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Pianist Wu Han, recipient of Musical America’s Musician of the Year Award, enjoys a multi-faceted musical life that encompasses artistic direction, performing, and recording at the highest levels. Co-Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center since 2004 as well as Founder and Co-Artistic Director of Silicon Valley’s innovative chamber music festival Music@Menlo since 2002, she also serves as Artistic Advisor for Wolf Trap’s Chamber Music at the Barns series and Palm Beach’s Society of the Four Arts, and as Artistic Director for La Musica in Sarasota, Florida. Her recent concert activities have taken her from New York’s Lincoln Center stages to the most important concert halls in the United States, Europe, and Asia. In addition to countless performances of virtually the entire chamber repertoire, her concerto performances include appearances with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Atlanta Symphony, and the Aspen Festival Orchestra. She is the Founder and Artistic Director of ArtistLed, classical music’s first artist-directed, internet-based recording label, which has released her performances of the staples of the cello-piano duo repertoire with cellist David Finckel. Her more than 80 releases on ArtistLed, CMS Live, and Music@Menlo LIVE include masterworks of the chamber repertoire with numerous distinguished musicians. Wu Han’s educational activities include overseeing CMS’s Bowers Program and the Chamber Music Institute at Music@Menlo. A recipient of the prestigious Andrew Wolf Award, she was mentored by some of the greatest pianists of our time, including Lilian Kallir, Rudolf Serkin, and Menahem Pressler. Married to cellist David Finckel since 1985, Wu Han divides her time between concert touring and residences in New York City and Westchester County.
Violinist Aaron Boyd enjoys a versatile career as soloist, chamber musician, orchestral leader, recording artist, lecturer, and teacher. Since making his New York recital debut in 1998, he has concertized throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. Formerly a member of the Escher String Quartet, he was a recipient of an Avery Fisher Career Grant and the Martin E. Segal prize from Lincoln Center, and was also awarded a Proclamation by the City of Pittsburgh for his musical accomplishments. A passionate advocate for new music, he has been involved in numerous commissions and premieres, and has worked directly with such legendary composers as Milton Babbitt, Elliott Carter, and Charles Wuorinen. He is also founder of the Zukofsky Quartet (quartet-in-residence at Bargemusic); the only ensemble to have played all of Milton Babbitt's notoriously difficult string quartets. As a recording artist, he can be heard on the BIS, Music@Menlo Live, Naxos, Tzadik, North/South and Innova labels. He has been broadcast in concert by NPR, WQXR, and WQED, and was profiled by Arizona Public Television. Born in Pittsburgh, Mr. Boyd began his studies with Samuel LaRocca and Eugene Phillips and graduated from The Juilliard School where he studied with Sally Thomas and coached extensively with Paul Zukofsky and cellist Harvey Shapiro. He now serves as Director of Chamber Music and Professor of Practice in Violin at the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University and lives in Dallas with his wife Yuko, daughter Ayu, and son Yuki.
Violinist Benjamin Beilman has won praise both for his passionate performances and deep, rich tone which the Washington Post called “mightily impressive,” and the New York Times described as “muscular with a glint of violence.” Highlights of recent seasons include debuts with the Budapest Festival Orchestra, return engagements with the Philadelphia Orchestra, and his return to the London Chamber Orchestra to play-direct. He has also performed with the Chicago Symphony, Antwerp Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, Frankfurt Radio Symphony, Zurich Tonhalle, Sydney Symphony, Houston Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, and Minnesota Orchestra. In recital and chamber music, he performs regularly at major halls across the world, including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Kölner Philharmonie, Berlin Philharmonie, Wigmore Hall, Louvre (Paris), and Bunka Kaikan (Tokyo). In 2018 he premiered a new work dedicated to the political activist Angela Davis written by Frederic Rzewski and commissioned by Music Accord. An alum of CMS’s Bowers Program, Beilman studied with Almita and Roland Vamos at the Music Institute of Chicago, Ida Kavafian and Pamela Frank at the Curtis Institute, and Christian Tetzlaff at the Kronberg Academy, and has received many prestigious accolades including a Borletti-Buitoni Trust Fellowship, an Avery Fisher Career Grant, and a London Music Masters Award. He has an exclusive recording contract with Warner Classics and released his first disc Spectrum for the label in 2016. He plays the “Engleman” Stradivarius from 1709 generously on loan from the Nippon Music Foundation.
In this Musical Heritage Series episode, we look at the immortal Friedrich-Max "Fritz" Kreisler, violinist, composer, and master teacher molding generations of the world’s greatest musicians. Discover the work and legacy of this unique artist and hear excerpts of rare historic recordings by Kreisler, who is an extraordinary example of an innovative and consummate musician.
Introduced by CMS Co-Artistic Director Wu Han, with remarks from violinists Aaron Boyd and Benjamin Beilman.
Originally aired July 27, 2020