Lyra festival artists are among the best classical musicians in the world today.

MEET OUR DISTINGUISHED 2018 FESTIVAL ARTISTS

Guest Artists

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Kristin Lee, Violin
Sat. July 14, 2018 Smith College Sage Hall
10:00am  Violin Masterclass
4:00pm   Recital with pianist Jeremy Jordan

A recipient of the 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant, as well as a top prizewinner of the 2012 Walter W. Naumburg Competition and the Astral Artists’ 2010 National Auditions, Kristin Lee is a violinist of remarkable versatility and impeccable technique who enjoys a vibrant career as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and educator. “Her technique is flawless, and she has a sense of melodic shaping that reflects an artistic maturity,” writes the St. Louis Post-­‐‑Dispatch, and The Strad reports, “She seems entirely comfortable with stylistic diversity, which is one criterion that separates the run-­‐‑of-­‐‑the-­‐‑mill instrumentalists from true artists.”

Kristin Lee has appeared as soloist with The Philadelphia Orchestra, St. Louis Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Rochester Philharmonic, New Mexico Symphony, West Virginia Symphony, the Ural Philharmonic of Russia, the Korean Broadcasting Symphony, the Milwaukee Symphony, the Guiyang Symphony Orchestra of China, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, and many others. She has performed at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, the Kennedy Center, Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Steinway Hall’s Salon de Virtuosi, the Louvre Museum in Paris, Washington, D.C.’s Phillips Collection, and Korea’s Kumho Art Gallery. She has been featured on the Ravinia Festival’s Rising Stars Series and has toured throughout northern Italy. She has curated programs that premiered at Philadelphia’s World Cafe Live and New York’s (le) Poisson Rouge in which she commissioned five new works for the violin and various instruments.

An accomplished chamber musician, Lee is a member of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center following her completion of a three-­‐‑year residency as a CMS Two artist. Lee is a principal artist with Camerata Pacifica, sitting as The Bernard Gondos Chair. She is also the concertmaster of the Metropolis Ensemble, with whom she premiered Vivian Fung’s Violin Concerto, written for her, which appears on Fung’s CD Dreamscapes (Naxos) and won the 2013 Juno Award.

Lee’s many honors include awards from the 2015 Trondheim Chamber Music Competition, 2011 Trio di Trieste Premio International Competition, the SYLFF Fellowship, Dorothy DeLay Scholarship, the Aspen Music Festival’s Violin Competition, the New Jersey Young Artists’ Competition, and the Salon de Virtuosi Scholarship Foundation. She is also the unprecedented First Prize winner of three concerto competitions at The Juilliard School – in the Pre-­‐‑College Division in 1997 and 1999, and in the College Division in 2007.

Born in Seoul, Lee began studying the violin at age five and within one year won First Prize at the Korea Times Violin Competition. In 1995, she moved to the US to continue her studies under Sonja Foster and in 1997 entered The Juilliard School’s Pre-­‐‑College Division to study with Catherine Cho and Dorothy DeLay. In 2000, Lee was chosen to study with Itzhak Perlman after he heard her perform Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with Juilliard’s Pre-­‐‑College Symphony Orchestra. Lee holds a Master’s degree from The Juilliard School, where she also served as Perlman’s assistant teacher as a Starling Fellow. She is a member of the faculty of the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College and the co-­‐‑founder and artistic director of Emerald City Music, a chamber music series based out in Seattle. She has also served on the faculties of the LG Chamber Music School in Seoul, Korea, El Sistema’s chamber music festival in Caracas, Venezuela, and the Music@Menlo Chamber Music Festival.  www.violinistkristinlee.com

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Nicholas Tzavaras, Cello
Thurs. July 12, 2018 Smith College Sage Hall
1:30pm  Cello Masterclass
7:30pm Recital with pianist Rieko Aizawa

A Native of Spanish Harlem in New York City, cellist Nicholas Tzavaras has quickly become a much sought after chamber musician, soloist and educator across four continents.  Recent reviews in the New York Times have called his playing “richly singing” and “beautifully nuanced.”  Since 2000, Mr. Tzavaras has been the cellist of the internationally renowned Shanghai Quartet, playing more than 1500 concerts throughout the world.

Mr. Tzavaras has recorded more than 20 albums for the Naxos, Delos, Bis, Centaur, Camerata, and New Albion labels.  Recent engagements have included the Santa Fe, La Jolla and Taos festivals, the Casals festival in Prades France and Puerto Rico, the Melbourne Music Festival in Australia, the Beethoven Easter Festival in Poland and the Marlboro Festival.   Since 2009 Mr. Tzavaras has held the esteemed title of guest principal cellist of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra.

Formerly on the faculty of the University of Richmond, Mr. Tzavaras is currently the coordinator of the string department and artist-in-residence at the John J. Cali School of Music at Montclair State University in New Jersey, a position he has held since 2002.  He is also a guest professor at the Shanghai and Central Conservatories in China and in 2016 joined the cello and chamber music faculty of the Longy School of Music in Caimbridge MA.  Mr. Tzavaras holds degrees from the New England Conservatory and the State University of New York at Stonybrook, working exclusively with Laurence Lesser and Timothy Eddy.  Mr. Tzavaras can be seen in the Academy Award nominated documentary “Small Wonders,” the motion picture “Music of the Heart” starring Meryl Streep and with the Shanghai Quartet in Woody Allen’s “Melinda Melinda.”

When not with his cello, Mr. Tzavaras is an avid cyclist, enthusiastic but unfortunately average chess player, back yard chicken farmer and, perhaps most importantly, a challenged father of three children all under the age of nine. 

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Gilles Vonsattel, Piano
Fri. July 20, 2018 Smith College Sage Hall
1:30pm  Piano Masterclass
7:30pm Solo Recital

A "wanderer between worlds" (Lucerne Festival), Swiss-born American pianist Gilles Vonsattel is an artist of extraordinary versatility and originality. Comfortable with and seeking out an enormous range of repertoire, Vonsattel displays a musical curiosity and sense of adventure that has gained him many admirers. Recipient of an Avery Fisher Career Grant and winner of the Naumburg and Geneva competitions as well as the 2016 Andrew Wolf Chamber Music Award, he has in recent years made his Boston Symphony, Tanglewood, and San Francisco Symphony debuts, while performing recitals and chamber music at Ravinia, Tokyo’s Musashino Hall, Wigmore Hall, Bravo! Vail, Music@Menlo, the Gilmore festival, the Lucerne festival, and the Munich Gasteig. His most recent 2014 New York solo recital was hailed as “tightly conceived and passionately performed…a study in intensity” by The New York Times. 

Reengaged by the San Francisco Symphony, he has also appeared with the Warsaw Philharmonic, Calgary Philharmonic, Edmonton Symphony, l’Orchestre Symphonique du Québec, Boston Pops, Nashville Symphony, Musikkollegium Winterthur, Staatskapelle Halle, and L’orchestre de chambre de Genève. Chamber partners include musicians such as James Ehnes, Frank Huang, Ilya Gringolts, Nicolas Altstaedt, David Shifrin, David Finckel, Stefan Jackiw, Jörg Widmann, Gary Hoffman, Carter Brey, Anthony Marwood, Paul Neubauer, Paul Watkins, Philip Setzer, Emmanuel Pahud, Karen Gomyo, David Jolley, Ida Kavafian, and the Swiss Chamber Soloists. He has appeared in concert with the Pacifica, Orion, Ebène, Danish, Daedalus, Escher, and Borromeo Quartets. Deeply committed to the performance of contemporary works, he has premiered numerous works both in the United States and Europe and worked closely with notable composers such as Jörg Widmann, Heinz Holliger, and George Benjamin. His 2011 recording for the Honens/Naxos label of music by Debussy, Honegger, Holliger, and Ravel was named one of Time Out New York’s classical albums of the year, while a 2014 release on GENUIN/Artist Consort received a 5/5 from FonoForum and international critical praise. His latest solo release (2015) for Honens of Scarlatti, Webern, Messiaen, Debussy, and George Benjamin’s Shadowlines received rave reviews in Gramophone, The New York Times, and the American Record Guide.

Recent projects include Berg’s Kammerkonzert with the Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana, a tour with Jörg Widmann and the Irish Chamber Orchestra, Mozart concerti with the Vancouver Symphony and Florida Orchestra, performances at Seoul’s LG Arts Centre and at the Beijing Modern Music Festival, collaborations with Kent Nagano with L’Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal and the Munich Philharmonic (Bernstein’s Symphony No. 2, The Age of Anxiety) as well as numerous appearances internationally and throughout the United States with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. Mr. Vonsattel received his bachelor’s degree in political science and economics from Columbia University and his master’s degree from The Juilliard School, where he studied with Jerome Lowenthal. He is on the faculty of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and makes his home in New York City. Gilles Vonsattel is a Steinway Artist. www.gillesvonsattel.com


Guest Collaborative Pianists

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Rieko Aizawa, Piano
Thurs. July 12, 2018 Smith College Sage Hall
7:30pm Recital with cellist Nicholas Tzavaras

Praised by the NY Times for an “impressive musicality, a crisp touch and expressive phrasing”, Japanese pianist Rieko Aizawa has performed throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe, including New York's Lincoln Center, Boston's Symphony Hall, Chicago's Orchestra Hall and Vienna's Konzerthaus.

At the age of thirteen, Ms. Aizawa was brought to the attention of conductor Alexander Schneider on the recommendation of the pianist Mitsuko Uchida. Schneider engaged Ms. Aizawa as soloist with his Brandenburg Ensemble at the opening concerts of Tokyo's Casals Hall. Later that year, Schneider presented her in her United States début concerts at the Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall with his New York String Orchestra. She has since established her own unique musical voice. 

Ms. Aizawa is also an active chamber musician. The youngest-ever participant at the Marlboro Music Festival, she has performed as a guest with string quartets such as the Guarneri Quartet, the Orion Quartet and the Shanghai Quartet. She is a founding member of the Horszowski Trio and of the prize-winning Duo Prism. Ms. Aizawa became artistic director of the Alpenglow Chamber Music Festival in Colorado in 2010.

Recently, Ms. Aizawa’s solo debut recording of Scriabin’s and Shostakovich’s “24 Preludes” was released by Altus in Japan, and her second album of Messiaen's and Faure's preludes is coming out in the upcoming season.  Ms. Aizawa also has a great interest in exploring unusual repertoire. - the St. Paul Pioneer Press said of her performance with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra conducted by Hans Graf: "the Salieri Piano Concerto in C was played so splendidly by Rieko Aizawa. Hers was a graceful reading. .... Aizawa's performance lent the work a respect it rarely receives." In the same year, she received the Washington Award.  

Ms. Aizawa was the last pupil of Mieczyslaw Horszowski at the Curtis Institute and she also studied with Seymour Lipkin and Peter Serkin at the Juilliard School. Ms. Aizawa lives in New York City, and she is on the faculty at Longy School of Music of Bard. Ms. Aizawa is a Steinway Artist.  www.riekoaizawa.com

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Jeremy Jordan, Piano
Sat. July 14, 2018 Smith College Sage Hall

4:00pm Recital with violinist Kristin Lee

A member of the Young Steinway Artists roster and critically acclaimed, “a clear technical virtuoso”, “a rare talent”; “a true Wunderkind”, pianist and native Chicagoan Jeremy Jordan burst on the music scene at age 9 playing Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 1 in a live televised performance, followed by appearances on the acclaimed radio program From The Top and From The Top: Live from Carnegie Hall performing Liszt. He has twice again appeared at Carnegie Hall playing Chopin, Liszt, and Wagner.

Mr. Jordan attended the Juilliard School where he received undergraduate and graduate degrees in piano performance, studying on the Van Cliburn and Irene Diamond scholarships. He made his concerto debut with Maestro Alan Heatherington and the Ars Viva Symphony Orchestra playing Grieg, followed by performances and recordings of the Prokofiev Piano Concerto No. 1 and Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto No. 1 with the Chicago Sinfonietta and the Czech National Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Paul Freeman.

Mr. Jordan subsequently performed solo and chamber concerts throughout Europe and America including Carnegie Hall, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Rudolfinum in Prague, Chicago’s Orchestra Hall and the Ravinia Festival. Other notable performances include his appearances with renowned clarinetist Anthony McGill and cellist Yo-Yo Ma, recitals for the American Liszt Society in California and New York, and his own Juilliard lecture-recital celebrating the bicentennials of Liszt and Wagner.

In 2011, Jeremy Jordan was featured in a ‘live’ interview on Chicago’s WFMT Radio program Impromptu with Kerry Frumkin, where he performed his own transcriptions of Liszt/Horowitz, Wagner, and Saint-Saens.

Mr. Jordan is the recipient of many honors and accolades including first prizes at the Walgreens/Midwest Young Artists Concerto Competition, Steinway Concerto Competition, and the Rembrandt Chamber Ensemble Competition. He is also a recipient of the Gluck Community Service Fellowship, and the Jazz Institute of Chicago Dick Wang scholarship for excellence in jazz piano.

Jeremy Jordan studied with distinguished pianists Matti Raekallio and Regina Syrkin, and received tutoring from renowned artists including Andre Watts, Yoshie Akimoto, Jerome Lowenthal, Eteri Andjaparidze, Steve Million, and Ron Perillo.