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Guest Artist Biographies

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Alberto Almarza, flute

Described as a virtuoso flutist by the Boston Globe, Alberto Almarza brings a unique and passionate approach to music. His versatility and musicianship have led him to perform and record some of the most adventurous and challenging pieces from the music of today as well as works from the standard repertoire and Baroque literature on period instruments.

A native of Chile, Mr. Almarza previously held the position of Principal Flute of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Santiago. He later came to the United States to study with Jeanne Baxtresser in New York and with Julius Baker at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, where he obtained his master's degree. He currently serves on the faculty at Carnegie Mellon as Associate Teaching Professor of Flute. 

His skills as a pedagogue, lecturer and recitalist have led to invitations from international festivals in the U.S., Mexico, Germany, Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Peru. He is a resident artist and member of the faculty at The Jeanne Baxtresser International Master Class and has been recently appointed to the National Flute Association Advisory Board for New Music.
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Jennifer Aylmer, soprano

American soprano Jennifer Aylmer has developed a sterling reputation for her beautiful voice, compelling stage portrayals and impeccable musicianship. The New York Times has hailed her for her, “awesome accuracy,” while The Chicago Sun-Times has recommended that listeners, “bask in the aural delight of Aylmer’s dazzling shifts from regal command to cool insouciance and fatally attractive seduction”

This season, Ms. Aylmer performs with Lyric Fest! in their La Dolce Vita  program, in a duet recital at The Trust in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with baritone Thomas Meglioranza and pianist Timothy Long, and as soprano soloist with Brevard Symphony in Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. She also appears in concert with the Utah Symphony in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, conducted by Thierry Fischer.  At Carnegie Mellon University, she will sing on a new chamber music series in Schubert’s Auf dem Strom  with French hornist William Cabellero and later this season, she joins baritone Daniel Teadt, singing Bernstein’s Arias and Barcarolles, both accompanied by pianist Mark Carver. 

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Bronwyn Banerdt, cello

Bronwyn Banerdt joined the cello section of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 2014.  She made her solo debut with Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2002 and has since appeared in concert throughout the United States, Europe, Russia and southern Africa. Notable solo appearances include performances with the Houston Symphony, Albany Symphony and the world premiere of Poem for Cello & Orchestra by Michael Kamen. At age 15, Banerdt was personally invited by the world-renowned composer John Rutter to perform the solo from his Requiem in Carnegie Hall. Banerdt was awarded Grand Prize at the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Bronislaw Kaper Awards, and she has also captured top prizes at the Houston Symphony Ima Hogg Competition and Kingsville Music Competition. 
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Kelsey Blumenthal, violin

Kelsey Blumenthal joined the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at the beginning of the 2014-15 season. Originally from Cape Elizabeth, Maine, she studied at the Juilliard Pre-College in high school, and earned her Bachelor of Music degree from The Colburn School in Los Angeles. She received her Master of Music Degree from New England Conservatory in May 2014. 

An active chamber musician, Blumenthal has studied as a fellow at the Taos School of Music, Aspen and Sarasota Music Festivals, and the Tanglewood Music Center. She has also been a guest artist at the Laguna Beach Music Festival. At New England Conservatory, she was a member of the conductor-less Chamber Orchestra and her piano quartet, the Frost Quartet, won the 2013-2014 Honors Ensemble competition.
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William Caballero, french horn

During the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s 2011 European Festivals Tour, Caballero — and the Pittsburgh Symphony horn section he leads — received rave reviews. Michael Church of The Independent called Caballero “a principal horn whose pianissimo is simply miraculous,” and Guy Dammann wrote in The Guardian, “The horn section — led very much from the front by their excellent principal William Caballero – is one of the best in the business.” In its September 2012 review of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra’s Exton recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 5, Gramophone magazine wrote, “Pittsburgh’s first horn is as spectacular as any on disc.” 

The 2014-2015 Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra season represents William Caballero’s 25th year as its principal horn under the Maestros Lorin Maazel, Marris Jansons and Manfred Honeck.  Before joining the symphony in May 1989, Caballero previously held principal horn positions with the Houston Symphony, Houston Grand Opera and Hartford Symphony. He held third horn positions with the Montreal Symphony, Montreal Opera and acting third horn with the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops. He has performed as guest principal horn with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the St. Louis Symphony.  
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Andrés Cárdenes, violin

Recognized worldwide as a musical phenomenon, Grammy-nominated Andrés Cárdenes parlays his myriad talents into one of classical music’s most versatile careers. An intensely passionate and personally charismatic artist, Cuban-born Cárdenes has garnered international acclaim from critics and audiences alike for his compelling performances as a violinist, conductor, violist, chamber musician, concertmaster, and recording artist.

Since capturing Second Prize in the 1982 Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition in Moscow, Mr. Cárdenes has appeared as a soloist on four continents with over 100 orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, St. Louis Symphony, Moscow Philharmonic, Dallas Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, Shanghai Symphony, Sinfonica Nacional de Caracas, Sinfonica de Barcelona, and the Bavarian Radio Orchestra. He has collaborated with many of today’s greatest conductors, including Lorin Maazel, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Mariss Jansons, Charles Dutoit, Christoph Eschenbach, Sir André Previn, Leonard Slatkin, Jaap van Zweden, David Zinman and Manfred Honeck.

This year and next Mr. Cárdenes continues his project to record many standard and contemporary concerti. Released in 2009 are recordings of concerti by Brahms, Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Barber and David Stock on the Artek and Albany labels. Plans to record Bartok’s Second Violin Concerto and the new version of the Viola Concerto are slated for 2012, along with other sonata recordings with pianist Ian Hobson. A recording of the complete works for violin by Leonardo Balada was released on Naxos in January 2011, with the complete Sonatas by Hindemith and the Beethoven Violin Concerto on Artek, to be released in the fall of 2011. Cárdenes’s discography includes over two dozen recordings of concerti, sonatas, short works, orchestral and chamber music on the Ocean, Naxos, Sony, Arabesque, RCA, ProArte, Telarc, Artek, Melodya and Enharmonic labels.

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Mark Carver, piano

American pianist Mark Carver was born in Mobile, Alabama and received his earliest musical training in Pittsburgh, PA from Jerry Veeck and Lorraine Gaal Landefeld. Other teachers include Natalie Phillips and Ralph Zitterbart. International artists with whom he has studied are Earl Wild, Jorge Bolet, Jeanne-Marie Darré, Ozan Marsh, John Ogdon, Enrica Cavallo-Gulli, and Pierre Sancan. He has studied at the Chautauqua Institute, Chautauqua, NY, Académie Internationale d'Été, Nice, France, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, and Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA. Mr. Carver holds the degrees of Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Music.

He made his début with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at age 15, and has been a guest artist with the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra, the Plum Creek Chamber Orchestra, and the University of Pittsburgh Orchestra. He has appeared in recital at Steinway Hall, NY, and his début at age 17 at Carnegie Hall, NY, was with the Carnegie Mellon University Wind Ensemble in the première of Introduction and Allegro by Philip Catelinet.

"Total command" and "delightful" (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review) are words used to describe Carver's performances of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue with the River City Brass Band. Called "a stalwart presence in the local music scene" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette), his accompanying for the Pittsburgh Camerata has been regarded as "refined and tasteful" (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).  His work has also been acclaimed by The American Record Guide, Chamber Music America magazine, and Epoch Times.
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Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida, oboe

Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida was appointed by Lorin Maazel as principal oboe of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1991. For two years prior, she was associate principal oboe of the Philadelphia Orchestra under Riccardo Muti.

DeAlmeida received the Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Michigan, studying with Arno Mariotti, and the Master of Music degree from Temple University, as a student of Richard Woodhams. She is also grateful to her other teachers — Sarah Young, Robert Sorton, Elaine Douvas, John Mack, H. Robert Reynolds and Max Rudolf. DeAlmeida proudly plays on F. Loree oboes of Paris, France.

In November 2002, DeAlmeida’s first solo CD was released on the Boston Records label. Classic Discoveries for Oboe was hailed by American Record Guide as “a masterly recording… Cynthia Koledo DeAlmeida is simply one of the finest exponents of the instrument anywhere.” Her second solo CD, entitled Mist Over the Lake on the Crystal Record label, was released in 2006 to rave reviews: “Ms. DeAlmeida is hands down one of the best players in the world…” In 2015, her third CD Silver and Gold was released on the Crystal Records label. Gramophone magazine called her “a poetic artist” and Fanfare magazine wrote “she is a soloist of immense technique and considerable charm…”  DeAlmeida can also be heard on Crystal Records’ recording of Sir Andre Previn’s Sonata for Oboe, Bassoon, and Piano with Sir Andre Previn, as well as all the Pittsburgh Symphony recordings since 1991 under Lorin Maazel, Mariss Jansons, Marek Janowski and Manfred Honeck. In 2009, DeAlmeida travelled to Berlin to perform and record the German Requiem of Brahms with Marek Janowski and the Radio Orchestra of Berlin (RSB) on the Pentatone label.

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James Ehnes, violin

Born in 1976 in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada, James Ehnes has established himself as one of the foremost violinists of his generation. Gifted with a rare combination of stunning virtuosity, serene lyricism and an unfaltering musicality, Ehnes is a favorite guest of many of the world’s most respected conductors including Ashkenazy, Alsop, Sir Andrew Davis, Denève, Dutoit, Elder, Ivan Fischer, Paavo Järvi, Maazel, Noseda, Robertson and Runnicles. Ehnes’s long list of orchestras includes, amongst others, the Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, New York, London Symphony, Philharmonia, BBC Philharmonic, Czech Philharmonic, DSO Berlin and the NHK Symphony orchestras.

Recent and future orchestral highlights include London Symphony with Alsop, Vienna Symphony with Elder, New York Philharmonic with Mena, Orchestre National de France with Gardner, Philadelphia and Boston Symphony Orchestra with Denève, Frankfurt Radio Symphony with Orozco-Estrada, Danish and Washington National Symphony with Noseda, Pittsburgh Symphony with Vänskä, Royal Philharmonic with Dutoit, DSO Berlin and Sydney Symphony with Søndergård, and Oslo Philharmonic with Petrenko.
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Cyrus Forough, violin

Noted for the “fiery intensity” and “poetic vision” of his playing, Cyrus Forough's reviews comprise a lexicon of superlatives in more than a dozen languages. In a recent review of Mr. Forough’s performance of the Debussy’s violin sonata Jim Lowe wrote, “…With a warm sound and deft technique, Forough was an expert musician, utilizing skilled articulations and a broad palette of tonal colors, in delivering Debussy’s unique mix of Romanticism and Impressionism.” 

A Laureate of the Tchaikovsky International Competition, he has won first prize in the Milwaukee Symphony Violin Competition and was a finalist in the Munich International Violin Competition. With his wife Steinway Artist Carolyn McCracken as the Forough/McCracken Duo, they won the United States Artistic Ambassador Program's National Violin/Piano Duo Competition. Mr. Forough also holds the World Academy of Arts, Literature, and Media Award in recognition of his contributions to classical music and education.

Mr. Forough's unique succession of studies in three major cultural centers with three of the twentieth century's most legendary masters make singular his recognition as a prominent representative of the Franco-Belgium school of violin playing. 

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David Harding, viola

David Harding has an extensive solo and chamber music career, having performed throughout Europe, the United States, Canada, Central America and Australia, in such renowned venues as Berlin’s Philharmonie, the Beethovenhaus in Bonn, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, and New York’s 92nd Street Y and Metropolitan Museum of Art. Noted for his “eloquent viola playing” (The Scotsman), David has performed at music festivals around the world, including the Edinburgh International Festival, Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival, Seattle Chamber Music Society, Sitka Chamber Music Festival, Australian Festival of Chamber Music, and Philip Glass’ “Days and Nights Festival” in Big Sur, California. David’s career has involved collaborations with leading instrumentalists and ensembles such as the Pacifica, Shanghai, Cypress, Dover, Fine Arts and Miro Quartets as well as the Gryphon Trio. David was formerly a member of the Toronto String Quartet and the Chester String Quartet  (“one of the country’s best and brightest young string quartets,” — Boston Globe) as well as the Canadian string trio “Triskelion.” With his wife, flutist Lorna McGhee and harpist, Heidi Krutzen, David is a member of Trio Verlaine.
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Sung-Im Kim, piano

Sung-Im Kim was born in Seoul, South Korea. She started playing the piano at the age of seven. Two years later she won first prize in a national competition.

By the age of fifteen, she had her debut as a soloist with the Seoul National Philharmonic Orchestra. She went on to win the Eum Ak Chun Chu and Jung-Ang competitions, amongst the most prestigious in Korea.  She also played many solo and chamber concerts in Seoul, including professional debut recital by Cho-Sun Daily Newspaper.

After obtaining her first degree from Kyung-Won University under Dr.Young-Ho Kim, she continued to study at the Royal Academy of Music under Mr. Frank Wibaut and Mr. Christopher Elton, gaining a Diploma in Advanced Studies and Licentiate Piano Teacher. While in England, she gave solo performances at many venues, including the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields, Glenilla Arts Foundation, and the Pump Room in Bath. In addition, She won prizes including the Haverhill Sinfonia Soloist competition in England, Ibla International Piano competition in Italy, and the Sterndale Bennett Prize at Royal Academy Of Music.
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Marta Krechkovsky, violin

Ukrainian violinist Marta Krechkovsky joined the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra at the beginning of the 2014-2015 season. An experienced performer of orchestral and chamber music, she has been a substitute player with the New York Philharmonic and New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, and was invited to perform with World Orchestra for Peace as a tribute to Sir Georg Solti on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of his birth. 

Krechkovsky has participated in numerous music festivals such as National Arts Center's Young Artists Programme led by Pinchas Zukerman and ChamberFest at the Juilliard School. She has served as concertmaster with Verbier Festival Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra in Switzerland and Pacific Music Festival in Japan. Krechkovsky was personally invited by conductor Valery Gergiev to participate in his Russian Easter Festival in Moscow, where she was a concertmaster. She was also invited by conductor Charles Dutoit to take part in the Miyazaki International Music Festival, held in Japan. 

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Victoria Luperi, clarinet 

Victoria Luperi was appointed associate principal clarinet with the Pittsburgh Symphony in June 2016. She previously served as principal clarinet with the Fort Worth and Winnipeg Symphony Orchestras, and has performed with the Grand Teton, Tanglewood, Verbier and Mainly Mozart Festivals.

Luperi premiered “Fantasía sobre Yma Sumac,” a piece for solo clarinet and orchestra written for her by John B. Hedges (Miguel Harth-Bedoya/Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra). She has appeared as a soloist with the Madison Symphony, Signature Symphony in Tulsa, Debut Orchestra (Los Angeles), Philharmonia of Kansas City, Córdoba Symphony, Córdoba Chamber Orchestra and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.

A devoted chamber musician, Luperi has collaborated with members of the Emerson, Vermeer and Guarneri Quartets, and performed at the Marlboro and Mimir Festivals, the Académie musicale de Villecroze in France, the Oregon Bach Festival, Chicago’s Latino Music Festival and the Forth Worth Chamber Music Society.

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Luz Manriquez, piano

Luz Manríquez was born in Santiago de Chile, where she studied with Elena Weiss at the Escuela Moderna de Música. Upon graduation, she continued to advance her studies under Edith Fisher in Switzerland and María Iris Radrigán at the Catholic University in Chile. Following the completion of her Master's Degree at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Ms. Manríquez was appointed to the faculty as Artist Lecturer in Piano and Chamber Music in 1992. She was promoted to Associate Teaching Professor in 2004. Since 2012, she has also served as the Co-Director of Collaborative Piano.

Ms. Manríquez has been a regular guest of the Shadyside Concert Series and the Frick Art Museum Series. She has performed with the Nuance Music Ensemble, conducted by former PSO Concert Master, Andrés Cárdenes, as well as with the Chamber Music Project Ensemble at the Andy Warhol Museum. Since its founding in 2004 by cellist Aron Zelkowicz, Ms. Manriquez has been a regular guest with PJMF (Pittsburgh Jewish Music Festival). She also appears yearly at the Carnegie Mellon Faculty Chamber Music Series.

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Lorna McGhee, flute

Scottish-born Lorna McGhee is principal flute with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. She has performed as guest principal with Chicago Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, London Symphony, London Philharmonic, Academy of St-Martin-in-the-Fields, Chamber Orchestra of Europe and has been fortunate to work with conductors such as Haitink, Gergiev, Rattle, Solti, Harnoncourt, Muti, and Honeck.  Before immigrating to North America in 1998, Lorna was co-principal flute of the BBC Symphony Orchestra, England. As a soloist, she has given concerto performances with the London Symphony Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in the UK and Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, Toronto Philharmonia, and Victoria Symphony in Canada and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra, Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra, San Luis Obispo Symphony and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in the USA. A career highlight was a performance of Penderecki's flute concerto with the Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra under the baton of the composer in 2004.

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Monique Mead, violin

Violinist, Monique Mead has garnered international acclaim as a performer and ambassador of classical music for audiences of all ages. Collaborating with artists such as Manfred Honeck, Sarah Chang, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Jon Kimura Parker, Leonidas Kavakos, and Lars Vogt as well as prominent athletes, Mead has educated audiences since 1997, creating thousands of new concertgoers annually for major orchestras in the United States and Europe. 

As a soloist, educator and presenter, Mead’s innovative youth and family concerts have been broadcast on German radio and television.  She has performed with and developed long-term programs for ensembles such as the Munich Radio Orchestra, Düsseldorf Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, Berlin Radio Orchestra, Cologne Philharmonic, Neue Philharmonie Westfalen, Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie, Choir of the Berlin Philharmonic, RIAS Chamber Choir, Mexican State Symphony, Krakow Radio Orchestra, Mainly Mozart Festival, Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival, and San Diego Symphony.

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Djordje Nesic, piano

Djordje Stevan Nesic’s pianism has been described as artful, assertive, sensitive and quietly virtuosic, and his career highlighted by recital, concerto, chamber, and collaborative performances, both in the US and his hometown of Belgrade, Serbia. Engagements in 2016 include a recital for the George London Foundation, and performing as the official accompanist for the Joyce DiDonato Carnegie Hall masterclasses.

Recent activity includes a recital with mezzo Isabel Leonard for the Lincoln Center Great Performers Circle, teaching residency in Zagreb, Croatia, a gala concert for the 84th anniversary of Belgrade’s Kolarac Hall, recitals for the Metropolitan Opera Guild, appearances at Opera Saratoga, Asolo Theater in Sarasota, and the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice, as well the Opera America Conference in San Francisco, a teaching residency at the historic Kolarac Hall in Belgrade, performances at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, as well as a live performance on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor. 

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Rodrigo Ojeda, piano

Venezuelan born pianist Rodrigo Ojeda began his piano studies at the age of ten.  He completed his Bachelor's Degree in piano performance at the IUDEM (Institute of Musical Studies) in 1997 under Arnaldo Pizzolante.  In 1999 he went on to complete his graduate studies at Carnegie Mellon University with Enrique Graf where he also remained to complete his Artist Diploma certificate.

Mr. Ojeda has performed on master classes with such notable pianists as Kasimierz Giesrod ( former rector of the Frederic Chopin Academy in Warsaw ), Marek Joblonsky, Georgy Sandor, Marta Gulyas, and Earl Wild.  His solo recitals include performances throughout Venezuela, Ecuador and most recently in the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina.  He has performed concerti from an expansive repertoire of Tchaikovsky, Brahms, Gershwin, Grieg, Schumann, Mozart, Lizt (Totentanz), Cesar Frank and Prokofiev.

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Jennifer Orchard, violin

Canadian violinist Jennifer Orchard has traveled the world performing as a chamber musician, soloist and as first violinist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra since 2001.

Upon graduating from the Juilliard School, Orchard was invited to be a member of the world renowned Lark Quartet. As a legacy from this time period with the quartet, Orchard recorded works of Robert Schumann, Alfred Schnittke, Peter Schickele, Arnold Schoenberg, Alexander Zemlinsky, Amy Beach, Alexander Borodin and the Pulitzer Prize-winning quartet by Aaron Jay Kernis – one of several new works for string quartet commissioned by the Lark Quartet. 

Shortly after arriving in Pittsburgh, Orchard was asked to join the Pittsburgh Piano Trio. Highlights of their career include a trip to Russia to perform at the St. Petersburg Conservatory and the Moscow Conservatory Grand Hall. The trio presented the Russian premiere of the triple Concerto of Paul Juon with the Tchaikovsky State Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Vladimir Fedoseev.

As well as playing with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Orchard enjoys staying active in the chamber music arena. She recently released a world premiere CD of Paul Juon's violin and piano works with pianist Igor Kraevsky. They have another recording project under way that will come out later this year. 
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Dimitri Papadimitriou, piano and Artistic Director

Pianist Dimitri Papadimitriou has distinguished himself as an artist of refined musicianship and personal verve. A passionate avid of chamber music, Dimitri has recently collaborated with many principal musicians from major European and U.S.orchestras, including Noah Bendix-Balgley, concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic, and Andrés Cárdenes, former concertmaster of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. A musician of versatile skills, he has lately developed an interest in conducting that led him to a successful debut on the podium with Chausson’s Symphony in B-flat major and Shostakovich’s Ninth Symphony at the Pierre Monteux Festival and School. Currently a faculty member at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Music in Pittsburgh, he also serves as the Artistic Director of the ‘Carnegie Mellon Chamber Series’, a newly found series that brings together members of the CMU faculty and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Before moving to the U.S., Dimitri was residing in Ireland enjoying a flourishing career with engagements in some of the country’s most prestigious venues and festivals, while completing his Doctorate in Music Performance. A native of Greece, Dimitri at age sixteen won first prize at the international chamber music competition ‘Classical Heritage’ of Moscow, made his debut with the Greek Radio Symphony Orchestra with Rachmaninov’s ‘Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini’ and following an outstanding success, he was invited to perform Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto for a national broadcast. A graduate of Indiana University and the Royal Irish Academy of Music, he has participated in a plethora of festivals throughout Europe and the U.S. www.dimitripapadimitriou.com

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David Premo, cello 

Cellist David Premo joined the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1992, was promoted to Fourth Chair, a non-rotating position in 1994, and subsequent to a national audition in 1999, was offered the position of Assistant Principal. Following another round of national auditions, Mr. Premo was awarded the position of Associate Principal in 2001. Additionally, Mr. Premo has been Artist-Lecturer at Carnegie Mellon University since 1994, providing private cello instruction, coaching chamber music groups and teaching an orchestra repertoire class.

Mr. Premo came to Pittsburgh from Washington D.C., where he served as Associate Principal of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra from 1980 until 1991. During his tenure in Washington, Mr. Premo performed chamber music at the Phillips Collection, the Corcorcan Gallery and the Library of Congress, and served on numerous occasions as principal cellist with the American Chamber Orchestra, the National Gallery Orchestra and the Wolf Trap Festival Orchestra, among others. Mr. Premo performed as a member of the National Symphony Orchestra, both at the Kennedy Center and on several United States and European tours.
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Marylène Gingras-Roy, viola

A native of Québec City, Canada, Marylène Gingras-Roy joined the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra viola section in the 1997 season, and in 2004 was promoted to fourth chair. She studied at the Conservatoire de Musique de Québec with Douglas McNabney and François Paradis and graduated in 1993 with unanimous First Prizes in both in viola and chamber music. She was then the recipient of Canada and Québec Arts Councils' Scholarship Grants, enabling her to attend the Harid Conservatory with Victoria Chiang and the renowned Curtis Institute of Music with Karen Tuttle and Joseph DePasquale, where she earned an Artist Diploma in 1997. 

Marylène has participated in many festivals, including the Festival Dei Due Mondi in Spoleto, Italy, the Solti Project at Carnegie Hall, the Jerusalem Music Festival, the Jeunesses Musicales World Orchestra, where she served as Principal violist, and since 2000 she is a member of the Sun Valley Summer Symphony in Idaho. She is heard regularly in chamber music concerts and maintains a full teaching schedule at Duquesne University, privately and is the viola coach for the Three Rivers Young People Orchestra.

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Vahan Sargsyan, piano

Armenian pianist Vahan Sargsyan graduated from Yerevan Komitas State Conservatoire, under tutelage of Elza Tandilyan and his father, renowned pianist Villi Sargsyan.

Vahan was named Laureate of the International Piano Competition in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Few times he was selected by Pittsburgh Concert Society as winner in solo and chamber music categories. 

Mr. Sargsyan has concertized in Armenia, Georgia, Italy, Russia, Austria, Argentina Brazil, USA and Canada. His recordings are released by Alanna and Aerophon labels.

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Stephen Schultz, baroque flute

Stephen Schultz, called “among the most flawless artists on the Baroque flute" by the San Jose Mercury News and “flute extraordinaire” by the New Jersey Star-Ledger, plays solo and Principal flute with the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra and Musica Angelica and performs with other leading Early music groups such as Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra, Apollo's Fire, Portland Baroque Orchestra, Wiener Akademie, and Chatham Baroque. Concert tours have taken him throughout Europe and North and South America with featured appearances at the Musikverein in Vienna, Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, Royal Albert Hall in London, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, Carnegie Hall, and the Library of Congress.

A graduate of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Holland, Schultz also holds several degrees from the California Institute of the Arts and the California State University of San Francisco. Currently he is an Associate Teaching Professor in Music History and Flute at Carnegie Mellon University and director of the Carnegie Mellon Baroque Orchestra. Mr. Schultz has also been a featured faculty member of the Jeanne Baxtresser International Flute Master Class at Carnegie Mellon University and has taught at the Juilliard School and the International Baroque Institute at Longy School of Music.

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David Sogg, bassoon

David Sogg joined the PSO as Co-Principal Bassoon in 1989.  Raised in San Jose, California, he started his bassoon studies with Jerry Dagg of the San Francisco Opera. A graduate of Harvard College with a major in German literature, David studied with the Boston Symphony’s Sherman Walt, Günter Piesk of the Berlin Philharmonic, and finally Norman Herzberg, to receive a Master of Music from the University of Southern California.  

Following two summer fellowships at the Tanglewood Music Center and before joining the PSO, David served as Principal Bassoon of the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Omaha Symphony and Chamber Orchestra.  He has appeared on numerous occasions with the Berlin Philharmonic, the Minnesota Orchestra, the San Diego Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, and the Pittsburgh Chamber Music Project.  A proponent of new classical music, he has performed contemporary American, Chinese, French, and Russian pieces, including both “Andy Warhol Sez,” a piece written for him by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Paul Moravec, and “The Lunch Counter” written for him by opera and chamber music composer Susan Kander.

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Daniel Teadt, baritone

Internationally acclaimed baritone DANIEL TEADT has performed throughout the United States and Europe in over thirty operatic roles in repertoire spanning more than 400 years. His range of repertoire includes his New York City Opera debut as the title role in Telemann’s Orpheus which followed his critically acclaimed portrayals of Charlie in Jake Heggie’s Three Decembers and the title role in Tobias Picker’s Fantastic Mr Fox. Recently he performed with the Pittsburgh Symphony, Susquehanna Vallay Chorale, Resonance Works, Pittsburgh Song Collaborative and Lyric Fest.

Upcoming he will be appearing with Pittsburgh Opera in Little Women, Akron Symphony for the Faure Requiem, West Liberty Chorale’s Messiah, Resonance Works, Elgar’s The Apostles with the Riverside Symphonia and the New York City premiere of Missa Latina with Canticum Novum. Other notable highlights include Grammy Award winning performances with the London Symphony Orchestra, appearances with Pittsburgh Opera, San Francisco Opera, Aix-en-provence Festival, Arizona Opera, Opera Theatre of St Louis, Anchorage Opera, Ashlawn Opera Festival and Central City Opera among others.

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Anne Martindale Williams, cello

Anne Martindale Williams has enjoyed a successful career as principal cellist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra since 1979. Throughout her tenure with the orchestra, she has often been featured as soloist both in Pittsburgh and on tour in New York at Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall. Williams was soloist with the Pittsburgh Symphony in the Pittsburgh premier of The Giving Tree conducted by the composer, Lorin Maazel. She has also collaborated with guest artists such as Yehudi Menuhin, André Previn, the Emerson Quartet, Lynn Harrell, Joshua Bell, Gil Shaham and Pinchas Zukerman in numerous chamber music performances. She made her London debut performing Dvořák’s Cello Concerto with the Royal Philharmonic, Andre Previn conducting. Her solo in The Swan on the Pittsburgh Symphony’s recording of Carnival of the Animals by Saint-Saëns was described by Grammophon critic Edward Greenfield as “…the most memorable performance of all.”

Williams divides her time between the orchestra, teaching at Carnegie Mellon University, and solo and chamber music performances in America, Europe and the Far East. She has appeared in several nationally televised productions including Concertos, produced by the BBC and Previn and the Pittsburgh, produced by WQED. She has given master classes at many universities and festivals throughout the country, including The Curtis Institute of Music, SUNY at Stony Brook, Manhattan School of Music, the New World Symphony in Miami, the National Orchestral Institute, Aspen, Credo at Oberlin College and the Masterworks Festival. 

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Christopher Wu, violin

Violinist Christopher Wu enjoys a diverse career as an orchestral and chamber musician, teacher and soloist. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, Wu joined the first violin section of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in 1988, and holds the Nancy & Jeffery Leininger First Violin Chair. He has previously served as concertmaster of the Oklahoma City Philharmonic and Riverside Orchestra and has performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at Tanglewood, and the Rochester and Buffalo Philharmonics.

An active chamber musician, Wu has played with a wide range of artists including Nancy Wilson, Joshua Bell, and the Muir String Quartet. He is a founding member of the innovative chamber music group Innuendo, hailed by the Boston Herald as “an ensemble notable for its unanimity of spirit and sonority” and for its “warmly intense interpretive powers.” Chris has appeared in numerous festivals in recent seasons including Aspen, Brevard, Heidelberg, Savannah, Masterwork, Stockbridge and St. Bart’s Music Festival.
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