Bill Evans has been involved with bluegrass music and the banjo for over twenty-five years. For the last several years, Bill has authored "Off the Record," one of the most popular monthly instructional columns for Banjo Newsletter magazine. He has presented banjo workshops across the country at major folk and bluegrass festivals and at Augusta Heritage Center's Bluegrass Week in Elkins, West Virginia. Native and Fine, his Rounder Records debut featuring David Grier, Stuart Duncan and Mike Compton, was awarded an honorable mention for the 1996 Acoustic Instrument Recording of the Year by the Association for Independent Music (AFIM).
Bill served as co-host for the Homespun Tapes video "The Bluegrass Banjo of Sonny Osborne," and is a contributor to the Encyclopedia of Country Music from Oxford University Press. In addition he is the author of "Sonny Osborne: The Bluegrass Collection" and is the co-editor of "The Banjo of J.D. Crowe," both From AcuTab Publications. Bill is the subject of the cover stories in Bluegrass Now (Jan.-Feb.) and Banjo Newsletter (July 1996) magazines.
A doctoral candidate in ethnomusicology from the University of California at Berkeley, Evans has taught courses in American music at the University of San Francisco, the University of Virginia, and Duke University. In 1994-1995, he was the Associate Director of the International Bluegrass Music Museum in Owensboro, Kentucky. In 1997, he was an artist-scholar in residence at Virginia Commonwealth University as part of this university's New Perspectives in the Arts series. Bill was also a recipient of the 1997 Brown Foreman-Al Smith Artist Fellowship in musical composition from the Kentucky Arts Council, this state's highest award for achievement in the arts.
Gianna Abondolo cellist, leads a dynamic career performing regularly as soloist, chamber musician, improviser, and composer. Top prizewinner of the 1988 Young Musician’s Foundation Debut Competition, she gave her New York solo debut performance in 1991 at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall. Born and raised in Los Angeles, she started playing the cello at age eight and subsequently began concertizing, including at the age of 15 a performance of Vivaldi’s double concerto with Yo-Yo Ma and the Crossroads School Orchestra of which Terry McQuilkin of the LA. Times wrote, “clearly a musician of exceptional talent”. In 1991, upon receiving her Masters Degree from the Juilliard School, she won a position with the L.A. Philharmonic Orchestra under the direction of Esa Pekka Salonen, with whom she played for four years. She has played in numerous festivals includingMarlboro, Tanglewood, Steamboat Springs, Santa.Clara Univ. New Music Fest., Other Minds SF, the Santa Barbara Academy of the West, and in Italy at the Accademia Chigiana and the Festivale Positano. Ms. Abondolo resides in the Bay Area where she has played with the Adorno Ensemble, Quartet San Francisco, SF Contemporary Music Players, and as principal cellist of the New Century Chamber Orchestra, the SF Chamber Orchestra, and the Berkeley Akademie. Among the noteworthy composers she has worked with include Joan Tower, John Adams, Esa Pekka Salonen, Lou Harrison, Gabriela Frank, Karen Tanaka, and Alex Shapiro. As a composer herself, her compositional style blends ethnic influences with western classical tradition. Her compositions have been commissioned by dance companies such as The Perks at the Cunningham Space in N.Y. City and at Jacob's Pillow, Santa Barbara Dance Theater, and performed at Oakland Dance Festival, UCSB, Old First Concerts, Santa Clara Univ. New Music Festival, Cal State LA, Strings Showcase in Berkeley, and with theContra Costa Chamber Orchestra. In 2014 she wrote and scored music for the independent film entitled, “Of Stones and Water” that was featured at Santa Barbara Dance Alliance and the Ojai Film Festival. A former lecturer at UC Berkeley, Gianna is on the faculty of Mills College and teaches privately at her home studio.
Jennifer Culp, cellist, is professor of cello and chamber music at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, as well as teaching at Mills College. She enjoyed membership in the Kronos Quartet (1998 - 2005) during which time the quartet was named Musical America's 2003 'Musicians of the Year' and awarded a Grammy for Best Chamber Music Performance of Berg's 'Lyric Suite'. Culp is a former member of the Philadelphia String Quartet and Dunsmuir Piano Quartet and has collaborated with diverse artists such as Asha Bhosle, Irina Schnittke, Tom Waits, Sandor Vegh, Dawn Upshaw, Zakir Hussein, David Bowie and the Romanian Gypsy Band ' Taraf De Haidouks'. She has recorded numerous world premieres on Nonesuch, New Albion, CRI, Orion, New World and Sony. Recently, Thomas Sleeper's Cello Concerto, a world premiere recording with the Brno Philharmonic, was released on Albany Records. When away from the cello, favorite activities include bird-watching, hiking and staring out at the Pacific Ocean, while drinking 'Marriage Freres' Earl Grey Tea (avec blue flowers).
Cellist and Composer Joan Jeanrenaud has been involved in music for over 40 years. Growing up in Memphis Tennessee she was exposed to the sounds of the blues, Elvis, soul and classical music. She learned to play her instrument from cellists Peter Spurbeck, Fritz Magg and Pierre Fournier, studied jazz with David Baker and Joe Henderson and worked with Kronos Quartet as cellist for 20 years. For the past 15 years she has been involved with solo and collaborative projects in composition, improvisation, electronics, and multi-disciplinary performance. She has completed more than 60 compositions for cello, small ensembles and multi-media. Her compositions and recordings are featured in films (‘Born This Way’; ‘John Brown’s Body’; ’Saltwater’), installations (‘Chrysopylae’ by Doug Hall; ‘ARIA’ with collaborator Alessandro Moruzzi), museums (‘Body Language’ at the MET), theater and dance performances (Joe Goode, AXIS, ODC). Her CD, ‘Strange Toys’, was nominated for a 2008 Grammy and her recent 2016 release, ‘Visual Music’, appears on her record label Deconet Records. Go to http://www.jjcello.com for more information.
Beth Custer is a San Francisco based composer, performer, bandleader, and the proprietor of BC Recordswho composes for theatre, film, dance, television, and the concert stage. She has created scores for Left Coast Chamber Ensemble, Zeitgeist, Earplay, City Winds, and Turtle Island and Kronos String Quartets; for theatre productions of Campo Santo Theatre, Berkeley and San Diego Repertory Theatres, Magic Theatre, California Shakespeare, Overtone Industries, and Cornerstone Theatre; for dance troupes Joe Goode Goode Performance Group, Roco Dance, Flyaway Productions, Ledoh, Harupin Ha, and Osseus Labyrinth; for films of Brad Coley, William Farley, Cathy Lee Crane, Melinda Stone, KQED, CBS/Film Roman, and Koohan Paik, andmusicals with award winning writer Octavio Solis. Her collaborative scores with inventor and MacArthur Fellow Trimpin lead her to compose Vinculum Symphony, a site-specific, large-scale work that unites chamber musicians with experimental instrument builders. She has toured internationally and has over fifty recordings out with her ensembles Eighty Mile Beach, Clarinet Thing, Trance Mission, The Beth Custer Ensemble and Club Foot Orchestra. Her numerous awards include a six week artist residency in an Italian castle at Civitella Ranieri.
Beginning in 1992, when his group New Klezmer Trio "kicked open the door for radical experiments with Ashkenazi roots music" (SF Chronicle), clarinetist Ben Goldberg has established himself as “one of the most vibrant, flexible, and inventive clarinetists in jazz and improvised music” (Downbeat), “an artist who seems to find beautiful melodies at the end of every path." (NPR). Through his many bands and compositional projects The New York Times has noted Ben’s music for “a feeling of joyous research into the basics of polyphony and collective improvising,” and he was named #1 Rising Star Clarinetist in the Downbeat Critics Poll in both 2011 and 2013. In 2015 Ben released Orphic Machine, a song-cycle with lyrics from the “speculative poetics” of Allen Grossman, performed by a nine piece ensemble including Nels Cline, Ron Miles, and Ches Smith, and sung by violinist Carla Kihlstedt. The LA Times called Orphic Machine “knotted and occasionally spooky composition marked by dazzling interplay.”
Ben also leads or co-leads: The Out Louds, Invisible Guy, Unfold Ordinary Mind; Go Home, “a searching ensemble that welcomes lyrical improvisation while embracing the groove” (The New Yorker); Ben Goldberg School; and Ben Goldberg Trio with Greg Cohen and Kenny Wollesen. He is a member of the avant-chamber jazz ensemble Tin Hat; and performs in a duo with pianist Myra Melford called DIALOGUE. Other affiliations include plays monk; Myra Melford’s Be Bread; Kris Davis’ Infrasound; Nels Cline’s New Monastery; Todd Sickafoose’s Tiny Resistors; Allison Miller’s Boom Tic Boom; and Clarinet Thing. The 11-piece Ben Goldberg's Brainchild performs Ben's on-the-spot compositions.
Larry London did his undergraduate work at Harvard and earned a Master's degree in composition at Mills College. He studied with Darius Milhaud, Terry Riley, and Lou Harrison. He has played clarinet in all of the Bay Area's professional orchestras. His compositions have been performed at the Aspen and Cabrillo Music Festivals, by the Oakland Symphony and the San Francisco Symphony chamber series.
Tom Rose earned a BA in Music Education from San Francisco State University in 1962 and an MFA in Performance from Mills College in 1973. While studying at Mills he performed in several concerts for Darius Milhaud, including Mr. Milhaud’s farewell concert. He studied clarinet with Earl Smith, Leon Russianoff, and Rosario Mazzeo. After earning his BA he served in the military, played with the Ft. Wayne Philharmonic, the Oklahoma City Symphony and taught instrumental music in the Oakland and Berkeley Public Schools. He has been Principal Clarinetist with the Music in the Mountains Festival Orchestra, Grass Valley, CA since its founding, in 1982. From 1988 until 2010, he served as Personnel Manager of the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra. Rose is a member of two performing ensembles: TRIO BRILLANTE (clarinet, viola, and piano), and GRAHAM-GRABER-ROSE TRIO (cello, piano, and clarinet). With pianist Miles Graber he has released two CDs—in 2004 and 2016 —Music for Clarinet and Piano, Volumes 1 & 2. Tom has been on the Mills Music Faculty since 1974.
Sandra Soderlund is organist at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley besides teaching harpsichord, clavichord, and organ at Mills College. Dr. Soderlund holds degrees from Stanford University, the University of Southern California, and Bethany College, Lindsborg, Kansas. She is the editor of scholarly editions of keyboard works, the author of articles on performance practices and of a book, "Organ Technique: An Historical Approach." She has recorded for Arkay and Albany Records.
Ellen Fullman has been developing her installation, the Long String Instrument, for over 30 years; exploring the acoustics of large resonant spaces with her compositions and collaborative improvisations. She has been the recipient of numerous awards, commissions and residencies including: Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists (2015); Center for Cultural Innovation Grants (2008 and 2013); Japan/U.S. Friendship Commission/NEA Fellowship for Japan (2007); and DAAD Artists-in-Berlin residency (2000). Fullman has recorded extensively with this unusual instrument. Releases include: The Long String Instrument (Superior Viaduct, 2015) first issued on Apollo Records in 1985 and selected as the number one reissue for 2015 by the Wire; Through Glass Panes (Important Records, 2011); Fluctuations, with trombonist Monique Buzzarté (Deep Listening Institute, 2007), and Ort, recorded with Berlin collaborator Konrad Sprenger (Choose Records, 2005). Fullman’s work was cited by Alvin Lucier in his Music 109: Notes on Experimental Music (Wesleyan University Press, 2012) and by David Byrne in How Music Works (McSweeney’s, 2012. In 2016 Ellen served on the faculty of the Milton Avery School of the Arts Summer MFA Program at Bard College and was invited to give the Distinguished Alumni Lecture at the Kansas City Art Institute.
Composer Wendy Reid is known for her Tree Pieces, an on-going set of musical processes which attempt to reflect nature’s manner of operations. Contextual in nature, these electro-acoustic cross-species compositions attempt to reflect the inter-connection of all things (including ourselves) in nature. In performance, with 'formation as process', an attempt is made at a spontaneous unforced and unblocked growing of sound and silence in which emphasis is placed on formation rather than pre-established form, as in the building and shaping of cell-like units in living processes.
Wendy Reid received degrees from Mills College (MA), USC School of Performing Arts (BM), and attended Stanford University, Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics. Between 1975-77, she was a private pupil of Nadia Boulanger in Paris and Les Ecoles D’Art Americaines at Fontainbleau. Composers she has studied under include Terry Riley, Robert Ashley, Halsey Stevens, James Hopkins and film composer David Raksin. Her works have been performed and broadcast throughout the United States, Europe and Asia by the Abel-Steinberg-Winant Trio, the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, the Kronos Quartet, the New MusicWorks Ensemble, the San Francisco String Quartet, Ruffled Feathers, Brassiosaurus, the Tree Ensemble, Charles Amirkhanian -Other Minds, Tom Dambly, William Banovetz, Nathan Rubin, and many more wonderful musicians/ensembles. Scores, CDs, CV, etc. can be found at treepieces.net.
Michelle Caimotto made her international debut with the San Francisco Symphony sight reading a performance of Mahler’s Symphony #7 at the 2007 Edinburgh Festival. She has toured extensively and recorded with the San Francisco Symphony, and can be heard on the Grammy Award winning Mahler Symphony #8, as well as other SFS recordings. Highly sought after as an extra and substitute musician, Ms. Caimotto has performed in every chair of the flute section of the San Francisco Symphony, Opera, and Ballet Orchestras. She is also active in the commercial recording industry, and plays with Broadway touring shows.
Ms. Caimotto is the principal flutist of the Festival Opera and West Bay Opera orchestras, piccoloist of the California Symphony, and section member of the Symphony Silicon Valley. She is on the faculties of California State University East Bay, Mills College, and the Northern California Flute Camp.
Douglas Hull (horn) played 16 seasons, starting in 1995, with the San Francisco Symphony, and he is currently principal horn of the California Symphony. In addition, Mr. Hull is an active freelancer and plays regularly with such noted ensembles as the San Francisco Opera and Ballet Orchestras, and the Berkeley Symphony.
While teaching at Mills, Mr. Hull is also a private teacher and coach shaping the lives of young musicians in the Bay Area. Mr. Hull was born in Tacoma, Washington, and began studying horn at age ten. He received his Bachelor of Music degree from University of Puget Sound, where he studied with Christopher Leuba, and his Masters from Northwestern University, where he was a student of Richard Oldberg.
Stephen Parris is a composer, instrument builder, and improviser. He currently directs Gamelan Encinal, a new music American aluminum gamelan ensemble, and is a performer with Gamelan Sari Raras at UC Berkeley. Before his relocation to the Bay Area, he performed as a member of Gamelan Pacifica. As a guitarist,he played and recorded as a member of various groups as part of the Monktail Creative Music Concern including but not limited to Special OPS, Non Grata, and Figeater. His playing can be heard on Lou Harrison - Scenes From Cavafy on New World Records, Gamelan Pacifica - Nourishment on Blind Stone Records, Special O.P.S. - Backdoor Draft on Monktail Records, and Figeater- Sweet Figeater Surprise on Bunny Blasto Records. As a member of the Monktail Creative Music Concern, he has been in projects that were awarded 2 Earshot Jazz Golden Ear awards, and the Pretty Good Artist award from Tablet magazine. Stephen holds a Bachelors of Music from Cornish College of the Arts and a Masters in music composition from Mills College.
Karen Gottlieb has performed with the San Francisco Symphony as second harpist for more than 30 years. She toured extensively with them on their USA, European and Asian tours as well as performed on their many grammy award winning recordings and DVDs. For 20 years she served as principal harpist with the California Symphony and also as a member of the SF Symphony- ‘AIM’ ensembles including 4 Sounds, Strings & Things, THAT! Group and Silver & Gold, Plus. Her CD "Music for Harp", produced by Innova Records features composers of the San Francisco Bay Area and has received much much acclaim and honorable mentions. (More info can be found on her website.)
Ms. Gottlieb is the harpist for the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players & Opera Parallele and has appeared regularly with other new music groups-Earplay, Empyrean & Left Coast Ensembles. She has recorded multiple major film, TV and video game sound tracks with the Skywalker Recording Symphony orchestra and subbed with both the San Francisco Opera & Ballet orchestras.
Ms. Gottlieb received her Bachelors at University of Washington, Seattle and her Masters in Performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music. She teaches harp at SF State University, Mills College and privately. As a certified harp technician for Lyon & Healy and Salvi Harps, Ms. Gottlieb maintains and repairs harps locally, on the west coast and Mexico. More info and details can be found on her website: www.kgharp.com
Janice Ortega is classically trained in harp performance with many of the finest musicians at music schools in America and Europe. Learn more about her background and performance.
“Harp instruction is a delight for me! It is a privilege to be involved in the creative learning process of my students. Because the harp can be a difficult instrument to learn, I teach all aspects of harp technique along with a general knowledge of music.” Janice teaches both Salzedo and Grandjany methods of playing the harp. Learn more about her harp instruction.
Janice’s performance experience includes the Royal Concertgeboiuw Orchestra, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Kiril Kondrashin, conductor, Skywalker Ranch, and a variety of orchestral, chamber and solo performance experience. More information is available at www.bayareaharp.com.
Tom Nugent holds a Bachelors of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where he was a student of renowned oboist Marc Lifschey. Mr. Nugent is a founding member of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble and currently holds the Principal Oboe position in the Sacramento Philharmonic, Sacramento Opera, Sacramento Choral Society, Stockton Symphony, Mendocino Music Festival and the Bear Valley Music Festival. He has also performs with the Oakland Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, San Jose Symphony, Fremont Symphony, and the Marin Symphony. Mr. Nugent has performed as soloist with the Sacramento Philharmonic, Stockton Symphony, Mendocino Music Festival Orchestra, Bear Valley Music Festival, Reno Baroque Ensemble, and the Diablo Ballet.
An avid teacher, he is on the faculty of the University of the Pacific Conservatory of Music and performs as Artists in Residence with the Pacific Arts Woodwind Quintet. Mr. Nugent is also the oboe instructor at Mills College. Mr. Nugent also plays electric bass in a blues band in the bay area. A passionate home winemaker, Mr. Nugent has been making wine for 10 years and studied enology at Napa Valley College.
William Winant, "one of the best avant-garde percussionists working today" according to music critic Mark Swed (Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal), has performed with some of the most innovative and creative musicians of our time, including John Cage, Iannis Xenakis, Keith Jarrett, Anthony Braxton, James Tenney, Cecil Taylor, Steve Reich and Musicians, Jean-Philippe Collard, Frederic Rzewski, Ursula Oppens, Joan LaBarbara, Oingo Boingo, and the Kronos String Quartet. He is principal percussionist with the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players and the John Zorn Chamber Ensemble. Since 1995 he has been the percussionist with the avant-rock band Mr. Bungle, has made two recordings ("Disco Volante" and "California" on Warner Brothers), and has toured throughout the world with the group. In March of 1997 he participated in the world premiere of Lou Harrison's quintet "Rhymes with Silver" featuring cellist Yo-Yo Ma and the Mark Morris Dance Group, and has toured the piece throughout the United States and Great Britain. In the fall of 2003, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, Mr. Winant, along with composers Takehisa Kosugi and Christian Wolff, created music for a series of eight special "Events" staged by Merce Cunningham and Dancers at London's Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern. He has made over 130 recordings, covering a wide variety of genres, including music by Earle Brown, John Zorn, Pauline Oliveros, Luc Ferrari, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Danny Elfman ("Batman Returns"), Souxie and the Banshees, The Ex, Han Bennink, White Out with Jim O'Rourke, and the Thurston Moore Trio. His recording of Lou Harrison's "La Koro Sutro" (which he produced for New Albion Records) was the New York Times Critic's Choice for best contemporary recording of 1988. In 1999 he produced a recording of 20th-century avant-garde composers with the influential rock band Sonic Youth; "Goodbye 20th-Century" (SYR4) was hailed by both The Los Angeles Times and New York's Village Voice as one of the best compendiums of this type of music ever recorded.
Many composers have written works for him, including John Cage, Lou Harrison, John Zorn, Peter Garland, Alvin Curran, Chris Brown, David Rosenboom, Gordon Mumma, Alvin Lucier, Terry Riley, Fred Frith, Somei Satoh, and Wadada Leo Smith. Mr. Winant has been featured as a guest artist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic (under the direction of Pierre Boulez), the San Francisco Symphony, and the Berkeley Symphony, as well as at Cabrillo Festival, Ravinia Festival, Salzburg Festival, Holland Festival, Ojai Festival, All Tomorrowís Parties, Taklos, Other Minds, Lincoln Center, Royal Festival Hall, Library of Congress, the Barbican, and Brooklyn Academy of Music. For ten years he was principal percussionist with the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra (Dennis Russell Davies, director), and timpanist with the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra 1985-1989 (Nicholas McGegan, director). He is a Visiting Lecturer at the University of California at Santa Cruz, and teaches at Mills College and the University of California at Berkeley. For eight years Mr. Winant was Artist-in-Residence at Mills College with the critically acclaimed Abel-Steinberg-Winant Trio. Formed in 1984, the ASW Trio has premiered over 25 new works for violin, piano, and percussion at major festivals and recitals throughout the world. Their recordings can be heard on the New Albion, Tzadik, and CRI/New World labels.
Belle Bulwinkle is known as a performer on both early and modern pianos. The San Francisco Chronicle described her playing as “terrific technically as well as expressively. One seldom hears so much finesse…”. Lou Harrison dedicated his Concerto for Piano and Javanese Gamelan to her. She played the world premiere of this work at Mills College and a second performance at the Cabrillo Festival. She has given the first US performances of works by international composers Jack Body, Marcello Panni, Anthony Payne and Makiko Nishikaza.
As a fortepianist she has performed at Davies Symphony Hall, UC Santa Cruz, Cornell University, Santa Rosa Symphony Summer Festival, Hausmusik, Old First Concerts, Cascade Head (OR) Music Festival, Musicsources and Mills College. She gave the dedicatory recital of a new fortepiano at Palomar College, and she was a soloist at the Antverpiano91 Festival in Belgium. In May 2014, she was both a performer and a panelist at the Keyboard Festival at UC Davis.
Her recordings include the Harrison concerto on the Leonardo label, songs of Darius Milhaud on Music & Arts, and Jose Maceda’s Sujeichon on Tzadik. Ms. Bulwinkle is on the performance faculty at Mills College where she frequently appears in concert. She has taught music history and theory at Mills and at the California College of Arts.
Piano (Jazz Piano and Vocal, Jazz and Popular Vocal)
Pianist, composer and arranger Larry Dunlap is at home in jazz, classical and popular styles of music. He lives in the San Francisco area with his wife Bobbe Norris, a renowned jazz and cabaret vocalist.
Larry has appeared with Cleo Laine and John Dankworth since the early 1980s and has performed extensively with many other well-known musical artists including Mark Murphy, Art Farmer and The Pointer Sisters. He has composed music for small and large jazz groups, chamber and symphonic orchestras and is in demand as an arranger and pianist in a variety of contexts. He has also served as musical consultant to Gordon Getty.
Larry's recordings include several CDs of music by the Cape Verdian composer Amandio Cabral. With his wife he has a record company which has released several of their recordings, most recently Bobbe Norris' "Out Of Nowhere".
Steve Adams is active both as a composer and a performer on saxophones, flutes and electronics. Steve is best known as a member of the Rova Saxophone Quartet, with whom he has played for over twenty five years and released more than twenty five recordings. Rova has been called "one of the most daring ensembles of any instrumentation to emerge in recent years" by Downbeat magazine. He has performed with Anthony Braxton, Sam Rivers, Dave Holland, Roscoe Mitchell, John Zorn, Steve Lacy, Fred Frith, Tin Hat Trio, Yo! Miles with Henry Kaiser and Wadada Leo Smith and Ted Nugent, as well as many other jazz, rock, dance and theater groups. Steve has performed the premieres of numerous classical compositions, including Prisoner of Love by Robert Aldridge for soprano saxophone and piano, Thomas Oboe Lee’s Saxxologie… A Sextet for saxophone sextet and Louie MCMLV for saxophone quartet, and Passing Timeby Jon Nelson for tenor saxophone and computer-generated tape. He performed Edmund Campion’s Corailfor saxophone and computer-generated electronics with the Berkeley Symphony and at the Ojai Music Festival.
Steve has appeared on more than fifty recordings, and has six recordings as leader or co-leader on the 9 Winds, Clean Feed and pfMENTUM labels. His piece Cage (for John Cage) was performed at the 1993 Bang on a Can festival, and his piece The Gene Pool was commissioned in 1993 by Meet the Composer and performed at their festival “The Works” in Minneapolis in 2002. He received a California Arts Council Fellowship in 2000. Steve is a graduate of the School of Contemporary Music in Brookline, MA and studied composition with Alan Crossman, Christopher Yavelov and Thomas Oboe Lee, saxophone with David Birkin and Indian music with Peter Row and Steve Gorn.
Saxophonist, composer, improviser and electronics. A founding member of the Rova Saxophone Quartet Jon Raskin's early career include his '70s participation in new music ensembles directed by John Adams (San Francisco Conservatory of Music) and Dr. Barney Childs (University of Redlands). Before Rova, Raskin served as music director of the Tumbleweed Dance Company (1974-77), was a founding member of the Blue Dolphin Alternative Music Space and participated in the creation of the Farm- an art project that included a city farm, a community garden, Ecology Center, Dance and Theater companies and organized the creation of a city park. Highlights as a member of Rova include composing a collaborative work for SF Taiko Dojo/Rova, working with Howard Martin on the installation work “Occupancy”, composing music for Mr. Bungle/ Rova, organizing the 30 year Anniversary Concert of John Coltrane's Ascension, performing the music of Miles Davis at the Fillmore with Yo Miles! , the Glass Head Project with Shinichi Iova-Koga and Inkboat and the ongoing Electric Ascension Project. He has recorded with Tim Berne, Glenn Spearman, Anthony Braxton, Henry Kasier, Terry Riley and over 25 recordings with Rova.
Jay Rizzetto received a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, a Master of Music from the New England Conservatory of Music and was a fellow at the Institute de Hautes etudes Musicales in Switzerland. He has performed in numerous musical settings including, opera, ballet, chamber ensemble, Broadway musicals, radio, and television where his trumpet was the "voice" of KCBS Eyewitness news. Mr. Rizzetto has performed with numerous ensembles, including the San Francisco Ballet, San Francisco Opera, San Francisco Contemporary Chamber Music Players, California Brass Quintet, Orpheum Theater, and Golden Gate theater. He has worked with many musical icons including Aaron Copland, Frank Sinatra, Luciano Pavarotti, Krysztof Penderecki and Arturo Sandoval. Mr. Rizzetto has premiered numerous solo compositions for trumpet, including most recently, "King Lear Sonata" for Trumpet and Organ by the award winning composer Larry Delinger. Mr. Rizzetto is the author of various works for trumpet including his recent text "An Anthology of Lyric Pieces for Trumpet." Mr. Rizzetto also has a long career as a trumpet teacher. Many of his students have gone on to successful careers in the music profession as teachers, performers and composers in all musical idioms.
Peter Wahrhaftig is the Principal Tubaist of the San Francisco Ballet Orchestra, the Sun Valley Summer Symphony, the San Francisco Contemporary Chamber Players, and the Bay Brass. Additionally, he performs frequently with the San Francisco Opera, and many other Bay Area groups. He is active as a recording musician, on movie and video game soundtracks, as well as orchestral and chamber music recordings. He maintains an active private studio, in addition to being on the faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. His primary studies were with Arnold Jacobs and Floyd Cooley.
Viola de Gamba
Elisabeth Reed teaches Baroque cello and viola da gamba at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where she is co-director of the Baroque Orchestra. Her playing has been described in the press as, “intense, graceful, suffused with heat and vigor” and “Elisabeth Reed provided the authentic Baroque sound, with her delicately nuanced and powerful playing of the Baroque cello and viola da gamba.” A member of the American Bach Soloists, Voices of Music, and Wildcat Viols, she has also appeared with the Seattle, Portland, and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestras, and at the Boston Early Music Festival, the Berkeley Early Music Festival, the Ohai Festival, the Whidbey Island Music Festival, and the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival. A graduate of the North Carolina School of the Arts, the Oberlin Conservatory, the Eastman School of Music, and Indiana University's Early Music Institute, she can be heard on the Virgin Classics, Focus, and Magnatune recording labels. She also teaches baroque cello and viola da gamba at the University of California at Berkeley. Highlights of this current season include performances of Haydn trios with Ian Swensen and Ken Slowik at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.; 17th century German chamber music with Monica Huggett in Portland, OR; French Baroque chamber with Byron Schenkman and Ingrid Matthews and the St. John Passion with Steven Stubbs and Pacific Musicworks in Seattle, WA. She is a Guild-certified practitioner of the Feldenkrais Method of Awareness Through Movement, with a focus on working with musicians and performers.
Icelandic violinist Hrabba Atladottir studied in Austria and in Berlin, Germany. Hrabba worked as a freelancing violinist in Berlin for five years, regularly playing with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Deutsche Oper, and Deutsche Symphonieorchester. In 2004, Hrabba moved to New York, playing on a regular basis with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, Orchestra of St. Luke's and New Jersey Symphony Orchestra among other orchestras. Hrabba has worked closely with major composers such as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Helmut Lachenmann and Kaija Saariaho. She has also toured with pop artist Björk and violinist Nigel Kennedy.
Since August 2008, Hrabba is based in Berkeley, California, where she has been performing as a soloist and with most major ensembles in the area, and also serves as lecturer in Violin at UC Berkeley. Joshua Kosman, music critic of San Francisco Chronicle, praised her performance of Vivaldi's "Spring" with the New Century Chamber Orchestra, and called her violin playing "delicate but fervent".
Kobialka holds a unique place in the world of music. Clearly a prodigy, an accomplished and creative performer, Kobialka’s interest in contemporary music was sparked while he was a boy. His father played violin with the Stradivarius String Quartet, and the household was filled with music, from Beethoven to Bartok and Schoenberg. Kobialka was the founding concertmaster and soloist at the Greater Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra, where he played alongside John Adams, one of his high school friends who is now regarded as one of the foremost contemporary composers of our time. Other important relationships that influenced Kobialka’s musical talents include such legendary musicians and composers as Lou Harrison, Harry Partch, Vivian Fine and Henry Brant. "A sensitive and intelligent performer with a natural gift for his instrument." Aaron Copland.
Kobialka is widely sought after internationally as a performer and lecturer, as well as composer. He has performed at major events in Europe, Taiwan and Japan where his recordings are best sellers. The Japanese government awarded him a Medium Term Grant to study traditional and contemporary music. During this same period Kobialka performed a newly commissioned work of Benjamin Lees, Sonata No.2 for Violin and Piano, the world premiere a the International Cultural Center in Tokyo. He also gave a lecture recital at the Fukushima Music Arts Festival. One of his most recent appearances was documented on a commercial video released by Prem Promotion Ltd. Of Tokyo, Japan. Dr. Aiyoshi Kawahata, states, "The gentle, sweet melodies pulsing form your music relaxes my heart and fills my mind with happiness."
He is completing a new book on the effects of Music Therapy, and the healing arts arenas, which will be a powerful work representing some of the tremendous research and new techniques that are being used to reduce stress, illness, and increase longevity in a more balanced living style of all ages.
Kobialka is continually pioneering new explorations into music that will be a wonderful resource for the both the general public and the various medical modalities in the healing arts.
With vocal flair and dramatic mastery, Miriam Abramowitsch is acknowledged as a leading interpreter of both classic and contemporary song in more than ten languages. According to the San Francisco chronicle, "she has the rare internal stuff of which the fine Lieder singer is made." In 1998 she sang the world premiere of David Del Tredici's "Chana's Story" with the composer at the piano. Set to the poetry of Chana Bloch, the cycle was commissioned for Ms. Abramowitsch by Marie Damrell Gallo. The enthusiastic reception of its first performance called for its New York premiere in 1999 at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall. Previously she was featured in a performance of Schoenberg's famed "Pierrot Lunaire" for its 75th anniversary, presented at the University of Southern California's Schoenberg Institute. The Los Angeles Herald-Examiner found her an "exceptionally gifted singer-speaker," and another of her numerous performances of "Pierrot Lunaire" prompted the San Francisco Chronicle to note that "her affinity is exceptional; no one does it more effectively."
Based in California, Ms. Abramowitsch regularly performs as guest soloist with numerous contemporary music groups such as the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, the Monday Evening Concerts series in Los Angeles and Composers, Inc. She sang the title role in the world premiere of Charles Wuorinen's opera "The W of Babylon" with the San Francisco Symphony's New and Unusual Music series. Other premieres include works by Ralph Shapey, Ursula Mamlok, Gerhard Samuel, Harold Blumenfeld, Tom Cipullo and many others.
In addition to the song literature, Ms. Abramowitsch has a large and Varied orchestral repertoire, from the classic works of Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Brahms, Handel and Verdi to Mahler, Stravinsky, Durufle and Berlioz. On compact disc for the Music & Arts label, Ms Abramowitsch has recorded Schubert's "Winterreise" with George Barth, fortepiano, and songs of Darius Milhaud. A future release is planned of Del Tredici's "Chana's Story," with Mr. Del Tredici at the piano.
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