, the Brockton Symphony, the New England Philharmonic, and the New England Conservatory, and was also a prizewinner of the 24th Irving M. Klein International String Competition.

Also a devoted chamber musician, Ms. Choi appeared in concert with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, performing with Itzhak Perlman, and toured major cities of Canada with the Kumho Virtuosi Trio. She is currently active as the founding cellist of her piano trio, Trio Céleste, who have recently been appointed Artists-in-Residence at the Claire Trevor School of the Arts at the University of California, Irvine. Also a member of the Kumho-Asiana Soloists, she performs in their chamber music series and international tours on a regular basis.

Ms. Choi has participated in the International Program at Music@Menlo, Yellow Barn Music Festival, Banff Centre for the Arts, and the Schleswig-Holstein Musikfestival, collaborating with Itzhak Perlman, John Adams, John Harbison, Donald Weilerstein, Stephen Coxe, and other such renowned artists. As a member of the Perlman Music Program, Ms. Choi gives solo and chamber music concerts at major New York venues such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, as well as performing on their international tours.

Jacqueline Choi is currently pursuing her doctor of musical arts degree at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City. She completed her master of music degree at the Juilliard School and her bachelor of music degree at the New England Conservatory in Boston. Her teachers include Clive Greensmith, Timothy Eddy, and Paul Katz. Ms. Choi plays on a 1854 Giuseppe Rocca cello graciously loaned by the Kumho-Asiana Arts Foundation.

William Lang, trombone

William Lang, trombone

Originally from Long Island, Trombonist William Lang is an active performer and improviser in New York and Boston. Hailed for his “superb performance” of James Bergin’s Langmusik by the Boston Globe, William is dedicated to playing premieres and new music.

He has performed solo recitals at the Stone, the Tank, the Gershwin Hotel, and Greenfield Hall in New York City, as well as other venues throughout the Northeast and Miami. He has also appeared as a soloist with the Fredonia Wind Ensemble on a tour of New York State; and as a guest soloist on the Avant Media Festival, the Defacto Music Series, and the Electronic Music Festival.

As a chamber musician William has appeared with the Argento Chamber Ensemble, Wet Ink, the SEM Ensemble, Tilt Brass, TACTUS, the Claremont Ensemble, and Zero Gravity. William is also a founding member of two New York City based groups: the Guidonian Hand, a trombone quartet hailed by the New York Times for their “expertly played, with meaty low brass textures” performances; and loadbang, his groundbreaking ensemble consisting of Baritone, Bass Clarinet, Trumpet, and Trombone. He is also a member of the Boston Microtonal Society’s premier ensemble: Notariotous.

William has also performed in such venues as the Guggenheim Museum, Carnegie’s Isaac Stern and Zankel Halls, le Poisson Rouge, the Winter Garden, St. Paul’s Church in Boston, St. John the Divine In New York City, Paul Hall, Lincoln Center’s Rose Theatre, the Flea, Issue Project Room, Galapagos, Secret Project Robot, and St. Peter’s in New York City. Alongside trumpeter Andrew Kozar, William ran a weekly concert series, Will and Andy’s Power Concerts, at The Manhattan School of Music. Featuring guest performers every week and a dedication to new music, Will and Andy hosted 42 concerts, which built up a steady following and featured the premieres of over 50 new works.

William received his masters degree from The Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with Benjamin Herrington, and his bachelors degree from SUNY Fredonia, where he studied with Stefan Sanders and Carl Mazzio.

Michael F. Tietz, conductor

Michael F. Tietz, conductor

Michael F. Tietz is the Music Director and Principal Conductor of The Broadway Bach Ensemble, a 50-piece orchestra on New York’s upper west side, which he founded in 1985. His conducting repertoire spans baroque, classical, romantic and 20th-century works. Mike has had the privilege of working with numerous professional musicians as soloists, including members of major New York orchestras and chamber ensembles.

Mike started his conducting activities at the University of Pennsylvania Law School Light Opera Company, which he founded in 1978. He is a member of New York’s Village Light Opera Group, where he has served as Music Director, Assistant Music Director, Chorus Master, member of the company/chorus, and orchestra member. Mike has pursued conducting studies with Michael Adelson, Diane Wittry and Joseph Gifford, and at conducting workshops in New York and Nevada.

An active ‘cellist and violist, Mike plays in numerous orchestras and chamber ensembles in the New York City metropolitan area. He is also a bagpiper with the Mount Kisco Scottish Pipes and Drums, performing parades and shows in the tristate area.

Silvie Jensen, mezzo soprano

Silvie Jensen, mezzo soprano

“The marvelous mezzo-soprano Silvie Jensen,” according to The New York Times, “sings beautifully.” Critics have called her voice “exquisite, floating and expressive, a joy to hear.” A vocalist of great versatility, Ms. Jensen enjoys a wide-ranging career, which includes early and contemporary music, opera and musical theater, and ethnic, improvised, and experimental music. As a soloist, she has appeared with Ornette Coleman at London’s Barbican Centre, with Meredith Monk at Zankel Hall and Teatro Comunale Ferarra, in Handel’s Messiah at Trinity Wall Street, and in classical and contemporary works at Brooklyn Academy of Music with Sir Jonathan Miller and Paul Goodwin, Ash Lawn Opera, Stonington Opera House, Riverside Opera, American Chamber Opera, New Amsterdam Opera, Miller Theater, One World Symphony, Big Apple Baroque, and with The Broadway Bach Ensemble singing Mahler’s 4th symphony. Her performance in Hildegard von Bingen’s chant opera Ordo Virtutum, under the direction of Drew Minter, was critically acclaimed by The New York Times.

Ms. Jensen is a frequent collaborator with composers and artists in other genres; she has commissioned and premiered works created specifically for her, and has presented solo recitals and chamber music at Weill Hall, Steinway Hall, Symphony Space, Americas Society, Liederkranz Club, the Cell Theater and Nicholas Roerich Museum. She has appeared as a vocal soloist with Christopher Caines Dance Company for several seasons.

Silvie Jensen has performed with the Philip Glass Ensemble at Carnegie Hall, San Francisco Symphony Chorus under Herbert Blomstedt at Davies Hall, San Francisco Opera Chorus under Christoph von Dohnanyi, Berkeley and Oakland Symphonies under Kent Nagano, American Symphony Orchestra under Leon Botstein, Vox Vocal Ensemble, Voices of Ascension, Early Music New York, Pomerium, Russian Chamber Chorus of New York, Foundation for Universal Sacred Music, and at Merkin Concert Hall, New York City Ballet, Hammerstein Ballroom, Bang on a Can Marathon, Sound Res, Bard Festival, and Tanglewood.

Silvie Jensen has made recordings on the ECM, London, Koch, Helicon, and Soundbrush Records labels.

Ms. Jensen is a graduate of Columbia University.

Krystalia Gaitanou, viola

Born into a family of musicians, Greek violist Krystalia Gaitanou started playing the violin under the tutelage of Dimitri Semsis. At the age of 16 she switched over to viola, studying with Natassa Anana at the Musical Horizons Conservatory in Athens. Upon her graduation she received a viola diploma and a first prize, while at the same time she was honored with a gold medal for excellence (a superior distinction awarded for the first time to a violist). She earned the “Alexandra Trianti” Scholarship from the Athens Megaron Concert Hall and pursued further studies in Paris with Vincent Aucante in CNR of Rueil-Malmaison and Isabelle Lequien in CNR of Boulogne. She also holds a bachelors degree in musicology from the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.

Ms. Gaitanou has been awarded the Special Distinction of the Pan-Hellenic Competition for orchestral instruments as well as the “Musical Prize” of the Athens College. As a recipient of the Alexander Onassis Foundation Scholarship and the Greek State Foundation Scholarship, as well as the Helen F. Whitaker Fund String Initiative Scholarship, Ms. Gatanou earned the master’s degree and the professional studies certificate in the orchestral performance program at Manhattan School of Music in the studio of Karen Dreyfus.

As an orchestra player, she has appeared in some of the world’s leading concert halls and has collaborated with such orchestras as the Tanglewood Music Center orchestra, European Youth Orchestra, World Youth Symphony Orchestra, Mediterranean Youth Orchestra, State Orchestra of Athens, Greek Radio Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra of the Colors, Orpheus Institute Chamber Sinfonia and the Kurt Masur MSM Seminar Orchestra, among others. She has also attended international festivals and master classes given by Yuri Bashmet in Accademia Chigiana in Italy, Hartmut Rohde in Pablo Casals Festival in France, Wilfried Strehle in Salzburg’s International Summer Academy “Mozarteum”, and with Michael Ouzounian and Steven Ansell in New York and Boston. She has performed extensively as a chamber musician and has been a founding member of the “Consonance” string quartet. Ms. Gaitanou was selected to participate as a fellow in the Tanglewood Music Center 2009, the Athens Festival, and has been a regular guest in the Santo Domingo Music Festival.

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