UGA Presents favorites return to Athens with co-artistic directors Wu Han and David Finckel. Two works by Beethoven lead to a dreamy miniature and an affirmative Dvořák piano quartet. A stellar lineup makes this the perfect program for the annual Payne Memorial concert.
Ludwig van Beethoven(1770–1827)
Sonata in G major for Violin and Piano, Op. 30, No. 3(1801–02)
Ludwig van Beethoven(1770–1827)
Trio in C minor for Violin, Viola, and Cello, Op. 9, No. 3(1797–98)
Rêve d'enfant< for Violin and Piano, Op. 14(1895–1900)
Quartet in E-flat major for Piano, Violin, Viola, and Cello, Op. 87(1889)
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.
Winner of a 2009 Avery Fisher Career Grant, Arnaud Sussmann has distinguished himself with his unique sound, bravura, and profound musicianship. Minnesota’s Pioneer Press writes, “Sussmann has an old-school sound reminiscent of what you'll hear on vintage recordings by Jascha Heifetz or Fritz Kreisler, a rare combination of sweet and smooth that can hypnotize a listener.” A thrilling musician capturing the attention of classical critics and audiences around the world, he has recently appeared as a soloist with the Vancouver Symphony and the New World Symphony. As a chamber musician, he has performed at the Tel Aviv Museum in Israel, London’s Wigmore Hall, Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, the Dresden Music Festival in Germany, and the Phillips Collection in Washington, DC. He has been presented in recital in Omaha on the Tuesday Musical Club series, in New Orleans by the Friends of Music, and at the Louvre Museum in Paris. He has also given concerts at the OK Mozart, Moritzburg, Caramoor, Music@Menlo, La Jolla SummerFest, Mainly Mozart, Seattle Chamber Music, Chamber Music Northwest, and Moab Music festivals. He has performed with many of today’s leading artists including Itzhak Perlman, Menahem Pressler, Gary Hoffman, Shmuel Ashkenasi, Wu Han, David Finckel, and Jan Vogler. An alum of CMS’s Bowers Program, Sussmann is Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach and Co-Director of Music@Menlo’s International Program, and teaches at Stony Brook University. In September 2022, Sussmann was named Founding Artistic Director of the Boscobel Chamber Music Festival.
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.
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.