University of Rochester
MEET THE ARTISTS
George Sakakeeny, ESM BM ’78, has appeared as a soloist with orchestras throughout North and South America, Europe, and the Far East, including engagements in Vienna at the historic Musikverein, at Severance Hall with members of the Cleveland Orchestra, and a nationally televised concert in Japan under the baton of Seiji Ozawa. Three major works for bassoon and orchestra have been commissioned for him. Libby Larsen’s full moon in the city (2013), Peter Schickele’s Bassoon Concerto (1998), and Viennese composer Alexander Blechinger’s Faggottkonzert (1997).
As a soloist, he has been recorded numerous times including his latest solo CD, full moon in the city, which features four previously unrecorded works for solo bassoon and orchestra, Blechinger’s Faggottkonzert with the Kiev Camerata, and his famous recording of the Villa-Lobos Duo for Oboe and Bassoon with oboist Alex Klein, on the IDRS 25th Anniversary CD. Other available media featuring George Sakakeeny include two teaching videos published by the new world symphony.
Professor Sakakeeny served on the faculty of the Oberlin Conservatory for 28 years. In addition he has served as visiting professor for graduate studies at Simon Bolivar University in Caracas, Venezuela, and guest professor at the Central Conservatory of Music of Beijing. Each summer he serves as principal bassoonist and faculty of the Eastern Music Festival, and as a faculty member at the Round Top Festival Institute.
Sakakeeny formerly held principal bassoon positions of the New Japan Philharmonic, Handel & Haydn Society of Boston, Opera Company of Boston, Boston Musica Viva, Promusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus, and CityMusic Cleveland. He has also served as principal bassoonist of the Grand Teton Music Festival, New Hampshire Music Festival, and Peninsula Festival, and has performed extensively with the Boston Symphony and Boston Pops orchestras.
Many of Sakakeeny’s former students have gone on to hold positions in symphony orchestras, chamber ensembles, and universities throughout North and South America and the Far East. He has been invited to teach master classes at three conferences of the International Double Reed Society and is regularly invited to serve as a jury member for national and international competitions. He also served for seven years in an ongoing capacity as wind coach and bassoon teacher in the Venezuelan National Youth Orchestra System, known as El Sistema. His contributions included teaching master classes to orchestra members, leading wind sectionals, and providing training to the bassoon teachers of El Sistema through his position as guest professor of the Latin American Bassoon Academy.
Sakakeeny has given numerous solo recitals and taught master classes at leading institutions such as the Paris Conservatory, the Juilliard School, Tchaikovsky National Music Academy in Kiev, Rice University, and the Tokyo University of the Fine Arts. He has served in longer-term teaching residencies at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing, Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Seoul National University, the Conservatoire National Supérieur Musique et Danse in Lyon, France, and the New World Symphony.
Internationally known soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, recording artist, and pedagogue Steven Doane appears at festivals and on concert series throughout the United States and overseas. Doane received his BM from Oberlin Conservatory and his MM from SUNY Stony Brook. He received a Watson Foundation Grant for overseas study in 1975, and had further studies with Richard Kapuscinski, Bernard Greenhouse, Jane Cowan, and Janos Starker.
Steven Doane and Eastman pianist Barry Snyder have made a series of recordings for the Bridge label. The duo’s recording of the complete music of Gabriel Fauré for cello and piano was awarded the Diapason D’or in France, and has been broadcast throughout the United States and Canada, over the BBC in England, and throughout Europe. The second recording in the series, of works by Britten and Frank Bridge, was also released to critical acclaim. New releases on Bridge include the Rachmaninoff Sonata with Barry Snyder (May 2012) and Britten Solo Suites (due for release in 2013).
Steven Doane received Eastman’s Eisenhart Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1993, and the Piatigorsky Prize in teaching at the New England Conservatory in 1986. As a member of the New Arts Trio, Doane was awarded the Naumburg Chamber Music Award in 1980. He made his Carnegie Hall and Kennedy Center debuts in Don Quixote with David Zinman and the Rochester Philharmonic in 1983. His Tully Hall recital debut occurred in 1990, and has been followed by numerous recital appearances, including programs in London’s Wigmore Hall, Boston’s Saunders Theater, and many other venues. Steven Doane currently holds the title of “visiting professor” at the Royal Academy of Music, London, where he has done several residencies.
The Grammy Award-winning violist Masumi Per Rostad has received praise for his rich and expressive tone, energy, and commanding presence, and has been described by critics as an “electrifying, poetic and sensitive musician.” In addition to performing, Rostad teaches and has contributed to online and print publications.
Rostad started studying music, initially on the violin, at the Third Street Music School Settlement in New York City when he was three years old. He discovered the viola when he was twelve years old and four years later, attracted to the instrument’s warm and mellow sound, devoted himself to the viola.
As a member of the Pacifica Quartet, which he joined in 2001, Masumi has performed and toured extensively throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia. In 2009, the quartet received a Grammy for Best Chamber Music Performance and was named Musical America’s Ensemble of the Year. Other honors include the Cleveland Quartet Award and the Avery Fisher Career Grant. From 2009 to 2012, Pacifica was the quartet-in-residence at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a position that had been held only by the Guarneri String Quartet. The ensemble has served as quartet-in-residence at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Northwestern University, and the University of Chicago.
As a soloist, Rostad has appeared at prominent festivals including Spoleto USA, Music@Menlo, Marlboro, and Rockport Chamber Music; collaborated with such string quartets as the St. Lawrence, Pavel Hass, Emerson, and the Ying Quartet, which is the quartet-in-residence at the Eastman School of Music; and toured extensively and recorded as a former member of the International Sejong Soloists and the Metamorphosen Chamber Orchestra.
Rostad’s advocacy for the arts and passion to increase opportunities for audiences to hear chamber music led him to launch DoCha, a festival in Champaign, IL. Events feature multi-genre collaborative presentations from classical chamber music to contemporary dance to the spoken word. All programs are free and include performances for elementary school students and master classes, competitions, and performance opportunities for local music students.
Rostad has been a contributing writer to such publications as Strings, Gramophone, The Huffington Post, and The Guardian.
Rostad received his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from The Juilliard School, where he received the Lillian Fuchs Award for outstanding graduating violist. There, he studied with legendary violist and pedagogue Karen Tuttle from the age of 17; just three years later, when he was 20, she selected him as her teaching assistant. Rostad performed the world premiere of Michael White’s Viola Concerto in Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall, and gave the New York premiere of Paul Schoenfield’s Viola Concerto with the Juilliard Symphony.
Rostad has served on the faculties of the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern University, and given numerous solo and chamber music master classes at schools, venues, and festivals including the Cleveland Institute of Music, the Colburn School, the New York Youth Symphony, Suntory Hall, Sydney Conservatory, the Royal College of Music, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and the Aspen and Bowdoin festivals.
Alexander Kobrin has won top prizes in international piano competitions, including the Nancy Lee and Perry R. Bass Gold Medal at the 2005 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, First Prize in the Busoni and Scottish competitions, and Top Prize at the Hamamatsu competition.
Kobrin’s recitals and performances have been praised for their brilliant technique, musicality, and emotional engagement with the audience. He has appeared with many of the world’s great orchestras, including the New York, Tokyo, Warsaw, Royal Liverpool, and Moscow Philharmonics; the Dallas, Birmingham, Swedish Radio, Berliner, and BBC Symphonies; and the Russian National Orchestra, British Chamber Orchestra, Orchestra Verdi, Orchestre de las Suisse Romande, and Chicago Sinfonietta.
Kobrin has released recordings on the Harmonia Mundi, Quartz, and Centaur labels. His recording of Robert Schumann’s Carnaval, Waldszenen, and Arabesque was named a Top 5 Album of the year by Fanfare magazine in 2015. Gramophone praised his performance of Rachmaninoff’s Second Sonata on the Cliburn Competition disc, noting “Kobrin achieves a hypnotic sense of the music’s dark necromancy.” He also has recorded three volumes of Chopin works and a Haydn CD.
In addition to his acclaimed performances, Kobrin has served on the faculties of the Gnessin Academy of Music and New York University’s Steinhardt School, and held the L. Rexford Whiddon Distinguished Chair in Piano at the Schwob School of Music at Columbus State University in Georgia. He has given master classes in Europe and Asia and been a jury member for many international piano competitions, including the Busoni, Blüthner, Neuhaus, and the “Prix Animato.”
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All concerts are free unless otherwise noted. All concerts listed are open to the public. Please note that all concerts are subject to change.
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