Rolston String Quartet named YSM’s new fellowship quartet-in-residence

Rolston String Quartet | Photo by Tianxiao Zhang Photography

The Rolston String Quartet ’16Norfolk has been named the new fellowship quartet-in-residence at the Yale School of Music. The group, whose previous residencies include the Yale Summer School of Music/Norfolk Chamber Music Festival in the summer of 2016, will begin their tenure at YSM this fall. While at Yale, the quartet will work closely with the Brentano String Quartet — YSM’s quartet-in-residence — perform recitals, and participate in education-outreach programs.

“The Rolston String Quartet is very eager to come to New Haven as the Yale School of Music’s fellowship quartet-in-residence,” the group said in a statement. “We are incredibly optimistic about the possibilities for development and growth provided by Yale’s stimulating environment. We can’t wait to meet the Yale students and faculty who will illuminate and influence this new experience. Working closely with the Brentano Quartet is a dream come true. They are endlessly generous and inspiring people whose artistic spirits are to be admired. We look forward to deepening our musical understandings, refining our interpretations, and benefiting from their extensive professional experience.

“We will be so lucky to be able to coach chamber ensembles made up of Yale (undergraduate) students; this opportunity is a rare one that will yield immense insight into the complexities of teaching music. The fellowship program at Yale will aid our growth as we cultivate an ensemble that reflects the values of community, the highest levels of artistic and academic excellence, and the important traditions of chamber music,” the group said.

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Published May 16, 2017
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Argus Quartet wins Senior Strings division of M-Prize competition

The Argus Quartet, left to right: cellist Jo Whang ’09MM, violist Dana Kelley, violinist Jason Issokson, and violinist Clara Kim

The Argus Quartet, YSM’s fellowship quartet-in-residence, has been named the first place winner in the Senior Strings division of the University of Michigan’s M-Prize Chamber Arts Competition. In addition to a cash prize of $20,000, the quartet will return to the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre & Dance for a residency during the 2017-18 academic year.

Now in its second year, the M-Prize seeks “to identify and showcase the highest caliber of international chamber arts ensembles,” according to the competition’s website. In addition to distributing more than $200,000 of cash prizes (an increase from last year) the M-Prize provides competition winners with platforms for professional development and performance opportunities.

This year, 29 applicants were selected to compete as semifinalists for the grand prize in Michigan. The ensembles, which are made up of 112 artists from seven countries, were selected from an pool of more than 100 ensembles representing 41 countries. In addition to increased prize coffers, this year’s competition featured an interview round during which each of the senior division winners (strings, winds, and other) were asked to advocate on behalf of their ensemble’s repertoire and program plan.

Having been praised by the Calgary Herald for its “supreme melodic control and total authority,” the Argus Quartet is quickly gaining a reputation as one of today’s most dynamic and versatile young ensembles.

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Published May 10, 2017
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Argus Quartet welcomes new member

The Argus Quartet, left to right: Joann Whang, Dana Kelley, Jason Issokson, and Clara Kim

The Argus Quartet, left to right: Joann Whang, Dana Kelley, Jason Issokson, and Clara Kim

The Argus Quartet, the Yale School of Music’s fellowship quartet-in-residence, has welcomed a new member, violist Dana Kelley, to the ensemble. “Dana is a truly dynamic performer with an inquisitive spirit, and we are deeply impressed by her musicianship and her personality,” the quartet said in a statement. “We are growing to admire her more and more every day, and it’s already clear that she’s going to put a major imprint on our quartet’s artistic voice and vision. We look forward to many years of working together, and we can’t wait to share her music-making with audiences at Yale and beyond.” Kelley joins violinists Clara Kim and Jason Issokson and cellist Joann Whang ’09MM in the quartet. MORE

Published January 19, 2017
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Rolston String Quartet wins Banff International String Quartet Competition

Rolston String Quartet | Photo by Tianxiao Zhang Photography

Rolston String Quartet | Photo by Tianxiao Zhang Photography

The Rolston String Quartet (’16 Norfolk) has been named the First Prize Laureate of the 2016 Banff International String Quartet Competition, which concluded after five rounds on Saturday, September 4. “In addition to a generous cash prize of $25,000,” the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity announced, “the Rolston String Quartet will benefit from a comprehensive custom-designed three-year career development program including a professional recording at Banff Centre and a performance tour in over 50 North American and European cities.” The ensemble also won the Esterházy Foundation Prize and the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance Prize.

“This young quartet now has the opportunity to share their artistry with the world,” Barry Shiffman, the competition’s executive director, was quoted as saying.

The Tesla Quartet, whose members—including violist Edward Kaplan ’10MM ’11AD—attended Norfolk in 2011, earned Second Prize at the BISQC, receiving a $12,000 award. The Tesla Quartet also won the R.S. Williams & Sons Haydn Prize and the Canadian Commission Prize, each of which came with a $3,000 award. MORE

Published September 6, 2016
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Ralph Kirshbaum receives honorary doctorate from Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Carol Coburn Grigor, left, a member of the Yale School of Music's Board of Advisors, and Ralph Kirshbaum, in Glasgow, Scotland

Carol Colburn Grigor ’69MMA, a member of the Yale School of Music’s Board of Advisors, and Ralph Kirshbaum, in Glasgow, Scotland

Cellist Ralph Kirshbaum ’68BA was one of three acclaimed artists to receive an honorary degree from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in July. Jeffrey Sharkey ’88MM, the school’s principal, recognized Kirshbaum with an Honorary Doctor of Music Degree during graduation ceremonies on July 5. Actor David Tennant and choreographer Sir Matthew Bourne were also recognized.

“David, Sir Matthew and Ralph are all world leaders in their fields and we’re thrilled to celebrate their achievements,” Sharkey was quoted in a news release as saying. “This creates also a wonderful opportunity for our students to engage with such inspirational individuals as they prepare to enter into the professional world in their own right.”

A former student of Aldo Parisot, Kirshbaum has worked with many of the world’s most renowned ensembles and artists. For three decades, he performed and recorded in a trio with violinist György Pauk and YSM faculty pianist Peter Frankl. He is the Gregor Piatigorsky Chair in Violoncello and chair of the string department at the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music. He taught previously at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, England, and, in 2012, founded the Piatigorsky International Cello Festival in Los Angeles. In 2001, President George W. Bush appointed Kirshbaum, a Texas native, to a five-year term on the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities.

Published August 16, 2016
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[ students & alumni ]

Hannah Collins appointed Visiting Assistant Professor of Cello at University of Kansas

hannah_collinsHannah Collins ’08 MM ’09 AD has been appointed Visiting Assistant Professor of Cello at to the the University of Kansas School of Music. Her appointment will begin in fall 2016.

More about Hannah

Winner of De Linkprijs for contemporary interpretation, cellist Hannah Collins takes an active role in catalyzing and championing the works of young composers as a soloist and as part of the duo New Morse Code (with YSM alumnus Michael Compitello ’09 MM ’12 MMA ’16 DMA). She is co-director of the Avaloch Farm New Music Initiative and appears frequently on both modern and Baroque cello with Cantata Profana, The Sebastians, NOVUS NY, and the Trinity Baroque Orchestra.

A dedicated teaching artist, Collins is an alumna of Ensemble ACJW, a professional development program focused on chamber music performance, teaching artistry, and arts advocacy through the resources of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School, Weill Music Institute, and the NYC Department of Education.

Collins holds a bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from Yale College and graduate degrees in cello performance from the Yale School of Music and the Royal Conservatory of The Hague. She is currently pursuing a doctorate at the City University of New York Graduate Center and serving as a teaching fellow at Queens College’s Aaron Copland School of Music.

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Published May 24, 2016
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[ students & alumni ]

Argus Quartet to compete in Banff International String Quartet Competition

Argus Quartet

YSM’s fellowship quartet-in-residence, the Argus Quartet, has been selected to compete in the Banff International String Quartet Competition this August. The group is one of 10 quartets chosen to participate in the prestigious live rounds of the competition.

The competition, held in Banff, Alberta, consists of five rounds for which Argus has prepared a total of seven full works, including a newly commissioned work by Canadian composer Zosha di Castri. Grand prize-winners receive an award worth over $150,000, including a cash prize of $25,000 in addition to a three-year development program of concert tours, residencies, and recordings.

The 10 quartets were selected by Clive Greensmith of the Tokyo Quartet, Philip Setzer of the Emerson String Quartet, and Douglas McNabney, artistic director of Toronto Summer Music. Judges for the live rounds include members of the Rondom Kwartet; Orford, Lawrence, and Tokyo String Quartets; Cleveland and Belcea Quartets; and Quartour Vio Nova. MORE

Published May 16, 2016
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[ students & alumni ]

Dmitry Yablonsky Named Conductor Laureate of Jerusalem Symphony

b97832_03bf41b361704541ab0c68b5dce748f9Grammy-nominated conductor and cellist Dmitry Yablonsky ’85 CERT has been named conductor laureate of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra. The announcement comes ahead of a United States tour with Maestro Yablonsky and the orchestra from February 23 to March 15, 2016.

The tour will feature Yablonsky as conductor and cello soloist, as well as pianist Fahard Badalbayli and cellist Daniele Akta, and will cover many East Coast states of the U.S., starting in Florida and ending in Massachusetts. MORE

Published March 3, 2016
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[ students & alumni ]

Chang Pan and Ronaldo Rolim to Perform at Carnegie Hall

pan rolimTwo Yale School of Music students, cellist Chang Pan and pianist Ronaldo Rolim, will perform at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall on February 3, 2016 at 7:30 pm. Both have appeared worldwide as soloists, recitalists, and chamber musicians, and will perform music ranging from Northern Europe to Asia.

The program will begin with Manuel de Falla’s Suite popular Española, a collection of seven Spanish folk songs originally written for voice and piano. The duo will then turn their attention to music of the French with one of César Franck’s best-known compositions, his Violin Sonata in A Major. The concert will proceed with music from China, starting with Festival Tianshan for cello solo by Wentao Jiang and Ling Cao, and will conclude with Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg’s largest chamber work, his Cello Sonata in A Minor, Op. 36. MORE

Published January 26, 2016
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[ in the press ]

Interlude: Revered Cellist Aldo Parisot full of ‘Fogo’

parisot_aInterlude | By Janet Horvath

Exuding Fogo or fire, Brazilian cellist Aldo Parisot continues to be an immense musical force with a busy schedule at the Yale School of Music. He teaches thirteen students and conducts the Yale Cellos. One of the greatest cellists of all time, he has performed in chamber music, in recital, and as soloist with the elite orchestras of the world and eminent maestros including Leonard Bernstein, Sir John Barbirolli, Zubin Mehta, Pierre Monteux and composers Paul Hindemith and Hector Villa-Lobos. Parisot has premiered numerous cello works including Villa-Lobos Cello Concerto No. 2, which was written for him. Parisot played the work with the New York Philharmonic in 1955, Parisot’s first performance in America, and Villa-Lobos was present. In addition to his teaching at Yale he was on the faculty of the Mannes, Peabody and Juilliard Schools.

Parisot is a man of contrasts. Soft-spoken with a wicked sense of humor, he owns a red sports car with the license plate “Fogo,” wears dark glasses, a cigarette constantly dangles from his bow hand, and his support of his students is unwavering. I had the privilege of seeing him in action. “These are not master classes,” he declared, “they are mastery classes.” Recently, we had a conversation. MORE

Published November 25, 2015
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