CHAMBER MUSICFEST

SATURDAY, JUNE 18, 7:30

Dohnányi Serenade for String Trio, Op 10

Bach Double in D minor

Brahms Piano Quartet No 3 in C minor, Op 60

SUNDAY, JUNE 19, 3:00

Mozart Duo No 2 for Violin & Viola, K 424

Dvorák Piano Quartet in E-flat major, Op 87

Monti Csardas

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The winner of the Second Prize at the 2016 Queen Elisabeth Competition and the 2015 William Petschek Recital Debut Award from The Juilliard School, pianist Henry Kramer is establishing himself as one of the most exciting American musicians of his generation. His performances have been praised by critics as “triumphant” and “thrilling” (The New York Times), and “technically effortless” (La Presse, Montreal). After his Philadelphia recital debut, Peter Dobrin of the Philadelphia Inquirer deemed Henry,

”…a pianist of enormous talent…[he] personalized interpretations to such a degree that works emerged anew. He is a big personality.”
-Peter Dobrin, Philadelphia Inquirer

 

Henry has been invited to play with orchestras across the globe including the National Belgian Orchestra, Brussels Philharmonic, Calgary Philharmonic, Shanghai Philharmonic, Bilkent Symphony Orchestra in Ankara, Turkey, the Portland (Maine) Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestre Métropolitain du Montreal, and the Yale Philharmonia.  He has soloed under the batons of preeminent conductors Marin Alsop, Jan Pascal Tortelier, and Stéphane Dénève. In recent seasons, Mr. Kramer was featured in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 3 with the National Orchestra of Belgium and Hans Graf, in Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional in the Dominican Republic, Ravel's Concerto in G with Gerard Schwarz and the Indianapolis Symphony, and Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 with Symphony in C.

 

Mr. Kramer has been a guest performer in recitals at Portland Piano International (Oregon), The Cliburn Foundation, and the National Chopin Foundation in Miami and in important venues like Carnegie Hall in NY, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Queen Elizabeth Hall in Antwerp (Belgium) and BOZAR in Brussels.  Deeply committed to the chamber music repertoire, he has been featured in performances at Lincoln Center, and has participated in the Steans Institute at the Ravinia Festival, La Jolla Music Society’s Summerfest, Music@Menlo’s International Program, and the Verbier Festival Academy, where he was awarded the Tabor Prize in piano. He appeared on Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute tour, which included performances at Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and New York’s Morgan Library, as well as an unprecedented appearance in Havana, Cuba, as a cultural ambassador. This past summer, Mr. Kramer performed in the Orchestra of St. Luke’s Resonance Festival dedicated to the works of Schubert and also at the Salon Chamber Music Festival in Provence where he shared the stage with prominent members of the Berlin Philharmonic including Emmanuel Pahud and Daishin Kashimoto.

 

Dr. Kramer holds both a Master’s and a Bachelor’s degree from The Juilliard School and an Artist Diploma from the Yale School of Music where he received the Charles S. Miller Prize for the most outstanding first-year pianist. In 2018, he earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts from the Yale School of Music.  He has been the Iva Dee Hiatt Visiting Artist in piano at Smith College and also served as Assistant Professor of Piano at the University of Missouri Kansas City Conservatory of Dance and Music. His musical mentors have included Julian Martin, Robert McDonald, and Boris Berman. Henry's first commercial recording dedicated to the Oratorio Transcriptions of Liszt was recently released on the NAXOS label.  Since August of 2018, Dr. Kramer holds the L. Rexford Whiddon Distinguished Chair in Piano at the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia.

This is Henry's second season at Pierce Hill Performing Arts.

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The violin artistry of Desirée Ruhstrat has captivated audiences throughout Europe and the Americas. The Berlin Taggespiegel wrote, "...she played with such an intensive fire and sleepwalking assuredness that she was stormily celebrated by the audience." Ms. Ruhstrat is renown for her versatility as a soloist, Chamber musician, and teacher.

 

Since her debut at age 12 with Lukas Foss and the Milwaukee Symphony, Ms. Ruhstrat has appeared as a soloist with orchestras throughout the world, including the Berlin Radio Symphony, Radio Suisse Romande, Gottingen Symphony, Philharmonia Da Camera, Orchestra Symphonica Aguascalientes, Colorado Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Concerto Soloists Of Philadelphia, Utah Symphony, Chicago Civic Orchestra, Debut Orchestra of Los Angeles, and National Repertory Orchestra and by special invitation of Sir George Solti in Chicago’s Orchestra Hall.

 

She has worked with such renowned conductors as Eric Kunzel, Max Rudolph, William Smith, Rico Saccani, Brian Priestman, Mats Liljefors among others. Ms. Ruhstrat has won numerous awards including first prize at the National Young Musicians Debut Competition in Los Angeles, where she was also lauded a special award for a young performer with extraordinary talent. She became the youngest prizewinner at Switzerland's Tibor Varga International Competition and also won the award for best interpretation of the commissioned contemporary composition. She went on to earn top prizes at the Carl Flesch, Julius Stulberg, and the Mozart Festival Violin Competitions.

 

Ms. Ruhstrat's distinguished career as a chamber musician includes performances throughout the US as a member of the Lincoln Trio, including Carnegie Weil Hall, Lincoln Center, Ravinia Festival, Indianapolis Symphony Beethoven Series, Poisson Rouge and Music In the Loft. She has also appeared as guest artist of the Chamber Music Series of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Colorado Symphony, Apollo Chamber Ensemble, the Colorado Chambers Players, Pacifica Quartet, the University of Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Tennessee, and Northwestern University Midwinter Series with Jorge Federico Osorio and Ani Kavafian, as well as collaborations with Shmuel Ashkenasi, Ilya Kaler and Roberto Diaz. Festival appearances include the Aspen Music Festival, Peninsula Music Festival, Laurel Festival of the Arts, the Breckenridge Music Festival and the Green Lake, University Of Wisconsin, Utah Music Festival, and ARIA International Summer Academy, where she has also served as faculty.

 

A champion of new music Ms. Ruhstrat has worked with some of the worlds leading composers, George Crumb, Jennifer Higdon, Shulamit Ran, Augusta Read Thomas, Chen Yi, Zhou Long and most recently had a work written for her by Laura Elise Schwendinger "Violinists In My Life."

 

Ms. Ruhstrat is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music. Her teachers have included Aaron Rosand, Joseph Gingold, Harold Wippler and Dorothy Delay. Her discography includes the Stamitz Duo for Violin and Viola for Centaur Records ,the Ravel Duo for Violin and Cello for Albany Records, a 2013 GRAMMY nominated NAXOS release Annelies, based on the Diary of Anne Frank and multiple recordings with the Lincoln Trio on the Cedille Label and a 2016 GRAMMY Nomination for Trio’s From Our Homeland’s.

 

A passionate teacher, Ms. Ruhstrat's students are prizewinners of national and international competitions and members of professional orchestras worldwide. Ms. Ruhstrat has been on Faculty at the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University Bloomington and currently is on faculty and serves as the Strings Chamber Music Coordinator at Northwestern University Bienen School of Music. In 2014 Ms. Ruhstrat was awarded the American String Teachers Association Illinois Outstanding Studio Teacher Award.

This is Ms Ruhstrat's second season at Pierce Hill Performing Arts. 

 

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Julian Rhee is quickly gaining recognition as an emerging artist and performer, praised for his “sophisticated, assured tone, superb intonation, and the kind of poise and showmanship that thrills audiences.” (The Strad) 

An avid soloist, Julian made his Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra debut at age 8, and has gone on to perform with orchestras including the Aspen Philharmonic, Wisconsin Philharmonic, San Jose Chamber, Avanti, San Diego, Pittsburgh, Eugene, Santa Rosa and Madison Symphony Orchestras. He has performed in an array of venues including Ravinia’s Bennett Gordon Hall, Heinz Hall, the Overture Center for the Arts, Teatro El Círculo in Rosario, Argentina, The Musikverein in Vienna, Bartok Hall in Hungary, New World Center, and the John F Kennedy Center. 

Julian is a winner of the 2021 Astral Artists’ National Auditions, and in January of 2020, was named the first prize winner of the Elmar Oliveira International Competition, where he was also awarded the special Community Engagement Award. A top prize winner of the Johansen and Klein International Competitions, Julian has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center as a Presidential Scholar and received his medal at the White House. 

A passionate chamber musician, Julian’s performance on violin and viola earned him and his String Quartet first prize in the A.N. & Pearl G. Barnett Chamber Music Competition, Rembrandt, Fischoff and the M-Prize International Chamber Arts Competition. He has performed at and attended festivals including the Heifetz Institute, Four Seasons Chamber Music Festival, Ravinia Steans Institute, Rockport Music, NorthShore Chamber Music Festival, and Pierce Hill Performing Arts. He has also appeared alongside Time for Three on NPR’s From The Top, Jupiter Chamber Players, 98.7 WFMT’s Introductions, Milwaukee Public Television, and Wisconsin Public Radio and Television.

 

Julian studied with Almita Vamos and Hye-Sun Lee at the Music Institute of Chicago Academy. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree with Miriam Fried at the New England Conservatory.

This is Julian's second season at Pierce Hill Performing Arts.

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Violist Tabitha Rhee is a gifted young violist currently pursuing a Masters of Music degree at the Juilliard School where she studies with Misha Amory and Roger Tapping as a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship.

Ms. Rhee was born in New York City and raised in  Wisconsin, commuting weekly to study at the Music Institute of Chicago Academy with Almita and Roland Vamos. During her pre-college years, she enjoyed her time as an active member of the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra as Concertmaster and Principal Violist. Following high school, she continued her studies at Juilliard as a Kovner Fellow, where she received her  Bachelor of Music degree under the tutelage of Misha Amory and Heidi Castleman. 

Ms. Rhee is the winner of the Juilliard Concerto Competition and has soloed with the  Juilliard Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Peter Oundjian at Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully  Hall. She has performed with The Juilliard Orchestra as a Principal Violist and has appeared on the concert stages of Carnegie Hall, Jazz at Lincoln Center, The Wiener Musikverein, and Bela  Bartok Hall in Budapest. In addition, she has performed as a soloist with the Skokie Valley,  Madison, and Milwaukee Symphony Orchestras. As a young student, she was a recipient of the  Jerome and Elaine Nerenberg Foundation Scholarship from the Musicians Club of Women in  Chicago and a founding member of the Wisconsin Intergenerational Orchestra, where she currently serves as Artistic Assistant and Mentor when she is home in Wisconsin. 

Tabitha has attended various prestigious music festivals such as the Music@Menlo International Program, Four Seasons Chamber Music Festival Winter Workshop, Verbier Festival Academy, Pierce Hill Performing Arts, Bravo! Vail, and Finckel-Wu Han Chamber Music Program at the Aspen Music Festival, where she was a New Horizons Fellow. She has worked closely with esteemed coaches such as Samuel Rhodes, Natasha Brofsky, Wu Han, and David Finckel, as well as masterclasses with Antoine Tamestit, Kim Kashkashian, Lawrence Power, and Nobuko Imai.

While a graduate student at Juilliard, Ms. Rhee has performed with the New York  Philharmonic as a substitute violist, the Death of Classical music series in collaboration with  Cantori New York, and the Apex Ensemble, formerly known as the Montclair Orchestra. She has participated in studio recording work for this year’s Michael Buble Christmas television show and the Don’t Worry Darling film, expected to release in the fall of 2022. She recently performed with the Wisconsin Philharmonic, Mozart's Sinfonia Concertante for violin and viola with her brother Julian, who is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Music degree at the New England Conservatory.

This is Ms Rhee's second season at Pierce Hill Performing Arts.

 

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Known for his “rich tone and lyrical acumen” (Chicago Tribune), violist Michael Isaac Strauss has performed around the world as a soloist, recitalist, in chamber music, and in symphonic settings. His love for the intimate concert setting has led to performances on concert series, live radio broadcasts, and festival appearances across Europe, North America, and Asia.

 

A former member of the distinguished Fine Arts Quartet, Strauss made several European and domestic tours with them, as well as a critically acclaimed recording of Mozart’s complete viola quintets on the Lyrinx label. He is a founding member of the new Indianapolis Quartet, in residence at the University of Indianapolis since 2016, where he also serves on the faculty. Strauss has also taught at Youngstown State University’s Dana School of Music since 2016 and is the violist for the Dana Trio, in residence at Youngstown State University.

 

Strauss’ solo work is featured on several CDs—the debut recording of Jennifer Higdon’s Viola Sonata, David Finko’s Viola Concerto (re-released in 2015), Stamitz’s works for solo viola with orchestra (Centaur), and the Suzuki Viola School CDs, Volumes 8 and 9. He has also recorded chamber works by living composers with the Philadelphia-based Orchestra 2001, the complete string quintets by Mozart with the Fine Arts Quartet, and he recently released Wordless Verses (Naxos)—trio works inspired by poetry for oboe, viola, and piano with the Jackson Trio.

 

Strauss was principal violist of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra for 20 years and has served on the faculty of several prominent schools including Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, Philadelphia’s University of the Arts, and Swarthmore College. He is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music. 

 

This is Strauss' third season at Pierce Hill Performing Arts.

Michael performs on a Matteo Albani viola, Bolzano, Italy, ca. 1704.

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Acclaimed cellist David Cunliffe is a founding member of the Grammy nominated Lincoln Trio and cellist of the Black Oak Ensemble.

Mr. Cunliffe has performed in many of the world's leading concert halls and Festivals including appearances at Carnegie's Weil Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Harris Theatre, Queen Elizabeth Hall, Purcell Room, Bryant Park Festival, Ravinia Festival and in South America where the Lincoln Trio toured with the Filarmónica Joven de Colombia performing Beethoven’s Triple Concerto in five cities across Colombia.

Recent highlights include a tour of Europe with the Black Oak Ensemble including appearances in Amsterdam, Athens, Paris, Grenoble and a performance on behalf of the United Nations mission of Hungary, in Geneva Switerland.

His collaborations with other artists include appearances with Roberto Diaz, Shmuel Ashkenasi, Illya Kaeler, Antonio Lysy, Roger Chase, Simon Keenlyside, Arianna Zukerman, Paul Colletti, Mathieu Dufour, Ricardo Morales. In addition Mr. Cunliffe was also a member of the renowned Balanescu Quartet.

As a member of the Lincoln Trio, Mr. Cunliffe has appeared on numerous recordings including the Grammy nominated “Trios from our Homelands”, Grammy nominated “Annelies”, as well as five other releases on the Cedille label. Other Recording highlights include the critically acclaimed debut recording of “Silenced Voices” with the Black Oak Ensemble and “Arabian Waltz” with the Balanescu Quartet.

An enthusiast of new music, he has performed and worked with some of the world’s leading composers including George Crumb, John Tower, Jennifer Higdon, Lera Auberbach, Augusta Read Thomas, Terry Reilly, Michael Nyman, Chen Yi, Conrad Tao, Zhou Long, Pierre Jalbert, Shulamit Ran and Joan Tower.

Mr Cunliffe is a recipient of the Terrance Weill, Leonard Hirsch and the Lady Barbirolli Chamber Music Awards. With the Lincoln Trio he was the winner of the 2008 Master Players International Competition in Venice, Italy and recipient of the 2011 Young Performers Career Advancement Award.

A passionate and sought after educator he has appeared as guest artist at San Francisco State University, University of Wisconsin Madison, SUNY Fredonia, Universidad Javeriana Bogota and Michigan State University among others.

He is currently on faculty at the Music Institute of Chicago and the New Music School and is an Artist-in-Residence at the Merit School of music. He is also a member of the chamber music faculty at Northwestern University.

A native of England, David studied at the Royal Northern College of Music and continued his studies at the International Menuhin Music Academy in Gstaad, Switzerland where he toured with Camerata Lysy and Yehudi Menuhin. His teachers included Margaret Moncrieff, Christopher Bunting, Moray Welsh, Antonio Lysy and Radu Aldulescu.

 

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Cellist Wyatt Sutherland is the former Principal Cellist of the Chamber Orchestras of Louisville, Oklahoma City, and Baltimore, and has performed with the New Orleans Philharmonic, Baton Rouge Symphony, Shreveport Symphony, Louisville Orchestra, Oklahoma Symphony Orchestra, Yamagata Symphony Orchestra (Japan), and the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.  

 

He became interested in the cello after hearing the legendary cellist Janos Starker solo with the Louisville Orchestra. At age 9 he started cello studies with Guillermo Helguera at the University of Louisville String Academy, and upon graduating high school began studies with Starker at Indiana University's School of Music in Bloomington Indiana. Other cello mentors include Raya Garbousova, Susanna Onwood, Thaddeus Bryce and Yoshio Sato.

 

Wyatt has worked with Leonard Bernstein, Seiji Ozawa, Klaus Tennstedt, Gunther Schuller, David Zinman, Josef Gingold, Menahem Pressler, Louis Krasner, Juilliard String Quartet, and the Tokyo String Quartet. He was a Fellowship recipient at the Aspen and Tanglewood Music Festivals, and a recipient of the Leonard Bernstein Scholarship, Gustav Golden Award, Mark Allen Everett Foundation Award, and the Phillips Petroleum Foundation Award. Wyatt performed the North American premiere of Yehudi Wyner's "De Novo" for Cello and Chamber Ensemble at the Tanglewood Contemporary Music Festival.

During the week Wyatt is a Technical Software Consultant with Industrial Logic, specializing in XP/Lean/Agile principles and practices, helping Fortune 100 companies improve their software development process. When Wyatt is not at the cello or coaching software organizations or working on a construction project he can be found experimenting in his kitchen whipping up something yummy for family and friends.


Wyatt has a deep passion for excellence in music, in 2018 he and his wife, Monika, founded Pierce Hill Performing Arts, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization with a mission of providing scholarships for young musicians, in need of financial support to help reach their potential, for summer music camps and private lessons.

Wyatt resides in Viroqua in a renewable energy-efficient home he built with Monika and their four children.

This is Wyatt's third season at Pierce Hill Performing Arts.

 

Wyatt performs on a Gennaro Gagliano cello, Cremona, Italy, ca. 1760.

 

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Violinist  Anna Lena Derocher is 12 years old and the proud recipient of the 2022 Pierce Hill Performing Arts Fellowship.

 

Anna Lena studies with Pamela Simmons in Milwaukee. This summer she plans to study at the Sewanee Summer Music Festival in Sewanee, Tennessee.

When she isn't practicing the violin she can be found enjoying rock climbing, biking, and caring for her many pets at home.

Anna Lena performs on a Jay Haide violin on loan from Ralph Rabin Violins in Madison, Wisconsin.