MUSICIANS

Katherine Collier, piano and music director

Katherine Collier has had a distinguished and versatile career as a soloist, chamber music artist, and accompanist. After her early training in Texas, she studied piano with Cecile Genhart and accompanying with Brooks Smith. She was awarded unanimously the Performer’s Certificate at Eastman. Professor Collier was the first prize winner of the National Young Artist’s Competition and the Cliburn Scholarship Competition and was the recipient of a Rockefeller Award. She won a Kemper Educational Grant to study at

the Royal College of Music in London, England. Collier has been asoloist with orchestras in Cincinnati, Dallas, Eastman-Rochester, and Houston, and is an active collaborator with many renowned musicians including Joshua Bell, Hilary Hahn, Ani Kavafian, Cho-Liang Lin, Andres Cardenes, Erling Bengtsson, David Shifrin, and members of the Tokyo, Emerson, Cleveland, Orion, Vermeer, Miami, Shanghai, and Ying Quartets.

She has performed around the world and appeared at recital halls in Europe such as Wigmore Hall and the Purcell Room (Southbank) in London, the Concertgebouw, the Brahms-Saal, and the Konzertsaal der Staatlichen Hochschule für Musik. She has presented concerts at Merkin Hall, the Phillips Collection, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Dame Myra Hess Series in Chicago, and the Y Music Society in Pittsburgh. She performs at the Aspen Music Festival, Interlochen, Meadowmount, and Skaneateles. As an accompanist, Ms. Collier worked in the studios of Dorothy Delay at Aspen and Nathan Milstein and the BBC in London.

     Collier tours extensively with her husband, violist Yizhak Schotten. They are founders and music directors of the Maui Classical Music Festival in Hawaii and music directors of the Strings in the Mountains Festival in Steamboat Springs. Ms. Collier appears with her husband on four compact discs on Crystal Records and has recorded with other artists on the Pandora, Pearl, Crystal, and Centaur labels. Ms. Collier previously taught at the universities of Washington, Northern Kentucky, and Wyoming.

Yiizhak Schooten

Yizhak Schotten, viola and music director

Yizhak Schotten (viola) was brought to the United States by the renowned violist William Primrose, with whom he studied at Indiana University and the University of Southern California. Other studies were with Lillian Fuchs at the Manhattan School of Music. Schotten has concertized in his native Israel, Japan, Taiwan, Malaysia, Holland, Austria, Mexico, England, Canada, and throughout the United States. His solo appearances with orchestras

in this country and abroad have included performances with conductors Seiji Ozawa, Thomas Schippers, Sergiu Commissiona, Joseph Swensen, Arthur Fiedler, and others. His solo recitals have included Town Hall, Carnegie Hall, and Merkin Hall in New York, Boston’s Jordan Hall, the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., the Dame Myra Hess Series in Chicago, and the Cleveland Museum of Art. He has also had numerous broadcasts on National Public Radio.

     As a member of the Trio d’Accordo, Schotten won the Concert Artists Guild International Competition in New York. He regularly collaborates with renowned musicians and has appeared in concerts at Bargemusic in New York, the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., Boston’s Symphony Hall, and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. Abroad he has performed at the Taipei Philharmonic Festival in Taiwan, the Festival Internacional de Musica Clasica in Mexico, the Amsterdam Kamermuziek Festival, the Festival de Musique de Chambre de Montreal, and at Domaine Forget in Quebec.

     Formerly a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Schotten has been principal violist of the Cincinnati and Houston symphony orchestras. He was the artistic director of the XIV International Viola Congress and has been a featured artist at six other International Congresses. In 1997, he represented the U.S. as a judge and performer at the Tertis International Viola Competition in England. He has recorded seven discs for Crystal Records and his C.R.I. recording was chosen as “Critics’ Choice” for three months in HIGH FIDELITY Magazine. Pearl Records included his playing on its anthology, History of the Recording of the World’s Finest Violists.

     Schotten has been on the faculties and performed at the Aspen Music Festival, Banff, Meadowmount, Interlochen, Tanglewood, Chamber Music Northwest, Montreal, Chautauqua, Skaneateles, Montecito, Juneau, and Fairbanks Festivals. He is also music director of the Maui Classical Music Festival in Hawaii and was director of Strings Music Festival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, and SpringFest in Ann Arbor.

     Schotten was also on the American Federation of Musician’s Congress of Strings faculty. He is very active giving master classes in the U.S. and throughout the world. He has given classes in England at the Tertis International Viola Competition at the Isle of Man, the Menuhin School in Surrey, and the Guildhall School of Music, Royal College of Music, and the Royal Academy of Music in London. He has also given master classes in Spain at the Conservatrio Superior de Musica, Oviedo; in Israel at the Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem Academies of Music; in Australia at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music; in Canada at the Banff School of Music, the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, the Glenn Gould School, and the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto; in Korea at the College of Music at Seoul National University; and in Taiwan at the Hsing Tien Kong Culture Foundation in Taipei. He has also been on the faculties of Rice University and the University of Washington.

Amir Eldan, cello

Amir Eldan performs as a soloist, chamber musician, and as guest principal cellist. In 2011-12, he served as principal cellist of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra by invitation from Zubin Mehta and a year later, as guest principal cellist with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. At age 22, he became the youngest member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in New York, when he won the position of associate principal cellist and was invited by James Levine to perform with the MET Chamber Ensemble in Carnegie Hall. As the winner of the Juilliard Competition, Eldan made his New York debut with the Brahms Double Concerto in Lincoln Center and has performed the six Bach Cello Suites in a series of concerts worldwide.

     Eldan has collaborated in chamber music performances with members of the Cleveland, Guarneri, and Juilliard String Quartets and the Beaux Arts Trio, pianist Richard Goode, and cellists Lynn Harrell and Steven Isserlis.

     Music festivals appearances include Bowdoin, Giverny (France), La Jolla (California), Pilsen (Czech Republic), Prussia Cove (England), and West Cork (Ireland). He also participated in the Marlboro music festival and toured with Musicians From Marlboro.

     In 2006, while working on his doctorate, Eldan was appointed cello professor at the Oberlin Conservatory and served as chair of the String Department from 2015-19. He was a member of the Oberlin Trio and performed with the Trio throughout the U.S. and South Korea.

Professor Eldan holds a DMA and MM, both from Juilliard where he also served as a guest teacher. His performances have been featured on public television and radio in the U.S., Europe, and in Israel.

He was appointed a professor of cello at the University of Michigan in 2019.

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Benny Kim, violin

Whether playing in the intimate setting of a string quartet or performing a concerto on the stage of a concert hall, Benny Kim’s “emotional depth and musical carriage are his real drawing cards. His is a style that touches the peak of romantic violín playing.” (The Washington Post) Known for his versatility as soloist, chamber musician, and teacher, Mr. Kim has been described as having “titanium technique” and producing “exquisite, pearly colorations.”

     Benny is a proud product of the Suzuki Method, which he began at age 10 with Doris Preucil. He continued his violín studies with Almita Vamos and at age 15 won the Chicago Symphony Youth Symphony Auditions, making his solo debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. One year later he won the St. Louis Symphony Youth Auditions and the Julius Stulberg Auditions. Kim went on to graduate with Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School, where he studied with legendary pedagogue Dorothy DeLay. In 1983, Mr. Kim won the Young Concert Artists International Auditions at age 20. While at Juilliard, the residents of Macomb, IL, Benny’s hometown, heard the news that he was preparing to puchase a violin. This small community, along with faculty members of Western Illinois University, began a fundraising campaign to contribute to the purchase. In 1987 he acquired a 1732 Stradivarius violin.

     Collaborating with long-time friends plays an important role in Benny Kim’s musical career and has resulted in two EMI recordings with Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Bella Italia and Night and Day, frequent performances with the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio, and many engagements with his brother, cellist Eric Kim. In past seasons, Benny has performed in concert with violinist Daniel Hope at the Savannah Music Festival, Norway’s Trondheim Chamber Music Festival, Queen Elizabeth Hall in London and most recently at Alice Tully Hall in Lincoln Center, New York, NY.

     Benny has performed with the symphony orchestras of Chicago, Boston, St. Louis, Cincinnati and Detroit, and internationally with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the Orquésta Sinfonica Nacional de México, BBC National orquesta of Wales and the major orchestras of South Africa. In recital, Kim has performed in virtually every major city in the United States, including critically acclaimed engagements at New York’s 92nd St. Y and at Washington DC’s Kennedy Center.

     Mr. Kim is first violinist of the Miami String Quartet, winner of the prestigious Cleveland Quartet Award, and Quartet in Residence at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio. Highlights of recent seasons include performances on the Quartets Plus Series at Carnegie Hall and the Fortas Chamber Music Series at the Kennedy Center. The quartet has also enjoyed working with students in limited residencies in Hong Kong and Bogotá, Colombia. The ensemble’s commitment to new music has led to many commissions and premieres, including Concierto de Cámara by Roberto Sierra, Septet by Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Angels by Joan Tower and Green Sneakers by Ricky Ian Gordon. Benny spends most summers playing chamber music with friends at festivals around the world, including the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Music from Angel Fire, Bravo!-Vail Valley Music Festival, Chamber Music Northwest, Mecklenburg and Schlewig–Holstein Festivals in Germany and the Bristol Festival in England.

     Benny and his golden retriever, Cubby, make their home outside Kansas City on the Falcon Ridge

Golf Course.

Fabiola Kim

Fabiola Kim, violin

Hailed by the New York Times as “a brilliant soloist,” who “played with extraordinary precision and luminosity,” violinist Fabiola Kim is a dynamic and versatile artist who enjoys a diverse career as a

soloist, chamber musician, recording artist and a pedagogue. Her recent CD, titled “1939” with the Munich Symphony and Kevin John Edusei has gotten many international acclaims from BBC magazine, The Strad Magazine, Gramophone, American Record Guide and many others. After beginning her studies at the age of four, she made her concerto debut with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra just three years later. Ms. Kim is the winner of various awards and competitions, including the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra’s Concerto Competition as the youngest competitor in the history of the competition to win. Since then, she has won the Aspen Music Festival Violin Concerto Competition, The Juilliard Concerto Competition, Livingston Symphony Orchestra Young Artists Concerto Competition, the Kumho Prodigy Music Award, an award given to the most promising young musicians in Korea, and was a prize winner at Corpus Christi International Competition and the Irving M. Klein International Competition for Strings.She has collaborated with conductors such as Alan Gilbert, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Gilbert Varga, Jane Glover, and Nicholas McGegan. Her past solo performances include engagements with the Seoul and Suwon Philharmonics; an European tour with Suwon Philharmonic Orchestra to the Bruckner Festival in Linz and Merano Festival in Merano, Italy, The Juilliard Orchestra, Aspen Philharmonia, the Kangnam, Korean, Broward, and Prime Symphony Orchestras; the Livingston Symphony; Koln Chamber Orchestra; North Czech Philharmonic Orchestra; the American Academy of Conducting at Aspen, Orquestra Sinfonica OSUANL, the Budapest Symphony Orchestra MAV, the Hofer Sinfoniker, Berlin Symphoniker, Korean Chamber Orchestra, Westdeutche Sinfionia, Munich Chamber Orchestra and Colburn Orchestra.

Yoonah Kim

Yoonah Kim, clarinet

Rapidly earning recognition as a young artist of uncommon musical depth and versatility, clarinetist Yoonah Kim is a winner of the 2016 Concert Artists Guild International Competition. The first solo clarinetist to win CAG in nearly 30 years, this Korean-Canadian artist joins the ranks of prominent solo clarinetists discovered by CAG, including David Shifrin, Michael Collins, and David Krakauer. 

     2017-18 solo performances include Yoonah’s New York recital debut at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall on the CAG New York Series, as well as debut recitals for Chicago’s Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts series, Washington Performing Arts’ Music in the Country series, Chamber Music Society of Little Rock and Union County Performing Arts Center (NJ). She also appears as concerto soloist with the DuPage Symphony Orchestra near Chicago, Arkansas Symphony Youth Orchestra, and the Chesapeake Youth Symphony. In summer 2018, Yoonah will appear at Bay Chamber Music Festival in Maine, and on tour to Greece at the invitation of composer Lowell Liebermann

     In 2016, Yoonah became the first woman to win first prize at the Vandoren Emerging Artist Competition, leading to her world premiere performance of Pocket Concerto by American composer Dag Gabrielsen at The Music for All National Festival in Indianapolis, presented by Yamaha. Other honors include first prize at  the 2017 George Gershwin International Competition. She has also been a featured soloist at Juilliard’s Focus Festival, performing Donald Martino’s A Set for Clarinet at Peter Jay Sharp Theater in New York City. 

     Beginning in fall 2016, Yoonah became a member of Ensemble Connect (formerly Ensemble ACJW), a highly selective two-year fellowship program under the joint auspices of Carnegie Hall, The Weill Institute, and The Juilliard School. With Ensemble Connect, she performs regularly at Carnegie Hall, often in collaboration with renowned conductors and guest artists. One recent Zankel Hall performance was conducted by Sir Simon Rattle, and in December 2016, she performed in France at the Philharmonie de Paris, featuring soprano Natalie Dessay. 

     As principal clarinetist of The Juilliard Orchestra and The Mannes Orchestra, Yoonah has performed at prestigious venues, including Carnegie Hall, David Geffen Hall, Alice Tully Hall, and Symphony Space. Yoonah has also served as principal clarinetist of the New York Youth Symphony and the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra, with whom she appeared in the closing ceremony of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics, televised across the world. Also an active chamber musician, Yoonah tours regularly with the ensemble FOUNDERS and Frisson, and has appeared at chamber music festivals, including the Chautauqua Music Festival, Sarasota Music Festival, The Banff Centre Music Festival, and Caroga Lake Music Festival. She has been invited to participate in the prestigious Marlboro Music Festival beginning in summer 2019. 

     In addition to her appearances on stage, Yoonah is also committed to teaching. Through her extensive educational outreach working with Ensemble Connect, she serves as an education ambassador for Carnegie Hall at New York City public schools. She is also currently on the faculty of New York School of Music and Art and maintains a small private studio in New York City. 

     Born in Seoul and raised in British Columbia, Yoonah Kim holds a Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School and a Bachelor of Music degree from the Mannes College of Music at The New School, where she studied clarinet under Charles Neidich. 

Aaron Kohlberg

Yaron Kohlberg, piano

Steinway Artist Yaron Kohlberg, born in Jerusalem, is among today's top Israeli pianists. He is the President of Piano Cleveland, presenter of the Cleveland International Piano Competition, in which he was the silver medalist in 2007.

     Kohlberg played in major halls in forty countries over five continents and has won over ten international prizes.  His performances won critical acclaim. Kohlberg speaks six languages, including Mandarin Chinese, and uses them often during his performances worldwide. He has performed as soloist at the Carnegie Hall in New York, the Kremlin in Moscow, the UN Hall in Geneva, Asahi hall in Tokyo, the Beethovenhalle in Bonn, the hall of the Forbidden City in Beijing, the Melbourne Recital Center, Teatro Coliseo in Buenos Aires, Residenz in Munich, Shanghai Symphony Concert Hall, Mann Auditorium in Tel Aviv, Phillipsaal in The Hague, Kimmel Center in Philadelphia,  Salle Cortot in Paris, the Bellas Artes in Mexico City and elsewhere.  He has also played in the Israel parliament (Knesset) and the residence of the Israeli president. His performances have been broadcast on major TV stations in China, Korea and Japan.

     International piano competitions in which Kohlberg won top prizes include the Cleveland International Piano Competition (2007), the international Parnassos competition in Monterrey (Mexico), the Shostakovich competition (Hanover), the international Grieg competition in Oslo, the international competition in Andorra, the Top of the World competition in Tromso (Norway), and the Tivoli competition (Denmark). He won the young artist and Clairmont competitions in Israel and received various additional awards.  Kohlberg appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Cleveland orchestra, the Copenhagen philharmonic orchestra, the Beijing symphony orchestra, the Oslo radio orchestra and the Palermo orchestra in Italy. He also played with all the leading Israeli orchestras, including the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, Israel Camerata, Haifa Symphony orchestra, Tel Aviv Soloist Ensemble and others.

     In recent years Kohlberg has teamed up with his friend Bishara Haroni to form the highly successful Duo Amal piano duo. He also cooperates regularly with top musicians and ensembles around the globe. Kohlberg holds a graduate degree (with distinction) from the Buchmann-Mehta school of music of Tel Aviv University and is a student of the late Luisa Yoffe as well as Eitan Globerson and Arie Vardi. He served on juries of international competitions in the US, China, Spain, Portugal, Taiwan, Singapore, Mexico and Israel. In some of his concerts he combines classical music with new arrangements of popular and world music. As President of Piano Cleveland, he creates original programming to engage new audiences to classical music. His articles about the subject have been published in various international publications, such as International Piano Magazine, Musical America, WFIMC publicity and GetClassical in NYC.

Kurt Muroki

Kurt Muroki, double bass

Kurt Muroki is professor of double bass at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.
    An artist member with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, he began his musical studies on the violin at the age of six and subsequently performed concerti with the Honolulu Symphony and the Maui Symphony. He went on to study the double bass at the age of 13 and entered the Juilliard School of Music at the age of 17, studying with his Homer R. Mensch.
    At the age of 21, Muroki began performing with the internationally renowned Sejong Soloists under ICM Management. He has performed with the Jupiter Chamber Players, Speculum Musicae, Ensemble Sospeso, Sequitur, the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, American Composers Orchestra, Tokyo Opera Nomori, New York City Ballet, 92nd St. Y, Bargemusic, and in the Great Performers series at Lincoln Center.
    His festival appearances include the Marlboro Music Festival, Festival L'Autonne at IRCAM, and the Aspen Music Festival, among others.
  He is also active playing on soundtracks for movies and commercials, with titles including the Oscar-winning film The Departed, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Hitch, Julie and Julia, The Manchurian Candidate, and Moonrise Kingdom. He has collaborated on albums and live concerts including projects with such artists as The Who, Sting, Peter Gabriel, and Itzhak Perlman.
    Muroki has won numerous competitions, including first prize in the Aspen Music Festival double bass competition, the Honolulu Symphony Young Artists competition, and becoming the first bassist to win the New World Symphony concerto competition. He has collaborated with members of the Guarneri, Juilliard, Tokyo, and Orion quartets, Ensemble Wein-Berlin, Jaime Laredo, Lynn Harrell, Maurice Bourgue, Toru Takemitsu, Peter Schickele, John Zorn, and Brian Ferneyhough, among others, and has performed concerto tours throughout Asia and the United States.

    Muroki is also on the faculties of Stony Brook University, the McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University, the Bowdoin International Music Festival, and the New York String Orchestra Seminar. He has been a judge at the Yale Gordon Competition at Peabody Conservatory, American String Teachers Association, and others. He is on the board of directors of the International Society of Bassists and is a D'Addario Strings artist.
   
He plays on a double bass once owned by the famous double bassist Domenico Dragonetti and attributed to Nicolo Amati circa 1665.

Sarah Oates

Sarah Oates, violin

Sarah Oates enjoys a varied career combining chamber music, orchestral leading and teaching. As the associate concertmaster of the Philharmonia Orchestra in London she has performed regularly in the great concert halls and around the world. She is a sought-after guest concertmaster with other world class orchestras including the London Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic, the Royal Opera House of Brussels, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, and the Dutch National Ballet Orchestra in Amsterdam.

     Sarah’s education began in her country of birth, South Africa, with Louis van der Watt. She went on to study with Yossi Zivoni at the Purcell School in London, then at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, completing her studies at the Manhattan School of Music in New York with Pinchas Zukerman.Sarah maintains a busy chamber music schedule.  As a member of the Devich Piano Trio she recorded four CD’s with Challenge Records to international critical acclaim. Recent recordings include a CD with Warner Classics, including works by Chausson, with her string quartet, the Philharmonia Chamber Players. She is a founding member of the Phoenix Festival, an annual chamber music festival in Brussels, with Brussels Muzique, an ensemble of international musicians. She is also a member of the Ubuntu Ensemble, a group of South African musicians currently based in the UK and Europe, who come together to perform classical repertoire as well as showcasing contemporary South African composers.

     Sarah is a violin professor at the London Performing Academy of Music.

Anna Polonsky

Anna Polonsky, piano

     Anna Polonsky is widely in demand as a soloist and chamber musician. She has appeared with the Moscow Virtuosi, the Buffalo Philharmonic, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, the Memphis Symphony, the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, the St. Luke’s Chamber Ensemble, and many others. Ms. Polonsky has collaborated with the Guarneri, Orion, Daedalus, and Shanghai Quartets, and with such musicians as Mitsuko Uchida, Yo-Yo Ma, David Shifrin, Richard Goode, Emanuel Ax, Arnold Steinhardt, Peter Wiley, and Jaime Laredo. She has performed chamber music at festivals such as Marlboro, Chamber Music Northwest, Seattle, Music@Menlo, Cartagena, Bard, and Caramoor, as well as at Bargemusic in New York City. Ms. Polonsky has given concerts in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Vienna Konzerthaus, the Alice Tully Hall, and Carnegie Hall’s Stern, Weill, and Zankel Halls, and has toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. A frequent guest at the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, she was a member of the Chamber Music Society Two during 2002-2004. In 2006 she took a part in the European Broadcasting Union's project to record and broadcast all of Mozart's keyboard sonatas, and in the spring of 2007 she performed a solo recital at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium to inaugurate the Emerson Quartet’s Perspectives Series. She is a recipient of a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship and the Andrew Wolf Chamber Music Award.

     Anna Polonsky made her solo piano debut at the age of seven at the Special Central Music School in Moscow, Russia. She emigrated to the United States in 1990, and attended high school at the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. She received her Bachelor of Music diploma from The Curtis Institute of Music under the tutelage of the renowned pianist Peter Serkin, and continued her studies with Jerome Lowenthal, earning her Master's Degree from the Juilliard School. In addition to performing, she serves on the piano faculty of Vassar College, and in the summer at the Marlboro and Kneisel Hall chamber music festivals.

     Beginning in 2018, Polonsky performs in a trio with clarinetist David Shifrin and cellist Peter Wiley. 

Ms. Polonsky is a Steinway Artist.

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- Musical America

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