About the 2012-2013 First Muse Chamber Music Artists

The Amenda Quartet (October7) (Patricia Sunwoo and David Brickman, violins; Melissa Matson, viola; Mimi Hwang, cello)

Violinist Patricia Sunwoo had long entertained the notion of performing a "Beethoven cycle" - that is, performing all 16 of Beethoven's string quartets in a series of concerts. The Beethoven quartets are revered by musicians and loved by audiences.  Spanning the master's creative life, within them one finds expressed the spectrum of human experience - joy and anger, jocularity and gravity, despair and exaltation.  
    It was with little difficulty that Patricia enlisted three colleagues to undertake the project which might be considered the "Mount Everest" of the chamber music repertoire. (The Amenda musicians plan to achieve this without the use of supplemental oxygen.)  
    Formed in January, 2010, the AQ has performed in Hatch Hall and Kilbourn Hall at the Eastman School of Music, on the RIT Performing Artist series, on the Chamber Music Rochester and First Music series, and in the Performance Hall of the Hochstein School of Music.  The AQ brings its music to a diverse audience in all manner of venues.  (see individual bios at bottom of page)
 
 
Violinist David Brickman (October 7, May 5) is known for his highly personal interpretations of the solo and chamber music repertoire.  He is the Principal Second Violinist of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the Concertmaster of The Rochester Chamber Orchestra.  He has also played with the Pittsburgh, Columbus, Honolulu, Milwaukee, and National Arts Center Orchestras.  An Associate Professor at the Eastman School of Music, Mr. Brickman prepares graduate students for orchestral careers.  He resides in Rochester with his wife, violinist Patricia Sunwoo, and his daughters, Claire and Lillian. 







 

Since joining the RPO as Principal Flute in September 1996, Rebecca Gilbert (February 17) has illuminated the RPO’s classical and pops performances with her expressive and versatile playing. She also has performed as Acting Principal Flute of the St. Louis Symphony and Guest Assistant Principal Flute with the Boston Symphony at Tanglewood. An active soloist/recitalist, Ms. Gilbert has performed with the Society for Chamber Music in Rochester, Live from Hochstein, Skaneateles Festival, Charleston’s Piccolo Spoleto Festival, the Charles Ives Center for the Arts Contemporary Music Festival and the Chautauqua Chamber Players. She is a regularly featured soloist with the RPO and has performed concerti with the St. Louis Symphony, the Charleston (SC) Symphony, Cincinnati Philharmonia Orchestra and the Penfield (NY) Symphony Orchestra.

A Wisconsin native, Ms. Gilbert began playing the flute at age nine and went on to attend the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, earning her master’s degree, and the Centre International de Formation Musicale in Nice, France. Ms. Gilbert teaches flute at Ithaca College and in her home studio and is a coach/mentor with the Rochester Philharmonic Youth Orchestra.



 The music of award-winning composer Marek Harris (May 5) has been played throughout the United States, Europe and Japan by some of the world's most prominent musicians and ensembles. His New Angels for solo violin and orchestra was commissioned and premiered by David Brickman and the RPO; and his Duo-Sonata #3 for violin and viola was commissioned and premiered by First Muse. Mr. Harris' music has been acclaimed by critics as "original and uncompromising," "beautiful and communicative" and "colorful and lyrical." His extensive catalog of works included six symphonies, an oratorio, seven concertos, and numerous solo, orchestral, vocal and chamber music compositions.
    Among his recent works are the piano quintet Voodoo Trances-Spectral Dances; Requiem for the Victims of Hurricane Katrina (for four solo voices, chorus and orchestra); and La Clique (for alto saxophone, four trumpets, four trombones, guitar and rhythm section). Mr. Harris earned degrees from the Eastman and Juilliard Schools of Music where he studied with David Diamond, Samuel Adler, and Pulitzer Prize recipient Joseph Schwantner. He is an accomplished pianist and arranger whose diverse musical interests are reflected in his broad experience as an arranger, accompanist, and studio musician. He resides in New York City and Portland, Oregon where he embraces his passion for cycling.

 
Kathleen Murphy Kemp
(February 17 )is Assistant Principal Cellist of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and has been a full-time member of the cello section since 1977. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, she earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Performance and Literature, as well as the Performer’s Certificate. Ms. Kemp serves on the Collegiate and Community Education faculties of the Eastman School, as well as serving as coordinator of Eastman’s Orchestral Studies Diploma Program. She is also co-chair of the string faculty of Rochester’s Hochstein School of Music.
    Her teachers include Ron Leonard, Alan Harris, Jeff Holm, Gabor Rejto, and Robert Newkirk. She participated in master classes with Gregor Piatigorsky and Janos Starker. In addition to giving numerous solo and chamber music recitals, Kathleen was a member of Cello Divas, and has performed with the Society for Chamber Music, Rochester Chamber Orchestra, Skaneateles Music Festival, Fortissimo Music Festival, Roycroft Music Festival, Aspen Music Festival, Music Academy of the West, and Sarasota Festival. She was a finalist in the Hudson Valley Solo competition and won the concerto competition at Music Academy of the West.
    As a strong advocate for music education, Kathleen served more than 10 years on the Rochester Philharmonic Youth orchestra Board, and during her tenure developed the mentor program (RPO musicians coaching RPYO students). She is co-founder of Chamber Music at the Hochstein School, a program for beginning through advanced young musicians with an interest in learning the art of great chamber music playing. Kathleen devotes much of her time to educational volunteerism, and has been honored with the RPO Volunteer Recognition Award and the Philharmonic Leagues Fanfare Award for Education. She has served on the Board of the Rochester Philharmonic orchestra and was a parent advocate on the Greece (NY) School Board on behalf of school counselors and librarians.
 



Violist Melissa Matson (October 7, February 17, May 5), artistic director of First Muse Chamber Music, is the Principal Violist of the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. She also performs frequently with Chamber Music Rochester and with the Skaneateles (NY) Festival. A California native, she received her degrees and the Performer’s Certificate from Eastman, where she teaches viola orchestral repertoire. Ms. Matson was a founding member of the Chester String Quartet (prize winners at the Munich and Portsmouth international competitions) and has been a chamber music participant in the Aspen, Norfolk, and Grand Teton summer festivals. She enjoys creating artisan-dyed fabrics and garments (www.MelissaMatson.com), and lives in Honeoye Falls with her husband.




 



Stefan Reus
s 
(May 5) studied with Antonio Janigro in his native Germany at the Robert Schumann Konservatorium in Düsseldorf and later with Harvey Shapiro at The Juilliard School, where he 
received his master’s degree. He taught at the University of Northern Iowa and the California Music Center before joining the San Francisco Symphony. He joined the RPO in 1988. Mr. Reuss also enjoys chamber music and is Co-Artistic Director of Chamber Music Rochester, directs a series of Salon concerts at the Academy of Medicine, and is a founding member of the Finger Lakes Chamber Ensemble.

 


 



Patricia Sunwoo (October 7 - Amenda Quartet), winner of the 1998 Naumburg Award as a member of the Whitman String Quartet, has performed across the United States and Europe to critical acclaim.  For five years she was on faculty at Binghamton University.  Ms. Sunwoo currently is a member of the Bard Festival String Quartet and the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2007 she founded the company www.PlayMyPiece.com for which she recorded and produced several albums of student violin music. She also directs the Chamber Music Connection program at the Hochstein School of Music and Dance.  She spends the rest of her days with her husband, David Brickman, and enjoying her daughters Claire (15) and Lillian (5).  

Ivan Trevino (February 17) is a musician who wears many hats. He’s a rock drummer at heart, and brings that spirit into other avenues of his life, such as classical percussion, composing, and teaching.  Mr. Trevino has performed, recorded, and composed extensively with Break of Reality, a national touring cello and percussion quartet. As a founding member of Break of Reality, Ivan has reached international acclaim, selling over 40,000 albums worldwide and performing extensively across the U.S. As a composer, Ivan has received multiple prizes and commissions, including 1st Prize (2011) and 2nd prize (2007) in the Percussive Arts Society’s International Composition Contest. His indie rock influence is evident in his compositions, which are becoming standard repertoire for collegiate and professional musicians. 

    Ivan holds a Master’s Degree in percussion performance from Eastman, where he studied with Michael Burritt and John Beck. He also holds a Professional Certificate in Music Business from Berklee College of Music’s Extension School. Ivan is currently on faculty of the Hochstein School of Music & Dance in Rochester NY, where he teaches percussion, composition, and chamber music. He also teaches a course in music business at Eastman.    
 

Diane Walsh
(May 5), whose many awards include the top prizes at the Munich International Piano Competition and the Salzburg International Mozart Competition, has performed solo recitals, chamber music and concertos worldwide. She appeared with the radio symphonies of Munich, Frankfurt, Stuttgart and Berlin, the American Symphony and the symphonies of San Francisco, Indianapolis, Austin, Delaware and Syracuse. Her recitals include engagements in major venues in the United States, Canada, Europe and South America, and her many summer festival appearances include Marlboro, Santa Fe, Bard, Chesapeake and Skaneateles, where she was the artistic director from 1999 to 2004.  She  has performed Beethoven’s Variations on a Waltz of Diabelli well over 200 times, in the Broadway production of 33 Variations, a play by Moisés Kaufman starring Jane Fonda, and in three other productions in Washington, La Jolla and Los Angeles. Ms. Walsh has made sixteen discs for labels which include Bridge, Newport, Sony, Nonesuch, Koch, Stereophile and CRI; her latest releases are Schubert’s Sonatas Vol. I and II on Jonathan Digital and Paul Moravec’s Useful Knowledge on Naxos. She is an associate professor at Mannes College, and is a Steinway Artist.



 

The daughter of Chinese immigrants, cellist Mimi Hwang (October 7 - Amenda Quartet) was born and raised in Los Angeles. She was a founding member of the Franciscan String Quartet, First Prize winner of the Banff International String Quartet Competition. The Quartet performed in concert halls throughout North America, Europe and Asia, and was Quartet-in-Residence at the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth College. Ms. Hwang is currently an Assistant Professor of Chamber Music at the Eastman School of Music and Co-Artistic Director of Yellow Barn Music School and Festival’s Young Artists Program. Ms. Hwang serves on the Board of Trustees of the Rochester Area Community Foundation and lives in Brighton with her two daughters.