Chamber Music Concert Series
In the summer of 2001, Rintaro and Ritsuko Wada founded the Chamber Music Concert Series (Chamber Music Concert Series by Chamber Music Society of Olean since October 2005) to ignite live classical music scenes in the Southern Tier of New York State and had given over fourty concerts in Western New York and Northern Pennsylvania. Their performance groups such as the “Duo Wada”, “Grifen Piano Trio”, “Felix Piano Trio”, “Felix Piano Quartet” have been invited to perform by radio programs, universities and concert associations. The organization is also enthusiastic to promote the next generation in classical music society and began annual Young Artists Concert Series since 2007.
Rintaro Wada, Cello/ Artistic Director
The Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Olean. His solo, chamber music, and orchestra performances have given in Japan, Italy, and the US, and have been invited to perform by radio programs, universities and concert associations. He studied in Rochester, NY, and Japan, earning a Master of Music in performance and literature from Eastman School of Music and a Bachelor of Music degree and post-graduate diploma in cello performance from Showa College of Music. He has studied cello performance with Joichi Sano, Ryoichi Hayashi, Hirofumi Kanno, Stefan Reuss, Marcy Rosen, Nathaniel Rosen, Steven Doane, and Alan Harris, also chamber music with Richard Killmer, Paul O’Dette, Christel Thielmann, Margery Hwang, and John Graham as well as with members of the Amadeus Quartet, Bartok Quartet, Mendelssohn Quartet, Ying Quartet, and Fine Arts String Quartet. Mr. Wada is a cellist of the Western New York Chamber Orchestra, and orchestra teacher of the Olean City School District, adjunct faculty of the Houghton College, Greatbatch School of Music as well as the St. Bonaventure University.
Ritsuko Wada, Piano
Mrs. Wada, native of Japan, holds a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from Showa Collage of Music where she was a merit scholarship student studying with Takahiro Sonoda, who was Japan’s leading pianist, and judge of the most important International Piano Competitions. Also She studied piano, solfege and chamber music with Jun Ozawa, and piano performance with Hikaru Matsuura and Yaeko Sasaki. Mrs. Wada’s extensive piano study includes attendance at the Respighi Summer Music Academy in Italy and the Cahl Slue Piano Education Association and the first prize of Showa Collage concerto competition. Mrs. Wada began her teaching career in 1991 at the Yamaha Music School. She has performed number of recitals as a soloist, chamber musician and accompanist in universities and churches. She played as a pianist in Allegany Piano Trio, Felix Piano Trio, Felix Piano Quartet, Greifen Piano Trio, and W piano Quartet. Mrs. Wada is a member of Music Performance Practice Association of Japan. She currently teaches in her private studio and at Jamestown Community College in Olean.
The Felix Ensemble Musicians
Loren Silvertrust (Violin): A native of Riverwoods, Illinois, Loren Silvertrust joined the Buffalo Philharmonic first violin section in September 2010. After completing a degree in Comparative Literature from Williams College, Loren attended Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music where she earned a Master’s Degree in Violin Performance and a performer’s diploma, and won the Kuttner String Quartet competition. Prior to moving to Buffalo, Loren played as a member of the New World Symphony in Miami. For the past four summers, Loren has been attending the Breckenridge Music Festival, in Breckenridge Colorado, where she is the assistant concertmaster. Around Buffalo, she has also performed with the Buffalo Chamber Players, Ars Nova, and the Camarata di Sant’ Antonio chamber orchestra.
Gayle Hutton (Violin): TBA
Zachary Collin (Viola): Zachary Collins joined the Buffalo Philharmonic in 2012. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, he began violin studies with his mother before switching to the viola at age 17. Zachary received his Bachelor's Degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music where he studied with Robert Vernon. Previously, he studied with Michael Klotz, Constantine Kiradjieff, and Linda Cerone. Prior to joining the BPO, Zachary has performed in the viola section with The Cleveland Orchestra, and CityMusic Cleveland. He was also the Principal Violist of the Akron Symphony, and the Assistant Principal Violist of the Canton Symphony in Ohio. As a member of the Aeolus String Quartet, he premiered a new composition which was performed throughout the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and Wisconsin, and received coaching from the Cleveland and Borromeo Quartet's, among others.
Derek E. Chazen (Viola): Derek Chazen earned his Bachelor of Music degree at the State University of New York at Fredonia, after studying viola and chamber music with David Rose and Maureen Yuen. As a SUNY-Chinese Government Scholar, Derek had the extraordinary opportunity in 2011 to study and perform in Chengdu, Sichuan, China, where he served as the principal violist of the Sichuan University Symphony Orchestra and performed chamber music. Derek is a violist in the Western New York Chamber Orchestra, and frequently performs in other orchestras and chamber ensembles throughout Buffalo, NY, the Southern Tier, and Erie, PA. In addition to his performance activities, Derek maintains a private studio of viola students and is an Orchestra teacher in the Amherst Central School District in Amherst, NY.
Rintaro Wada (Cello): is the Artistic/Executive Director of the Chamber Music Society of Olean. His solo, chamber music, and orchestra performances have given in Japan, Italy, and the US, and have been invited to perform by radio programs, Universities and concert associations. He studied in Rochester, NY, and Japan, earning a Master of Music in performance and literature from Eastman School of Music and a Bachelor of Music degree and post-graduate diploma in cello performance from Showa College of Music. Mr. Wada is a cellist of the Western New York Chamber Orchestra, and Orchestra Director of the Olean City School District, faculty of the Houghton College, Greatbatch School of Music.
Brett Shurtliffe (Contrabass): Brett Shurtliffe is the Associate Principal Double Bassist with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra. Brett received his Bachelor in Music and the prestigious Performer's Certificate from the Eastman School of Music, where he studied with James VanDemark and his Master in Music from Duquesne University, where he studied with Jeffrey Turner. In 2003 he was the Top American Prizewinner at the International Society of Bassists Solo Competition, and two years later took 1st Prize at the ISB Orchestral Competition. Since joining Buffalo in 2007, Brett has appeared numerous times as a soloist with the BPO, as well as with the Amherst Symphony, the National Repertory Orchestra, and the orchestra of SUNY Cortland
Brett’s playing has been described as “immaculate” in a 2012 Bass World review, and “Not even Johann Sebastian shredded as hard as this guy” were the accolades from an imaginative recital at a downtown Buffalo night club. His recital engagements have taken him across the U.S. and Canada, and before joining the BPO, he performed with the Wheeling, Erie, Detroit and Pittsburgh Symphonies. Apart from performing, Mr. Shurtliffe has commissioned new works for the double bass, as well as creating numerous transcriptions of his own including Monte’s Czardas, Kabalevsky’s 1st Cello Concerto, and Sarasate’s Zigeunerweisen among many others. Brett serves as Adjunct Professor of Double Bass at SUNY Fredonia, Canisius and Houghton Colleges, and is on faculty at the International Festival Institute in Round Top Texas.
Ritsuko Wada (Piano): Native of Japan, holds a Bachelor of Music degree in piano performance from Showa Collage of Music where she was a merit scholarship student studying with Takahiro Sonoda, who was Japan’s leading pianist, and judge of the most important International Piano Competitions. Also She studied piano, solfege and chamber music with Jun Ozawa, and piano performance with Hikaru Matsuura and Yaeko Sasaki. Mrs. Wada’s extensive piano study includes attendance at the Respighi Summer Music Academy in Italy and the Cahl Slue Piano Education Association and the first prize of Showa Collage concerto competition. Mrs. Wada began her teaching career in 1991 at the Yamaha Music School. She has performed number of recitals as a soloist, chamber musician and accompanist in universities and churches. She played as a pianist in Allegany Piano Trio, Felix Piano Trio, Felix Piano Quartet, Greifen Piano Trio, and W piano Quartet. Mrs. Wada is a member of Music Performance Practice Association of Japan. She currently teaches in her private studio and at Jamestown Community College in Olean.
David Colwell, Violin
Since his solo debut with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra at the age of 14, violinist David Colwell has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in Europe, Canada, and the United States, and has been recorded by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. A native of Alberta, Canada, David received his first violin lessons from Elfreda Gleam and William van der Sloot. After further studies with Ranald Shean and Edmond Agopian, he began his undergraduate education in 1997 at the University of Alberta where he studied with Martin Riseley.
In 2001, he entered the studio of Peter Oundjian and Ani Kavafian at Yale University School of Music and was awarded the Master of Music and Master of Musical Arts degrees in 2003 and 2005 respectively. In 2009, he was awarded the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Yale. David is grateful to the Winspear Fund for its generous support of his studies from 2001-2005.
As a winner of a Johann Strauss Foundation Scholarship in both 1998 and 1999, David was afforded the opportunity to study at the Internationale Sommerakademie Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria with Igor Oistrakh, Michael Frischenschlanger, Jean-Jacques Kantorow, and Igor Ozim. In the summers of 2004 and 2005, he studied and performed at the Steans Institute for Young Artists at the Ravinia Festival in Chicago. In June of 2005, David made his formal Ravinia Festival debut at the Martin Theater.
As a member of the Mondrian Piano Quartet, David participated in the Banff Centre's Chamber Music Residency in the summer of 2007. Other memorable performances have included chamber music collaborations with Edgar Meyer, Timothy Eddy, Paul Katz, Barry Shiffman, Henk Guittart, Pekka Kuusito , Ismo Eskelinen, and Ralf Gothóni. In 2006, David became a member of the performance faculty at the University of Virginia. In 2011, he was appointed Assistant Professor of Violin at SUNY Fredonia School of Music. He taught at the Wintergreen Summer Music Academy in 2011 and served on the faculty of Masterworks Festival in 2012 and 2013.
David Rose, Viola
David Rose was born in Regina, Saskatchewan and there began his early musical education and violin study. At the suggestion of his first teacher, Ernest Kassian, David switched to the viola at age 12 and immediately enjoyed the deep, warm sound of this new instrument. A few years later, he became a member of the Regina Symphony Orchestra. David's principal teachers have been Gerald Stanick at the University of British Columbia, and Atar Arad at Indiana University, both of whom guided him to a greater love for music and the viola. His interest in orchestral and chamber music led to association with the Vancouver Symphony, the CBC Vancouver Orchestra, and many chamber music series from coast to coast in Canada, including the Vetta Chamber Ensemble in Vancouver, the Ottawa Chamber music Festival and the summer festival of New Brunswick. Upon graduation, David was awarded the position of associate principal viola of the Vancouver Symphony. He served for eight seasons as principal viola of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and violist with the Canadian Chamber Ensemble, as well as teaching at the University of Waterloo. Also greatly interested in performance on period instruments, David studied baroque viola with John Sawyer and Stanley Ritchie. He was a member of the Pacific Baroque Orchestra and performs and tours frequently with Toronto's Tafelmusik. Most recently, David served as the acting assistant principal viola of the San Francisco Symphony, enjoying involvement in a European tour and the grammy winning Mahler symphony recording cycle.
Steven Thomas, Violin/Viola
Steven Thomas is the Conductor and Music Director of the Amherst Symphony Orchestra. The ASO is one of America’s oldest and most distinguished community orchestras with a continuous 65-year history in the town of Amherst. Steve appears as a performer on violin, viola and piano throughout the Northeast. Along with his wife Martha he directs Vivace String Camp at Houghton College.
Steve built his conducting and string teaching expertise in the public schools of Amherst, including eleven years at Williamsville South, North and East high schools as well as twenty years at Amherst Central High School. Sought after as a guest conductor, Steve has worked with festival orchestras at all levels throughout the Eastern United States. His conducting mentors include Semyon Bychkov, Brock McElheran and Vaclav Nelhybel . He has served the string community as President of the NY chapter of the American String Teachers Association and has been active in the New York State School Music Association and the Erie County Music Educators Association. He is also a member of the American Federations of Musicians, Local 92.
Steve and his wife Martha live in Fillmore, NY, near Houghton College, where each summer they produce Vivace String Camp, an intense eight day program that serves string players ages 10-18 with orchestra, chamber music and personal growth experiences at Houghton College. Many of our best local string professionals join us on the faculty of VSC. Next summer David Kim, Concertmaster of the Philadelphia Orchestra, will teach a Master Class and perform our Opening Recital with Mr. Thomas at the piano.
Since moving to the Southern Tier Steve has conducted the Wellsville Performing Arts Orchestra and the Alfred University Orchestra and performed as a first violinist in the Orchestra of the Southern Finger Lakes and as Principal Viola in the Southern Tier Symphony.
Steve is the Concertmaster for all touring Broadway performances at Shea’s Buffalo Performing Arts Center and the Auditorium Theatre in Rochester for touring Broadway productions of shows such as this year’s lineup that includes “Young Frankenstein”, “Shrek” and “West Side Story”.
To stay fit Steve enjoys hiking, bicycling, fishing, gardening and canoeing. He is also a private pilot and enjoys flying a Cessna 150 from Perry Warsaw Airport. He shares his love of life with his wife Martha and their five children
First Prize winners of the 7th Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in 2011, top prizewinners and Listeners’ Choice Award recipients in the 2011 Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, and winners of the Alice Coleman Grand Prize at the 60th annual Coleman Chamber Ensemble Competition in 2006, the internationally acclaimed Attacca Quartet has become one of America’s premier young performing ensembles. The Attacca Quartet is comprised of violinists Amy Schroeder and Keiko Tokunaga, violist Luke Fleming and cellist Andrew Yee, and was formed at the Juilliard School in 2003. Praised by Strad for possessing “maturity beyond its members’ years,” they made their professional debut in 2007 as part of the Artists International Winners Series in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. The Attacca Quartet is represented by Baker Artists, Artists, LLC.
The Attacca Quartet performed John Adams’ recently composed String Quartet (2008) in Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall in December 2009; having worked closely on the quartet with Mr. Adams, he has enthusiastically supported their performances of it and his other works for string quartet. They have recently completed a recording project of the complete works for string quartet by John Adams, which was released on Azica Records in March 2013. In his review for the New York Times, Steve Smith praised this “vivacious, compelling set,” describing the Attacca Quartet’s playing as “exuberant, funky, and…exactingly nuanced.” The 2013-2014 marks the fourth season of “The 68,” an ambitious six-year project in which they will perform all sixty-eight Haydn string quartets on a special series they have created in New York. They have been honored with the 2013 National Federation of Music Clubs Centennial Chamber Music Award, the Arthur Foote Award from the Harvard Musical Association, and the Lotos Prize in the Arts.
The Attacca Quartet held the position of Graduate Resident String Quartet at the Juilliard School for 2011-2013, and they have been the resident string quartet of the Northern Lights Music Festival since 2010. They were artists-in-residence at both the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival in Connecticut and at the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival in Michigan, and in 2005 were the resident quartet at the Festival of Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy. They have also performed at the Sitka Summer Music Festival in Alaska and Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival in North Carolina. The Attacca Quartet has collaborated with pianists Claude Frank, Jerome Lowenthal and Jean-Yves Thibaudet, violinists Arnold Steinhardt and Vadim Gluzman, cellist Andres Díaz, clarinetist David Shifrin, flautist Carol Wincenc, and the Tokyo String Quartet.
The Attacca Quartet has engaged in extensive educational and community outreach projects, serving as string quartet-in-residence and teaching fellows at the Lincoln Center Institute, Vivace String Camp in New York and Animato Summer Music Camp at Florida International University in Miami. Since 2006, they have performed in yearly
Amy Schroeder, Violin
Hailed by the Washington Post as ‘an impressive artist whose playing combines imagination and virtuosity’ violinist Amy Schroeder, was born in Buffalo, New York. She studied with Sally Thomas and the Juilliard String Quartet at the Juilliard School where she received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees as well as an Artist Diploma. Ms. Schroeder has soloed with orchestras including the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Amherst Symphony Orchestra, the Clarence Symphony Orchestra, the Hilton Head Symphony Orchestra, and the Greater Buffalo Youth Orchestra. A founding member of the Attacca Quartet, she has been a part of a wide array of festivals including the Spoleto Festival in Italy, Music@Menlo, the Pacific Music Festival Tokyo String Quartet Program, the Emerson String Quartet seminar, the Juilliard String Quartet Seminar, the Banff Summer Chamber Music Festival, the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, the Sitka Chamber Music Festival, the Highlands/Cashiers Chamber Music Festival, the Meadowmount School of Music, and the Music Academy of the West. She was also the recipient of the Henrietta and Albert J. Ziegle Jr. Scholarship, which provided the tuition for her studies at Juilliard. Growing up in Buffalo Ms. Schroeder began her violin studies with Karen Campbell and Thomas Halpin. She currently plays on a violin made in 2012 by Nathan Slobodkin.
Keiko Tokunaga, Violin
An eminent member of the up-and-coming American ensemble, the Attacca Quartet, Keiko Tokunaga has already established a formidable reputation as a soloist and a chamber musician across North America, Italy, Mexico and in her native Japan. With the Attacca Quartet, she has won prizes in numerous competitions and served as Graduate Resident String Quartet at the Juilliard School, a guest artist at the Hunter College of New York and Port Townsend Chamber Music Festival and as a violin faculty of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute. Ms. Tokunaga has performed both as a soloist and chamber musician in such major venues as Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the Banff Centre in Canada, and Suntory Hall in Tokyo, Japan. In September 2009, Ms, Tokunaga gave her solo debut recital at Ohji Hall, Tokyo. Ms. Tokunaga holds Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees from the Juilliard School, where she is a faculty member of the Pre-College Division. She is currently under sponsorship by the Information Development Co., Ltd. and ARUMA Inc. Ms. Tokunaga performs on a Stefano Scarampella violin from 1900.
Luke Fleming, Viola
Having made his New York debut to a sold out audience in Alice Tully Hall in 2009, violist Luke Fleming has established himself as an exceptional solo and chamber recitalist. His performances have been described by Strad as “confident and expressive” and by the New York Sun as “superbly coordinated…a mysterious world of sound,” and he has been praised by the Philadelphia Inquirer for his “glowing refinement.” Festival appearances include performances at the Marlboro Music School and Festival, the Steans Institute at Ravinia, and the Norfolk and Sarasota Chamber Music Festivals, as well as concerts in Japan, Korea, Australia, England, Spain, Poland, Denmark, Germany, Austria, and Mexico. In 2011, Mr. Fleming was featured on a Live from Marlboro CD release on the Archiv Music label. He has performed as a guest artist with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Sejong Soloists, Ensemble ACJW, the Georgian Chamber Players, Continuum, AXIOM, and the Serafin String Quartet. A native of New Orleans, Mr. Fleming holds a Doctorate of Musical Arts, Artist Diploma, and Masters of Music from Juilliard, a Graduate Diploma with Distinction from the Royal Academy of Music in London, and a Bachelor of Music summa cum laude from Louisiana State University. Mr. Fleming will receive his Artist Diploma from Juilliard in May 2013. He is represented by Arts Global, Inc.
Andrew Yee, Cello
Andrew Yee, cello, has been praised by Michael Kennedy of the London Telegraph as “spellbindingly virtuosic…remember that you heard [his] name here first.” He is a founding member of the internationally acclaimed Attacca Quartet, and received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from the Juilliard School, where he studied with Fred Sherry, Darrett Adkins, and Joel Krosnick. Mr. Yee has appeared with the International Sejong Soloists, and has played solo and chamber music recitals across the United States. His many engagements include the Concert Hall, Terrace Theatre, and Millennium stages in the Kennedy Center of Washington D.C. Alice Tully Hall, the Spoleto Festival, Carnegie Hall, and other venues including solo performances of Popper’s Hungarian Rhapsody, Vivaldi’s Concerto for two cellos, and Dvořák’s Cello Concerto. Mr. Yee plays on a 2002 Nathan Slobodkin cello modeled after the 1731 “Ex Messeas” Guarneri “del Gesu” cello.
David (Chun Chim) Leung, violin
David (Chun Chim) Leung is active and versatile in all aspects of performance as violin soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, concertmaster and orchestral conductor. Dr. Leung is currently visiting assistant professor of violin at the Florida State University. He was also on the faculty of the Roberts Wesleyan College in Rochester, New York and the State University of New York at Buffalo.
A recipient of numerous awards and prizes, David Leung has collaborated with many internationally renowned artists such as Vladimir Ashkenazy, Paul Badura-Skoda, Malcolm Bilson, Anthony Camden, Christoph Campestrini, Andrés Cárdenes, Sergiu Comissiona, Steven Doane, Hilary Hahn, Warren Jones, Mikhail Kopelman, Alicia de Larrocha, Cho-liang Lin, Sir Neville Marriner and Joseph Silverstein. David Leung has performed extensively in the United States, Canada, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, Austria, Italy, France, and major international festivals such as Pablo Casals Festival, Carinthian Summer Music Festival in Austria, Musicarama, Le French May, Aberdeen International Music Festival and June in Buffalo.
In 2009 David Leung made his highly successful Carnegie Hall recital debut at the Weill Recital Hall in New York. His upcoming engagements include concerto appearances and touring with the Holland Symphony Orchestra in Mainland China, master classes and recitals in Alabama, California, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, Colombia, Hong Kong, and performances with the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra as the new associate concertmaster.
David Leung is the co-founder of Felix Piano Trio, Phoenix Trio and Helios String Quartet. A native of Hong Kong, David Leung began his violin studies at the age of six and made his concerto debut at ten. He completed his undergraduate studies with first-class honors under the tutorledge of Michael Ma and Lo Chu-Tung at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. He holds a doctorate degree in violin performance and orchestral conducting from the Eastman School of Music, where he studied with Mikhail Kopelman, Neil Varon and Brad Lubman. He also holds a Master’s degree in violin performance and the prestigious performer’s certificate from Eastman.
Maureen Yuen, Violin
Acclaimed Canadian violinist Maureen Yuen has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in the United States, Canada, Norway, and Italy. She has also performed with the Victoria Symphony, Wichita Symphony and the National Academy Orchestra of Canada. During the summers, she is on the faculties of the Schlern International Music Festival in the Italian Alps, Music/Meadows/and Mountains in Washington and the Rocky Ridge Music Center in Colorado. Balancing her busy performance schedule, Ms. Yuen is a string adjudicator with Kiwanis Music Festivals in Canada and a member of the College of Examiners of the Royal Conservatory of Music. Ms. Yuen joined the faculty of the School of Music at the State University of New York at Fredonia in 2004 and maintains a full studio there of promising violinists.
Ms. Yuen graduated from the University of British Columbia at the age of 21 with a Master of Music Degree in Violin Performance. Her primary teachers were Andrew Dawes, Nancy Di Novo and Gerald Stanick. She has also worked with members of the Emerson, Fine Arts, Oxford, St. Lawrence, and Tokyo string quartets. She is also a member of the Bellingham Festival Orchestra, whose recordings can often be heard on National Public Radios Performance Today.
Active in chamber music collaborations and coachings, she was a founding member of the English Bay String Quartet which has toured throughout North America and the Caribbean. Along with her role as Artist/Faculty at the Schlern International Music Festival in Italy, she is also one of the Chamber Music Coaches for the Festival.
Ms. Yuen was formerly on the faculty at Mercyhurst College in Erie, PA as Instructor of Violin and Viola. Her active schedule also includes solo and chamber music recitals and masterclasses throughout North America, including recent appearances at Pasadena Conservatory of Music, University of Missourit-Kansas City, Western Illinois University, Brock University, University of Buffalo, Cleveland State University, Ohio University, Northern Ohio University and the University of Minnesota at Duluth.
The Felix Piano Quartet
Shieh-Jian Tsai, Violin
Shieh-Jian Tsai was born in Taipei, Taiwan. He began playing the violin at age 6, and attended music schools in Taipei until 1991, when he immigrated to the US with his family. Shieh-Jian received his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, and Master of Music degree from New England Conservatory in Boston, MA. His principle teachers include Mr. Gerardo Ribeiro, Mr. Sherban Lupu, and Ms. Masuko Ushioda. Shieh-Jian had been a participant of Musicorda, Tanglewood, and Sarasota Music Festivals, where he learned from great musicians such as Ronald Copes, Pamela Frank, Emanual Ax, and Arnold Steinhardt, and performed orchestral and chamber music with colleagues from around the country. As a member of the Nuance Chamber Ensemble, he performed regularly in concert halls in Taiwan and at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. He has also been a soloist with the Taiwan Strings Orchestra after winning their 5th violin concerto competition in 2004. More recently, he was invited on European and South American tour with the Verbier Festival Orchestra under direction of Maestro Jiri Belohlavek and pianist Yundi Lee and Lang Lang. Shieh-Jian performs frequently with the Buffalo Chamber Players, Sant Antonio Camerata, Ars Nova, and is currently a member of the second violin section of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra.
Janz Castelo, Viola
Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, violist Janz Castelo is the son of Cuban parents. He received his Bachelor of Music in viola performance from the Peabody Conservatory of Music as a student of Victoria Chiang and Roberto Diaz. Upon completing his degree, Janz continued his studies with Boston Symphony violist Edward Gazouleas.
In Boston, Janz held teaching positions at The Cambridge School of Weston and The Dana Hall School of Music and was Assistant Principal Violist of the Portland Symphony Orchestra in Portland, Maine. He has appeared in music festivals in the United States and abroad, including the National Orchestral Institute in Maryland, the Yellow Barn Chamber Music Festival in Vermont, the New Hampshire Music Festival, and the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival in Kuhmo, Finland.
Janz joined the viola section of the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra in the fall of 2001 and the faculty of the University at Buffalo in 2005. In the fall of 2007 he formed the Buffalo Chamber Players, a mixed chamber ensemble residing in the Elmwood Village.
Lin He, violin
Born in Shanghai, China, violinist Lin He began his musical training at the age of five. Mr. He received his doctorate degree from the Eastman School of Music, where he worked under the tutelage of Zvi Zeitlin. Other major influences include Sylvia Rosenberg, Paul Kantor, Kyung Sun Lee, James Lyon, Joanne Feldman, and Peiwen Yuan.
As a soloist and chamber musician, Mr. He has performed concertos with the Drake Symphony, the Houghton Philharmonia, the Jiang Su Symphony, the Southern Tier Symphony, the Tuscarawas Philharmonic, and the Wooster Symphony. He has also presented recitals at universities across the United States as well as at the East China Normal University, the Nanjing School of the Arts, and the Xi'an Conservatory of Music.
As an orchestral player, Mr. He has performed with the Shanghai Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, and New World Symphony, and has worked under the direction of Alsop, Conlon, DePreist, Ozawa, Previn, Robertson, Seaman, Slatkin, Spano, de Waart, and Zinman.
Summer festival appearances have taken Mr. He from venues such as the Music Academy of the West to the Tanglewood Music Center where he had a solo performance in Ozawa Hall, in 2001. In 2005, Mr. He appeared at the Aspen Music Festival, where he served as Assistant Principal Second Violin for the Festival Orchestra and was the featured violinist for the world premiere concert of American-Chinese composer Huang Ruo. Lin He has been a laureate of the Padesta Solo Competition, the ASTA competition, and a finalist for the Marlboro Music School and Festival. Mr. He has received the Creative Achievement Award, the William Forest Chamber Music Award, and the 2003 John Celentano Award for Excellence in Chamber Music from the Eastman School of Music. Mr. He has been featured on several live radio broadcasts and on the 8 CD set of The Complete Musician (a theory textbook written by Steven Laitz at the Eastman School of Music).
Mr. He has previously taught at Eastman School of Music and Pennsylvania State University. Lin He is now serving as the Assistant Professor of Violin at the Louisiana State University School of Music and the Associate Concertmaster of the Baton Rouge Symphony.
Recent and upcoming projects include a recording of French Sonatas with Centaur label, concert tour during the winter of 2009 in major cities of mainland China, concerto appearance with orchestra in Malaysia and a solo debut with the Louisiana Sinfonietta.
Sun Mi Ro, Composer
Composer Sun Mi Ro lists numerous composition awards and honors among her many achievements, including the Leroy Robertson Composition Prize, a commission from the Hanson Institute of American Music, and the Outstanding Graduate of the College of Creative Arts at San Francisco State University. Her works have received performances throughout Asia and North America by such prestigious groups as Parnassus, Speculum Musicae, Earplay, California E.A.R. Unit Ensemble, Canyonlands New Music Ensemble, The Society for Chromatic Art, Felix Piano Trio and Kaprizma Ensemble of Israel. In addition, Ms. Ro has been selected to participate in many music festivals, including New Music Miami, the NACUSA concert, May in Miami, UNK New Music Festival, and The Oregon Bach Festival Composers' Symposium. She has also held residencies at the Atlantic Center for the Arts, the Arcosanti Composers Residency, the Composers Conference, and the California Summer Institute of the Arts.
Ms. Ro is currently an Assistant Professor of Music Theory and Composition at Houghton College in New York, and also the contributing author on music to a Korean children’s book series published by Gaeamnamu Publishing. Prior to her appointment at Houghton College she taught at Westminster College, the University of Utah, and the Korean National University of Arts. Ms. Ro earned her Ph.D in composition from the University of Utah and her master’s and bachelor’s degrees from San Francisco State University. Her principal teachers in composition include Morris Rosenzweig, Richard Festinger, and Steve Roens.