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Masterful Strings Welcomes World-Renowned String Pedagogues and Performers to UMD

Mon, Jul 03, 2017


Join the UMD School of Music for a lively series of masterclasses and discussions that feature renowned string artists sharing their expertise in string pedagogy and performance.


All events are free and take place at The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center.


(From left to right: Felix Wang, Simon James, Jeffrey Irvine, Yehonatan Berick, Lev Polyakin)

Masterclass with Felix Wang, cello
Friday, September 29, 
2017 . 1:00 pm . Gildenhorn Recital Hall
Felix Wang is a cello professor at Vanderbilt University, a member of the Blair String Quartet, a founding member of the Blakemore Trio and co-principal cellist of the IRIS Orchestra under the direction of Michael Stern. In addition to coaching UMD cello students in a masterclass, Wang will perform a brief program that includes a Bach cello suite and a duo with UMD cello professor Eric Kutz.

Masterful Strings Residency: Simon James, violin
Monday, October 2, 2017 - Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Seattle Symphony second assistant concertmaster, master teacher and studio contractor Simon James teaches violin students how to achieve professional success on stage and behind the scenes during his three-day residency at the UMD School of Music.

Solo Repertoire Masterclass
Monday, October 2, 2017 .
12:00 pm . Leah M. Smith Lecture Hall
Students refine their solo repertoire with feedback from James.

A Life in Music: Leadership, Creativity and Entrepreneurship
Tuesday, October 3, 
2017 . 12:30 pm . Gildenhorn Recital Hall
James gives his personal insights on carving out a niche in classical music.

Orchestral Excerpts Masterclass
Wednesday, October 4, 2017 . 12:00 pm . Gildenhorn Recital Hall

James shares his expertise of the violin orchestral repertoire with UMD students in an interactive coaching session.

James will give a recital with UMD piano professor Rita Sloan on Wednesday, October 4 at 8 pm in Gildenhorn Recital Hall.

Masterclass with Jeffrey Irvine, viola
Tuesday, October 17, 
2017 . 12:30 pm . Leah M. Smith Lecture Hall
Jeffrey Irvine is a dedicated educator, violist and chamber musician. As a member of the New World String Quartet, he performed throughout the United States and Europe at such venues as Carnegie Recital Hall and the Kennedy Center. Mr. Irvine has been the principal violist of the Wichita Symphony and a member of the Aspen Festival Orchestra and Chamber Symphony. He is currently Professor of Viola and Head of Strings at the Cleveland Institute of Music.

Masterclass with Yehonatan Berick, violin
Tuesday, October 31, 2017. 12:30
pm . Gildenhorn Recital Hall
Internationally renowned since becoming a prizewinner at the 1993 Naumburg Violin Competition, Yehonatan Berick enjoys a busy concert schedule as soloist, recitalist, chamber musician and pedagogue throughout North America, Europe and Israel. His many ambitious recital programs feature one-day performances of such cycles as Bach’s complete sonatas and partitas, Paganini’s 24 Caprices, Ysaÿe's Six Sonatas for solo violin, as well as complete sonata cycles by Brahms, Beethoven, Schumann and Grieg.

Berick will perform an all-Brahms program with piano professor Rita Sloan on the same evening at 8 pm in Gildenhorn Recital Hall.

Masterclass with Lev Polyakin, violin
Monday, November 20, 
2017 . 12:00 pm . Leah M. Smith Lecture Hall
Lev Polyakin joined the first violin section of The Cleveland Orchestra in 1982 and was appointed an assistant concertmaster in 1999. In addition, he serves as concertmaster of the American Academy of Conducting Orchestra at the Aspen Music Festival.

Masterful Strings is funded in part by The Tretter Distinguished Faculty Fellowship in Violin and the Barbara K. Steppel Memorial Faculty Fellowship in Cello.