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William Wolfram

PIANO

WILLIAM WOLFRAM was a silver medalist at both the William Kapell and the Naumburg International Piano Competitions and a bronze medalist at the Tchaikovsky Piano Competition in Moscow. A versatile recitalist, concerto soloist and chamber musician, he has won the respect of musicians and critics across the country and abroad. Wolfram has several recordings on the Naxos label, has played recitals in cities throughout the U.S., Asia and Europe and has performed with dozens of the finest orchestras in the world. His concerto debut with the Pittsburgh Symphony under the baton of Leonard Slatkin was the first in a long succession of appearances and career relationships with numerous American conductors and orchestras. He has appeared with the San Francisco, St. Louis, Indianapolis, Seattle and New Jersey symphonies, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the National Symphony, the Florida Orchestra and the Grand Teton and Obispo Mozart festival orchestras, among many others. He enjoys regular and ongoing close associations with the Dallas Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony and the Minnesota Orchestra. Conductors with whom he has worked include Jerzy Semkow, Joseph Silverstein, Mark Wigglesworth, Jeffrey Tate, Vladimir Spivakov, Gerard Schwarz, Carlos Miguel Prieto, Jeffrey Kahane, James Judd, Roberto Minczuk, Stefan Sanderling, JoAnn Falletta, James Paul and Carlos Kalmar. Abroad, Wolfram has appeared with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the Warsaw, Moscow and Budapest philharmonics, the Capetown and Johannesburg symphonies of South Africa, L'Orchestre de Bretagne, the orchestras of Thailand and Singapore and the National Symphony of Peru. An enthusiastic supporter of new music, he has collaborated with and performed music by composers such as Aaron Jay Kernis, Kenneth Frazelle, Marc Andre Dalbavie, Kenji Bunch and Paul Chihara. His world premiere performance of the Chihara re-orchestration of Chopin's Piano Concerto No. 1, with the Milwaukee Symphony under the baton of Andreas Delfs, was met with great critical attention and acclaim. Wolfram has extensive experience in the recording studio. For the Albany label, he recorded the piano concertos of Edward Collins with Marin Alsop and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Wolfram has recorded, and continues to record, the solo piano music of Franz Liszt for Naxos records. These recordings include Liszt's rarely heard Etudes en douze exercices, as well as opera transcriptions of both Donizetti and Bellini. Wolfram was the focus of a full chapter in Joseph Horowitz's book, The Ivory Trade: Music and the Business of Music at the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. On television, he was a featured pianist in the documentary of the 1986 Tchaikovsky International Piano Competition. A graduate of The Juilliard School, William Wolfram resides in New York City.

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Thomas Sauer

PIANO

Pianist THOMAS SAUER is a highly sought after soloist, chamber musician, and teacher. Recent appearances include concerto performances with the Quad-City and Tallahassee Symphonies and the Greenwich Village Orchestra; solo performances at Carnegie Hall (Stern Auditorium), Merkin Concert Hall, Rockefeller University, and St. John’s College, Oxford; appearances on Broadway as the pianist in 33 Variations, a play about the composition of Beethoven’s Diabelli Variations; and performances at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. With his long-time duo partner Colin Carr, Mr. Sauer has appeared at the Wigmore Hall (London), Holywell Music Room (Oxford), the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and Musikgebouw, Bargemusic (New York City), the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (Boston), Da Camera (Houston), and Princeton University, among many other venues.  Other appearances include recitals with Midori at the Philharmonie in Berlin and the Palais des Beaux Arts in Brussels; performances with members of the Juilliard String Quartet at the Library of Congress; a recital with violinist Jennifer Koh at the Kennedy Center; and numerous concerts with the Brentano String Quartet. Mr. Sauer has performed at many of the leading festivals in the United States and abroad, including Marlboro, Caramoor, Music@Menlo, Chamber Music Northwest, El Paso Pro Musica, Aloha International Piano Festival, and the Chamber Music Festivals of Seattle, Taos, Four Seasons (North Carolina), Portland and Salt Bay (Maine); as well as Lake District Summer Music (England), Agassiz International Chamber Music Festival (Canada), Festival des Consonances (France), and Esbjerg International Chamber Music Festival (Denmark). Mr. Sauer’s varied discography includes recordings of Beethoven and Haydn piano sonatas for MSR Classics; with Colin Carr, the complete cello and piano works of Mendelssohn on Cello Classics and complete Beethoven on MSR Classics; a disc of Hindemith sonatas with violist Misha Amory (Musical Heritage Society); music of Britten and Schnittke with cellist Wilhelmina Smith on Arabesque; music of Ross Lee Finney with violinist Miranda Cuckson for Centaur Records; music of James Matheson on Yarlung Records; and violin sonatas of Mozart with Aaron Berofsky for Blue Griffin Recordings. In recent seasons, Mr. Sauer has premiered works by Philippe Bodin, Robert Cuckson, Sebastian Currier, Brian Fennelly, Keith Fitch, David Loeb, Donald Martino, Suzanne Sorkin, David Tcimpidis, and Richard Wilson. A member of the music faculty of Vassar College and the piano faculty of the Mannes College, Mr. Sauer was the founder and for fifteen years director of the Mannes Beethoven Institute, and is co-Artistic Director of Chamber Music Quad Cities. A graduate of the Curtis Institute, Mannes College of Music and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, his major teachers included Jorge Bolet, Edward Aldwell, and Carl Schachter.

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Kurt Nikkanen

VIOLIN

American violinist KURT NIKKANEN is an international soloist of the highest order. Born in Hartford, Connecticut, he began his violin studies at the age of three, later studying with Roman Totenberg and Jens Ellerman. At twelve he gave his Carnegie Hall debut, performing with the New York Symphony; two years later he was invited by Zubin Mehta to perform the Paganini Concerto No.1 with the New York Philharmonic for a Young People’s Concert. He is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where he was a scholarship student of Dorothy DeLay.

Mr. Nikkanen regularly receives invitations from the leading orchestras and presenters in the USA and Europe, and has toured Japan and the Far East. In North America he has appeared with the Dallas Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic and Cleveland Orchestra, and in Europe with the BBC Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Rotterdam Philharmonic and the Dresden Staatskapelle. He has worked with many leading conductors.

An enthusiastic advocate of contemporary music, Kurt Nikkanen has given numerous performances of the John Adams Violin Concerto, with orchestras such as the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Oregon Symphony, Hallé Orchestra and Cincinnati Symphony (all under the composer’s direction).

Highlights of recent seasons have included a UK tour with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, performances with the Gothenburg Symphony and Neeme Jarvi at the BBC Proms, and concerts with the Rotterdam Philharmonic, Prague Symphony and RTE Orchestra in Dublin; also with the Bayerischer Rundfunk and Suddeutscher Rundfunk orchestras, both with the late Yakov Kreizberg, and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra with Junichi Hirokami. He has also appeared with the Belgian National Orchestra, Trondheim Symphony and the orchestra of RAI Turin, the Detroit Symphony and Orchestra of Galicia, the Bilbao Symphony, the Malaysian Philharmonic and performances of the Dvorak concerto with the Czech Philharmonic and Vladimir Ashkenazy, both in Prague and on tour in the USA, with concerts in New York and Chicago. In 2011, he was featured as soloist in a performance of the Barber Violin Concerto and Ravel Tzigane with the Turku Philharmonic in a live webcast that was streamed worldwide.

Mr. Nikkanen has had many works written for him, including Steven R. Gerber’s violin concerto, which he has recorded for Koch International. In 2009, Mr. Nikkanen performed the world premiere of Mikko Heinio’s concerto Alla Madre, subsequently recording it for Sony Classical with the Turku Philharmonic under Petri Sakari and released in 2010. His recording of William Walton’s Violin Concerto with the New Haven Symphony Orchestra was released on the Nimbus Alliance label in 2010 and was chosen as “Critics Choice for 2010” in Gramophone Magazine.

Mr. Nikkanen gave the New York premiere of the Violin Concerto by Thomas Adès in May 2010 and has since performed it in Australia with the Perth Symphony Orchestra conducted by Paul Daniel.

In addition to his orchestral appearances, Kurt Nikkanen performs regularly as a recitalist both in the US and abroad with his wife, pianist Maria Asteriadou, presenting repertoire ranging from the complete Beethoven sonatas to Piazzolla tangos.

He is the Concertmaster of the New York City Ballet Orchestra and maintains a private teaching studio in New York, where he resides with his family.American violinist KURT NIKKANEN is an international soloist of the highest order. Born in Hartford, Connecticut, he began his violin studies at the age of three, later studying with Roman Totenberg and Jens Ellerman. At twelve he gave his Carnegie Hall debut, performing with the New York Symphony; two years later he was invited by Zubin Mehta to perform the Paganini Concerto No.1 with the New York Philharmonic for a Young People’s Concert. He is a graduate of the Juilliard School, where he was a scholarship student of Dorothy DeLay.

Mr. Nikkanen regularly receives invitations from the leading orchestras and presenters in the USA and Europe, and has toured Japan and the Far East. In North America he has appeared with the Dallas Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic and Cleveland Orchestra, and in Europe with the BBC Symphony, Royal Philharmonic, BBC Philharmonic, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Rotterdam Philharmonic and the Dresden Staatskapelle. He has worked with many leading conductors.

An enthusiastic advocate of contemporary music, Kurt Nikkanen has given numerous performances of the John Adams Violin Concerto, with orchestras such as the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Oregon Symphony, Hallé Orchestra and Cincinnati Symphony (all under the composer’s direction).

Highlights of recent seasons have included a UK tour with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, performances with the Gothenburg Symphony and Neeme Jarvi at the BBC Proms, and concerts with the Rotterdam Philharmonic, Prague Symphony and RTE Orchestra in Dublin; also with the Bayerischer Rundfunk and Suddeutscher Rundfunk orchestras, both with the late Yakov Kreizberg, and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra with Junichi Hirokami. He has also appeared with the Belgian National Orchestra, Trondheim Symphony and the orchestra of RAI Turin, the Detroit Symphony and Orchestra of Galicia, the Bilbao Symphony, the Malaysian Philharmonic and performances of the Dvorak concerto with the Czech Philharmonic and Vladimir Ashkenazy, both in Prague and on tour in the USA, with concerts in New York and Chicago. In 2011, he was featured as soloist in a performance of the Barber Violin Concerto and Ravel Tzigane with the Turku Philharmonic in a live webcast that was streamed worldwide.

Mr. Nikkanen has had many works written for him, including Steven R. Gerber’s violin concerto, which he has recorded for Koch International. In 2009, Mr. Nikkanen performed the world premiere of Mikko Heinio’s concerto Alla Madre, subsequently recording it for Sony Classical with the Turku Philharmonic under Petri Sakari and released in 2010. His recording of William Walton’s Violin Concerto with the New Haven Symphony Orchestra was released on the Nimbus Alliance label in 2010 and was chosen as “Critics Choice for 2010” in Gramophone Magazine.

Mr. Nikkanen gave the New York premiere of the Violin Concerto by Thomas Adès in May 2010 and has since performed it in Australia with the Perth Symphony Orchestra conducted by Paul Daniel.

In addition to his orchestral appearances, Kurt Nikkanen performs regularly as a recitalist both in the US and abroad with his wife, pianist Maria Asteriadou, presenting repertoire ranging from the complete Beethoven sonatas to Piazzolla tangos.

He is the Concertmaster of the New York City Ballet Orchestra and maintains a private teaching studio in New York, where he resides with his family.

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Janet Arms

FLUTE

A charismatic and versatile flutist, JANET ARMS has been a member of the New York City Opera orchestra since 1988. She has also performed and recorded with the New York Philharmonic, San Francisco Ballet, Metropolitan Opera, as guest principal flutist with the St. Louis Symphony in the US and throughout Europe, as well as with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in Boston, at Tanglewood, and on tour. She had a long-standing association with the Bard Festival Orchestra and the American Symphony Orchestra, has worked with the NYC Ballet, American Ballet Theater, New Jersey Symphony, as well as subbed on Broadway in The King and I, Finding Neverland and the Radio City Christmas Spectacular.

As a faculty member of the Hartt School, Janet holds the title of Senior Artist Teacher as well as the Associate Chair of Chamber Music of Winds and Brass. As a newly appointed member of the flute faculty, Janet Arms is now teaching at the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University, where she started in the fall of 2018. She has been a faculty member of the Pacific Region International Summer Music Academy - PRISMA in Powell River, BC for many years and has spent several summers in Brazil, teaching and performing with the faculty of the renowned Festival Eleazar de Carvalho in Fortaleza. She spent one recent summer performing chamber music in Greece at the St George International Music Festival.

As an active performer in commercial recording here in NYC, Janet can be heard on a number of film documentaries for PBS. Scored by Michael Bacon, these include Jewish Americans, The Kennedy Years, and The Roosevelt Years to name a few. She made her recital debut at Carnegie Hall as a prizewinner of the Concert Artists International competition while completing her Masters degree at Juilliard.

Ms. Arms’ chamber music career has included appearances with her NYC Opera colleagues at Lincoln Center, performances at the Eastern Shore Chamber Music Festival, with the Concordia Chamber Players, the New York Chamber Soloists and appearances at PRISMA with her colleagues from the Chicago Symphony, Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal, LA Philharmonic, Vancouver Symphony, and Victoria Symphony Orchestra.

Her most recent chamber music project, The Pandora Duo, is a collaboration with guitarist and fellow Hartt faculty member Christopher Ladd. Concertizing throughout the northeast, the duo is busy recording and working with living composers, promoting new music and adding new works to their ever expanding repertoire.

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Shari Hoffman

CLARINET

SHARI HOFFMAN is currently the second clarinetist with the American Ballet Theatre Orchestra, the American Symphony Orchestra, and the Stamford Symphony, and enjoys an active career as a freelance musician in the New York City area.  She regularly performs with many of the country’s finest orchestras, including those of the Metropolitan Opera and the New York City Opera, as well as the New York City Ballet, and the New Jersey Symphony.  Comfortable performing in many musical styles, Ms. Hoffman has been a member of numerous Broadway show orchestras including “My Fair Lady”, “The King and I”, and “South Pacific”.  She is an active chamber musician, and a passionate teacher.  Born and raised in the Philadelphia area, Ms. Hoffman completed her Bachelors and Masters degrees at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY.  Her principal teachers were Jon Manasse, Eli Eban, and Ken Grant.

 

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Hyona Kim

VOICE

Lauded by the New York Times as a “vibrant mezzo soprano” and a “dark toned, agile Mezzo soprano”, HYONA KIM is currently in her second season with the  Dortmund Opera in Germany as a member of the ensemble and performed the role of Suzuki in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, Ortrud in Wagner’s Lohengrin and Tante/Kamel in Avner Dorman’s world premiere production Die Kinder des Sultans. Last season in Dortmund, she made her much acclaimed house and role debut singing Amneris in Verdi's Aïda and next season, she will be singing the title role in the German premiere production of Frédégonde by Ernest Guiraud and Camille Saint-Saëns, and the role of Fricka in Wagner’s Die Walküre. Kim made her San Francisco Opera debut singing one of the leading roles, Lady Wang in Bright Sheng’s world premiere Dream of the Red Chamber under Geroge Manahan and was critically acclaimed as “Unstoppable powerhouse” by the San Francisco Chronicle and performed the same role with Hong Kong Arts Festival under Muhai Tang. She has also sung with New York City Opera, Romanian National Opera, Opera Lancaster, Opera Company of Middlebury among others. Other roles which she has performed around the world include Azucena in Verdi's Il Trovatore, Dame Quickly in Verdi’s Falstaff, Hermia in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream,Wowkle in Puccini's La fanciulla del West, Olga inTchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin and many more. Hyona Kim was a National finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and performed with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra conducted by Marco Armiliato at Lincoln Center. She also was the Grand Winner of the Joy in Singing Competition and performed the winner’s solo Recital at Merkin Concert Hall in New York City. She was a First Prize winner of the Gerda Lissner Competition, and a multiple grant winner at the Licia Albanese-Puccini and Giulio Gari Competitions. She is a grant recipient of the Olga Forrai Foundation and also won the Jennie Tourel prize in the Poulenc Competition. She won the Suri Competition and the Schubert Lied Competition in her native country, South Korea, where she earned her Bachelor’s degree at Ewha Womans University. She received her Master’s degree and Professional Studies Diploma from Mannes College of Music in New York City and was chosen to be the recipient of the Marian Marcus Wahl Memorial Award, awarded to a graduating singer showing particular excellence. During her time as a member of the Mannes Opera, she performed many roles with Metropolitan Opera conductor Joseph Colaneri such as Dorabella in Cosi fan tutte (Mozart), Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro (Mozart) and Annina in Verdi’s La Traviata (Verdi), all acclaimed by Opera News. Apart from Mannes College of Music, she has participated in many festivals and projects, including Aspen Music Festival, the Music Academy of the West, Israel’s International Vocal Arts Institute, the Natchez Music Festival and the Martina Arroyo Foundation. She made her Houston Grand Opera debut originating the role of Hal-Mo-Ni (grandmother) in Jeeyoung Kim’s From My Mother’s Mother at HGOco, and also has performed the lead role in Su Lian Tan’s opera Lotus Lives at Distler Hall at Tufts University in Boston. Kim has sung with the Nashville Symphony and the Sinfonia da Camera as the soloist in Handel’s Messiah and Verdi’s Requiem respectively. She made her Carnegie Hall debut with New England Symphonic Ensemble singing the alto solo in Vivaldi’s Gloria. She was the featured alto soloist in numerous concerts including performances of Bach’s St. John Passion, St. Matthew Passion, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Beethoven’s Symphony No.9. Passionate about chamber music and art song, Ms. Kim has appeared in many chamber music concerts and recitals with Mannes Baroque Chamber Players, the Guinnes Quartet as part of Viva Virginia, International Festival of Music, and also in several concerts of Ensemble 212, in works such as: Mahler’s Symphony No.2 and No. 3, world premieres for Chamber Orchestra both by Yoon Jae Lee, and Der Abschied from Das Lied von der Erde featured with Michael Mao Dance. She has participated in Stephanie Blythe and Alan Smith’s Fall Island Vocal Arts Seminar which only performs Art Songs by living American composers. Kim also has sung with Brooklyn Art Song Society in their concert series of Les six: Francis Poulenc and Songs of Mahler.

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