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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.
Praised by The Strad as an “utterly dazzling” artist, violinist Danbi Um captivates audiences with her virtuosity, individual sound, and interpretive sensitivity. She is a Menuhin International Violin Competition Silver Medalist, a winner of the prestigious 2018 Salon de Virtuosi Career Grant, and a recent top prizewinner of the Naumburg International Violin Competition. Recent and upcoming engagements include appearances with the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia and her Washington, DC, recital debut at the Phillips Collection. This season will also see her return to the Rockport, Moab, Saratoga Performing Arts (SPAC), Santa Fe, and North Shore Music Festivals, as well as her debuts at the Cleveland Chamber Music Society, Chamber Music San Francisco, and the Mostly Music, Newburyport, La Musica (Sarasota), and Chelsea Music Festivals. In addition, she embarks on a duo recital tour with guitarist Jiji to Delaware, Houston, New York, and Nova Scotia. Her debut album, Much Ado: Romantic Violin Masterworks, will be released in fall 2023. Past concerto engagements include appearances with the Israel Symphony, Auckland Philharmonic, Vermont Symphony, and Dartmouth Symphony. Born in Seoul, South Korea, Ms. Um moved to the United States to study at the Curtis Institute of Music, where she earned a bachelor’s degree. She also holds an Artist Diploma from Indiana University. Her teachers have included Shmuel Ashkenasi, Joseph Silverstein, Jaime Laredo, and Hagai Shaham. She is an alum of CMS’s Bowers Program and plays a 1683 “ex-Petschek” Nicolo Amati violin, on loan from a private collection.
Co-Artistic Director of CMS since 2004, cellist David Finckel’s dynamic musical career has included performances on the world’s stages in the roles of recitalist, chamber artist, and orchestral soloist. The first American student of Mstislav Rostropovich, he joined the Emerson String Quartet in 1979, and during 34 seasons garnered nine Grammy Awards and the Avery Fisher Prize. His quartet performances and recordings include quartet cycles of Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Mendelssohn, Dvorák, Brahms, Bartók, and Shostakovich, as well as collaborative masterpieces and commissioned works. In 1997, he and pianist Wu Han founded ArtistLed, the first internet-based, artist-controlled classical recording label. ArtistLed’s catalog of more than 20 releases includes the standard literature for cello and piano, plus works composed for the duo by George Tsontakis, Gabriela Lena Frank, Bruce Adolphe, Lera Auerbach, Edwin Finckel, Augusta Read Thomas, and Pierre Jalbert. In 2022, Music@Menlo, an innovative summer chamber music festival in Silicon Valley founded and directed by David and Wu Han, celebrated its 20th season. As a young student, David was winner of the Philadelphia Orchestra’s junior and senior divisions, resulting in two performances with the orchestra. Having taught extensively with the late Isaac Stern in America, Israel, and Japan, he is currently a professor at both the Juilliard School and Stony Brook University, and oversees both CMS’s Bowers Program and Music@Menlo’s Chamber Music Institute. David’s 100 online Cello Talks, lessons on cello technique, are viewed by an international audience of musicians. Along with Wu Han, he was the recipient of Musical America’s 2012 Musicians of the Year Award.
Violist Paul Neubauer has been called a “master musician” by the New York Times. He recently made his Chicago Symphony subscription debut with conductor Riccardo Muti. He also gave the US premiere of the newly discovered Impromptu for viola and piano by Shostakovich with pianist Wu Han. In addition, his recording of the Aaron Kernis Viola Concerto with the Royal Northern Sinfonia was released on Signum Records, and his recording of the complete viola/piano music by Ernest Bloch with pianist Margo Garrett was released on Delos. Appointed principal violist of the New York Philharmonic at age 21, he has appeared as soloist with over 100 orchestras including the New York, Los Angeles, and Helsinki philharmonics; National, St. Louis, Detroit, Dallas, San Francisco, and Bournemouth symphonies; and Santa Cecilia, English Chamber, and Beethovenhalle orchestras. He has premiered viola concertos by Bartók (revised version of the Viola Concerto), Friedman, Glière, Jacob, Kernis, Lazarof, Müller-Siemens, Ott, Penderecki, Picker, Suter, and Tower, and has been featured on CBS's Sunday Morning and A Prairie Home Companion as well as in Strad, Strings, and People magazines. A two-time Grammy nominee, he has recorded on numerous labels including Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, RCA Red Seal, and Sony Classical, and is a member of SPA, a trio with soprano Susanna Phillips and pianist Anne-Marie McDermott. Neubauer is the artistic director of the Mostly Music series in New Jersey and is on the faculty of the Juilliard School and Mannes College.
Recorded live in Alice Tully Hall on November 15, 2015.
Video produced by Ibis Productions.