Meet the Artists 2021
Peter Rainer, Concertmaster
Violinist/GermanyPeter has been iPalpiti’s Concertmaster since 1994. In his native Germany, he is a concertmaster and a founder of the Kammerakademie Potsdam, and leads an active career as a chamber musician, soloist, and teacher. Since 2007, Peter has been on the faculty of the “Universität der Künste” (University of the Arts) in Berlin and of the “Stern Institute” for young talented students. Since 2018, Peter is the Head of the string department of “Musikgymnasium Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach at the “Hanns Eisler Hochschule für Musik," a school for highly talented musical kids in Berlin. He is the founder and leader of the Persius Ensemble, focusing mainly on repertoire written for the classical nonet, and has released three CDs; a CD with nonets by Spohr, Clementi and Mozart was chosen by Berlin-Brandenburg Radio (RBB) as one of the best releases of 2007. In 2008, he founded the Merlino String Quartet and has been a member of the Max Brod piano trio from 2012. In 2016, the piano trio released a CD of compositions by Robert Kahn, a wonderful discovery of romantic music in style of Johannes Brahms. Peter has worked as the assistant to Professor Schmieder at the Holland Music Sessions, at the Southern Methodist University in Dallas and at Temple University in Philadelphia. Music-loving children know Peter Rainer through the many interactive concerts he developed for them in the past 20 years, such as Till Eulenspiegel, Ferdinand the Bull, The Horse on the Violin, to mention a few. In the past 3 years, he has appeared at the Festival International de Musique de Chambre en Charente together with iPalpiti artist Jacob Shaw, and continues to collaborate with iPalpiti alumni on international musical projects. Peter studied violin in the U.S. with Professor Eduard Schmieder at the Meadows School of the Arts, where he received his Artist Certificate in 1994 and his Master of Violin Performance degree in 1995. Upon his return to Germany, he was concertmaster of the Brandenburgische Philharmonie in Potsdam from 1996 to 2000. In 2005, he received a commendation from the City of Los Angeles for his leadership of iPalpiti and his contributions to culture.
Violinist/IrelandSamuel Allan-Chapkovski was born in Ireland in 2000 and began studying violin at the age of 4. He studied in Central Music School for Gifted Children of Moscow State Conservatory, Russia, with Prof. Victor Pikayzen, pupil of David Oistrakh. Upon Prof. Pikayzen retirement in 2016, Samuel has won full scholarship at the Boyer College of Music, Temple University of Philadelphia, USA in the class of Prof. Eduard Schmieder where he received his Bachelor’s and now continues in the Master of Performance program. Winner of numerous competitions including 2010 Gran Prix in Bari, Italy (Euterpe), Samuel received First Prize in “Remember Enescu” competition, Sinaia, Romania (2018), First Prize in “Young Talents of Performing Arts”, New Jersey, USA where he also won a violin by contemporary luthier (2019), and also won Temple University Concerto Competition, performing with Temple University orchestra. As a Laureate of international competitions in Italy, Slovakia, Estonia, and Latvia, Samuel was invited to perform with various festivals’ orchestras. In 2013 he was a soloist with Moscow State Symphony Orchestra performing J.S. Bach concerto in A minor under the conductor Dm. Orlov. Samuel gives regular recitals throughout Ireland. As an active participant in the Alion Baltic festival in Riga, Latvia and in Summit Music Festival, Purchase, New York he was featured in solo performances. Samuel’s hobbies and interests are Music, Composition, and Mathematics. This is his first season with iPalpiti.
Violinist/JapanWinner of numerous prizes in international and national competitions, Takamori is a graduate of The Tokyo University of Arts with the top score and the Acanthus Music Prize for such outstanding academic achievements. During his college years he was selected numerous times as a soloist with the university symphony orchestras, and played under baton of such conductors as Prof. Kazuki Sawa, Prof Douglas Bostock, and Prof. Ken Takaseki. He studied with Prof. Eduard Schmieder in his international class Artist Diploma program at the Boyer College of Music at Temple University in Philadelphia as a recipient of the scholarship. Currently he is in the doctoral degree program in Tokyo, working with Prof. Takashi Shimizu and Prof. Sung Yang. In 2014 he was selected as a soloist of the Musical Activity Supporting System by YAMAHA Music Foundation, and has been performing in concerts and music festivals in Europe. This is his third season with iPalpiti.
Elvin Hoxha Ganiyev
Elvin Hoxha Ganiyev
Violinist/ Azerbaijan-TurkeyiPalpiti Special Prize recipient 2021 A concert violinist, Elvin is the youngest musician presented with the certificate and badge of the honorary title of the Honoured Artist of Azerbaijan for his merits in the development of Azerbaijani culture (2018) and is the recipient of the 2019 IKSV Istanbul Culture and Arts Foundation Aydin Gun Encouragement Award. Born in 1997 into a family of esteemed musicians, he started playing the violin when he was 5 years old. At the age of 8, he gave his first orchestral concert with his grandfather Server Ganiyev, and that same year he was admitted to the Zurich Conservatory Young Student program. Since the age of 10 when Elvin made his debut with Moscow Virtuosi under the baton of Vladimir Spivakov at the Kremlin Palace, he has always performed with renowned conductors, such as Zubin Mehta, Yuri Bashmet, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Sasha Goetzel, Gürer Aykal, Rauf Abdullayev, Placido Domingo, Jules van Hessen and David Bernard among others. Elvin has performed with Amsterdam Philharmonic, Shanghai Chamber Orchestra, Borusan Philharmonic, Azerbaijani Philharmonic, Qatar Philharmonic, Odessa Philharmonic, New Russia Orchestra, BMTG NY Chamber Orchestra, Burgogne Lyric Orchestra, İstanbul State Symphony and all leading orchestras in Turkey, Albanian RTSH Orchestra, and many others. Elvin is a winner of numerous international competitions including David Oistrakh Violin Competition, Lipinski-Wieniawski Competition for Young Musicians, Golden Medal Berliner International Music Competition, and Vienna International Music Competition to name a few. He has performed at many festivals internationally such as Interlaken Classics Festivals in Switzerland, Menton Festival in France, Rostropovich Festival and Gabala Festival Music in Azerbaijan, Vladimir Spivakov Invites Festival, Trans-Siberian Art Festival in Russia, Istanbul Music Festival and Ankara Music Festival in Turkey, Cannes Music Festival, Voices for Peace and Festival du Floréal Musical d’Epinal in France, Oettingen Festival in Germany and Megaro Festival in Greece. He has recorded with LGT Young Soloists for the album “Italian Journey” under RCA Red Seal/Sony Music Switzerland. In 2019, his debut album “Say’s 1001 Nights in the Harem Violin Concerto” and a single in 2020 “Chausson, Poème Op.25” were released on digital music platforms. Elvin holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Spain and currently pursuing his Master’s Degree at Hochschule für Musik Theater und Medien Hannover in Germany, Elvin is supported by ÇEV Contemporary Education Foundation of Turkey Young Talents Project and also by Dr. Nejat F. Eczacıbaşı Foundation Music Scholarships Program. He performs on a 1715 Guiseppe Guarneri “filius Andreae” violin with an Eugène Sartory bow.
Violinist/Malaysia-USAThe international prize winner Miclen LaiPang is praised by the New York Times as “a force to be reckoned with…” while German newspaper Die Welt said he is “a musician of daring virtuosity with gripping access and noble elegance”. Miclen started his first violin lesson at the age of three and by the age of 9, he had won the grand-prize of the Merit Award Competition, ASTA, MTNA, and Redlands Bowl Young Artist Competition. Since then, Miclen has performed in over 50 countries and has won multiple awards, including the Stradivarius International Violin Competition, Schoenfeld International String Competition, Grand Prize of the American Fine Arts National Competition, 1st Prize of the American Music Talent Competition, and 1st and Special Prize at the International Moscow Music Competition. Miclen has recorded numerous CD’s on both Sony RCA Red Seal and Naxos with the most recent one released in November 2020 featuring a transcribed Beethoven Kreutzer Sonata for Violin and Strings. He has appeared in festivals including IMS Prussia Cove, Rome Chamber Music Festival, the New York String Orchestra Seminar, Verbier Festival, and the Castleman Quartet Program. In 2021, Miclen won a three year scholarship from Villa Musica Rheinland-Pfalz where he will start working with leading musicians from around the world. He has had the privilege to work with international artists such as Ivry Gitlis, Janos Starker, Gerhard Schulz, Robert McDuffie, Irvine Arditti, Csaba Erdélyi, and Peter Serkin. His primary mentors include Ida Bieler, Charles Castleman, Ruggiero Ricci, Aaron Rosand, Alice Schoenfeld, and Linda Rose. Currently, Miclen resides in Cologne, Germany and is the teaching assistant of renowned violinist Ida Bieler while completing his post-graduate Konzertexamen at the Robert Schumann Hochschule and further studies at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Graz with Boris Kuschnir in September of this year. Miclen performs on a violin by J.B. Vuillaume c.1850 once owned by Arthur Grumiaux and a bow made by D. Peccatte. He is grateful for the generous support from the American Fine Arts Association, National Artists, DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst) and Talent Unlimited. Miclen was selected to join iPalpiti in 2019.
Violinist-violist/ Turkmenistan-USAAhmed Mamedov started to play violin at the age of seven and graduated from the Sobinov Saratov State Conservatory in 2005, actively performing in solo, chamber ensembles, and string quartet concerts. Among his awards are the Grand Prize in the Fourth Regional Goldenberg Violin Competition, stipend from the “Russian Performing Art” foundation, Diploma at the 5th Demidov International Violin Competition, and an award from the VI “Golden Talent.” In 2006 Akhmed was selected to join “Youth Symphonic Orchestra of CIS Countries” and through 2009 toured the cities of CIS, Europe, and USA, under such conductors as Yury Simonov, M. Gorenshtein, Vladimir Spivakov. In 2010 Akhmed was accepted into Artist Diploma Program at Temple University in Philadelphia, completed his Master of Music degree in violin performance (2014) in the class of Professor Schmieder, and MM as a second major in viola (2017). He plays both as violinist and violist at Symphony in C, New Jersey Capital Philharmonic Orchestra, Vox Ama Deus Orchestra, Wayne Presbyterian Oratorio Society, and Bach Festival Orchestra of Bethlehem. Ahmed Mamedov is a co-founder and active performer of the Blue Line Quartet. Since 2018, he enjoys teaching at the Perkins Center for the Arts Conservatory in New Jersey. Ahmed is a member of iPalpiti since 2013.
violinist/Canada-ArmeniaA violinist who has proven the theory of self-actualization (The Strings Magazine), Nuné made her solo debut at Carnegie Hall’s Stern Auditorium in 2016. Based in Montreal and New York, she appeared in the United Nations Headquarters, as well as Merkin Hall at Lincoln Center, Palace des Arts, Bolshoy Hall, Toronto Arts Centre among others. An Artist-in-Residence in the Miami Chamber Orchestra and Orquestra Filarmonía since 2015, she has been an invited artist at festivals such as the Montreal Bach Festival, Montreal Chamber Music Festival, Festival du Monde Arabe, iPalpiti Festival, Festival Classica, Musical Armenia, Strad for Lunch, St. Barth Music Festival, and was representing Canada at the XVII Sommet de la Francophonie, 2018. Exploring the unknown repertoire since 2010, she founded the ‘Hidden Treasure’ ©. It comprises research, performance, and lectures of the rarely heard music. As a specialist in music of the Caucasus, Nuné has performed and lectured on this in venues like Columbia University, Wayne State University, University of Arizona, Alberta University. In 2017, she produced the “Hidden Treasure” CD to great critical acclaim. The musician has also directed a documentary about Armenian composer, Arno Babadjanian which was screened at the POM Festival (Toronto). In 2020, she founded ArtMelik, a non-for-profit advocating for the diversity in arts. A laureate of various international competitions, Nuné is a recipient of the grants such as the Canada Council for the Arts, the AGBU Arts Fellowship, McGill Graduate Excellence Fellowship, and Paul and Marie Gélinas Bursary. She holds and a Doctorate Degree from McGill University and Master’s Degree from University of Montreal. Nuné plays on a1824 Jean Baptiste Vuillaume violin loaned by the Groupe Canimex. She is the North American Representative of the Arno Babadjanian Foundation which celebrates the Centennial of the composer’s birth in 2021. Nuné joined iPalpiti in 2017.
Violinist/Hungary-EthiopiaSamuel Nebyu is the winner of numerous national and international competitions including Grand prizes at the National ASTA (American String Teachers Association) Solo Competition (2015), “Remember Enescu” International Violin Competition (Romania, 2013), Flame International Violin Competition (Paris, 2008), and a winner of the Beverly Hills National Auditions (CA, 2014). Born in Hungary of Ethiopian-Jewish descent, Samuel spent most of his early childhood in Asia. Starting playing the violin at the age of six, at fifteen, he was admitted to the Young Talents Program at the Brussels Royal Conservatory where he received tutelage from renowned musicians, including Igor Oistrakh. He was a violinist-in-residence for several years at the prestigious Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Belgium. Currently, he is in DMA program at Boyer College of Music and Dance at Temple University working with Eduard Schmieder who is a Distinguished University Carnell Professor of Violin and Artistic Director of Strings. Samuel has performed as soloist with number of orchestras, including the Brussels Philharmonic, at important international music festivals, and in venues such as the Centre of Performing Arts in Brussels (BOZAR), Peles Castle in Romania, the Wiener Saal in Salzburg, and Alice Tully Hall in New York. In 2015, he was selected as iPalpiti Junior and was a featured soloist with iPalpiti orchestra in Los Angeles at the Wallis Annenberg Center. Since, he has returned to iPalpiti every season, and in 2017 was a featured soloist together with iPalpiti alumnus violist Juan-Miguel Hernandez at Walt Disney Concert Hall, performing Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante. In 2016, he received the prestigious Clifton Emerging Artist Award, gave a recital at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia, and became a prize winner of the Mozarteum Salzburg Festpiel competition – the only one of 291 violinists to be selected as one of the eight prize winners – and was further honored to conclude the winners concert at the Mozarteum Grosse Saal. From 2017, Samuel teaches at the Community Music Scholars Program at Temple University. Highlights of the 2019 season were: featured soloist at Kimmel Center Verizon Hall in Philadelphia, performing Concerto for Violin with Choir and Orchestra by Jennifer Higdon, recital with Professor Lambert Orkis (long-time piano partner of violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter), and a tour with Mutter’s Virtuosi exclusive soloist ensemble of Anne-Sophie Mutter Foundation, performing through South America. Samuel is the 3rd iPalpiti artist chosen by the great violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter; prior artists were cellist Kian Soltani and bassist Roman Patkolo. Highlights of this spring was a recital with Charles Abramovic (collaborative pianist of Midori) at LACMA’s Sundays Live! livestream series. His CD “Violin Gems from Black Composers” was released on BCM+D label in 2018, selected for Grammy nomination, named Best Album of the Year by numerous classic radio stations across the nation, including KUSC-FM.
Violinist/GeorgiaBorn and raised in Tbilisi, Georgia, Irina was accepted to Tbilisi's Central Music School for Gifted Children in 2008 where she remained one of the most successful students, featured in multiple music festivals and competitions including Future Stars festival (2015) Diploma for the Best Performance and the First Prize in the 7th National Music Competition of Georgia. Irina was honored to perform as a soloist multiple times with the Tbilisi Opera and Ballet Theatre Orchestra, Georgian Philharmonic Orchestra, and Tbilisi Symphony Orchestra. Irina performed in numerous masterclasses of visiting brilliant violinists from Germany, Spain, Russia, Norway, Finland, including iPalpiti’s alumnus Daniel Austrich (Russia/Germany) and took part in Telavi International Music Festival and in the International Summer Academy in Castelnuovo Di Garfagnana, Italy, where she received First Prize in the International String Competition. Accepted into the Tbilisi State Conservatoire for Bachelor Music Performance in 2018, by early 2019 she already started professional career as the Associate Concertmaster in the Tbilisi Youth Orchestra, also serving as concertmaster of the Tbilisi state conservatory orchestra. In the fall of 2019, Irina was accepted to the Artist Diploma Program in Prof. Schmieder’ class in the Boyer College of Music and Dance at Temple University, became a matriculated student in the Bachelor of Music Performance program in 2020, and in 2021 became the recipient of The Helen Kwalwasser Prize. This is her first season with iPalpiti.
Violinist/Lithuania-USALithuanian-American violinist Aleksandr Snytkin has been praised by critics as “a virtuoso with delicate touch and a sense of intimacy, technical and artistic maturity.” Member of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra since 2011, Aleksandr served as guest concertmaster in Texas’ Irving and Plano Symphony Orchestras and the Bergen Philharmonic (Norway), where he served as a full-time associate concertmaster for 2009-2010 seasons before returning to Dallas. Born in 1977 in Potsdam, Germany, he began his musical education at the age of seven, studying violin at the B. Dvarionas Music School. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Lithuanian Music Academy and Malmo Music Academy (Sweden). In 2001, Snytkin came to the United States to pursue a doctoral degree at the University of Kansas and later was accepted into Artist Certificate program at the Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX in the class of Prof. Eduard Schmieder. Snytkin has been soloist with several chamber orchestras in his native country, as well as being an active chamber musician, performing at festivals and participating in competitions in Lithuania, France, Sweden, Norway, Holland, Italy, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Austria, Israel and the United States. He made his American orchestral solo debut, performing the Brahms Violin Concerto with the Springfield (Missouri) Symphony Orchestra, as a result of his winning the Hellam Young Artists Competition. He has also performed with many renowned musicians such as members of Accorda String Quartet (Kansas City), pianist Stanislav Ioudenitch, violinist Anne Akiko Meyers, violist Mikhail Iakovlev, Hansa String Quartet (Norway) and is a founding member of the ART Piano Trio (Lithuania) and the Emerald Piano Trio (Dallas, TX). He frequently performs in various chamber music groups and is a member of the PLUS string quartet. Most recent solo performances include Vivaldi’s Four Seasons with the Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra. Snytkin is a member of iPalpiti since 2005, including three tours to Israel (2006, 2011 and 2017).
Violinist/ChinaTian Yuan was born in Harbin, China in 1999, the city of music. With the unique musical atmosphere and the influence of his hometown and family, Tian began learning violin at the age of three with his father and had his first public performance at the age of four. At the age of seven, he entered the Harbin children's palace High School Symphony Orchestra and became the exceptional youngest first violin player there. In 2008 Tian came to Beijing to study with the famous violin teacher Lin Yaoji, continuing at the affiliate primary school of Central Conservatory of Music, where he received the highest scholarship from The Affiliated primary school of Central Conservatory of Music and Hong Kong Brothers Fund. In 2011, Tian gave a solo concert in Harbin concert hall, performing 11 solo compositions and the virtuosic Vieuxtemps's Fourth Violin Concerto, with a review famous music critic, " …The topic of the city of music, the pride of the city of music, this warm night, due to Tian Yuan's wonderful string becomes more romantic, more charming." The highlight of 2012 was successful performance of the famous violin concerto "Butterfly Lovers" at the Harbin Summer Music Concert. Winner of the Outstanding Performance Award at the Schoenfeld International String Competition in 2014, Tian took part in the Central Conservatory of Music scholarship competition and won third prize (2015), and the following year, won a second prize in Hong Kong Art Festival violin competition. In July 2017, Tian was selected member of the NYO-China Youth Symphony Orchestra concert in the US Carnegie Hall and a world tour with conductor Ludovic Morlot and pianist Yujia Wang. Tian participated in the Karvendel Music Festival in the MittenWald, Germany, with many masterclasses, including Viktor Tretyakov, and in SUMMIT Music festival in New York, with many performing opportunities in festivals’ concerts. As a winner of the First Prize of the Young Talent World Festival of Performing and Visual Art 2019, he had a chance to debut with a solo performance at Carnegie Hall. Selected again by NYO-China again, he performed in Shanghai Oriental Art Center, followed by European tour in Konzerthaus Berlin that broadcast to millions via ARTE, United Kingdom’s Snape Maltings Concert Hall and Italy’s Fondazione Teatro Comunale as part of the 2019 Bolzano Festival. On this tour, he also played in piano trio at the Chinese Embassy in the UK. Tian continues his violin studies with Prof. Eduard Schmieder as recipient of a full scholarship at TEMPLE University in Philadelphia. This is his first season with iPalpiti.
Violinist/Georgia-ArmeniaBorn in Tbilisi, Georgia in 1997, Sendi studied piano up to the age of 10 and from the age of 10 has been learning the violin under the honored teacher Victoria Voskanova at Tbilisi Z.Paliashvili Central Music School for Gifted Children. During first 2 years of studying she has achieved a place among the 10 top students and frequently performed at gala concerts. In 2017, Sendi became a student of Tbilisi State Conservatory and in 2019 was principal violin and concertmaster of the Tbilisi Youth Orchestra. From the age of 16, Sendi started her private violin studio teaching students of different ages. Winner and the laureate of numerous competitions including First Prize at the American Protégé Competition in New York with invitation for a solo performance at Carnegie Hall and Georgian Republic of Musician-Performers (2019), Radio festival "Muza," the first national Eurovision competition “Eurovision Young Musicians,” second international festival “New names” and the Festival and Competition “Musika Sepashvili”, "MAKE WAY FOR THE NEW GENERATION", from 2012-2018 Sendi took part in international projects in Germany and Austria, performing in International Youth Orchestra Academy (IJOA) in Hessen, Hamburg, Selb, Bayreuth, project “Kammerton” (under Lyudmila von Berg) in Berlin, and gave recitals in Vienna and Hamburg. During June 2019, Sendi performed concerts in New York and Philadelphia, including the stages at Carnegie Hall, Baruch Performing Art Center, and solo concert in The National Opera America Performing Center. In August -September of the same year she has been chosen as a concertmaster of Mahler 2nd symphony in the opening concert of Tsinandali Festival, concluding the season as a member of "Baroque Festival" with Georgian Sinfonietta. In 2020, Sendi was accepted by the prestigious Erasmus Exchange Program and fully sponsored to attend Finland’s “Sibelius Academy”, Norway’s “Norwegian Academy of Music”, or Denmark’s “The Royal Academy of Music”; however, after being accepted into Prof. Eduard Schmieder class, she came to Philadelphia to become his student at Temple University, Boyer College of Music and Dance. This is Sendi’s first season in iPalpiti.
Violinist/KoreaBorn in 1999, Jaewon made her recital debut and solo debut with orchestra at age 11. This May, Jaewon won the Second Prize and the Special iPalpiti Prize at the George Enescu International Competition 2020-21 in Bucharest where she performed Brahms’ Violin Concerto with “George Enescu” Philharmonic Orchestra at the Romanian Athenaeum, a capital’s landmark since 1888. As a winner of the Concerto Competition at Juilliard School, Jaewon performed Prokofiev 2nd violin concerto at Lincoln Center, Alice Tully Hall. Jaewon was awarded Grand Prix and first prizes in both national and international competitions, including the KBS·KEPCO Music Competition, the Journal of Music Europe Debut Concours, the Concerto Competition at the Great Mountains International Music Festival, the Ishikawa International Music Award, Menuhin Competition 2014, Tchaikovsky Competition for young musicians, and Kloster Schöntal Competition. As a soloist, she has appeared with many orchestras including New Russia State Symphony Orchestra, Korean Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra, Suwon Philharmonic Orchestra, Seong-Nam Philharmonic. Orchestra, Busan Philharmonic Orchestra, and many others. Graduate of the Juilliard’s Master of Music Degree program under the tutelage of Ronald Copes, from the fall of 2021 Jaewon will continue in a graduate diploma program on the Dean's scholarship at the New England Conservatory with Donald Weilerstein. She received her bachelor’s degree from Korea National University of Arts, where she studied with Nam Yun Kim, Koichiro Harada, and Takashi Shimizu, and graduated with the president’s and highest performance awards. She attended Aspen Music Festival (as a violin fellowship), Ishikawa International Music Academy, Great Mountains International Music Festival, Busan International Music Festival, and Friends International Violin Academy where she had masterclasses with many great musicians such as Pinchas Zukerman, Midori Goto, Stefan Jackiw, Dong-Suk Kang, Mihaela Martin, and Sylvia Rosenberg. After iPalpiti, Jaewon will travel to the Palermo Classica Festival 2021 in Italy as an artist to perform Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E minor with the Festival Orchestra and will in several chamber concerts.
Xuan Shirley Yao
Xuan Shirley Yao
Violinist/ChinaXuan Yao began to learn violin at age four, studying from 2004-2010 with Weijian Tang in the middle school of the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. While in Beijing, Xuan was actively performing as soloist, in string quartet, piano trio and was an assistant concertmaster of Chinese Youth Symphony Orchestra. In 2010, Xuan was accepted to Temple University in Philadelphia on a full scholarship to study with Professor Eduard Schmieder in his select international violin class at Boyer College in the Center of Performing Arts, receiving Bachelor degree in 2015 and Master degree in 2017. A recipient of the Garrigues Scholarship, Xuan currently is DMA student at Temple University, where she is a teaching assistant in Prof. Schmieder studio. While in Philadelphia, she performs actively as a chamber musician and in Symphony in C. Xuan is a prize-winner of national competitions in her native China including First Prize of Hunan Province Soloist Competition in 2002, First Prize of Chinese Junior New Artist competition, and Grand Prize of Changsha Soloist competition (2003). In USA, she received 2nd prize in Pi Kappa Lambda Competition in 2017 and was a First Prize winner of Young Talents World Festival of Performing Arts in 2018. Xuan performs in numerous international music festivals, including Mozarteum Salzburg and Summit Music Festival in New York. This is her second season with iPalpiti.
Violinist/VenezuelaBorn in Carupano, Sucre State, Venezuela in 1993, Diego began his training as a musician at 5 years old. At ten he began musical studies in Caracas Simon Bolivar Conservatory with Professor Eddy Marcano, Efrain Lara and continued at the School of Music Mozarteum Caracas, with teacher Richard Biaggini. He was part of the Youth Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, conducted by Maestro Gustavo Dudamel and in the concert conducted by the Director of the Orchestra of Berlin, Sir Simon Rattle. He received his bachelor degree in Juan N Corpas University, in Bogotá, Colombia, followed by an Artist Diploma and a Performance Certificate at the Richard Wagner Conservatory in Vienna and the University of Kansas, respectively. In 2021, Diego graduated from the University of Kansas where he was working on his Master’s degree with the violin professor David Colwell. Diego took part in numerous festivals including the seminar on advanced technical development of violin in Merida, 2007-2008, summer courses with the professor Yuval Yaron in Santa Barbara, California, and master classes with such violinists as Kristof Barati, and Daniel Austrich (iPalpiti alumnus). Diego has played several times with the National Symphony of Colombia and he was featured in the Documentary Film Foundation Orchestras of Venezuela "Tocar y Luchar." This is his first season with iPalpiti.
Violist/USAViolist Julia Clancy is currently based in Northwest Louisiana where she is on faculty at the Academy of Fine Arts at FBC Shreveport. Before pandemic Julia worked in the Staatskapelle Berlin under the direction of Daniel Barenboim. She performs regularly with the West Eastern Divan Orchestra, the Boulez Ensemble, Konzerthaus chamber orchestra, Sinfonie Orchester Berlin, and the Gstaad Festival Orchestra and has been a principal violist in Krzysztof Penderecki’s festival orchestra, Britten-Pears Orchestra, Yale Philharmonia, Sarasota Festival Orchestra, CityMusic Cleveland, Moritzburg Festival Orchestra, and Lorin Maazel’s Castleton Orchestra. As a member of Aldeburgh Strings, Julia performs regularly in London and Snape, England, and has collaborated with the ensemble in two albums for Linn Records. She can also be heard in the iPalpiti album, “Life Cycles” by BCM+D records. As an educator, she has taught or assisted in teaching music theory, history, writing, and viola performance at both the Cleveland Institute of Music and Yale School of Music. She is currently an associate faculty member of the Encore Chamber Music Institute and teaches at the Moabit Musikschule. As a writer, Ms. Clancy was a guest columnist for the Case Western Observer, and was regularly published by the Yale School of Music as a program annotator. Her early musical education began at the Juilliard Pre-College program where she studied with Heidi Castleman. She graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in medical anthropology from Case Western Reserve University and with a Bachelor of Music with honors from the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied with Jeffrey Irvine, Lynne Ramsey and Robert Vernon. Julia received her MM and is currently pursuing her DMA from Yale University, where she was a two-time winner of the Georgina Lucy Grosvenor Memorial Prize. Julia joined iPalpiti in 2016
Violinist-violist/USABorn in Oakland, California, Joseph began his violin studies at the age of five. He has studied with Yayoi Numazawa of the Philadelphia Orchestra, James Lyon and Max Zorin of The Pennsylvania State University, and Eduard Schmieder of Temple University. A graduate of the Pennsylvania State University in 2008 with a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance, he was honored to receive the Creative Achievement Award, given to only one exceptional student. Winner of many competitions in Pennsylvania, Joseph received first prize in the PSU Philharmonic Concerto Competition performing the Sibelius Violin Concerto (2008). He returns to State College every summer for the Penn’s Woods Music Festival under the direction of Maestro Gerardo Edelstein. Kauffman founded and performed with the “Valens” Piano Quartet, which received First Prize in the MTNA Chamber Music Competition. Most recently, Kauffman (along with his iPalpiti colleague, cellist Yoni Draiblate) founded a chamber music concert series in Wayne, Pennsylvania, a Philadelphia suburb. As a chamber musician – both as violinist and violist - Kauffman was featured live on classical radio in Los Angeles and Philadelphia. In 2008, Kauffman was accepted into the international class of Prof. Eduard Schmieder in the Master’s Degree program at Temple University, which he completed in 2011, with distinction and received the Albert Tashjian Prize for excellence in performance. He frequently served as concertmaster for the TU Symphony Orchestra and TU Opera Theater. In 2010, Kauffman was selected to join the acclaimed iPalpiti orchestral ensemble of international musicians, and has been a dedicated orchestra manager during the festivals. He has performed on major concert stages including Disney Hall, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, the Kimmel Center, and the Kennedy Center, among others. He has participated in master classes with world-class soloists and ensembles, including Jaime Laredo, Philip Setzer, Martin Chalifour, the Shanghai, Emerson, the American, the Tokyo quartets, and many others. Currently, Joseph is in the DMA program at Temple University, where he is also an adjunct faculty member. He teaches a talented class of students at the NBS School, maintains a thriving private violin studio, and leads an active performance career. Together with iPalpiti alumnus and cellist Yoni Draiblate, he founded the MUSIC TRANSFORMS concert series in Philadelphia.
Violist/TurkeyBorn in 1987 in Ankara, Turkey, Can is a principal violist of the Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra. His M.A. in Viola is from the Lausanne Conservatory (Bruno Pasquier’s class) and his B.M. in Viola is from the Bilkent University Faculty of Music and Performing Arts, where he was awarded a full scholarship. He also attended master classes of James Creitz, Rusen Gunes, and Tatiana Masurenko at the Ayvalik International Music Academy. Can joined the Bilkent Youth Symphony Orchestra in 2001 and was its Principal Viola from 2005 to 2008. Other leading positions were at Bilkent Youth Virtuosos (2006-2008), touring Turkey and Germany as Co-Principal with the World Youth Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Damiano Guiranna (2007), and as Principal Viola in the Greek-Turkish Youth Orchestra, conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy (Summer 2008). In 2009, Can became a member of the Camerata de Lausanne under the leadership of Pierre Amoyal. He has performed in many chamber music and solo concerts all over the world including Turkey, Switzerland, France, Russia, Singapore, Greece, Germany, and Cyprus and has participated in festivals such as the Cannes Festival, the Montebello Festival, the Saint-Riquier Festival, the International Students Chamber Music Festival in Stuttgart, the Youth Composers and Youth Performers, World Music Day, the Festival of Castle of Ankara, and VEKAM Art Festival. He has also performed at television and radio broadcasts on Mezzo, Radio Suisse Romande (La Tribune des Jeunes Musiciens) and Turkish National Television and Radio. Member of iPalpiti since 2011.
Violist/ChinaZi Wang was born in Shanghai and started to learn the violin at the age of four. He attended Szechuan Conservatory of Music with Professor Kaixiang Li and at the High School for Gifted Children of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music with Professor Mengla Huang. During 2016 -2018 seasons he was selected to work in violin section of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra and Shanghai Opera Orchestra, and performed with the Zurich Youth Symphony Orchestra. He participated in various music festivals, including Summit Summer Music Academy in New York. In 2018, Zigmund was accepted into Professor Schmieder international violin class at the Boyer College of Music at Temple University where he is currently working toward his Bachelor’s Degree. As the first prize winner of the 2019 World Youth Talent Festival, he performed solo at the Carnegie Hall in New York in the 2020 season. Zigmund’s father is a well-known luthier in China, and for this iPalpiti season, he will be playing viola made by his father. This is his first season with iPalpiti.
Cellist/RussiaRussian-born cellist, Egor Antonenko has distinguished himself as a versatile soloist, chamber musician and orchestral player. Making his solo debut at the age of eight with the Kaliningrad Chamber Orchestra, he continued to perform with many of the prestigious Eastern European orchestras including the Moscow and Ryazan chamber orchestras, and the Petrozavodsk, Yaroslavi and Volograd Symphonies. Egor has made his American orchestral solo debut at the Longy School of Music performing the Dvorak Cello Concerto with Bard College Symphony, and most recently, performed Tchaikovsky's Rococo Variations with the Syracuse University Symphony Orchestra. As a soloist, Egor has performed under the baton of Marius Stravinsky, Leon Botstein, Miguel Etchegoncelay, Gil Rose, Benjamin Zander, Terry King amongst many others. A prize winner in numerous competitions including the International Competition of Moscow’s Young Musicians “Rising Stars”, the 18th “Citi di Barletta” Italian International Young Artist Competition, and “Gradus ad Parnassum” of Lithuania 2nd International competition, he has collaborated in performances with Shanghai and Hausmann String Quartets, William Preucil, the Newport and Lyrica chamber music festivals and the International Music Festival of St. Marks. Egor received diplomas from the Moscow State Conservatory and Central Music School as a student of Maria Zhuravleva, an undergraduate diploma in cello performance at Longy School of Music of Bard College as a student of Dr. Terry King and currently continues at the Setnor School of Music at Syracuse University as Teaching Assistant to his mentor Dr. King. In 2016, Egor toured more than 30 countries, performing over two hundred chamber music concerts through a partnership of the Lincoln Center Stage and the Holland America Line. He also participated in a live performance collaboration between BBC Earth and Holland America Line for a documentary series known as “Frozen Planet Live”. Currently, Egor is a member of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra under maestro Benjamin Zander, as well as principal cellist of Lyrica Chamber Orchestra and has participated as acting principal cellist with Boston Modern Orchestra Project. This is his second season with iPalpiti. Egor joined iPalpiti in 2019.
Cellist/PolandWinner of the awards in a number of competitions, home as well as abroad, including the International Dotzauer Competition in Dresden, the International String Instruments Competition “Talents for Europe”, the Kazimierz Wiłkomirski International Youth Cello Competition in Poznań, Gustaw graduated the Zenon Brzewski Secondary Music School, and from 2018 continues his studies at the Leopold Mozart Centre of the Augsburg University in the class of Prof. Julius Berger and Prof. Hyun-Jung Berger. He also has taken part in master courses run by outstanding professors from all around the world. So far, he has performed with suc orchestras as: The Orchestra of the Foundation for Early Music, under Paweł Osuchowski, The Polish Orchestra Sinfonia Iuventus under Mirosław Jacek Błaszczyk, The Slovak Sinfonietta Zilina State Chamber Orchestra under Serhiy Khorovets, and the Polish Radio Chamber Orchestra „AMADEUS” under Anna Duczmal-Mróz. He has participated in many concerts, in Poland as well as abroad, including the concert hall of the National Philharmonic in Warsaw, the Ballroom of the Royal Castle in Warsaw, Sinfonia Varsovia orchestra in Warsaw, the Auditorium Maximum of the Warsaw University, the Presidential Palace in Warsaw, and the Concert Hall of the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing as well as the Concert Hall of the Forbidden City (Beijing). Gustaw has been recipient of grants from the National Fund for Children, the Foundation of the Sinfonia Varsovia Orchestra, and the Swiss Foundation ‘Kunst ohne Grenze’. From May 2018, Gustaw Bafeltowski is a Young Artist of the Scandinavian Cello School under the guidance of Prof. Jacob Shaw (iPalpiti alumnus) and in June 2021 was selected into “Yehudi Menuhin Society Live Music Now!” (Augsburg). This is his first season with iPalpiti.
Cellist/USAJosephina You-Kyung Kim performs internationally as a soloist, chamber and orchestral musician. Among numerous international competitions prizes, she received top winner prize at the prestigious Heida Hermann’s International Competition, the same contest that launched the cello careers of Amit Peled and Rajan Krishnaswami. As a recipient of a full scholarship award, Josephina attended the esteemed Juilliard Pre-College, where, as a winner of the concerto competition she performed the Korngold Cello Concerto with the Juilliard Orchestra at Lincoln Center. At age 15, she was invited to play solo recital at the Carnegie Hall. Ms. Kim graduated with an undergraduate diploma from the Longy School of Music of Bard College as a student of Dr. Terry King, where she won all of the institution’s top honors; most notably a concerto performance at Harvard University’s Sanders Theater under the direction of Leon Botstein, performing Elgar Cello Concerto. A core member of Lyrica Chamber Music, Ms. Kim has performed numerous performances with Lyrica, ArtsAhimsa and the Yale Cellos and Philharmonic Orchestra at Woolsey, Sprague, Carnegie, Lincoln Center, Pickman, Sanders Theater, and Boston’s Symphony halls. Josephina received Master of Music at the Yale School of Music, and currently is at New England Conservatory in the studio of Laurence Lesser. Ms. Kim has been honored to play for cello luminaries, Yo-Yo Ma, Aldo Parisot, Ralph Kirshbaum, Sol Gabetta and Matt Haimovitz, Laurence Lesser. Ms. Kim is currently Co-Principal Cellist of the Lyrica Chamber Orchestra. This is her first season with iPalpiti.
Cellist/Hungary-USABorn in Budapest, Hungary, Laszlo gained national recognition as one of the top musicians of his generation when he won First Prize in the “Kertész Ottó Memorial Competition” at 18. Since then, he has won numerous other competitions which have brought him international recognition including the Fourth Prize in the “Antonio Janigro Junior International Competition” in 1998, Second Prize in the “International Dávid Popper Competition for Young Cellists” in 2000, the Special Prize in the “International Dávid Popper Cello Competition” in 2004, and First Prize in the “Ima Hogg International Competition” in 2008. Mr. Mezo has forged a career as a soloist, recitalist, master teacher, and chamber musician. He has performed extensively in Europe, Asia, and North and South America. Mr. Mezo is currently an adjunct professor in cello at Chapman University and Saddleback College in California, and he was Assistant Teacher at the University of Southern California between 2007 and 2008. Laszlo has also conducted master classes in Japan, Brazil, Italy, Switzerland, Hungary, and the United States. As a soloist with orchestras, Laszlo has performed with maestros Ádám Fischer, Thomas Wilkins, Grant Llewellyn, Zsolt Hamar. As a chamber musician, he has collaborated in recitals with pianists Kevin Fitz-Gerald, Steven Vanhauwaert, Gábor Farkas, Márta Gulyás, Piotr Folkert, and Balázs Szokolay, violinist Kristóf Baráti, cellist Philipp Muller, and the Bartók Quartet. He has also played under the direction of Zubin Mehta and Kent Nagano as a member of the Bayerische Staatsorchester in Munich, Germany. Laszlo holds two master's degrees from the Liszt Ferenc University of Music in Budapest and the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München, and also graduated from the class of Ralph Kirshbaum at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Currently residing in Los Angeles, California, Laszlo is a member of the Pacific Symphony Orchestra, is a sought after soloist, and an active studio musician in Hollywood. He has played in many film scores, some most updated blockbusters include Ice Age, Life of Pi, Wolverine, and The Lone Ranger. His first CD recording of Dávid Popper’s works, on the Hungaroton label, includes several first time ever recordings of the master’s cello works. He recently finished his second CD, “Made in Paris,” with romantic cello pieces from the 19th century also featuring world premiere works by cellist-composer Daniel Van Goens, and pieces from the Suite Populaire Espagnole by Manuel De Falla. Laszlo joined iPalpiti first in 2008; his brother, violinist Peter Mezo, participated in iPalpiti Los Angeles & Salzburg tours in 2017, and we are happy to welcome Laszlo again.
Bassist/USAJustin Smith is an aspiring double bassist from Smithtown, NY with a goal to a professional career as an orchestral musician. He began playing the double bass at age 8, continuing his studies at The Juilliard School pre-college division, later to receive his Bachelor of Music from Juilliard, and now is a second-year master’s student in The Juilliard College Division, working with Professor Eugene Levinson. Justin studied at Juilliard as a recipient of the Ann S. Alderman & Harold Alderman Scholarship, Homer & Constance Mensch, and Jim Wargowsky Scholarships. Since acceptance into the College Division at Juilliard, Justin was offered a mentoring position in the Juilliard Pre-College Orchestra, where he continues to mentor and teach Pre-College students today. Outside of Juilliard, Justin has worked with Nassau Pops, Gilbert & Sullivan Light Opera Company of Long Island, and is currently the general manager and music director for the School of Rock in Port Jefferson. Justin was invited to iPalpiti by Maestro Schmieder in 2018, after working with him at the Summit Music Festival in New York. During his seasons at SMF chamber orchestra, Justin also served as the Residential Advisor and Artistic Coordinator for the festival, where was granted a full scholarship. Justin is a laureate of numerous competitions, including the Bottesini International Competition in Italy in 2017, and in the same year he was a winner of the Camerata Artists International Competition where he gave a solo recital in Merkin Hall, New York. This is his fourth season with iPalpiti.
Pianist/Italy-USAAs a soloist as chamber musician, Jacopo has performed at major festival and venues throughout the U.S. and Europe. He is a winner of 14 international competitions including the International Piano Competition San Dona` di Piave, Ibiza International Piano Competition, International Liszt Competition in Los Angeles, and the Beverly Hills National Auditions. Jacopo has taught at the Conservatory of Verona E.F. Dall’Abaco, worked as collaborative pianist at the Royal Conservatoire of Brussels, has been performing regularly in collaborative duos with international instrumentalists, and, most recently, formed Solo Due with pianist Konstantin Soukhovetski with a premiere at the Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center Protostar Series in the fall of 2021. Born in Italy to a family of pianists, Jacopo studied in Weimar at the Liszt Hochschule, earned his first Master`s Degree in Piano performance, Master`s in Sound Design (with Mauro Graziani) at the Conservatory of Verona in 2012, obtained his Diploma at the International Piano Academy of Imola Incontri col Maestro with Leonid Margarius, and completed his studies in Piano Performance from University of Southern California (2016) with Kevin Fitz-Gerald. After attending the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, Jacopo found himself embraced by this loving community and makes Santa Barbara his home, surfing at sunrise before heading to his piano. Verona is still his home as he continues his international career. His most recent musical engagements take him every year to Harmos Festival in Portugal, iPalpiti festival in Los Angeles, Pianofest in the Hamptons and at the Maui Chamber Music Festival in Hawaii. He has been invited to serve on competition juries and to give presentations, masterclasses and concerts throughout the world. Jacopo was selected as an iPalpiti artist for the 2016 iPalpiti Festival of international laureates in Los Angeles and since, has been an active member as a musician as well as great web and graphic design staff. He is also a talented photographer and film maker.
Critics around the world say
“iPalpiti provides polish for talented young professional musicians from around the world.”
Los Angeles Times
“…a fitting name for the vibrant string orchestra from which the conductor Eduard Schmieder elicited a lively pulse…the ensemble was particularly noteworthy for its unity of purpose and blend. It was as if the musicians’ hearts were beating to the same buoyant rhythm…lustrous, polished tone and graceful phrasing.”
New York Times
“…rich sonorities [of iPalpiti] audibly took the audience’s breath away – especially whenever concertmaster Peter Rainer, whose technically immaculate tone throughout the night was sweet and thrilling, had a few bars to play – showed that iPalpiti had charms to soothe a hall well filled with music lovers of all ages.”
“This was an invigorating world-class performance by young players with technique to burn and a palpable desire to live every note.”
Los Angeles Times
“…the highlight of this astonishing musical odyssey was the sold-out performance at Disney Hall with elegant Maestro Eduard Schmieder at the helm, conducting this world-class group with a brilliant sense of balance, tension and phrasing.”
Beverly Hills Outlook
“…The musicians played with vivid unanimity and committment… The playing was masterly…”
Los Angeles Times
“iPalpiti played with striking unity and spirit and had an infectious way of making music…All [artists] clearly stimulated each other musically, showing mutual inspiration and respect.”
The Strad Magazine
“…cool display of virtuosity… unified to an often a startling degree…”
Los Angeles Times
“[iPalpiti] performance can be called righteously overwhelming…”
Noord Holland Dagblad
“Exhilaration, thrills, and awe conquer audiences…. These are the stock and trade of Young [iPalpiti] Artists International.”
Los Angeles Times
“When one hears these musicians play, one realizes there is a connection between the title and the musical outcome…when it comes to 24 very talented string players (some have independent successful careers) and a conductor who leads them with great musicality, the result is naturally captivating and exciting.”
Ora Binur, Ma’ariv Daily, Jerusalem
“…an astounding demonstration of seamless and beauteous string playing… memorable, luminous, deeply moving performance…”
Los Angeles Times