Guest Artists 2019

Akropolis Quintet

All of the music…is remarkable for the sheer joy that it elicits from the exceptional ARQ musicians… Blend, balance, unanimity of pitch and phrasing: all are perfect. The quintet plays with imagination, infallible musicality, and huge vitality.
— Ronald E. Grames, Fanfare Magazine
 Photo Credit: Steve Korn Photography

Photo Credit: Steve Korn Photography

The Akropolis Reed Quintet was founded in 2009 at the University of Michigan and is the first ever ensemble of its makeup to win a Fischoff Gold Medal (2014), Grand Prize at the Plowman and MTNA national competitions, and 6 national chamber music prizes in total. Hailed by Fanfare for its “imagination, infallible musicality, and huge vitality”, Akropolis has performed from Juneau to Abu Dhabi and has showcased at five national conferences, including as a participant in APAP’s prestigious Young Performers Career Advancement Program (YPCA). Winner of the 2015 Fischoff Educator Award, Akropolis conducts extensive educational residencies and impacts thousands of children each year. A maverick of new wind music, Akropolis has commissioned over 30 reed quintet works and recorded three albums, including its 2017 release, The Space Between Us, which the San Francisco Chronicle calls, “pure gold”. Akropolis has received grants for its community programming in Detroit, MI from the National Endowment for the Arts (Art Works), Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, CultureSource, Quicken Loans, and Chamber Music America, as well as operating support from the Aaron Copland Fund for Music and the Amphion Foundation.


Euclid Quartet

The impressiveness of the Euclid Quartet extended to all the styles it performed on Saturday, when it made its Pittsburgh début. Their emotional and timbral richness brought to mind the old-world approach of the Guarneri Quartet. The Euclid performance was devoted, expert and exhilarating.
— Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Celebrating its 18th anniversary season, the Euclid Quartet enjoys one of the most highly regarded reputations of any chamber ensemble of its generation, with its members’ constituting a multinational mix representing four continents: violinist Jameson Cooper (Great Britain), violinist Brendan Shea (United States), violist Luis Enrique Vargas (Venezuela), cellist Jacqueline Choi (South Korea). 

Highlights of the Euclid Quartet’s career include significant global recognition as the first American string quartet to be awarded a top prize at the Osaka International Chamber Music Competition. The quartet also won awards in numerous United States, including the Hugo Kauder International Competition for String Quartets, The Carmel Chamber Music Competition and the Chamber Music Yellow Springs Competition. In 2009, the Euclid Quartet was awarded the esteemed “American Masterpieces” grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. 

In 2007, the Euclid Quartet was appointed to the prestigious string quartet residency at Indiana University South Bend, where its members teach private lessons and coach chamber music. They have performed for thousands of students and young adults, in part through support from the National Endowment for the Arts and collaborations with Carnegie Hall’s Weill Music Institute and the Fischoff National Chamber Music Association.

Active in the recording studio, the Euclid Quartet issued, most recently, a pair of CDs, comprising the six string quartets of Béla Bartók on Artek Recordings. The American Record Guide raved about these discs, “rarely has a group found such meaning and vision.” Their debut CD, on Centaur records, features the first four quartets of Hugo Kauder, a refugee from Nazi-occupied Austria who fled to the United States in the 1940s. He defied the atonal trend of his generation with his uniquely harmonic, contrapuntal style. 

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Atlantic Brass Quintet

Let’s not mince words: The Atlantic Brass Quintet has attained a rare level of perfection, placing it among the finest quintets of our time.
— Brass Bulletin (Switzerland)
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Widely acclaimed as one of the world's finest and most versatile brass chamber ensembles, the Atlantic Brass Quintet has performed in 48 of the United States and dozens of countries across four continents.  Winner of six international chamber music competitions, the Quintet's distinctive sound, impeccable ensemble, stunning virtuosity, and warm, inviting stage presence have won praise from scores of critics.

Founded in 1985, the Atlantic Brass Quintet was honored by Musical America by being named "Young Artists of 1988". In May 1992, by unanimous decision, the Quintet won the "Premiere Prix" at the International Brass Competition of Narbonne, France, recognized worldwide as the preeminent competition of its kind. Highlights in the Quintet's busy concert career include performances at Carnegie Hall, Weill Recital Hall, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Fleet Boston Celebrity Series, Tanglewood, and the White House. 

Atlantic has been the resident brass quintet of Boston University, the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, and the Boston Conservatory. 

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past Artists

Imani Winds (2018 Inaugural Season)

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Since 1997 Imani Winds, the Grammy-nominated wind quintet, has taken a unique path carving out a distinct presence in the classical music world with its dynamic playing, culturally poignant programming, adventurous collaborations, and inspirational outreach programs. With two member composers and a deep commitment to commissioning new work, the group is enriching the traditional wind quintet repertoire while meaningfully bridging American, European, African and Latin American traditions. From Mendelssohn to Astor Piazzolla to Wayne Shorter and Stravinsky, Imani Winds seeks to engage new music and new voices into the modern classical idiom. 

Starting in the fall of 2016 through 2018, Imani Winds has been appointed as the University of Chicago's Don Michael Randel Ensemble-in-Residence. Imani Winds’ touring schedule has taken them across the globe. At home, the group has performed in the nation’s major concert venues including Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, Disney Hall, to name a few. In recent seasons, the group has traveled extensively internationally, with tours in China, Singapore, Brazil, Australia and throughout Europe. Fall 2017 will include a tour of New Zealand. 

Imani Winds has five releases on E1 Music, including their 2006 Grammy Award nominated recording entitled The Classical Underground. They have also recorded for Naxos and Blue Note and released "The Rite of Spring" on Warner Classics which was on iTunes Best of 2013 list. Their 8th commercial recording was released in the fall of 2016.

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