Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Spring 2012 Lunch Music Archive

This is an archived post of A Little Lunch Music's spring 2012 season. For more about the series, go to the Lunch Music Schedule page on this website. I have some photos and more audio from the season, and if I ever get around to it, I'll post them here. UPDATE: I did! They're at right.
January 19: The Woodfield Trio
January 26: The Woodfield Trio
February 2: cellist Laura Usiskin and pianist Jeremy Samolesky
~Sponsored by Virginia Transue and an anonymous friend
February 9: pianist Thomas Harbin
February 16: flutist Nancy Vinson and pianist Laurelie Gheesling
February 23: Performance moved to Friday, Feb. 24
February 24: saxophonist Patrick McCurry with guitarist Dan Mackowski 
March 1: pianist Tzu-yi Chen
~Sponsored by Charles and Melanie Wright
March 8: The Woodfield Trio
March 15: Spring Break (no performance)
March 22: Raj Chaudhury and the Auburn Indian Music Ensemble
March 29: soprano Christina Burroughs with pianist Nicole Agostino
~Sponsored by Haygood, Cleveland, Mattson, Thompson & Pierce, LLP
April 4 (Wednesday): pianist Michelle Huang
~Sponsored by Haygood, Cleveland, Mattson, Thompson & Pierce, LLP
April 5: performance moved to Wednesday, April 4 (there will be music at the museum, however)
April 12: violinist Robin Scott and cellist Ahrim Kim
~Sponsored by Gene and Phyllis Stanaland
April 19: AU Chamber Choir, pianist Julia Tucker, The Woodfield Trio
April 26: flutist Stephanie Erdman with guitarist Jacob Brown
~Sponsored in part by Emil and Margaret Wright
May 3: pianist Mary Slaton
~Sponsored by Gene and Phyllis Stanaland
May 10: pianist Barbara Acker-Mills with guest The Woodfield Trio
~Sponsored by Bill and Josie Walsh
May 17: violinist Sarah Schrader and pianist Julia Tucker
with the George Washington Carver Elementary School Music Makers
May 18: saxophonist Patrick McCurry with bassist Sidney Simmons (jazz)

Audio from Spring 2012

Artist Bios (in progress) in Alphabetical Order

An active soloist and chamber musician, pianist NICOLE AGOSTINO has performed recitals across the U.S. In 2011 she toured the southeast as a guest artist giving recitals and lectures on J. S. Bach's Goldberg Variations and has recently recorded the work. Nicole is a doctoral candidate in performance at Florida State University. She holds a Master of Music and a Bachelor of Music, both in performance, from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. In 2008, she held a piano faculty position at the renowned Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp in Michigan. Nicole teaches privately from her home in Auburn.

The AUBURN INDIAN MUSIC ENSEMBLE comprises students in a semester long class where they learn fundamentals of Indian classical and semi-classical music. This music is based on the system of ragas (melodies) and talas (rhythms). The vocal performances of the group feature a variety of traditional instruments such as harmonium (organ), tabla (drums) and tanpura (drone).

The AUBURN UNIVERSITY CHAMBER CHOIR was established in fall 2008 as the premiere choral ensemble at Auburn University. Under the direction of William Powell, the group has represented the university at New York's Carnegie Hall, in northern Italy, and as an invited ensemble for the prestigious Alabama Music Educators Conference. The 40-plus-member group consists of students from throughout the university who represent a variety of majors and disciplines. They perform advanced choral literature including Renaissance madrigals, multi-movement masterworks, spirituals, jazz, and works by current composers.
DR. BARBARA ACKER-MILLS holds a PhD in psychology and a master’s degree in piano from the State University of New York at Binghamton. There she won the University Concerto Competition open to graduates and undergraduates on all instruments. While at Salem College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Dr. Acker-Mills studied with acclaimed performer and pedagogical award winner Barbara Lister-Sink who said that Acker-Mills “demonstrated admirably at Salem that a petite frame is no deterrent to commanding and powerful playing.” Dr. Acker-Mills teaches psychology for Argosy University and in the music department at Auburn University. She performs primarily as a collaborative artist.

A native of Buford, Georgia, JACOB BROWN began his serious study of classical guitar at the age of 21. He currently studies at Columbus State University with Dr. Andrew Zohn. Since 2009, Jacob has competed in Columbus, Georgia’s Guitar Symposium and participated in other guitar festivals such as the Guitar Foundation of America and Appalachian Guitar Festival. During these festivals he has had master classes with Carloz Perez, David Russell, Michael Newman, Patrick Kearney, Stephen Aron and many others. At university he plays with guitar ensembles as well as with other vocalists and instrumentalists.

CHRISTINA BURROUGHS, lyric soprano, holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Alabama and a Master of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Christina has performed leading roles with California Theatre Center, Theatre West Virginia, Theatre Tuscaloosa, Opera Birmingham, BluePrint and Ensemble Parallele in San Francisco and Santa Cruz, and the San Jose Symphonic Choir. Past roles include: Die Zauberflöte (Pamina), Così fan tutte (Despina), La Bohème (Mimì), La Calisto (Giunone), La Traviata (Violetta), Le Nozze di Figaro (La Contessa), The Phantom of the Opera (Carlotta), Proof (Claire), Into the Woods (Rapunzel), The Tempest (Miranda), and Soprano soloist in the Mozart Requiem and Bach’s Matthaus-Passion. Christina is a native of Wetumpka, a proud alumnus of Edgewood Academy, and former Miss Lynx 1995. She is currently a Voice Instructor at Faulkner University, and teaches voice privately as well.

Trained in classical and semi-classical traditions of North Indian music, DR. S. RAJ CHAUDHURY has been performing and teaching college students for over 20 years. He has directed Indian music student ensembles at UCLA, Kansas State University, Christopher Newport University and now at Auburn University. A vocalist by training, Dr. Chaudhury plays harmonium, tabla, and tanpura. In 2009, Chaudhury became the Associate Director of Auburn Universtiy's Biggio Center for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning and has a background in physics education.

Among pianist TZU-YI CHEN’s many orchestra credits are the Taipei Symphony, the Saint Petersburg Symphony and the Utah Symphony. Her awards include first prize at both the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra Piano Competition (2007) and at the International Piano Competition of Mauro Paolo Monopoli (2001). She has appeared as a recitalist throughout Taiwan and in broadcasts in Hong Kong and Germany. She earned a master's degree at Karlsruhe Music University in Germany and studied at the National Superior Conservatory of Paris. Tzu-yi is currently enrolled at Columbus State University working on her Artist Diploma in the studio of Alexander Kobrin.

Flutist STEPHANIE ERDMAN currently studies at Columbus State University with Dr. Andrée Martin. In 2012, she performed at the National Flute Association Convention. For the last two years of high school, Stephanie attended the Advanced Academy of Georgia at the University of West Georgia where she was active in its music department, studying flute with Melanie Fuller. She has spent time at workshops with flutists such as Michel Debost, Kathleen Chastain, Göran Marcusson and Stephen Preston. A native of Ringgold, Georgia, she studied with Norma Anderson. Stephanie helped charter her school’s chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota, a national music fraternity.

Upon arriving to teach music at GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL in 2006, Mrs. Sarah Schrader formed the 3RD GRADE CHOIR. A year later, she formed the ADVANCED VIOLIN CLASS. Both are audition-only groups. The choir has performed for school productions, at events across Macon County and at the State PTA Convention in Montgomery. Each of the 15-25 third-grade students in the violin class borrows a violin from the school. They are responsible for practicing at home and for the wellbeing of their instruments. This class performs at county events including marching and playing in the 2011 Tuskegee Christmas parade.

Before becoming Coordinator of Accompanying at Auburn, LAURELIE GHEESLING served at Louisiana State University’s School of Music. She was the musical director for the LSU Opera Outreach Program and for fifteen years accompanied the Baton Rouge Symphony Chorus. Ms. Gheesling performed at the 7th International Alexander Technique Congress in Oxford, England. In 2003 she received the James Ronald Brothers Achievement in Accompanying Award of the Southern Division of the National Association of Teachers of Singing. She has been involved as a recitalist, leader and collaborator at Loyola and Tulane Universities in New Orleans and with the Louisiana Vocal Arts Chorale. Click here for an extended bio.

THOMAS HARBIN is a fourth-year Auburn University student from Mobile. He is earning a double major in piano performance and Spanish. He studies piano with Laurelie Gheesling and performs for university recitals as accompanist and soloist. He is a vocalist and multi-instrumentalist whose music crosses stylistic boundaries. He studies jazz with Dr. Mike Pendowski and performs at local events playing piano and singing. He intends to finish at Auburn in December of 2012 and pursue a graduate degree in music.

Michelle Huang
MICHELLE HUANG serves currently as Assistant Professor of Piano at Edward Waters College in Jacksonville, Florida. She has performed throughout the U.S. as well as in the Czech Republic, Italy, Switzerland, and Taiwan where she was born. Recently, she was broadcast on WUOT by the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. She taught in Tennessee at Walters State Community College in Sevierville and at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate. An advocate of mind and body wellness, Huang conducts performance anxiety workshops. Her degrees are from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of Tennessee, and Florida State University.

Cellist AHRIM KIM is a founding member of the Klimt Trio, awarded the Harvard Musical Association's Arthur Foote Award in 2011. Her honors include the Cassado Prize at Japan's Gaspar Cassado International Cello Competition. She has performed at Alice Tully Hall, the Salzburg Mozarteum, the Kennedy Center, and similar venues, and as soloist with the Boston Pops, the Houston Symphony Orchestra and others. She performs with the New York Classical Players and recently as principal cellist visiting the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. Before college, Kim studied at Juilliard and holds bachelor's and master's degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music.

The music of saxophonist and flutist PATRICK MCCURRY crosses boundaries between jazz and classical, pop and art, secular and sacred. Born and raised in Alabama and having returned home to Auburn, Patrick blogs in support of good music in and around his community. He performs with a chamber group, The Woodfield Trio, and holds a Masters degree in Chamber Music Performance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. There, his instructor and mentor was James Houlik, international concert saxophone maestro. He studied jazz improvisation, composition and arranging while earning his undergraduate degree from Loyola University New Orleans.

DR. JEREMY SAMOLESKY, a native of Manitoba, Canada, has been Assistant Professor of Piano since 2007 at Auburn University. Jeremy has appeared in concert as a soloist and chamber pianist throughout Canada, the U. S., Italy, Aus-tria, Malaysia and Singapore, including a full recital at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, which was broadcast on National Public Radio's "Performance Today." He has achieved the rare distinction of holding two doctoral degrees from the Eastman School of Music as well as multiple honors, awards and scholarships from that school. These included the Barr Award, the Barbara M. King Scholarship, and first place in the Kneisel Lieder Competition among others. Among his festival appearances are Canada’s Banff Centre, the Adriatic Chamber Music Festival and the Chigiana Music Academy in Siena. He has premiered works by David Plylar and David Maslanka and was featured in a documentary on the music of Prokofiev. Click here for an extended bio.

SARAH SCHRADER, born in Hanceville, Alabama, earned her Bachelor of Music Education from Auburn University in 2006. She has been teaching music at George Washington Carver Elementary School in Tuskegee ever since. She started playing the violin at age three and was a regular member of the Alabama All-State Orchestra through middle and high school. Sarah studied vocal music education at Auburn and minored in violin performance. Aside from teaching a growing studio in the Auburn area, Sarah plays for weddings and events as a regular member of the Auburn String Quartet. She also directs the Trinity Lutheran Church choir.

Violinist ROBIN SCOTT currently holds the violin fellowship with the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra. Recent highlights include debuting with the Minnesota Symphony Orchestra and touring with Musicians from Marlboro. Among his top awards are winning the 2010 California International Young Artists Competition. As a soloist he has appeared with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, France’s Orchestre National de Lille and others. He has performed with Indiana University's "Violin Virtuosi," touring France and appearing at Carnegie Hall. Scott is concertmaster of the New York Classical Players. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the New England Conservatory and completed an Artist Diploma at Indiana.

MARY SLATON is known throughout the southeast as one of the region’s premier piano-lounge soloists. Over the years, she has entertained many with her extensive knowledge of popular music. Among Memphis venues, Mary has performed at the Hilton and the Hyatt Regency. In Atlanta, she has played the Omni Hotel, the Hilton, the Atlanta Country Club and others. At home in the Auburn-Opelika area, the Terra Cotta, the Saugahatchee Country Club and the Marriott have featured her. Mary holds piano degrees from Memphis State University and from the University of Montevallo. She teaches privately and at Southern Union Community College.

Auburn native JULIA TUCKER entered Auburn University at age 15 after playing piano for eight years. She majors in economics and piano performance, studying with Dr. Jeremy Samolesky. She is assistant organist and scholarship singer at St. Dunstan's Episcopal Church in Auburn and choir accompanist at Trinity Lutheran Church. She also sings renaissance polyphony and enjoys puzzles and drinking coffee.

LAURA USISKIN holds the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra's cello fellowship. She founded the Montgomery Music Project that provides stringed-instrument instruction to elementary schools there. She has premiered works and has performed with new music ensembles including Ensemble Pamplemousse and the Bang-On-A-Can All Stars. She has performed early music with the American Baroque Orchestra and Yale's Schola Cantorum among others. Laura has performed in the Kennedy Center, Alice Tully Hall, Siena’s Palazzo Chigi Saracini, and Boston’s Symphony Hall. Her talents were recognized most notably as sitting principal cellist on Juilliard’s 2006 USA orchestra tour. Laura holds a Bachelor of Arts in Neuroscience and Behavior from Columbia University and a Master of Music from Juilliard. She finished her doctoral coursework at Yale in 2009. In 2008 she received Yale’s Aldo Parisot prize given to a gifted cellist showing promise in a solo career. Click here for Laura's website.

NANCY VINSON is principal flutist with the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra. She has played with the group for over 20 years. As a soloist most recently, in 2009, she performed J. S. Bach’s Suite in B Minor with the orchestra. A teacher for over 35 years, Ms. Vinson has produced a prize-winning legacy of young flutists. Many have placed in Alabama’s All-State bands and orchestra, four being the state’s top high-school flutists. Some have performed at national conventions and won national competitions. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Auburn and a Master of Music from the University of Mississippi. A Past President of the Alabama Music Teachers Association and a Certified Teacher of Music in Flute, she recently helped design the Flute Certification Examination for the Music Teachers National Association. She and her husband, Johnnie, live in Auburn. Their two sons, Lee and Ed are both professional musicians.

The Woodfield Trio
Based in Auburn, Alabama, THE WOODFIELD TRIO was formed in 2009 to be the regular performing chamber group for the weekly lunchtime series at the Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art. Its members are Patrick McCurry on flute and saxophones, pianist Barbara Acker-Mills and cellist Charles Wright. The trio performs traditional piano-trio repertoire, pieces for flute and basso continuo, and music adapted or composed for its instrumentations. Patrick holds degrees in chamber music and jazz. Barbara teaches psychology and music and studied with Barbara Lister-Sink. Charles leads string group The Auburn Quartet and performs with the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra.

CHARLES WRIGHT is cellist and leader of the Auburn Quartet, a string quartet in the East Alabama and West Georgia area. Having been a member of the Auburn Community Orchestra since 1985, he now plays principal cello for the group and is president of its board. He performs in the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra and is involved with the Auburn Chamber Music Society in which capacity he founded this chamber music series. Mr. Wright is passionate about classical music and plays a significant role in cultivating its growth and influence in the Auburn community.

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