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CMS Welcomes New Bowers Program Artists

CMS welcomes five new artists who will begin their Bowers Program Residency in the 2021-22 season. Get to know them here!

Stella Chen, violin

Visit Stella's website here.

Winner of the 2019 Queen Elisabeth International Violin Competition and recipient of a 2020 Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award, American violinist Stella Chen has been lauded for her “phenomenal maturity” and “fresh and spontaneous, yet emotionally profound and intellectually well-structured performance” (The Jerusalem Post). The present and upcoming season marks debut performances with the Chicago Symphony, at the Kronberg Academy, Ravinia Festival, and the Salzburg Mozarteum as well as tours of China, Korea and Japan. Concerto appearances this season include performances with the Luxembourg Philharmonia and her Alice Tully concerto debut with The Juilliard Orchestra featuring Jörg Widmann’s Concerto No. 2, conducted by the composer. Ms. Chen is also the first recipient of the Robert Levin Award from Harvard University, the top prize winner of the Tibor Varga International Violin Competition and youngest ever prize winner of the Menuhin Competition. She has given solo performances at venues such as the Kennedy Center, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and on the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series in Chicago. Other noteworthy ventures include performances in Bhutan, Cuba, and Colombia. Stella is a graduate of Harvard University and continues her studies at the Juilliard School and Kronberg Academy. She also serves as a teaching assistant for Li Lin at Juilliard. Mentors include Li Lin, Donald Weilerstein, Mihaela Martin, and Itzhak Perlman. Ms. Chen plays the ‘Huggins’ 1708 Stradivarius violin, generously on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation.

Sihao He, cello

Visit his website here.

Cellist Sihao He first came into international prominence in 2008 as a 14-year old cellist winning first prize at the International Antonio Janigro Cello Competition in Croatia. Later that same year, he sealed his great promise by winning the National Cello Competition in his native China. He is also the Grand Prize winner of the prestigious 3rd Gaspar Cassado International Cello Competition in Japan and 3rd prize of the 2019 ARD International Competition in Munich, Germany. As a soloist, Sihao has performed with many leading Orchestras including the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, Munich Radio Orchestra, Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, Brussels Philharmonic, Münchener Kammer orchester, Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, Orquestra the Sinfônica de Piracicaba in Brazil.

In the US, important performances took place before audiences at the Metropolitan Museum, the U.S Supreme Court Historical Society in Washington D.C and a recital at the Myra Hess Concert series in Chicago. As a chamber musician, Sihao appeared at the Shanghai Electronic Music Week, in the US at the Music@Menlo and in Europe at the Rome festival. He has performed together with the Joseph Silverstein, Pinchas Zuckerman, Donald Weilerstein and Calidore Quartet. Before coming to the US his string Quartet, Simply Quartet, won first prize at the Haydn Invitational Chamber Music Competition in Shanghai, China and was awarded “The Most Promising Young String Quartet” at the 4th Beijing International Chamber Music Competition.

Richard Lin, violin

Visit Richard's website here.

Denis Ryan Kelly Jr.
Praised in The Strad magazine as “an instinctive showman”, Richard Lin has become one of the most sought after musicians of the generation. He was the Gold Medalist of the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis and the Sendai International Violin Competition, and has also won top prizes at the Hannover, Wieniawski, Singapore, Shanghai, and the Michael Hill International Violin Competition. Mr. Lin has collaborated with famous conductors and renown orchestras, and he has performed at celebrated concert venues throughout the world. He released two albums under Fontec label.

Highlights of Richard’s 2019-2020 season include concerto engagements with the Indianapolis, Montclair and Chippewa Valley symphonies as well as the New Mexico, Evansville, and Marion philharmonics in the United States. Multiple recitals in Dallas, New York, Washington, D.C., and Poland will culminate in a Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium recital debut with pianist Thomas Hoppe in June 2020. In Asia, Mr. Lin will tour Vietnam with the Evergreen Symphony Orchestra. He will also perform Beethoven Triple Concerto with the National Symphony Orchestra in Taipei and Tchaikovsky Concerto with the Sendai Philharmonic Orchestra in Japan.

Born in Phoenix, Arizona and raised in Taiwan, Mr. Lin began his violin studies at the age of four. He graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music and The Juilliard School under the tutelage of respected pedagogues Aaron Rosand and Lewis Kaplan.

Timothy Ridout, viola

Visit Timothy's website here.

Timothy Ridout, selected as a BBC New Generation Artist in 2019, is one of the most sought after violists of his generation. This season he appears as soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Chamber Orchestra of Europe and Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine; and in recitals at the Wigmore Hall, Auditorium du Louvre and the Lucerne Festival, among many others. In January 2020 Ridout won Hamburg Symphoniker’s inaugural Sir Jeffrey Tate Prize.

Mr. Ridout has worked with conductors including Sylvain Cambreling, Christoph Eschenbach, Sir Andras Schiff and David Zinman; whilst his chamber music collaborations encompass projects with Nicolas Altstaedt, Joshua Bell, Frank Dupree, Isabelle Faust, Steven Isserlis, Janine Jansen, Lars Vogt, Jonathan Ware, Christian Tetzlaff, and Jeremy Denk.

Mr. Ridout studied at the Royal Academy of Music graduating with the Queen’s Commendation for Excellence. He completed his Masters at the Kronberg Academy with Nobuko Imai in 2019 and in 2018 took part in Kronberg Academy’s Chamber Music Connects the World. He plays on a viola by Peregrino di Zanetto c.1565-75 on loan from a generous patron of Beare's International Violin Society.

James Thompson, violin

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Violinist James Thompson is forging a promising career as a versatile chamber musician, soloist, and music educator. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, he is currently on faculty at Music@Menlo and is thrilled to be joining the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Bowers Program in 2021. In 2014, Mr. Thompson made his solo debut with the Cleveland Orchestra at Severance Hall. He has appeared as a soloist with numerous local orchestras including the CIM orchestra, the Blue Water Chamber Orchestra, the Cleveland Pops, and the Cleveland Philharmonic. Mr. Thompson was invited to perform in Budapest as part of the 1st Bartok World Competition and in Sendai for the 7th Sendai International Violin Competition.

Mr. Thompson has performed for top-tier chamber music festivals around the country, including Music@Menlo, the Perlman Music Program, and the Taos School of Music. He has collaborated in concert with a multitude of established musicians including David Finckel, Soovin Kim, Jaime Laredo, Peter Salaff, Roger Tapping, and a variety of musicians from both the Cleveland Orchestra and the Cleveland Institute of Music. An advocate for new music, Mr. Thompson has worked alongside composers Keith Fitch, Gabriela Lena Frank, Stephen Hartke, Libby Larsen, and David Rakowski, among others, on performances of their works.

Mr. Thompson is currently an Artist Diploma candidate at the Cleveland Institute of Music under Jaime Laredo, having studied previously with William Preucil and Paul Kantor.