GUEST ARTIST 2017
Natalia Lavrova, piano
Natalia Lavrova is a highly regarded performer of multi-faceted artistry, whose sincerity of interpretation and beguiling charm upon the stage has won the hearts of audiences around the world. Ms. Lavrova enjoys a diverse career upon the international platform, and additionally holds substantial positions in the worlds of arts administration and pedagogy.
Solo and orchestral performances have taken Ms. Lavrova throughout her native Russia to Canada, France, Hungary, Italy, United Kingdom, Peru, Chile, South Africa and the United States, to include notable New York venues such as Alice Tully Hall and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall and Steinway Hall. Ms. Lavrova has captured top prizes at the New Orleans, Isabel Scionti, Frinna Auerbach, Heidi Hermanns, Music Academy of the West, Silver Lake, and Senigallia International Piano Competitions. Upon her debut at the Leeds International Piano Competition, Ms. Lavrova was the youngest performer of 1996 admitted to the quarterfinal round. In her repertoire, she has over 30 concertos and extensive solo recital programs, as well as substantial chamber music repertoire, including an ongoing partnership with her duo partner, pianist, Vassily Primakov. Her repertoire includes works of Arensky, Clementi, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann, Chopin, Brahms, Schubert, Liszt, Debussy, Milhaud, Godowsky, Saint-Saens, Scriabin, Rachmaninoff, Shostakovich, Poulenc, Prokofiev, Corigliano, Liebermann, Barber and many others.
Natalia Lavrova was born in Moscow. She entered the prep division of the Moscow Conservatory at the age of five, and was subsequently accepted to The Juilliard School Pre-College Division, as a pupil in the studio of Herbert Stessin. Ms. Lavrova went on to earn her Bachelor of Music and Masters of Music degrees at Juilliard, under the tutelage of Jerome Lowenthal.
Ms. Lavrova is the founder and president of a very successful private school, Music School of New York City and together with Vassily Primakov, she is the co-founder and partner of LP Classics, a record label dedicated to unearthing rare, never-before released recordings and live performances of celebrated artists and emerging stars.
Natalia Lavrova is a Yamaha Artist in Education.
GUEST ARTIST 2016
Laura Metcalf, Cello
Cellist Laura Metcalf, acclaimed for her "gorgeous cello legatos" (Washington Post) and her "sensitive, melodic touch" (Blog Critics Magazine), is known for her compelling solo and chamber music performances both worldwide and in her home of New York City. She has given concerts in 40 states, as well as Argentina, Canada, Japan, United Arab Emirates, Austria, Germany, France, Mexico, England, and South Africa. She has appeared as a soloist with the One World Symphony, the Laredo Philharmonic, Ensemble 212 Orchestra and Orquesta Sinfonica Sinaloa. She is the cellist of the acclaimed string quintet Sybarite5, which was the first ensemble of its kind to win the Concert Artists Guild Competition, and which has since toured the globe performing to sold-out audiences in Carnegie Hall, the Library of Congress and many others. Sybarite5's debut album reached the Billboard Charts Top 10, and the quintet gave the world premiere of a concerto written for them by Dan Visconti with several American orchestras in 2015. Laura has performed at the Aspen, Caramoor, Ravinia, Newport, Chautauqua, Taos, Sarasota, Fontainebleau Music Festivals and is routinely invited to the Open Chamber Music session at the IMS Prussia Cove in Cornwall, UK. She performs with acclaimed guitarist Rupert Boyd, with whom she toured Australia in 2013. Among other accolades and awards, she has won the Rutenberg Chamber Music Competition and Mannes College's James E. Hughes Award. Comfortable performing a variety of genres, Laura is a member of the cello and percussion quartet Break of Reality with whom she has given hundreds of concerts and educational workshops across the country and whose recorded music has a reach of millions worldwide. She has appeared on the David Letterman and Conan O'Brien late-night shows, as well as the Today Show and the View, and at the US Open, New York Fashion Week, and in Johannesburg, South Africa with legendary rap artist Nas. As an educator, Laura routinely gives masterclasses from the elementary to the collegiate level, and has served on the faculty of Opus 118 Harlem School of Music (through which she founded the first-ever cello program at New York's PS 129) and the New York Summer Music Festival. Her debut CD with the Sono Luminus label is set for release in 2016.
GUEST ARTIST 2015
Angela Pickett, Viola
Angela Pickett has performed as a violist, violinist, and fiddler throughout North America, Europe. A member of the Princeton Symphony, Angela has also performed with Wet Ink Music, Ne(x)tworks, Continuum, and recently premiered a new version of Helmut Lachenmann’s Mouvement with the Argento Chamber Ensemble. In 2006, Angela performed Ann Southam’s Re-Tuning for viola and tape at the 34th International Viola Congress, and a subsequent performance of Re-Tuning at the 2006 International Sound Symposium was recorded for national radio broadcast. As a fiddler she has performed with Irish tenor John McDermott, the Chieftains, and appeared on numerous recordings of Irish/Newfoundland traditional music. A doctoral candidate in viola performance at the Manhattan School of Music, Angela completed a Masters degree from the Juilliard School and a Bachelor of Music in her hometown of St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada. Angela has attended Tanglewood Music Centre, Aldeburgh Festival, Banff Centre for the Arts, Centre d’Arts Orford, and has twice been a recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts’ Grant for Classical Musicians. Angela’s principal teachers include Michael Tree, Samuel Rhodes, Karen Tuttle and Karen Dreyfus.