Guest Artists

Guest Artists

A unique and inspiring aspect of POP programming is that we provide learning opportunities for our students to engage with renowned guest artists. POP has worked informally with varied and diverse guest artists from Philadelphia and beyond since our 2011 founding. These artists have joined our students on stage to perform with them and have led masters classes and workshops.

http://www.playonphilly.org/Adrian Anantawan
Adrian Anantawan
Violinist and Conductor Adrian Anantawan is considered a rising star in classical music. He has performed extensively in his native Canada as a soloist with the orchestras of Toronto, Nova Scotia, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, Montreal, Edmonton and Vancouver. He has presented recitals at the Aspen Music Festival, Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and the White House. He was a featured performer at the opening ceremonies of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. Adrian is a key proponent of the disabled arts, as he was born without a right hand. He is a spokesman for the War Amps of Canada and the Holland Blooriew Kids Rehab Center. A graduate of Curtis Institute of Music, Yale University and Harvard University, Adrian Anantawan has studied with luminaries including Pinchas Zukerman, Itzhak Perlman and Peter Oundjian. He serves as a faculty member of the National Arts Centre Young Artists Program and he created the CODA project, a musical outreach program in Ottawa. This coming September he will serve as conductor of the Dudamel Orchestra at the Conservatory Lab Charter School in Boston, MA.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Andrew Lipke
Andrew Lipke
Instrumentalist and Composer Andrew Lipke is a Philadelphia based, South African born multi-instrumentalist and composer active in many different styles of music. Lipke moved to Philadelphia to pursue a degree in composition at The University of The Arts and has since gone on to become a critically acclaimed and sought after arranger, producer, composer, performer, and educator. Andrew is driven by a passion to find the common ground between disparate styles of music and his career reflects this.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Anthony McGill
Anthony McGill
Clarinetist The winner of an Averry Fisher Career Grant, Anthony McGill currently serves as principal clarinet of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Prior to this position he was associate principal clarinet of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, following studies at the Curtis Institute with Donald Montanato and at the Interlochen ARts Academy with Richard Hawkins.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Arturo Stable
Arturo Stable
Percussionist and Educator Stable was born in Santiago de Cuba and began his formal study of music at the age of four, taking piano and theory lessons. When the family moved to Havana, he continued his music education. He earned his first degree, in percussion, at the Amadeo Roldán Conservatory. In 1993, Stable relocated to Puebla, Mexico where he also began here his career as an educator, teaching classical and Afro- Cuban percussion at the Puebla State University. At the same time, Stable continued his quest of knowledge, pursuing a post-graduate degree in music education from the Puebla State Development University. In 2001, Stable received a scholarship to study at the Berklee College of Music, where he earned a degree in Contemporary Writing and Production. Arturo also hold a Master Degree from the university of the Arts in Philadelphia. Stable was part of the 2013 Grammy Award Winning Album "Money Jungle" (Best Jazz Album) by drummer extraordinaire Terri Lyne Carrington. Stable has been granted several writing commissions, among them: Suite Ominira by the Puebla State Symphony Orchestra (Mexico 2007), A Weatfield on a Summer's Afternoon by the Philadelphia Museum of Arts (String Quartet & Jazz Quartet 2011). Arturo is currently the Chair of the Hand Percussion Department at the University of The Arts in Philadelphia. Photo by Gene Smirnov
http://www.playonphilly.org/Bernard Woma Ensemble
Bernard Woma Ensemble
Ghanaian Traditional Ensemble Bernard Woma has shared the performance stage with renowned artists such as Maya Angelou, Yo Yo Ma, and Glen Velez. He has performed for international dignitaries and presidents such as U. S. president Bill Clinton, Nelson Mandela and Queen Elizabeth II. He was recently honored as the cultural resource person for President Barack Obama's family when they visited Ghana. He is a cultural treasure from Ghana who has toured the world as xylophonist and lead drummer of the National Dance Company of Ghana. Bernard is an extremely dynamic artist and deeply experienced educator. His recent appearances in the US include a performance with New York Philharmonic at the Avery Fisher, Lincoln Center, South Dakota Symphony Orchestra and Minnesota Orchestra, residency with the Ethos Percussion group, performances and teaching at New York's AXF: African Xylophone Festival, and various universities and colleges. The performance of his composition "Gyil Nyog Me Na" in the spring of 2006 at Zankel Hall in Carnegie Hall is a testimony of his musicianship. Bernard is the Artistic Director of Saakumu Dance Troupe and the founder and director of the Dagara Music and Arts Center in Accra, Ghana.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Black Violin
Black Violin
String Duo Wil Baptiste (viola) and Kev Marcus (violin) are a string duo from Florida with equal footing in the worlds of classical music and hip-hop. 'Our mantra has always been to engage the audience to look at things from a different perspective,' says Kev. 'At first, we leaned on the fact that we were different, more than on our technique; we wanted you to be confused. This time, we tried to keep our core message, but with more gravitas, more seriousness. Not just be crazy and different, but really step it up and be badass violinists.' Photo by Colin Brennan
http://www.playonphilly.org/Bobby McFerrin
Bobby McFerrin
Vocalist And Conductor "There is something almost superhuman about the range and technique of Bobby McFerrin", says Newsweek. "He sounds, by turns, like a blackbird, a Martian, an operatic soprano, a small child, and a bebop trumpet." But despite the undeniable uniqueness of his gift, Bobby's music is always accessible and inviting. When he invites his fans to sing along, as he almost always does, few can resist. Inclusiveness, play, and the universality of voices raised together in song are at the heart of Bobby's art. Bobby McFerrin was exposed to a multitude of musical genres during his youth-classical, R&B, jazz, pop and world musics. "When you grow up with that hodgepodge of music, it just comes out. It was like growing up in a multilingual house", he says. Bobby McFerrin continues to explore the musical universe, known and unknown. Drawing on all genres, demonstrating matchless improvisational skills, he never fails to dazzle. He never seems to run out of new ideas, and he loves having no clue what's going to happen next. Ask him where he went to school, and he just might tell you that he is a graduate of MSU: Making Stuff Up. "Music for me", McFerrin says, "is like a spiritual journey down into the depths of my soul. And I like to think we're all on a journey into our souls. What's down there? That's why I do what I do." Photo by Carol Friedman
http://www.playonphilly.org/Borromeo String Quartet
Borromeo String Quartet
String Quartet Since their explosive debut in 1989, the critically acclaimed Borromeo String Quartet have become one of the most sought after strings quartets in the world, performing over 100 concerts of classical and contemporary music across three continents every season. Audiences and critics alike champion their ability to bring back the contemporary fire to often heard works from the classic repertoire while making even the most challenging new music approachable. As one of today's most adventurous quartets, they continue to push musical, intellectual, and technical boundaries to a level achieved by only a very few. Photo by Eli Akerstein
http://www.playonphilly.org/CaribeNostrum
CaribeNostrum
Cuban Quintet The Cuban quintet CaribeNostrum was founded during the 2014 residency of the Youth Orchestra of the Americas. Violinists Jenny Peña Campo Field and Lisbet Sevila, violist Camila Berg, cellist Roberto Mario de la Masa, and clarinetist Arístides Porto are all recognized young Cuban musicians with vast musical experience ranging from classical to contemporary music. All have been members of professional orchestras such as the Camerata Romeu, the Youth Symphony Orchestra of the Lyceum Mozartiano of Havana, the National Symphony Orchestra of Costa Rica, Havana Symphony Orchestra, and the ballet and opera symphony orchestra of the Gran Teatro de la Habana. This has allowed these accomplished musicians the opportunity to share a stage with the most prestigious artists of contemporary Cuban music. Its members are not only dedicated to orchestral music, but are also recognized in their respective instruments with various national and international rewards, performing in the concert halls of France, Belgium, Austria, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Nicaragua among others.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Chestnut Brass
Chestnut Brass
Brass Quintet The Grammy winning Chestnut Brass Company has earned international acclaim for brilliant performances on modern and historical brass instruments. Since beginning as a street band in Philadelphia in 1977, they have performed in North and South America, Europe, the Caribbean, and Asia. As curators of the sounds of ancient and antique brasses, the Chestnut Brass Company have been at the forefront of the period-instrument revival with performances on cornetti, sacbuts, keyed bugles and saxhorns. The quintet continues to collect antique brass instruments and to research the literature and performance practice of these instruments. Photo by Paul Nixdorf
http://www.playonphilly.org/Chicago Harp Quartet
Chicago Harp Quartet
Harp Ensemble Founded in 2012, the Chicago Harp Quartet has quickly established themselves as the leading harp ensemble in the United States. Widely regarded as a Chicago treasure, the Chicago Harp Quartet has dedicated itself to presenting innovative, charismatic and forward-thinking programs of existing classics transformed for the ensemble as well as new commissions.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Christine Lamprea
Christine Lamprea
Cellist Noted for her “supreme panache” (The Boston Musical Intelligencer), Colombian-American cellist Christine Lamprea is a multi-faceted soloist and chamber musician. Ms. Lamprea is the First Prize winner of the XVI Annual Sphinx Competition (2013). She has also received awards from the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts, the Young Texas Artists’ Competition and, most recently, captured First Prize at the 2013 Schadt National String Competition. She is also a winner of Astral Artists’ 2013 National Auditions. Ms. Lamprea has appeared as a soloist with the Houston and New Jersey Symphonies, among others. Photo by Vanessa Briceño
http://www.playonphilly.org/Don Liuzzi
Don Liuzzi
Percussionist Before joining The Philadelphia Orchestra in 1989, Mr. Liuzzi was a member of the Pittsburgh Symphony percussion section from 1982 to 1989. While in Pittsburgh he taught percussion and conducted the percussion ensemble at Duquesne University, was Assistant Conductor of the Three Rivers Young People Orchestra, and appeared on PBS' nationally-syndicated "Mr. Roger's Neighborhood", performing marimba and percussion solos. He also performs with the DePue Brothers Band, Philork Jazz, and the Philadelphia Orchestra Percussion Group.
http://www.playonphilly.org/DRUMLine Live!
DRUMLine Live!
Touring Ensemble DRUMLine Live is an international touring ensemble based on the Historically Black College and University marching band tradition. With riveting rhythms, bold beats and ear-grabbing energy, the show is a synchronized musical showcase of the HBCU experience. Incorporating original compositions and soul-infused interpretations of Top 40 hits, the performances range from colorful, choreographed routines to heavy doses of drum riffs and cadences.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Duo Scorpio
Duo Scorpio
Harp Duo Duo Scorpio is a New York City based harp duo on a mission to expand the duo harp repertoire by commissioning new works and exploring existing repertoire. In 2010, the duo began searching for music for their newly formed ensemble and realized this particular part of the harp repertoire had yet to be fully explored in a contemporary setting. Duo Scorpio was awarded the American Harp Society Grant, which they used to commission composer Robert Paterson. His work, “Scorpion Tales”, was premiered by Duo Scorpio at the AHS National Conference in New York City on July 2, 2012. Duo Scorpio released their first album, Scorpion Tales, on the American Modern Recordings Label on September 4, 2012 and was on the ballot nomination for the 2013 Grammy® awards. Duo Scorpio has performed with Florence + The Machine at the Met Gala, for Metro Harp New York and has performed together orchestrally in Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall. Photo by Frances Melhop
http://www.playonphilly.org/East Coast Chamber Orchestra (ECCO)
East Coast Chamber Orchestra (ECCO)
Chamber Ensemble The critically acclaimed East Coast Chamber Orchestra (ECCO) is a collective of dynamic like-minded artists who convene for select periods each year to explore musical works and perform concerts of the highest artistic quality. Drawing from some of the world's finest orchestras, chamber groups, and young soloists, ECCO strives for vitality and musical integrity; a self-governing organization, each member is equal and has a voice in every step of the artistic process, from programming to performance. ECCO believes that the best musical experience can speak to all audiences regardless of age or socioeconomic background and performs accordingly across a wide range of venues.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Ensemble 7/4
Ensemble 7/4
Venezuelan Trumpet & Percussion Ensemble At the beginning of 2011, four Venezuelan trumpet players, all products of the Venezuelan System of Children and Youth Orchestras (El Sistema), decided to explore and conquer new musical frontiers beyond their experience as an academic trumpet quartet, having as their ambition to play not only the Venezuelan repertoire but also the vast repertoire of the entire American continent. To achieve this they invited to their ensemble three outstanding performers of the Venezuelan cuatro, the double bass and percussion to create a unique new musical organization. ENSEMBLE 7/4 has definitely become an innovative musical and artistic voice, which starts with the use of the trumpet in genres that usual don’t feature it, like the Venezuelan joropo or the Argentinian tango. Other innovations include the creation of arrangements influenced by a deep investigation of the musical styles of countries such as Cuba, Mexico and the USA. These arrangements respect the original sonorities of the native music and feature a broad range of colors and timbres within the same instrument. In particular the group’s TOUR PABELLON CRIOLLO, a consolidation of its artistic and musical vision, is like a journey in which rhythms, melodies, colors and tastes intrinsic to our American countries join happily together.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Gary White
Gary White
Conductor Appointed Music Director and Conductor of Philadelphia Sinfonia in 1999, educated, nurtured, inspired, and shaped a troupe of unseasoned but ambitious young musicians into one of the Delaware Valley's finest youth orchestras. Since he took the podium, Sinfonia has grown to more than 90 members, competitively selected each year from an ever-more gifted pool of musicians attracted by White's conducting skills, and expanded into a full symphonic orchestra and a string chamber orchestra. A professional French horn player, Mr. White has performed with the Fairmount Brass Quartet; Concerto Soloists; Lehigh Valley Chamber Orchestra; Pennsylvania Sinfonia; the Harrisburg, Reading and Pottstown symphonies; as a substitute with The Philadelphia Orchestra, and is heard on numerous orchestra and chamber recordings. In 2008, Mr. White was inducted into Temple University's "Gallery of Success" for his achievements in the music profession as a conductor, educator and performer.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Hal Robinson
Hal Robinson
Double Bass Harold Robinson joined The Philadelphia Orchestra as principal bass in September 1995. He previously served as principal bass with the National Symphony Orchestra from 1985 to 1995, and he also served as assistant principal bass of the Houston Symphony Orchestra (1977-1985) and principal bass of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra (1975-1977, then known as the Albuquerque Symphony). Most recently he was appointed to the double bass faculty at The Juilliard School.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Hannibal Lokumbe
Hannibal Lokumbe
Trumpeter and Composer Over his forty years in music, Hannibal Lokumbe has been a jazz musician in New York, commissioned to compose for organizations around the country and founded the Music Liberation Orchestra, a program that teaches music, genealogy and writing to incarcerated men. He was raised by his mother in Texas in the 1950s and draws from those experiences to motivate his music and community involvement. In fall of 2015, The Philadelphia Orchestra debuted his latest composition "One Land, One River, One People", conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Photo by Mark Winslett
http://www.playonphilly.org/Harlem Quartet
Harlem Quartet
String Quartet Harlem Quartet is comprised of violinist Ilmar Gavilan, violinist Melissa White, violist Jaime Amador, and cellist Felix Umansky. Its mission is to advance diversity in classical music, engaging young and new audiences through the discovery and presentation of varied repertoire that includes works by minority composers. Passion for this work has made the quartet a leading ensemble in both educational and community engagement performances.New York-based HARLEM QUARTET, currently serving a three-year residency at London’s Royal College of Music, has been praised for its “panache” by The New York Times and hailed in the Cincinnati Enquirer for “bringing a new attitude to classical music, one that is fresh, bracing and intelligent.” Critic Julian Haylock, reviewing a NAXOS recording of string quartets by Walter Piston, called Harlem Quartet a “formidable ensemble whose members play highly demanding scores with infectious vitality, breezy confidence and (most importantly) affectionate warmth.” Since its public debut at Carnegie Hall in 2006, the quartet has thrilled audiences in 47 states as well as in the U.K., France, Belgium, Brazil, Panama, Canada, Venezuela, and South Africa.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Imani Winds
Imani Winds
Wind Quintet Imani Winds is an American wind quintet based in New York. The group was founded in 1997 and is known for its adventurous programming, which includes newly composed works, as well as compositions featuring African, Latin American, and American influences. They have presented premieres by composers including Paquito D'Rivera, Mohammed Fairouz, Wayne Shorter, Richard Wernick, Fred Ho, Kenji Bunch, and Bruce Adolphe. The group has released four CDs. Their first CD on a major label, The Classical Underground (Koch Entertainment), was nominated for a Grammy award in 2006. Imani Winds have toured throughout the United States and Canada, and participated in Chamber Music Society Two, a professional residency program of The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. In addition, Imani has toured internationally and recorded with saxophonist Steve Coleman, performed with pop recording artists Morley and opened for Cassandra Wilson and Wynton Marsalis. They have appeared on radio programs including Saint Paul Sunday, Performance Today, News & Notes, The Bob Edwards Show, and The World. The group's members are of African American and Latin American ancestry, and the name Imani means "faith" in the Swahili language. Photo by Merri Cyr
http://www.playonphilly.org/Jon Batiste and Stay Human
Jon Batiste and Stay Human
House Band for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert Jon Batiste is a singer, multi-instrumentalist, educator, and bandleader from Kenner, Louisiana. He received a master's degree from the Juilliard School, where his fellow band members also attended. In 2005, Batiste began performing regularly around New York with bassist Phil Kuehn and drummer Joe Saylor. A few years later they were joined by Eddie Barbash on alto saxophone and Ibanda Ruhumbika on tuba. Recently, he was appointed as the Associate Artistic Director of the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. On June 4, 2015, it was announced that the group would serve as house band of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. Photo by Peter Lueders
http://www.playonphilly.org/Joseph Conyers
Joseph Conyers
Double Bass Profiled in Ebony magazine as one of 30 Leaders 30 and Younger, Joseph H. Conyers joined The Philadelphia Orchestra in September 2010 as assistant principal bass. He came to Philadelphia after a one-and-a-half year tenure with the Atlanta Symphony, three-and-a half years as principal bass of the Grand Rapids Symphony, and four summers as a member of the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra. He is a founder of Project 440 which educates musicians from around the country how to become active, relevant, and integral pillars within their communities. Photo by Carolyn Stanish
http://www.playonphilly.org/Joseph Lin
Joseph Lin
Violinist, Juilliard String Quartet An active solo and chamber musician, Joseph Lin was a founding member of the Formosa Quartet, winner of the 2006 London International String Quartet Competition. He was named a Presidential Scholar in the Arts and has won numerous awards, including the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, the Pro Musicis International Award and First Prize at the inaugural Michael Hill World Violin Competition in New Zealand. His recordings include the music of Korngold and Busoni on the Naxos label, the unaccompanied works of Bach and Ysaÿe on the N&F label, and the Formosa Quartet’s debut CD released by EMI. Mr. Lin has appeared as a soloist with the New Japan Philharmonic, the Sapporo Symphony, the Taiwan National Symphony, the Auckland Philharmonia, the Ukraine National Philharmonic, and the Boston Symphony. After graduating from Harvard in 2000, he began an extended exploration of China in 2002, and studied Chinese music in Beijing as a Fulbright Scholar in 2004. From 2007 to 2011, Mr. Lin was an Assistant Professor at Cornell University, where he organized the inaugural Chinese Musicians Residency. Joseph Lin’s violin teachers have included Mary Canberg, Shirley Givens and Lynn Chang. Photo by Koichi Miura
http://www.playonphilly.org/Julietta Curenton
Julietta Curenton
Flautist The Philadelphia Inquirer says flutist Julietta Curenton's "tone glows more than it sparkles, and it draws in one's ear with sounds and ideas that simply cannot be resisted." The winner of the prestigious Musical Fund Society of Philadelphia Career Advancement Award in 2012, Ms. Curenton also has appeared as soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony, Kennedy Center Institute Orchestra, Amadeus Chamber Orchestra, U.S. Army Orchestra, Alexandria Symphony, and the Fairfax Band. She performed with legendary mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade at the Kennedy Center's Terrace Theater, where The Washington Post deemed her "a worthy support" to the opera diva. Photo by Johanna Williams
http://www.playonphilly.org/Jupiter Quartet
Jupiter Quartet
String Quartet The Jupiter String Quartet, formed in 2001, is a particularly intimate group, consisting of violinists Nelson Lee and Megan Freivogel, violist Liz Freivogel (older sister of Meg), and cellist Daniel McDonough (husband of Meg, brother-in-iaw of Liz). As they enter their second decade of making music together, their tightly knit ensemble has firmly established itself as an important voice in the world of chamber music. In addition to their performing career, the Jupiters have joined the faculty of the University of Illinois as String Quartet-in-Residence. They also hold visiting faculty residencies at Oberlin Conservatory and Adlephi University, and have engaged in a multi-year residency at Atlanta's beautiful Spivey Hall. They have enjoyed playing in some of the world's finest halls including New York's Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center, London's Wigmore Hall, Boston's Jordan Hall, and Washington, D.C.'s Kennedy Center and Library of Congress. The Jupiters place a strong emphasis on developing relationships with future classical music audiences through outreach work in the school systems and other educational performances.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Kinan Abou-Afach
Kinan Abou-Afach
Cellist, Oud-ist and Composer Born in Syria, Kinan Abou-Afach is a multi-talented artist who specializes in Arabic music. He commenced his musical studies with the Oud at age 7, learning traditional Arabic repertoire. He added cello at age 8. By age 15 he became a member of the National Syrian Symphony Orchestra and the Middle-Eastern ensemble. Kinan has performed as a soloist and chamber musician throughout the Middle-East, Europe and North America. He has also participated in Master Claases with Francoise Baduell in 1977, Federico Romano in 1998, Yo-Yo Ma in 1999 and members of the Alban Berg Quartet in 2002. Kinan has performed in The Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall and composed soundtracks for movies including, "The Long Night" and "Where We Stand." Locally he is active with Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Kiran Ghandi
Kiran Ghandi
Electronic Music Artist Kiran Gandhi, known by her stage name Madame Gandhi, is an electronic music artist and activist based in Los Angeles. Having gained recognition as the former drummer for M.I.A. and as the iconic free-bleeding runner at the 2015 London Marathon, Madame Gandhi now writes music that elevates and celebrates the female voice. Photo by Anna Marie Lopez
http://www.playonphilly.org/Marin Alsop
Marin Alsop
Conductor Marin Alsop is an American conductor and violinist. She attended Yale University, but later transferred to The Juilliard School, where she earned a bachelor's and a master's degree in violin. She is the music director of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and principal conductor of the São Paulo State Symphony Orchestra. Alsop is the first woman to hold a music director position with a major American orchestra. Among the new initiatives she has introduced are a free iTunes podcast, "Clueless About Classical" and a new educational program called "OrchKids", in which underprivileged Baltimore children will receive free music instruction, based on Venezuela's El Sistema program. Alsop was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2008 and was appointed Director of Graduate Conducting at the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University in 2015. She was also the first woman to conduct the last night at The Proms in 2013 and in 2014 received an Honorary Membership of the Royal Philharmonic Society. Photo by Grant Leighton
http://www.playonphilly.org/Mimi Stillman
Mimi Stillman
Flautist A Yamaha Performing Artist, Mimi Stillman is internationally acclaimed for performances as soloist with orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, Bach Collegium Stuttgart, Hilton Head Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Carlos Chávez (Mexico City), Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle, Oklahoma City Philharmonic, Texas Brazos Valley Symphony, Orchestra 2001, Ocean City Pops, and Curtis Chamber Orchestra. She has appeared as recitalist and chamber musician at venues including The Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, the Kimmel Center, Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, Bard College, La Jolla Chamber Music Society, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Bay Chamber Concerts (ME), Kingston Chamber Music Festival, Verbier Festival (Switzerland), and Festival delle Nazioni (Italy). Photo by Vanessa Briceño
http://www.playonphilly.org/Nokothula Ngwenyama
Nokothula Ngwenyama
Violist Featured as a "Face to Watch" in the "Los Angeles Times," Nokuthula Ngwenyama is an American solo violist of Zimbabwean and Japanese descent. She came to international attention when she won the Primrose International Viola Competition in 1993 and the Young Concert Artists International Auditions in 1994. Since then, she has been a soloist with orchestras around the world, including the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony, Baltimore Symphony, KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra in Durban, and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. She has appeared in recital at the Kennedy Center, Japan's Suntory Hall, the Louvre, and the White House. She is an alumnus of the Curtis Institute of Music, and attended the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris as a Fulbright Scholar. She also has a Master of Theological Studies degree from Harvard University. She is current president of the American Viola Society and director of the Primrose International Viola Competition. Photo by Darla Furlani
http://www.playonphilly.org/Orchestra 2001
Orchestra 2001
Orchestra Since the its founding in 1988, O2001 has grown into one of America’s most important cultural institutions, and one of America's most esteemed champions of new music. For three years in a row, (2007, 2008, 2009) ASCAP and the League of American Orchestras recognized the orchestra and Artistic Director James Freeman, as outstanding leaders in the field of new music with their “Awards for Adventurous Programming.” As one of only three contemporary music ensembles in the United States that can scale up to a full chamber orchestra, Orchestra 2001 plays an important role in the international musical community. Orchestra 2001’s mission is to “perform and promote the music of the 20th and 21st centuries, premiering new works, providing a major focus for the best new music of our time, while introducing unknown older works, and reaching out to regional and international audiences through recordings and tours”. The commitment to performing contemporary music is unparalleled. The record speaks for itself: over 90 world premieres, 105 Greater Philadelphia premieres, over 250 works by 130 American composers, of which more than 150 works were by 60 Philadelphia-area composers.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Paul Bryan
Paul Bryan
Conductor Paul Bryan is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and Temple University, where he studied trombone with Glenn Dodson and Eric Carlson and conducting with David Hayes, Arthur Chodoroff, and Larry Wagner. His current positions include: artistic coordinator and conductor of Bravo Brass, faculty member at Temple University's Esther Boyer College of Music, music director of Symphony in C's Summer Symphony Camp, conductor of the Reading Summer Music Institute, and conductor of the Rodney Mack Philadelphia Big Brass. Mr. Bryan has also conducted performances with the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia wind and brass ensembles and the Curtis Brass and Percussion Ensemble. In demand as a guest conductor and clinician, Mr. Bryan has conducted numerous ensembles, including Drexel University's Concert Band, 20/21: The Curtis Contemporary Music Ensemble, and various regional honor ensembles in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. He has served as director of bands at St. Joseph's Preparatory School in Philadelphia and as a conductor at the New York Summer Music Festival in Oneonta, N.Y. Mr. Bryan, a staff member since 1993, joined the faculty of the Curtis Institute of Music in 2009.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Philadelphia String Quartet
Philadelphia String Quartet
String Quartet The Philadelphia String Quartet is a dynamic string quartet that redefines classical music through electronic instruments and surround sound. All of its musicians have been trained at the finest classical conservatories and music schools. The quartet specializes in interpreting music in any style and plays anything from Bach to Lady Gaga.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Ranaan Meyer
Ranaan Meyer
Double Bassist & Composer Ranaan Meyer's work runs the gamut from appearances with the Philadelphia Orchestra to Joshua Radin, and all points between. Ranaan began playing the double bass at age 11 and formed the trio Time for Three with fellow students and violinists Nick Kendall and Zach DePue from The Curtis Institute of Music. When not performing with Time for Three, Ranaan Meyer dedicates himself to the universal education of double bass players. Through summer camps Wabass Institute and Wabass Workshop, Ranaan works with the most promising students and professionals in the world every summer. Ranaan recently received a Community Partner grant from the American Composers Forum to compose 10 pieces for student musicians in disadvantaged areas, and will be conducting residencies on those pieces beginning in the fall of 2013. Ranaan's residency with Play On, Philly! was through the generosity of the Community Partner grant.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Ray Chen
Ray Chen
Violinist Winner of the Queen Elisabeth (2009) and Yehudi Menuhin Competitions (2008), Ray Chen is among the most compelling young violinists today. Born in Taiwan and raised in Australia, Ray was accepted to the Curtis Institute of Music at age 15, where he studied with Aaron Rosand and was supported by Young Concert Artists. He plays the 1715 “Joachim” Stradivarius violin on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation. In 2012 he became the youngest soloist ever to perform in the televised Nobel Prize Concert for the Nobel Laureates and the Swedish Royal Family. His Carnegie Hall debut with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic and Sakari Oramo, as well as his sold-out Musikverein concert with the Gewandhaus Orchestra and Riccardo Chailly were met with standing ovations. Ray was a Junge Wilde artist at the Konzerthaus Dortmund between 2012 and 2015. Followed by over 2 million people on SoundCloud, Ray Chen looks to expand the classical music audience by increasing its appeal to the young generation via all available social media platforms. In particular his series of quirky, self- made online videos has proven an effective tool in broadening the reach of classical music through humor and education. Photo by Julian Hargreaves
http://www.playonphilly.org/Richard Hoenich
Richard Hoenich
Bassoon Montreal-born Richard Hoenich has enjoyed a distinguished 30-year career as a performer, conductor, teacher and coach. A graduate of the Curtis Institute, Richard won the principal bassoon position with the Montreal Symphony Orchestra in 1978. In 1985, music director Charles Dutoit appointed him associate conductor, a post he held until 1994. In 1992, Richard began a decade-long tenure as director of orchestral activities at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. He also worked closely with Michael Tilson Thomas at the New World Symphony in Miami, and was the first guest conductor in the orchestra's history invited to conduct a foreign tour, to Costa Rica. Richard's work as a coach and mentor to young players in Boston and Miami led him to devote part of his energies to help mold the next generation of orchestra performers. Two years ago, he established the Brooke Valley Musician's Retreat in rural Ontario, Canada, where he works with professional musicians seeking an orchestral position. In Canada, he has conducted the Toronto Symphony, Vancouver Symphony, and the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Ottawa, among others. He has recorded with Decca, New World Records, Albany, Liscio, Marquis Classics and McGill Records.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Rossen Milanov
Rossen Milanov
Bassoon Rossen Milanov's serves as music director of The Princeton Symphony Orchestra, Symphony in C, and the New Symphony Orchestra. He has led a tour with the Australian Youth Orchestra, concerts with the Aspen Chamber Symphony and was Music Director of the Chicago Youth Symphony from 1997 to 2001. He has also worked with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Orchestra of St. Luke's, the Rotterdam Philharmonic, the Orchestra of Komische Oper, Berlin, Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Singapore Symphony Orchestra, and works regularly with the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra. His ongoing relationship with The Philadelphia Orchestra has included critically acclaimed concerts at the orchestra's summer series at Mann Center, at the Bravo! Vale Valley Music Festival and in subscription concerts at Kimmel Center. Mr Milanov studied conducting at the Juilliard School (where he received the Bruno Walter Memorial Scholarship), the Curtis Institute of Music, Duquesne University and the Bulgarian National Academy of Music. He has received the Award for Extraordinary Contribution to Bulgarian Culture, awarded by the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture, and in 2005 was chosen as Bulgaria's Musician of the Year. Photo by Amanda Stevenson
http://www.playonphilly.org/Sir Simon Rattle
Sir Simon Rattle
Conductor Simon Rattle was born in Liverpool and studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 1980 he became Principal Conductor and Artistic Adviser of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, stepping up to Music Director from September 1990 until August 1998. He is also Founding Patron of the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group and since the early 1990s, has been a Principal Artist of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment. As guest conductor, he appeared regularly in the United States, London and Europe, with close links to a number of orchestras most notably with the Vienna Philharmonic and Philadelphia Orchestras. In September 2002 he became Chief Conductor and Artistic Director of the Berliner Philharmoniker and Music Director of the Osterfestspiele Salzburg. He leads regular Berliner Philharmoniker tours in Europe, North America and the Far East. Photo by Jim Rakete
http://www.playonphilly.org/Sixth Floor Trio
Sixth Floor Trio
Chamber Group The Sixth Floor Trio is a chamber group dedicated to the creation and performance of music that connects different musical styles, communities, and artistic disciplines. Formed by graduates of the Curtis Institute of Music in 2008, the Trio has performed extensively throughout the United States in venues ranging from traditional concert halls to grunge bars and experimental spaces.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Tai Murray
Tai Murray
Violinist Winner of an Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2004, Tai Murray was a BBC New Generation Artist from 2008 to 2010. Tai has performed on stages of such halls as Berlin's Konzerthaus, Wigmore Hall in London, Chicago's Orchestra Hall, Copenhagen's Tivoli Gardens, Shanghai's Concert Hall and New York's Carnegie Hall and has collaborated with a wide range of conductors and instrumentalists including Marin Alsop, Richard Goode, Alan Gilbert, Kristian Järvi, Jaime Laredo, Dmitry Sitkovetsky, Benjamin Schwarz, Mitsuko Uchida and Mihaela Ursuleasa. Other recent debuts include the Atlanta and Dallas Symphony Orchestras, the Danish National Symphony Orchestra as well as re-engagements with the Chicago, St. Louis, Cincinnati and Baltimore Symphony Orchestras. She is also an avid recitalist performing duo recitals with pianist Gilles Vonsattel and Mihaela Ursuleasa and last season she performed together with Lambert Orkis at the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society. A dedicated chamber musician, Tai Murray is a member of the conductor-less East Coast Chamber Orchestra (ECCO). She has been on tour numerous times with musicians from the Marlboro Festival and was a member of Lincoln Center's Chamber Music Society. Photo by Julia Wesely
http://www.playonphilly.org/Takacs Quartet
Takacs Quartet
String Quartet Recognized as one of the world's greatest ensembles, The Takács Quartet features Edward Dusinberre, first violin, Károly Schranz, second violin, Geraldine Walther, viola and András Fejér, cello. In 2001 the Takács Quartet was awarded the Order of Merit of the Knight’s Cross of the Republic of Hungary, and in March of 2011 each member of the Quartet was awarded the Order of Merit Commander’s Cross by the President of the Republic of Hungary. The Takacs Quartet is in residence at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where they teach in a string program dedicated to nurturing the chamber music interests of undergraduate and graduate students.
http://www.playonphilly.org/The Parker Quartet
The Parker Quartet
String Quartet Hailed by The New York Times as “something extraordinary,” the Grammy Award-winning Parker Quartet has rapidly distinguished itself as one of the preeminent ensembles of its generation. The quartet began its professional touring career in 2002 and garnered international acclaim in 2005, winning the Concert Artists Guild Competition as well as the Grand Prix and Mozart Prize at the Bordeaux International String Quartet Competition in France. In 2009, Chamber Music America awarded the quartet the prestigious biennial Cleveland Quartet Award for the 2009-2011 seasons. Photo by Cameron Wittig
http://www.playonphilly.org/Time for Three
Time for Three
String Trio The world’s first classically-trained garage band, Time for Three - Zachary (Zach) De Pue, violin; Nicolas (Nick) Kendall, violin; and Ranaan Meyer, double bass - defies traditional classification. Performing music from Bach and Brahms to their own arrangements of The Beatles, Katy Perry, Kanye West and Justin Timberlake, they have performed everywhere from Carnegie Hall to Jazz clubs, European festivals, NFL games and the Indy 500. Their hit YouTube anti-bullying video Stronger, featured on CNN and the Huffington Post, has inspired students around the globe. Their packed 2012/13 season will include the release of their second album, a return to Carnegie Hall, their first tour of Asia, and the world premiere of a new concerto by William Bolcom, in addition to their continuing residency with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. Photo by LeAnn Mueller
http://www.playonphilly.org/Timothy Warfield, Jr.
Timothy Warfield, Jr.
Tenor Saxophone Tim Warfield, Jr. is a tenor saxophonist who has performed all over the world, has appeared in numerous television shows and made numerous stage appearances with such names as Donald Byrd, Michelle Rosewoman, Marcus Miller, James Williams, Christian McBride, The Harper Brothers, Dizzy Gillespie, Isaac Hayes, Shirley Scott, Jimmy Smith, Eric Reed, Carl Allen, Stefon Harris, Orrin Evans, The Newport Millennium All Stars, "Papa" John Defrancesco, Joey Defrancesco, Claudio Raggazzi, and others. Warfield’s first recording, A Cool Blue, was selected as one of the top ten recordings of the year in a 1995 New York Times critic’s poll, as was his 1998 recording Gentle Warrior. In 1999, he was awarded "Talent Deserving Wider Recognition" in DownBeat Magazine’s 49th Annual Jazz Critic’s poll. In the fall of 1999 Warfield exclusively joined forces with New Orleans trumpeter and Warner Bros. recording artist Nicholas Payton with whom he toured and recorded until 2005. In 2006, Warfield joined trumpeter and Maxjazz recording artist Terell Stafford's Quintet. Tim Warfield, Jr. is an Adjunct Faculty Member of the Boyer College of Music of Temple University and an Artist-in-Residence at Messiah College. Photo by Steve Stoltzfus
http://www.playonphilly.org/Trio Cavatina
Trio Cavatina
Chamber Ensemble Pianist Ieva Jokubaviciute, violinist Harumi Rhodes, and cellist Priscilla Lee formed Trio Cavatina in 2005 at the renowned Marlboro Music Festival in Vermont. Deeply rooted in a strong sense of shared musical values, Trio Cavatina has rapidly emerged as one of today's outstanding chamber ensembles whose committed music-making prompted Harris Goldsmith to describe the trio, in his 2008 Musical America article, as offering 'potent, intense interpretations'. In addition to their command of the classical and romantic repertoire, Trio Cavatina is committed to collaborating with living composers and to weaving 20th and 21st century repertoire into their programs. They have worked closely with American composers Leon Kirchner, Richard Danielpour, and Augusta Read Thomas.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Troy Peters
Troy Peters
Conductor Conductor Troy Peters is equally at home with pops repertoire or educational concerts, classical masterworks or world premieres. He is Music Director of YOSA (Youth Orchestras of San Antoniio) and Director of Orchestral Studies at Texas State University. Past appointments include Music Director of the Vermont Youth Orchestra, Middlebury College Orchestra and Montpelier Chamber Orchestra. More recently has has conducted more than 20 performances with the San Antonio Symphony and made his guest conducting debut with the Oregon Symphony. He led the world premiere CD recording of Daron Hagen's "Masquerade" with vioinist Jamie Laredo, cellist Sharon Robinson and the Vermont Symphony Orchestra, released by Bridge Records in November, 2011. He has gained international attention for his orchestral collaborations with rock musicians including Blind Pilot, John Anderson (of the band Yes) and Trey Anastasio (of the band Phish), with whom he worked on two albums on Elektra Records.
http://www.playonphilly.org/West Philly Orchestra
West Philly Orchestra
Ensemble With a line-up of Philadelphia musicians whose influences range from Sun Ra to Bulgarian brass bands, West Philadelphia Orchestra is a unique live ensemble in today’s auto-tuned musical world. They began playing Romanian ballads, Macedonian folk-dance songs, Bulgarian wedding music, and Klezmer in late 2006, and have continued expanding their repertoire of Eastern European music. The band also plays original tunes which blend other sounds, like jazz and classical, together with traditional Balkan sounds. As much a community as a band, WPO’s performances are celebratory events. With blistering beats and walls of brass, they inspire audiences to hold hands, gyrate, howl, and otherwise slip the yoke of the homogenized culture industry.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Weston Sprott
Weston Sprott
Trombone Weston Sprott was appointed to the position of second trombone of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra in the spring of 2005. He began his musical training in his hometown of Spring, TX. Mr. Sprott attended Indiana University before completing his Bachelor of Music degree at The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. His primary teachers were Michael Warny, Carl Lenthe, and Nitzan Haroz.
http://www.playonphilly.org/Wynton Marsalis
Wynton Marsalis
Trumpeter Born October 18, 1961, in New Orleans, Wynton Marsalis began studying trumpet seriously at age twelve. During high school he performed in local marching bands, jazz bands, funk bands, and classical orchestras, and at age eighteen he moved to New York to attend the Juilliard School of Music. In the summer of 1980, he became a member of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers and that same year signed with Columbia Records. Since his self-titled debut was released in 1982, Marsalis' numerous jazz and classical recordings for Columbia and Sony Classical have sold nearly five million copies world wide. He has taken his jazz groups to thirty countries on six continents, averaging more than 120 concerts per year for many of the past sixteen years. Marsalis serves as artistic director for the internationally recognized Jazz at Lincoln Center program, which he co-founded in 1987. Under his leadership, the jazz department earned the distinction of being named Lincoln Center's first new constituent organization since 1969. Photo by Clay McBride
http://www.playonphilly.org/Yannick Nézet-Séguin
Yannick Nézet-Séguin
Music Director, The Philadelphia Orchestra Yannick Nézet-Séguin continues his inspired leadership as the eighth music director of The Philadelphia Orchestra, which began in the fall of 2012. His highly collaborative style, deeply-rooted musical curiosity, and boundless enthusiasm, paired with a fresh approach to orchestral programming, have been heralded by critics and audiences alike, from the Orchestra’s home in Verizon Hall to the Carnegie Hall stage. The New York Times has called Yannick “phenomenal,” adding that under his baton, “the ensemble, famous for its glowing strings and homogenous richness, has never sounded better.” Yannick Nézet-Séguin has established himself as a musical leader of the highest caliber and one of the most exciting talents of his generation over the past decade. Since 2008 he has been music director of the Rotterdam Philharmonic and principal guest conductor of the London Philharmonic, and since 2000 artistic director and principal conductor of Montreal’s Orchestre Métropolitain. In addition he became the first ever mentor conductor of the Curtis Institute of Music’s conducting fellows program in the fall of 2013. He has made wildly successful appearances with the world’s most revered ensembles—the Vienna Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Boston Symphony, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Dresden Staatskapelle, the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, the Bavarian Radio Symphony, the Berlin Staatskapelle, and all the major Canadian orchestras, among many others. Throughout Europe and North America, Yannick’s appearances have left indelible marks on the international classical music scene, making him one of the most sought-after conductors in the world. He is also widely recognized for his conducting of opera and choral music. Photo by Marco Borggreve

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Play On, Philly! (POP) provides intensive music education to K-12 students, who would typically lack access, as a vehicle for life skills and academic achievement

For 2½ hours every day, students enjoy instrument instruction and ensemble practice completely tuition-free