Piedmont Chamber Music Festival
The Piedmont Chamber Music Festival, a weeklong festival domiciled at the Piedmont Center for the Arts, will break some new ground in the world of classical music in Northern California. Scheduled for the week of August 1-7, it will be the first summer music residency festival in the East Bay – and, little surprise, the first ever in the city of Piedmont.
Organized by Piedmont native Wayne Lee, a touring violinist, and his fiancé’, pianist Juliana Han, the festival will include concerts at the Center on Friday through Sunday evenings, and a Children's concert on Wednesday afternoon.
The festival will draw seven professional musicians to Piedmont for a week of concerts and rehearsals. Most musicians will be coming from the East Coast. Lee and Han live in New York City.
The Festival draws some of its structure from the Bach Festival in Carmel, where musicians are housed by Carmel residents. All musicians will be staying in homes in Piedmont, largely within walking distance of the Center for the Arts.
“There’s surprisingly not another festival like this that we know of n the East Bay…or in San Francisco, for that matter,” said Lee. “It fills a void that existed before we came up with this idea.”
Lee and Han are solidly focused on ensuring that the festival becomes an annual event.
“We want to bring the East Bay community together,” Han commented. “We’re interested in becoming a focal point for chamber music in the Bay Area during the summer.”
Of the three principal concerts Friday through Sunday, each has music based upon a theme. On Friday, August 5, the Festival will open with a bang with a new arrangement of Bartók's Romanian Folk Dances, featuring all seven festival musicians. The Saturday concert is a tribute to living composers with Bay Area ties, titled Locally Grown. On Sunday, the Festival winds down with a program of French music, concluded by the Brahms Clarinet Quintet.
Tickets to the concerts Friday through Sunday at $25 general admission and $15 for students.
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• Wednesday, August 3, 4 p.m.
$5 for Ages 12 & Under; $10 Adults
Tickets for afternoon concert at:
• Friday, August 5, 7:30 p.m.
A concert dedicated to Folk Traditions
Béla Bartók (arranged by PCMF musicians): Romanian Folk Dances
Robert Schumann: Fantasy Pieces for clarinet and piano, Op. 73
Antonín Dvořák: Gypsy Songs
– Intermission –
Felix Mendelssohn: String Quartet in D major, Op. 44 No. 1
• Saturday, August 6, 7:30 p.m.
A salute to composers with Bay Area ties
Anthony Cheung: Violin Sonata (2002), written for Wayne Lee
William Bolcom: Second Piano Quartet (2003)
– Intermission –
Jake Heggie: Newer Every Day for soprano and piano (2014)
John Adams: John's Book of Alleged Dances for string quartet and recorded prepared piano (1994)
• Sunday, August 7, 3 p.m.
Claude Debussy: Première rhapsodie for clarinet and piano
Ernest Chausson: Chanson Perpétuelle for soprano, piano, and string quartet
Pauline Viardot: Songs
– Intermission –
Johannes Brahms: Clarinet Quintet
ABOUT THE PERFORMERS:
• Wayne Lee, Violin, Festival Co-Director
A member of the Formosa Quartet since 2012; ensemble-in-residence for The Art of Élan and as faculty string quartet-in-residence for the National Youth Orchestra of Canada. Founder and faculty member of the annual Formosa Chamber Music Festival in Hualien, Taiwan. Member of Manhattan Piano Trio since 2008. Performs internationally. Performed complete cycles of the Beethoven violin sonatas and the Bach Sonatas and Partitas. A graduate of The Juilliard School, he lives in New York City.
Juliana Han, Piano, Festival Co-Director
A Cincinnati native, she performs as concert pianist and chamber musician. Currently a doctoral fellow at The Juilliard School. Ms. Han also holds degrees in biochemistry and law from Harvard. She resides in New York City.
Jasmine Lin, Violin
A member of Formosa Quartet and Trio Voce, faculty member at Roosevelt University and Music Institute of Chicago, she has won both the prestigious Naumburg prize and Paganini competition. A graduate of Curtis Institute of Music, she is a Grammy nominee.
Clarissa Lyon, Soprano
The only vocalist at the Festival, Clarissa will make her Metropolitan Opera debut as in Janacek’s Jenufa and in Verdi’s Rigoletto during the 2016-2017 season. This year she returns to Carnegie Hall for a Spotlight Recital in Weill Hall, and in Wolf Trap Opera’s presentation of Florian Gassmann’s L’opera seria. She has performed locally at the Sunset Center for the Carmel Music Society. She has been a soloist with the U.C. Berkeley University Chorus, and the San Francisco Choral Society at Davies Symphony Hall. She holds a B.A. with Honors from U.C. Berkeley, a M.M. in Classical Voice from The Manhattan School of Music, and a Master of Vocal Arts from Bard College Conservatory.
Carol McGonnell, Clarinet
Originally from Dublin, she is a founding member of the Argento Chamber Ensemble and Artistic Director of Music for Museums in association with the National Gallery of Ireland. She has been involved in the commissioning of over 100 new works, ranging from solo pieces to clarinet concerti. She has performed at the Marlboro, Mecklenburg, Santa Fe and Charlottesville Chamber Music Festivals. From 2013-2015, she was in residence with Trio Ariadne at Weill Hall at the Green Music Center on the Sonoma State campus in Rohnert Park. An graduate of the Carnegie-Juilliard Academy and a member of the Carnegie affiliate ensemble Decoda, she is currently on faculty at the Aaron Copland School of Music at CUNY and auxiliary faculty for contrabass clarinet at The Juilliard School.
Robert Meyer, Viola
While violist of the acclaimed Arianna Quartet, he collaborated with members of the Tokyo, Juilliard, and Vermeer Quartets, In recent years, Mr. Meyer has been a guest artist with many chamber music series and festivals, including Strings in the Mountains, Camerata San Antonio, and the Chelsea Music Festival. Currently, he lives in New York, where he performs frequently with the New York Philharmonic.
Deborah Pae, Cello
A former Artist-in-Residence at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Belgium, she has performed with Sinfonia Varsovia of Poland, Orchestre Philharmonique Royal de Liège Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, Ensemble Orchestral de Bruxelles, and Westchester Philharmonic. She is the newest member of the Formosa Quartet, a member of Trio Modetre, and has been a featured artist at including Marlboro, Ravinia, Crans-Montana Classics, and Amsterdam Cello Biënnale.