Finchley Chamber Orchestra

Finchley Chamber Orchestra
Soloists engaged to appear in 2015-2016

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Ariana Kashefi
Schumann: Cello Concerto
21st May 2016

Ariana Kashefi

British cellist Ariana Kashefi, of Persian descent, has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in most major venues around London including Wigmore Hall, the Royal Festival Hall and the Royal Albert Hall. Born in 1991, she studied at the Junior Department of the Royal Academy of Music with Robert Max and went on to study at the Royal College of Music as an Amaryllis Scholar with Melissa Phelps. At the College she has been principal cello in all the major orchestras, working with great conductors such as Bernard Haitink, and won the Cello prize in her first year.

Through competitive live audition Ariana was selected to take part in the London Symphony Orchestra string experience scheme for 2013, which led to many concerts with the orchestra. She was also one of the winners of the 2013 Making Music Awards for Young Concert Artists, leading to many professional engagements around England, and is currently the recipient of the prestigious Royal Philharmonic Society’s Julius Isserlis Scholarship for instrumental studies abroad. Ariana is currently studying for her Masters degree at the ‘Hanns Eisler’ Hochschule für Musik in Berlin with Professor Claudio Bohórquez. After her first semester there she was chosen to perform in the ‘excellence concert’ for exceptional students. In 2015 Ariana was selected as a Park Lane Group Young Artist and appeared as a soloist on BBC Radio 3's programme, ‘In Tune’.

Ariana has participated in many festivals and courses including Encuentro de Musica y Academia Santander (Spain), Le Domaine Forget (Canada), Bad Leonfelden (Austria), Mendelssohn on Mull (Scotland), the Scottish International Cello Festival, IMS masterclasses Prussia Cove (Cornwall), Cervo Summer Academy (Italy), Musicworks (England) and the Lake District summer festival. She has worked with many great artists including Frans Helmerson, Natalia Shakhovskaya, Johannes Goritzki, Ivan Monighetti, Menahem Pressler, Noboko Imai, Thomas Riebl, members of the London Haydn Quartet and the Chilingirian Quartet.

Ariana is grateful for the help and support of the Emanuel Hurwitz Chamber Music Trust and the Tillett Trust.

Anny Chen
Tchaikovsky: Violin Concerto
14th November 2015

Anny Chen

Anny Chen is a Taiwanese violinist currently studying at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater, Hamburg, in the class of Professor Tanja Becker-Bender. She started her musical education at the age of four and soon afterwards began winning prizes at the Kiwanis Music Festival of Vancouver. She then received a full scholarship to attend the Purcell School for Young Musicians in London, where she studied until 2012 under the guidance of Evgene Grach, before studying at the Royal College of Music with Dr. Felix Andrievsky as the recipient of the prestigious ABRSM award from 2012 to 2015. Between 2010 and 2014, Anny was also an active participant in the Perlman Music Program in New York, where every school holiday a select group of talented students from around the world has private lessons, chamber music and orchestral coaching with Itzhak Perlman.

In 2001, at the age of six, Anny won 3rd Prize at the Canadian Musical Competition (CMC), where she was the youngest participant. Since then she has had successes at numerous international competitions including the title of Laureate and Further Studies Award at the Kloster Schöntal International Violin Competition, Germany (2011), and First Prize and prize for Best Performance of a Concerto at the ‘Violin of the North’ International Competition, Russia (2009). Also in 2009, Anny was the Second Prize winner at the Rickmansworth Young Musician of the Year competition; and earlier this year she won First Prize in the D’Addario String Competition in London. Anny was also invited to participate in the 12th International Sarasate Competition in Navarra, Spain, this year and was amongst the semi-finalists.

As a soloist, Anny has given performances in series at prestigious venues such as Wigmore Hall, LSO St. Luke’s, St Martin in the Fields and the Leeds International Concert Series. She made her concerto debut in 2006 at the Acadèmia Internacional de Música de Solsona where she played the Bach A minor Concerto with the AIMS Chamber Orchestra, led by Leon Spierer (former first concertmeister of the Berlin Philharmonic). She then performed with them again the following year, playing the Bach Double Violin Concerto in D minor. In 2007 and 2008 Anny was invited to perform the Bruch and Mendelssohn violin concertos with the Regent Orchestra in Aylesbury and in 2013 she performed ‘La Folia’ by Corelli with the New Virtuosi Chamber Orchestra. In 2012, Anny was selected to lead the Purcell Symphony Orchestra in its 50th Anniversary Celebration Concert at the Royal Festival Hall and her solos in Holst’s ‘The Planets’ received special praise in a review by The Guardian. Recently she has performed 'The Lark Ascending’ by Vaughan Williams with the St. Peter's Chamber Orchestra, Oxford as well as Lalo’s ‘Symphonie Espagnol’ with the Cambridge Graduates’ Orchestra. Anny is also a keen chamber musician and has performed movements from the Brahms G minor Piano Quartet and Schubert’s Trout Quintet at the Wigmore Hall in 2010 and 2012.

She now plays on a 1735 Dom Nicolo Amati violin kindly loaned by the Chi Mei Foundation in Taiwan.

Finchley Chamber Orchestra
Soloists who have performed with us in previous seasons

Nicole Frances Galtié
Favourite arias by Puccini, Verdi & Wagner
11th July 2015

Nicole Frances Galtié

Originally from ‘the other side of the pond’, Ms Galtié attended conservatoire at SUNY (State University of New York) Purchase, studying vocal performance, composition, conducting and languages. Prior to undertaking classical music studies, she was the youngest student to attend The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA), where she honed her skills in acting, dance and improvisation.

Performing as mezzo in the earlier part of her opera career, Nicole was heard on both sides of the Atlantic in such roles as Dorabella (Così fan tutte), Komponist (Ariadne auf Naxos), Second Lady (The Magic Flute) and Nicklausse (Les contes d’Hoffmann). As a concert soloist, frequently under the baton of Dr John Schuder, she performed a broad range of orchestral and choral works, including the Requiems of Mozart and Duruflé, Bach’s Magnificat, Britten’s Ceremony of Carols and Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater alongside Metropolitan Opera soprano Gale Limansky to rave reviews.

Since relocating to the UK, Nicole has undertaken further studies and has begun to transition into the soprano repertoire. She has focused on concert and recital work, including appearing as ‘The Goddess Britannia’ in a performance commemorating the 175th anniversary of Westminster University, lieder recitals and in 2012, made her London operatic debut as Desdemona in Verdi’s Otello with Southgate Opera.

A North London resident and now a British citizen, Nicole recently graduated from the University of Westminster with a degree in pharmacology and physiology, followed by post-graduate research in molecular psychiatry at UCL. She continues her operatic studies with internationally acclaimed Scottish soprano Marie McLaughlin. When not singing, teaching voice, or teaching yoga, Nicole has been known to combine science, opera and comedy for science festivals and events such as Cheltenham Science Festival, Science Burlesque, Science Showoff and UCL’s Bright Club.

Last year, Nicole joined Finchley Chamber Orchestra in Wagner’s Wesendonck Lieder and we are delighted to welcome her back for our ‘Gala Night at the Opera’.

Asagi Nakata
Schumann: Piano Concerto
16th May 2015 (Muswell Hill URC)

Asagi Nakata

Asagi Nakata was born in Japan in 1995 and began piano lessons at the age of three. She has studied with Ian Jones and Benjamin Kaplan, and she is currently studying with Tatiana Sarkissova at the Royal Academy of Music.

Asagi has won many prizes in her short but remarkable career. In 2005 she won First Prize in the EPTA Belgian International Competition and returned the following year to give a concert. In 2008, still aged only 12, she performed Mozart’s Concerto in A (K.488) with the Southbank Sinfonia conducted by Simon Over and, in the same year, won Third Prize in the James Mottram International Piano Competition (Category A: under 18 years) in Manchester, performing the same work with the Royal Northern College of Music Symphony Orchestra. In 2009 she won First Prize, as well as a special award for the best interpretation of a work by Franz Liszt, at the Second International Franz Liszt Competition for Young Pianists in Weimar, Germany; and since then she has won First Prize, as well as the Audience Prize, at the Beethoven Piano Society of Europe’s Junior Competition in London.

Asagi has performed as a soloist at major venues across the UK including the Wigmore Hall, the Bishopsgate Institute, the Blüthner Piano Centre, St Barnabas’, Ealing and St James’, Piccadilly, and in the Cadogan Hall in the presence of HRH Princess Alexandra. She has also given numerous concerts in other countries, making her Prague debut in the Dvořák Hall at the international festival Mladá Praha (Young Prague) in 2012, playing Grieg's Piano Concerto with the Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra of South Bohemia under the baton of Kleanthe Russo. She has since been invited for further concerts in Litomyšl, in the heartland of the Czech Republic, and in Litoměřice, just across the German border from Dresden. She has also given concerts across Japan and the Netherlands, as well as performing in Germany in the presence of the celebrated pianist, Alfred Brendel, and she was a guest performer at the 64th International Chopin piano festival, which took place in Poland.

This concert is to be presented in Muswell Hill United Reformed Church, in association with the 2015 North London Festival of Music, Dance and Drama. Asagi has been performing at the North London Festival since she was a little girl and in 2008 she won its most prestigious prize, the Emanuel Piano Trophy, which draws its competitors from across the UK. The Finchley Chamber Orchestra and David Lardi performed Grieg's concerto with her at this festival in 2011 and the second concerto of Saint-Saëns two years later; we are delighted to be performing with her again in this familiar setting.

Shana Douglas
Mendelssohn: Violin Concerto
7th March 2015

Shana Douglas

Shana Douglas’s recent performances include an appearance in Duke’s Hall at the Academy of Music in a Rising Stars series, a performance of both Shostakovich Piano Trios in Barbican Hall, concertos by Barber, Beethoven, Brahms, Dvořák, and Mozart with orchestras in the UK and the USA, and a recital in the Molière Hall in Lyons, France. Shana earned her Bachelors Degree in May of 2006 from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where she studied for five years as a student of Ida Kavafian and Arnold Steinhardt and was the recipient of the Harry Springman Memorial Fellowship. Following her graduation from Curtis, Shana moved to London to pursue studies with David Takeno at the Guildhall School where she spent three years as a Guildhall Artist Fellow, after first receiving her Masters Degree with Distinction in 2007.

Shana has been featured as a soloist with orchestra twice at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and has also performed a full solo recital on the prestigious Dame Myra Hess Recital Series which took place in Chicago’s Cultural Center and was broadcast live on television and radio. She has also performed alongside a distinguished line-up of violin virtuosos including Maxim Vengerov and Mark O’Connor in a benefit concert at the Apollo Theater in Harlem, New York, at the invitation of Arnold Steinhardt. An avid chamber musician, Shana has collaborated with renowned artists such as Atar Arad, James Clark, Roberto Diaz, Gil Kalish, Kim Kashkashian, Ida Kavafian, Charles Owen, and Steven Tenenbom.

Shana began her violin studies at the age of four, and her pre-college teachers included Teri Einfeldt, Brian Lewis, and Philip Setzer. She has performed in masterclasses for Shmuel Ashkenasi, Ana Chumachenco, Dorothy DeLay, Pamela Frank, Andras Keller, Cho-Liang Lin, Gyorgy Pauk, Eszter Perenyi, Gerhard Schulz, Joseph Silverstein, and Christian Tetzlaff. Shana twice attended the Ravinia Festival’s Steans Institute for Young Artists, where she studied chamber music with Miriam Fried, Paul Biss and other distinguished artists, and earned the loan of the festival’s prized Gagliano violin for two years. She studied with David Cerone and David Updegraff at the Encore School for Strings in Cleveland, Ohio for five summers, where her string quartet twice captured the festival’s only student prize, the Kay Logan Chamber Music Award. Other summer festivals that she has attended include the Sarasota and Kneisel Hall Chamber Music Festivals, and the IMS Prussia Cove masterclasses and Open Chamber Music sessions. Shana is also the Artistic Director of the Accord et a Cordes Chamber Music Festival, which takes place in the South of France every August.

In addition to fulfilling her busy solo and chamber music concert schedule, Shana frequently performs as a guest player with the top English Orchestras. She has appeared as Concertmaster of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and the English National Opera, Assistant Concertmaster of the Philharmonia Orchestra Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. She also regularly works with the London Symphony Orchestra and the Academy of St Martin-in-the-Fields.

Shana gave an acclaimed performance of Dvořák's violin concerto with Finchley Chamber Orchestra in March 2012 and we warmly welcome her return.

Miwako Miki
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3
22nd November 2014

Miwako Miki

Miwako Miki was born in Japan in 1985 and gave her first public performance in Kansas City (USA) at the age of seven. She went on to win third prize in the Chiba Piano Competition in Japan, and first prize at the Student Music Concours of Japan, which is one of the country’s biggest competitions for young musicians.

Miwako has performed throughout Japan, in the USA and in Europe. She has studied with Toshiko Katsutani, Haruko Kasama, Katsumi Ueda and Kei Ito and received guidance from Gilead Mishory, Bruno Rigutto, Vladimir Tropp, Nina Sereda, Philippe Giusiano, Michel Béroff, Nelson Goerner, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet and Simon Trpcheski.

From 2003 to 2007, Miwako went to the Mozarteum Summer Academy in Salzburg, where she studied with Professor Frank Wibaut. Having completed her undergraduate studies at the Geidai, Tokyo’s National University of Fine Arts and Music, Miwako moved to London to continue her studies privately with Professor Wibaut, and she recently obtained a Distinction in her Master’s degree at the Royal Northern College of Music under his tutelage. In 2009, she won prizes in the Norah Sande Award Piano Competition in Eastbourne and the President’s Prize Competition of the North London Festival, where she was awarded the Premier Challenge Cup; and in 2010 she won second prize in the North London Festival’s prestigious Emanuel Trophy Competition, which is open only to the top prizewinners of other UK music festivals. Soon afterwards, Miwako was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the London College of Music after giving a private recital at Fairlight Hall in Hastings. Following these successes, she has received many invitations to perform in the UK and in Japan, including broadcasting live on BBC Radio 3’s “In Tune”, and a full evening’s performance at the Bemrose Bursary Recital.

In March 2010, Miwako won first prize in the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition with a performance of Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto. As many of our audience will be aware, Finchley Chamber Orchestra has regularly hosted autumn concerts for Hastings Festival prizewinners, and in November of that year Miwako joined us in Finchley to play Liszt's First Piano Concerto. Now we are delighted to have her joining us again, this time to perform Beethoven's Third Piano Concerto.

Lisa Izumi
Brahms: Violin Concerto
17th May 2014

Lisa Izumi

Lisa Izumi was born in London and began learning the violin at the age of four. She entered Haberdashers' Aske's School for Girls, where she became a music scholar. Having joined the Junior Royal Academy of Music as their youngest student, she won First Prize in the violin section and performed with the Royal Academy Sinfonietta. In 1997 she was invited to perform in the Piccoli Mozart Festival at the Opera House in Trieste, and in 2000 she was invited to study with Professor Shimizu in Tokyo.

Lisa has gained prizes in several competitions, including second prize in the All Japan Student Music Competition and the highest prize in the All Japan Classic Music Competition. After taking a two-year leave from Tokyo University of the Arts to study with Pavel Vernikov at the Vienna Konservatorium Privatuniversitat, she returned to Tokyo, where she graduated with Honours, was awarded the Douseikai Prize, and is currently enrolled for a Master's degree. She won a Cultural Award in 2010 and 2012 and the Ganbaru Citizens award from Osaka (Matsubara prefecture).

Lisa has studied with Yumi Sasaki, Yfrah Neaman, Gerard Poulet, Takashi Shimizu, Asako Urushihara and Pavel Vernikov and has taken part in a masterclass with Volkhard Steude (concertmaster of the Vienna Philharmonic) to critical acclaim. She was selected by Maxim Vengerov to take part in the 14th Wieniawski International Violin Competition, where she was praised for the beauty of her tone. Most recently, in 2013, she was selected to become a student of violinist Julian Rachlin, her performance at the final recital gaining the highest mark from every jury member. Lisa's most recent performance in the UK was a recital at St James's, Piccadilly, where she and pianist Daniel King Smith gave impressive accounts of challenging works by Schumann, Symanowski and Ysaye.

Tae-Hyung Kim
Rachmaninov: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini
23rd November 2013

Tae-Hyung Kim

Tae-Hyung Kim graduated summa cum laude from the Seoul Arts High School, and studied with Professor Choong-Mo Kang at the Korean National University of Arts. He then completed Masters programmes in performance (with Elisso Virsaladze) and song accompaniment (with Helmut Deutsch) at the Munich Hochschule für Musik und Theater, and studied at the Tchaikovsky Moscow State Conservatory, again with Elisso Virsaladze.

Tae-Hyung Kim has performed with leading orchestras in South Korea, including the Korean Symphony Orchestra, Korean Chamber Orchestra and Bucheon Philharmonic. When he made his international debut in 2004 he was the first Korean to win first prize at the City of Porto International Piano Competition, as well as the Best Interpretation Prize for a Beethoven Sonata. In the same year, he won second prize in the Jeunesses Musicales International Piano Competition and awards in other prestigious competitions. These accolades led to engagements with international orchestras such as the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, National Orchestra of Belgium, Orchestre National de France, Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, Bulgarian National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra and Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra. His solo debut was at the Kumho Prodigy Concert in 2000, and he has performed in famous concert halls including the Salle Pleyel, Paris, the Gewandhaus, Leipzig, the Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, the Handelsbeurs, Gent, the Concertgebouw, Bruges, the Dom Muziki, Moscow, and the Philharmonie, St. Petersburg. He has shown a deep commitment to chamber music and in 2011, at the invitation of the Korea Foundation, went on tour in Costa Rica, El Salvador, and Panama to give performances in that genre.

In 2010 Tae-Hyung Kim was a prizewinner at the Queen Elisabeth International Music Competition in Belgium, one of the world’s top three major piano contests; and earlier this year he won both first prize and audience prize at the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition, to which tonight’s concert is directly linked. Recognized by world-renowned pianist Kun-Woo Paik as “a young pianist who knows how to interpret an entire piece”, he has now begun to develop his performing career in England and continental Europe. He has already given several recitals in Belgium, and has recently been signed by the SMOLART Concert Agency in Russia.

Sulki Yu
Barber: Violin Concerto
9th March 2013

Sulki Yu

Violinist Sulki Yu has just completed her studies with Augustin Dumay at the Chapelle Musicale Reine Elizabeth in Belgium, having graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama under David Takeno. Sulki enjoys playing both concertos and chamber music and is a keen advocate of contemporary music, which has led to several works being written for her including Edwin Roxburgh’s Soliloquy 3.

Laureate of the Yehudi Menuhin and Szigeti Hubay International Violin competitions, Sulki has been soloist with many prestigious orchestras including the Royal Flemish Philharmonic, Orchestre Nationale de Lille, Budapest Symphony, Moscow State Academic Symphony, Royal Wallonie Chamber and Amadeus Chamber Orchestras, collaborating with Mark Gorenstein, Joji Hattor, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Philippe Herreweghe.

A passionate chamber musician, Sulki has played as part of the Spring Chamber Music Festival in Seoul and her partners have included Gordon Nikoloc, Lawrence Power, Charles Neidich and Antonio Meneses amongst others. Sulki has performed in the USA, Europe and Asia in prestigious venues including the Royal Festival Hall, Wigmore Hall, Barbican, UNESCO Centre Paris, Carnegie Hall, New York and Seoul Arts Centre.

In 2009, along with cellist Pei-Jee Ng and pianist Chiao-Ying Chang she formed the Fournier Trio. In 2011 the Trio won 2nd prize and audience prize at the Trondheim International Chamber Music Competition and made their Purcell Room and Wigmore Hall debuts. They are currently artists in residence at Wolfson College, Oxford and have numerous 2012-13 Festival appearances lined up.

Eugenio Catone
Schumann: Piano Concerto in A minor
24th November 2012

Eugenio Catone

Eugenio Catone (26) was born in Naples, Italy. A pupil of the pianists Annamaria Pennella and Gabriella Olino, he graduated with top marks and a special mention from the Martucci Conservatory in Salerno and took lessons from Paul Badura-Skoda, Daniel Rivera and Bruno Canino (Scuola di Musica di Fiesole). He also studied at the Sweelink Conservatory of Amsterdam with Matthijs Verschoor and with the pianist Sonia Pahor (Scuola di Musica ‘Sinfonia’ – Lucca) and has participated in Master Classes held by Sergio Perticaroli (Santa Cecilia Academy), Orazio Maione, Antonio Pompa-Baldi, Claudia Schellenberger and Alain Meunier (for chamber music).

Eugenio has received awards in many national and international competitions, including first prize in the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition 2012; semi-finalist and special prize for the best performance of Ettore Pozzoli's studies in the Pozzoli International Piano Competition in Seregno; ‘Albano’ prize for the youngest finalist at the Arcangelo Speranza International Piano Competition 2012 in Taranto and first prize (‘Cepu’ Trophy) in the Nuovi Orizzonti Competition in Arezzo. He recently also won the first prize in the historical piano category of the ‘Chopin Golden Ring’ Competition in Ptuj (Slovenia), and was among the pianists selected to take part in the preliminary round at the Chopin Competition at the Warsaw Philharmonic in 2010.

He plays in a duo with the saxophonist Domenico Luciano (Duo Agorà), a combination which has been winning plaudits and prizes – first prize ‘Rospigliosi’ in Pistoia (with audience prize); ‘Hyperion’ in Ciampino; ‘Euterpe’ in Bari (Euterpe Cup and critics' prize); ‘Anemos Arts’ in Rome, V. Martina Massafra (TA), second prize ‘Rovere d'Oro’ in San Bartolomeo al Mare (IM); semi-finalists at the ‘Terem’ Crossover Competition in St. Petersburg; and second prize at the 2012 ‘TIM’ Competition in Paris.

Eugenio’s first CD (Temi & Variazioni – Estonia Pianos Netherlands) was awarded the ‘New Careers 2010’ prize by the Italian Comitate for Music. He has recorded three CDs as soloist and one with Duo Agorà which will be released this winter.

Eugenio Catone has broadcast for Radio Vaticana and Radio Slovenjia, and has performed under the batons of Marco Vanni, Francesco Pasqualetti and David Lardi with Sonora Sax, l’Orchestra Giovanile Universitaria and Finchley Chamber Orchestra. He gives recitals both as soloist and chamber musician in many European countries including Poland, France, Spain, UK, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, Croatia and the Netherlands and has been selected to take part in various festivals in Italy and abroad.

Philip Cobb
Hummel: Trumpet Concerto
26th May 2012

Philip Cobb

As a youngster, Philip Cobb regularly featured as a soloist on both the cornet and the trumpet, throughout the UK and abroad, alongside his brother Matthew and their father Stephen. It is tempting to suggest that he was born to the role, both his father and grandfather having previously occupied the Principal Cornet position in The Salvation Army’s International Staff Band.

In 2009, while still only 21 years of age, Philip was appointed as Joint Principal Trumpet of the London Symphony Orchestra, having just graduated from Guildhall School of Music and Drama where he had studied with Paul Beniston and Alison Balsom, winning the award for Most Promising Performer in the 2006 Maurice André International Trumpet Competition. He was also awarded the 'Candide Award' at the LSO's Brass Academy in 2008, and has been involved in the LSO's ‘On Track’ programme working with talented young musicians from East London boroughs.

Philip has played as soloist with the Guildhall Symphony Orchestra under Vasily Petrenko, played concertos with the Guildhall Brass Band and Symphonic Wind Ensemble and is part of the quintet Barbican Brass.

In 2007, Philip released his debut solo CD, Life Abundant, with the Cory Band and Ben Horden on organ.

Jessica Zhu
Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 20, K. 466
19th November 2011

Jessica Zhu

Jessica Zhu completed her undergraduate studies in 2009, Summa Cum Laude, at the University of Houston, Moores School of Music, where she studied with pianist-pedagogue Nancy Weems. She also studied with the sought-after pedagogue John Weems for six years. Having completed her Masters of Music with distinction at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama with Professor Joan Havill as a Marshall Scholar, Jessica is currently on a fellowship at the Guildhall School where she studies with Ronan O'Hora and Paul Roberts. In master classes, Jessica has also worked with Ferenc Rados, Arnaldo Cohen, John O'Conor, Pascal Rogé, Angela Hewitt, Anton Kuerti, Stanislav Ioudenich, Abbey Simon, and Yoheved Kaplinsky.

Since her orchestral debut with the Houston Symphony at age 19 in Jones Hall, Jessica has performed with many orchestras in America, including the Clear Lake Symphony, the Irving Symphony in Dallas, Fort Worth Civic Symphony and the Houston Civic Symphony, and in summer music festivals across America, Canada, and Europe. She has won many prizes and, following successes in the 2010 Sussex International Piano Competition, has begun to share her musicianship with British orchestras too, including the Sussex Concert Orchestra and the Worthing Symphony Orchestra. More recently, she performed Rachmaninov's Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the Croydon Symphony Orchestra in the Fairfield Hall.

A frequent recitalist, Jessica has given recitals in St. Martin-in-the-Fields, St. Mary's Henley-Upon-Thames, St. Lawrence Jewry, Wesley’s Chapel, and the Lancedowne Club in London. As a current Park Lane Group Young Artist, she gave her debut recital in January 2011 at the Purcell Room in the Southbank Centre, where she performed works by British and American composers. Believing in using music to reach and educate audiences without easy access to the arts, Jessica is on the LiveMusicNow young artist scheme, performing in hospitals, elderly homes, and special education schools throughout the UK. Information about her upcoming concerts can be found on
her own web page.

Most recently, Jessica won First Prize in the 2011 Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition, and this engagement to perform with Finchley Chamber Orchestra is a direct result of that success last March. She describes this particular Mozart concerto as “very dear to me”, and we are sure that it will become very dear to all of us as we perform and experience it with her.

Jessica is thankful for support of the George and Charlotte Balfour Award, JM Finn Co, The Martin Musical Scholarship Fund and the Marshall Scholarships for her studies.

Peter Bussereau
Bruch: Violin Concerto No. 1
12th March 2011

Peter Bussereau

Peter Bussereau was awarded the silver medal at the Guildhall School of Music for gaining the highest marks for his diploma recital whilst also studying for a Mathematics degree at Royal Holloway College, University of London, where he performed his last concert as a student of the latter by playing the Brahms Violin Concerto. Shortly afterward he took up a position with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra and subsequently moved to the BBC Concert Orchestra, where he is currently a Principal Violinist. Peter studied at the Guildhall School with Max Morgan and Josef Aranof and continued his studies privately with Homi Kanga and Hugh Bean.

As a soloist, Peter’s repertoire ranges from the baroque concerti of Vivaldi and Bach , through the classical-romantic concerti of Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Brahms to works of the twentieth century by Walton, Elgar and Finzi. Peter has also recently performed the world premiere of Richard Sisson’s newly composed violin concerto “Forbidden Music”. Peter worked closely with Richard in the composition and was pleased to record it subsequently. Peter was also proud to have performed the second UK performance of the concerto by Loris Tjeknavorian with the composer present.

Peter is the Artistic Director and Concert Master of Symphonia Academica , a professional chamber orchestra resident at the University of Bedfordshire, comprising some of this country's finest players. In this role he enjoys exploring the chamber orchestra repertoire as well as frequently directing from the violin. He is also the leader of Quartet Camerata, a member of the Trio Academica piano trio and a recitalist. He has broadcast on BBC television and radio and in America, Germany and Japan.

Miwako Miki
Liszt: Piano Concerto No. 1
20th November 2010

Miwako Miki with Petula Clarke

Miwako Miki with Petula Clarke CBE, President of the Hastings Musical Festival, at Fairlight Hall

Miwako Miki was born in Japan in 1985 and gave her first public performance in Kansas City (USA) at the age of seven. She went on to win third prize in the Chiba Piano Competition in Japan, and first prize at the Student Music Competition for Eastern Japan, held in Tokyo. She was also awarded a diploma in the Asia Chopin Piano Competition.

Miwako has performed throughout Japan, in the USA and in Europe. She has studied with Toshiko Katsutani, Haruko Kasama, Katsumi Ueda and Kei Ito and received guidance from Gilead Mishory (Germany), Bruno Rigutto (France), Vladimir Tropp (Russia) and Nina Sereda (England).

From 2003 to 2007, Miwako went to the Mozarteum Summer Academy in Salzburg, where she studied with Professor Frank Wibaut. She was awarded scholarships for this Academy for 2005, 2006 and 2007 and was chosen four times to perform in the Wiener Saal of the Mozarteum. Miwako also studied with Professor Wibaut at the Kirishima International Music Festival in Japan, again being chosen to perform during her time there.

Having completed her undergraduate studies at the Geidai, Tokyo’s National University of Fine Arts and Music, Miwako moved to London in June 2008 to study privately with Professor Wibaut. In 2009, she won prizes in the Norah Sande Award Piano Competition in Eastbourne and the President’s Prize Competition of the North London Festival, where she was awarded the Premier Challenge Cup; and in 2010 she won second prize in the North London Festival’s prestigious Emanuel Trophy Competition, which is open only to the top prizewinners of other UK music festivals. Most recently, Miwako was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the London College of Music after giving a private recital at Fairlight Hall in Hastings. Following these successes, Miwako has already received many invitations to perform in the UK and in Japan.

In March of this year, Miwako won first prize in the Hastings Musical Festival International Piano Concerto Competition with a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1. In recent years, as many of our audience will be aware, Finchley Chamber Orchestra has regularly hosted autumn concerts for Hastings Festival prizewinners, and we are delighted to have Miwako with us this year to perform the first Liszt concerto.

Anna Hashimoto
Weber : Clarinet Concerto No. 2
22nd May 2010

Anna Hashimoto

Anna Hashimoto was born in Japan in 1989 and moved to London six months later. She studied at the Junior Department of the Royal College of Music with Charles Hine, where she was awarded the Else and Leonard Cross Memorial Scholarship and the Esther Coleman Prize. She has also been a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

In 2003, Anna won the Japan Clarinet Society’s ‘Young Clarinettists Competition’ where she was also awarded all three special prizes. She was the winner of the Parthenon Tama Prize at the Japan Clarinet Competition in the following year, and made her Barbican debut in December 2004 at the age of fifteen, playing Weber’s Concertino with the English Chamber Orchestra. She has appeared at London’s Wigmore Hall on numerous occasions playing solo and chamber music. She has also played in the Cadogan Hall, South Bank Centre and Buckingham Palace. In 2006 Anna played Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet in a Gala concert at the British Embassy in Paris.

At the International ClarinetFest 2005, Anna had the honour of giving the Japan premiere and a live broadcasting of Michael Daugherty’s new clarinet concerto, Brooklyn Bridge. There she also performed Tartini/Jacob’s Concertino with the British Clarinet Ensemble, with whom she has also recorded a CD of the work.

Anna has given many recitals and concerto performances. In 2006 she performed Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto four times, including a performance with the Japan Chamber Orchestra, and another with the English Chamber Orchestra with whom she made her fourth appearance in February 2008 at St George’s, Bristol. As the winner of the Purcell School’s Senior Concerto Prize, she gave a highly acclaimed performance of Jean Francaix’s Concerto at LSO St Luke’s in March 2007. Other performances include Weber, Finzi and Spohr concertos with orchestras such as the London Pro Arte Orchestra and Kyushu Symphony Orchestra. She gave sold-out recitals at Tokyo’s Bunka Kaikan and Kioi Hall in 2008. As a chamber musician she has collaborated with the Alberni Quartet at the Grove Park Music Festival, and in August 2008 will work with the pianist Tom Poster and a member of the Skapma Quartet.

Forthcoming engagements include concertos with orchestras such as the English Chamber Orchestra (under the baton of Ashkenazy) and Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as a duo recital with Leon McCawley.

Anna was a student at the Purcell School for four years and is now at the Royal Academy of Music under a full Associated Board Scholarship, where she continues to study with world-renowned soloist Michael Collins. She plays on Peter Eaton ‘International’ clarinets and basset clarinet.

Anna last performed with Finchley Chamber Orchestra in 2005, soon after her Barbican debut, when she performed Weber’s Clarinet Concerto No. 1. We welcome her return to complete the set!

Aleksei Kiseliov
Elgar: Cello Concerto
13th March 2010

Aleksei Kiseliov

Aleksei Kiseliov was born in Belarus in 1985 and began his music studies five years later at the Republican Music College. At the age of 11 he represented his country at a Young Belarus event in Moscow and won the international Music of Hope competition. This was followed by engagements in Germany, Holland, France and Britain. He then became a soloist with the Belarus State Chamber Orchestra and Symphony Orchestra, and received a special award from the republic’s president.

In 1997, still only 12, he won the Tchaikovsky International Youth Competition in St Petersburg, was named Belarus Pupil of the Year and gained the support of the Vladimir Spivakov Fund. The following year he made acclaimed appearances at the Franco-Belarussian Spring Music Festival and performed in Paris. After a period of study in Germany, Aleksei gained entry to the Royal College of Music in London with a four-year Associated Board scholarship, where he currently studies with Raphael Wallfisch as part of a Master’s degree course, with the support of awards from Richard Carne and the Leverhulme Trust. He uses a bow loaned by the Felicity Belfield Music Trust.

In 2003 he won a prize for the best interpretation of a British composer at the Haverhill Sinfonia Soloist Competition and took part in several concerts at an international cello festival in the Netherlands. His debut at St John’s, Smith Square was followed by an appearance at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, more concerts in Britain and performances at the Aix-en-Provence festival. He has subsequently played in many international festivals and toured in the United States as a member of the Conjuncto Iberico cello octet.

In March 2009 Aleksei oversaw the opening of a new international music festival in London called Melodrama. He also appears regularly as a soloist with the Orpheus Sinfonia, an ensemble of young professional players which provides the series of Midweek Music in Mayfair concerts and recitals at ‘Handel’s church’ — St George’s, Hanover Square. In November 2008 he reeived the Orpheus Sinfonia’s annual Lilian Sutton award, and recently he was appointed its Associate Director. Dame Judi Dench, the Patron of the Orpheus Sinfonia Trust, has described his playing as “absolutely sublime!”

You may have heard Aleksei playing Tchaikovsky's Rococo Variations with us last season. If you did, you will certainly want to put 13th March 2010 into your diary now.

Jonathan Wilson
Tchaikovsky: Piano Concerto No. 1
21st November 2009

Jonathan Wilson

Jonathan Wilson was born in Canberra in 1985. He is currently a postgraduate student at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. He commenced piano studies at the age of 6, studying piano and viola at Canberra Grammar School as well as the Canberra School of Music between 2000 and 2002. He also obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree at the University of Sydney. Jonathan’s past teachers include Margaret Hair, Susanne Powell and Carolyn Morrison. He currently studies with Professor Joan Havill.

Jonathan has won prizes in numerous competitions including first prize in the Hastings International Piano Concerto Competition (and the Sir Phillip Ledger special prize), second prize in the Australian National Piano Award (and a special prize for contemporary music), third prize and highest placed pianist in the Bromsgrove Young Artists Platform, the Romantic Piano Prize at the Guildhall School, first prize at the Oxford Music Festival professional piano recital, the Marion MacAulay Bequest Scholarship and various prizes at the Werner Baer memorial and the Canberra piano awards.

Jonathan has performed throughout Australia, the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands, Estonia and Spain. Highlights have included the Sydney Opera House, Llewellyn Hall in Canberra, St James Piccadilly in London, Birmingham Town Hall and the National Library of Estonia. His performances have been broadcast several times on ABC Classic FM. Future engagements include concerts with the European Union and Finchley Chamber Orchestras and the Sussex Concert Orchestra. Jonathan is a Concordia Foundation Artist in 2009.

Jonathan has also attended Internationale Klaviersommer 2004, in Bad Betrich, Internationale Klavierakademie in Murrhardt, Germany and Pan Pacific Piano Performance School. He has also received masterclasses and lessons from Paul Lewis, John Lill, John Perry, Dominique Merlet, Yonty Solomon and Aquiles Delle Vigne.

Jonathan is supported by the Sergei Rachmaninov Award, the Phyllis Simmons Award and the Dennis & Sylvia Forbes Award for his studies at the Guildhall. He is also supported by the Tait Memorial Trust.

Valeriy Sokolov
Prokofiev: Violin Concerto No. 2
28th February 2009

Valeriy Sokolov

‘Handsome and youthful, Sokolov is a formidable talent. Move over, Joshua Bell!’ (Entertainment News, USA)

‘Vengerov has more maturity and finesse, but the serene, smiling and seriously cool young Sokolov matched him in just about every other department of string playing’ (The Glasgow Herald, Scotland)

‘Without doubt, we are listening to a coming great violinist’ (La Presse de Montréal, Canada)

‘Word will certainly spread about this young virtuoso’ (Le Monde de la Musique, France)

Born in 1986, violinist Valeriy Sokolov was nine when he was admitted into the class of Prof. Sergueï Evdokimov at the Kharkov Secondary Special Music School in his native Ukraine. He was just 11 when he appeared as soloist with an orchestra for the first time. Two years later, following successes at home and in international competitions in Eastern Europe, he was awarded the Study Grant Prize at the International Pablo Sarasate Competition in Pamplona, Spain. Funded by Vladimir Spivakov, the prize provided a scholarship for Valeriy to pursue his studies at the Yehudi Menuhin School in England, where he was a pupil of Natalia Borarskaya, and where he featured in numerous concerts given by the school. He is currently a student at the Royal College of Music in London, where he studies with Dr Felix Andrievsky. He has also taken part in masterclasses given by the late Mstislav Rostropovitch, Zvi Zeitlin, Dora Schwarzberg, Zakhar Bron, Ruggiero Ricci and Igor Ozim.

In the field of chamber music, Valeriy has joined violist Alexander Zemtsov, principal viola of the London Philharmonic Orchestra, and cellist Leonid Gorokhov, as the violinist in the Hermitage String Trio. During August 2007 the trio participated in the Australian Festival of Chamber Music in Townsville, where they joined forces with Piers Lane and Kathryn Stott.

Major engagements in 2007-8 included appearances as soloist with the Musik-kollegium Winterthur, the Bremen Philharmonic and the Basel Symphony Orchestra as well as a return visit to the Tonhalle Orchestra in Zurich. Valeriy has also given recitals at the Gstaad and St Denis festivals, and continues to appear at the Chatelet, Paris and the Auditorium de Lyon. He made his début at the Wigmore Hall London, in May 2008, with a programme that included works by Beethoven, Schumann, Enescu, Prokofiev and Bach. He can also be seen on film in Natural Born Fiddler, Bruno Monsaingeon’s audio-visual record of a recital that Valeriy gave in Toulouse in 2004, on the EMI/Virgin label.

This season, Valeriy has performed the Sibelius Violin Concerto with Vladimir Ashkenazy conducting, both in Bologna and in Paris. He was a performer at the Classical BRIT Awards 2008, televised from the Royal Albert Hall, and he also appeared in a concert for UNESCO at the Royal Festival Hall. He has also been to the USA, Belgium, Ukraine and Germany to perform.

At this concert, Valeriy will be making his fifth appearance with Finchley Chamber Orchestra, having performed Beethoven's Violin Concerto with us on 30th April 2005, Mendelssohn's Violin Concerto on 11th March 2006, Brahms's Violin Concerto on 3rd March 2007, and Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto on 1st March 2008, in every case to great acclaim.

Valeriy is generously supported by the Accenture Foundation for a period of three years as part of their young musician scheme.

Otis Beasley
Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 3
22nd November 2008

Otis Beasley

Otis Beasley was born in Devon in 1986. He began piano lessons at the age of six with Christopher Fletcher, director of music at Plymouth Cathedral and active conductor in the South West. Otis gained a scholarship to Wells Cathedral school at the age of eleven and was then taught by Michael Young. He continued his studies with John Byrne from the age of fourteen, gaining his dipABRSM with distinction at sixteen, and in his final year at Wells reached the piano final of the BBC Young Musician of the Year 2004 competition and gained scholarships to the UK's four major music colleges.

In September 2004 Otis joined the Royal College of Music as a Foundation Scholar and in January 2005 he toured the United Emirate States as one of five BBC Young Musicians. He studied with Ruth Nye in his second and third years at the RCM and with Gordon Fergus-Thompson in his third and fourth years, graduating from the RCM in July with first-class honours.

Otis has received masterclasses from Yonty Solomon, Sergei Dorensky and Menahem Pressler, and has received lessons from Nelly Akopian-Tamarina. Previous concerto appearances include Liszt's First Piano Concerto, Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto and Beethoven’s Choral Fantasy, with orchestras in the South West, the London area and Arad, Romania.

Otis’ performance with the Finchley Chamber Orchestra is as a result of his winning the 2008 Hastings Musical Festival International Piano Concerto Competition in March, where he was presented the Blüthner Trophy and also the Sir Philip Ledger Prize for being the youngest pianist to play in the finals.

Sarah Blood
Mahler: Symphony No. 4
1st March 2008

Sarah Blood

Sarah Blood (soprano) completed her postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music with distinction. She read Natural Sciences at New Hall, Cambridge, and was a member of Clare College Chapel Choir. Sarah has extensive experience as a soloist including performances at the Barbican, St John’s Smith Square, and Birmingham’s Symphony Hall with the CBSO.

Opera roles have included Susanna in Mozart’s Marriage of Figaro, Rosalinda in Strauss’s Die Fledermaus, Lucia in Britten’s Rape of Lucretia, Amore in Gluck’s Orfeo and most recently Donna Elvira in Hampstead Garden Opera’s Don Giovanni. She has performed frequently with the Carl Rosa Opera Company and is a member of the Opera Holland Park chorus. She is currently studying with Barbara Pearson and Christopher Gould.

Sarah is also a keen amateur viola player and plays with some of the leading amateur orchestras in London.

Natalia Loresch
Schumann: Piano Concerto
17th November 2007 (Trinity Church, Finchley N12)
and 25th November 2007 (St. John's, Smith Square, SW1)

Natalia Loresch

Natalia Loresch was born into a family of musicians in Russia and received her first piano lessons from her mother. At the age of eight she began playing on stage, and she gave a solo performance in the Glinka Chapel in St. Petersburg three years later. In 1995 the family emigrated to Germany and Natalia became a pupil of Conrad Hansen in Hamburg. In 2000 she entered the University of Arts in Berlin to study with Pascal Devoyon and graduated with a BMus in piano.

Natalia has lived in London since 2006, where she continues her studies in piano and harpsichord with Piers Lane, Kathryn Stott and Virginia Black on the MMus performance and research programme at the Royal Academy of Music. She has also taken part in masterclasses with Dang Thai Son, Rainer Becker, Christopher Elton, Felix Gottlieb, Stanislav Pochekin, Oxana Yablonskaya and Sir Peter Maxwell Davies and has had lessons with Hartmut Rohde, Patrick Dinslage, Annette von Stackelberg, Michael Dussek and Michael Roll.

Natalia has gained prizes at several competitions including the Steinway International Piano Competition, Jugend musiziert, Bergedorfer Musikwettbewerb and the Hastings Centenary Festival International Piano Concerto Competition where she won first prize and the Sir Philip Ledger Prize in 2007. She has also been the recipient of the Oscar and Vera Ritter Scholarship, the Paul Hindemith Scholarship, the Myra Hess Award and the Sir Richard Stapley Educational Trust Award.

Natalia has given solo and chamber music performances in the Musikhalle in Hamburg, at the Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Summer Festival, in the Philharmonie Berlin, at the Warehouse in London (playing with the Manson Ensemble) and at many other venues. She is constantly expanding her repertoire, working in different chamber music groups, and is also researching Bach's Well-tempered Clavier in the context of historical and religious correlations as her MMus project.

Samantha Ward
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 5 (Emperor)
18th November 2006

Samantha Ward

British pianist Samantha Ward began playing the piano at the age of eight before gaining a full scholarship to Chetham’s School of Music five years later. She is now studying for her Masters in piano performance at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, where she won scholarships for both her undergraduate and postgraduate studies to study with the Senior Professor, Joan Havill.

Since making her concerto debut in 2000 as a result of winning the Chetham’s concerto auditions, Samantha has been offered concerto appearances with many orchestras around the UK. She has given recitals, both solo and of chamber music, around the UK and Europe in such venues as Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, St James’s Piccadilly and St Martin’s in the Fields, London, St David’s Hall, Cardiff, and in the Leeds International Concert Season, and she has taken part in international master classes with leading professors such as Jacques Rouvier, Piotr Paleczny, Dominique Merlet and Boris Berman.

Samantha has appeared on HTV Wales, S4C and Granada Television, as well as on Classic FM Radio and in the Classical Music Magazine. Competition successes have included first prize in the Guildhall John Ireland and Beethoven Piano Competitions, and the Making Music Philip and Dorothy Green Award for Young Concert Artists, which resulted in concerto and recital appearances around the UK as well as concerts in St Martin’s in the Fields and the Wigmore Hall. This year, in the Hastings Music Festival Piano Concerto Competition, she won both the first prize and the Sir Philip Ledger Prize for the best performance of a Beethoven or Mozart concerto, resulting in a concerto performance at St John’s, Smith Square, and an appearance on BBC2’s Friday Night is Music Night. She also recently won a major award from the Musicians Benevolent Fund as well as scholarships from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, The City of Mitchell Trust, The Worshipful Company of Tobacco Pipemakers, The Worshipful Company of Leathersellers, John Lyon’s Charity, The South Square Trust and the Leverhulme Trust, to further her studies at postgraduate level. Most recently, Samantha was one of two young musicians to be invited to perform a concerto with the Mozart Festival Orchestra in June, to celebrate Mozart’s 250th anniversary, as well as being one of four pianists who were selected to perform all of the Mozart Piano Sonatas in the Cambridge Summer Music Festival.

Finchley Chamber Orchestra, under its conductor David Lardi, was privileged to accompany Samantha in her winning performance of Beethoven’s Third Piano Concerto at the Hastings Music Festival last March, and we look forward to performing with her again in the last and greatest of all Beethoven’s works for piano and orchestra.


Natalie Clein
Schumann : ’Cello Concerto
20th May 2006

Natalie Clein

Born in 1977, Natalie Clein studied at the Royal College of Music, where she was awarded the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Scholarship. After winning the 1994 BBC Young Musician of the Year Competition, she became the first British winner of the Eurovision Competition for Young Musicians in Warsaw. She made her concerto début at the BBC Proms in August 1997, performing Haydn’s Concerto in C major with Sir Roger Norrington and the National Youth Orchestra, and went on to study in Vienna with Heinrich Schiff between 1997 and 2001.

Since then, Natalie’s career has continuously gained momentum: appearing in venues such as the Royal Festival Hall, the Barbican, the Bridgewater Hall or Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, she has performed as a soloist with most of the UK’s major orchestras, including the London Philharmonic (Rozhdestvensky), the English Chamber Orchestra, the CBSO, the Bournemouth Symphony, the Philharmonia Orchestra (Sir Neville Marriner, Paul Daniel), the London Mozart Players, the BBC Symphony, the BBC Scottish Symphony, BBC National Orchestra of Wales, the Royal Philharmonic, the Royal Scottish National Orchestra (Peter Oundjian), and most recently the Hallé Orchestra with a performance of the Lutoslawski concerto (under Heinrich Schiff). In 1999/2000 she was chosen by the BBC to take part in their New Generation Artists scheme in which talented young artists are featured in recital, chamber and concerto performances and a number of studio recordings for broadcast on Radio 3.

Natalie is in great demand as a recitalist and chamber music player, appearing at the Wigmore Hall, St George’s Bristol, Turner Sims Hall Southampton, the Cheltenham, City of London, Bath, Oxford and Prussia Cove Festivals, as well as in Australia (Perth International Chamber Music Festival), Canada (Vancouver Festival), France (Divonne Festival), Germany (Moritzburg, Heimbach ‘Spannungen’), Switzerland (Verbier), the Netherlands (Delft) and Ireland (West Cork Chamber Music Festival). Besides her regular recital partners - Julius Drake, Itamar Golan and Charles Owen - her chamber music collaborations include Martha Argerich, Melvyn Tan, Imogen Cooper, Stephen Kovacevich, Lars Vogt, Steven Isserlis, clarinetists Michael Collins, Sharon Kam and Emma Johnson, violinists Priya Mitchell and Isabelle Faust, as well as the Jerusalem and Takacs Quartets. Natalie’s debut recording, a recital disc with both Brahms ’Cello Sonatas and Schubert’s Arpeggione Sonata with Charles Owen, is available on EMI/Classics for Pleasure.

This will be Natalie’s second appearance with Finchley Chamber Orchestra. Regular audience members will remember her magical performance of the Dvorák concerto with us last November (and perhaps also the intrusive sound of fireworks that failed to spoil it) and will welcome her back warmly. Natalie plays on a superlative 1777 instrument by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini which has been purchased on her behalf by the Natalie Clein ’Cello Trust.

Maria Mazo
Brahms : Piano Concerto No. 1
19th November 2005

Maria Mazo

Maria Mazo made her concerto début at the age of nine with Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 14 in A major, K. 414, and since then she has performed in Germany, Austria, Italy, Malta, Russia, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and France. Aged thirteen, she was the youngest competitor and prizewinner in the International Competition for Young Pianists in memoriam Arthur Rubinstein in Poland. Now aged 22, she has already established herself among the promising young artists of her generation, with a repertoire that includes an extensive range of solo and chamber works and more than a dozen piano concerti.

In 2001 Maria was a prizewinner in the Premio Guiliano Pecar International Piano Competition in Gorizia, Italy, where she also received a special award; and her prizewinning performances in the 2003 and 2004 seasons of the Città di Cantù International Competition for Piano and Orchestra, also in Italy, led to a concerto appearance in the Sala Verdi of Milan Conservatoire. Most recently, she won First Prize in the Third Richard Laugs Beethoven Piano Competition in Mannheim, Germany, in 2004, and in the Hastings Music Festival Piano Concerto Competition, England, earlier this year. She was also a semifinalist, and received a Jury Discretionary Award, at the Twelfth Van Cliburn International Piano Competition last May.

Having worked with such noted musicians as Andrei Gavrilov, Abbey Simon and Ian Hobson, Maria is currently enrolled at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater, Hannover, as a student of Professor Arie Vardi. Since January 2005, she has been a member of the Live Music Now!  Foundation, an organization founded by Yehudi Menuhin to promote the enjoyment and experience of live music amongst people who would not normally have access to it, for example in hospitals, special schools and prisons, and at the same time to assist gifted young professional musicians by providing them with performance opportunities at the outset of their careers.

Christopher Evesham
Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez
19th May 2007

Christopher Evesham was born in Halton in 1982 and was given his first guitar at the age of four. At ten, he began to study with American guitarist John Dunn of the Mons conservatoire in Belgium. Later he studied with Andrew Barrett as an external student of Wells Cathedral school where, in 1998, he won a DfEE scholarship to study full-time and subsequently earned the highest grade for performance in the string department.

In 2000, Christopher reached the semi-finals of the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition and in the same year became a student of Carlos Bonell at the Royal College of Music. In 2004 he gained a first class for his final recital. He graduated in the Summer of this year and he continues to live in London.

Since graduating, Christopher performs regularly as a soloist. He has also played in various ensembles including with flautist Laura Smith, singer Jo Risbero and 'cellist David Kadumakasa. He has performed solo recitals in many diverse venues around the UK, and he has also performed in Belgium, Germany and as a soloist with orchestra in Alba, Italy, performing a new work by composer Gabriele Roberto. Christopher has performed as a soloist with orchestras in London (including the Dulwich Symphony Orchestra and the Sutton Symphony Orchestra) and elsewhere in the UK, playing such works as Vivaldi's Concerto in D major and Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez.

Christopher plays a guitar made in 2002 by Australian guitar makers Greg Smallman and Sons.

Meryn Nance
Brahms : Alto Rhapsody
9th July 2005

Meryn was born and educated in North Wales and had already won competitions in the Liverpool Music Festival when she entered the Royal Academy of Music in London at the age of eighteen. She took part in afternoon recitals; was soloist in choral and orchestral concerts; sang and understudied roles in opera class productions; and won several competitions, including a scholarship for her final year. She also gained an LRAM and ARCM.

On leaving college, she joined the chorus of Welsh National Opera, where she understudied several leading roles, including the Queen of the Night in Mozart's The Magic Flute and Alice in Verdi's Falstaff. Solo roles with the WNO included Gianetta in Donizetti's L'Elisir D'Amore and Barbarina in Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro. Aside from WNO, she performed the roles of the Countess and Fiordiligi in Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro and Cosí fan Tutte respectively.

Eight years later, Meryn left Welsh National Opera and went to Dublin to re-train at the College of Music. Among her competition successes was the Recital Gold Medal which she won with the highest number of marks ever awarded to a gold medallist. She gave recitals and took part in opera class productions, and also taught singing and piano at the College. Meryn has appeared as a soloist with Chester Symphony Orchestra, and given solo recitals. In 2001, she was a featured soloist for the Last Night of the Proms at St Jude's Proms, Hampstead Garden Suburb; and recent solo oratorio appearances include Bach's B Minor Mass, St John Passion and Christmas Oratorio, Handel's Messiah and Dixit Dominus, and Rossini's Petite Messe Solonnelle.

Andrew Saunders
Shostakovich: Piano Concerto No. 2
30th April 2005

Andrew Saunders, now aged 22, joined the Junior Department of the Royal College of Music at the age of 14 to study with Patricia Carroll. He gave his first concerto performance (Mozart’s A major, K. 388) in the same year, followed by the Grieg and first Tchaikovsky concertos whilst still at Christ’s Hospital School. He also performed solo and chamber music in the annual Christ’s Hospital concerts at the Purcell Room.

Andrew received tuition (particularly for chamber music) from Tim Horton, John Thwaites and Adrian West whilst studying for his A-levels, and performed in master classes with Julian Jacobson, Steven Kovacevich, Caroline Presland, Yonty Solomon, and Martino Tirimo. In July 2002 he toured Germany and the Czech Republic playing the Tchaikovsky concerto, and in March 2003 he made his London concerto debut at the Barbican, playing Constant Lambert’s Rio Grande with another former Christ’s Hospital pupil, Charles Hazlewood, conducting.

Andrew graduated from the Royal College of Music with a BMus (Hons) degree in 2004. He was awarded a four-year scholarship from the Associated Board to study piano with Niel Immelman. His latest concert was a shared recital at St Martin’s-in-the-Fields. He has also performed in Austria, Germany, Italy and Spain. As an accompanist, Andrew has worked with the ex-leader of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, BBC Young Musician of the Year finalists, members of the Philharmonia Orchestra and members of the London Chamber Orchestra. He also enjoys teaching.

Andrew has been a finalist in the Malcolm Sargent Young Musician of the Year Competition, a prizewinner in the Sevenoaks Young Musician of the Year Competition, a finalist in the National Schools Chamber Music Competition held at St. John’s, Smith Square, a finalist in the Angela Bull Memorial Competition (Royal College), Second Prize winner in the Teresa Carreno Piano Competition (Royal College) resulting in a recital at the Venezuelan Embassy, and Second Prize winner in the Jaques Samuel Intercollegiate Piano Competition (Royal College). He was selected to represent North London to compete in the Emanuel Piano Competition 2004 (at which he was highly commended) having won several classes at a previous North London Festival of Music and Drama, including the Premier Challenge Cup (for piano) and the President’s Prize (overall sections winner), donated by Sir Colin Davis. We welcome Andrew back to the North London Festival of Music and Drama for tonight’s performance.

Jonathan Stone
Tchaikovsky : Violin Concerto in D major
19th March 2005

Jonathan Stone was born in London in 1980 and began learning the violin at the age of four with Elisabeth Waterhouse. A grant from the UK Government’s Music and Ballet Scheme enabled him to enter the Purcell School in 1992, where he studied with David Angel. In 1998, he began to study with Grigory Zhislin at the Royal College of Music, where he won numerous prizes for his work in chamber ensembles. After obtaining his degree and leading the RCM’s orchestras and ensembles both on tour and live on Radio 3, he started working with some of the UK’s top orchestras, including the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, the Halle, the BBC Concert Orchestra, the Orchestra of the Northern Ballet and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. He is also the violinist of the Prometheus Piano Trio.

In 2003, Jonathan was awarded a scholarship to study with Howard Davis at the Royal Academy of Music where he has received the DM Lloyd Prize and is very grateful to the Musicians’ Benevolent Fund for help towards this final year.

In the last year, he has also reached the Section Final of the Royal Over-Seas League competition and been a prize winner in the Haverhill Sinfonia Soloist Competition. He is one of two violinists chosen from the RAM to play with the London Symphony Orchestra on their String Experience Scheme.

This will be Jonathan’s third appearance with Finchley Chamber Orchestra. He performed the first movement of this concerto with us in May 2003 as part of the Music in Muswell Hill festival, and joined us again for the Bruch G minor concerto in November of that year. We welcome him back warmly.

Alon Goldstein
Grieg : Piano Concerto
20th June 2004

Israeli pianist Alon Goldstein studied at the Rubin Academy of Music in Tel-Aviv under Victor Derevianko, and the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore under Leon Fleisher. In 1997 he became the first Performer Fellow at the Guildhall School of Music in London. In this unique post, he initiated concerts involving the collaboration of staff and students, as well as annual festivals devoted to the four-handed repertoire.

In 2000, Alon joined the Piano Foundation in Lake Como, Italy, where he enjoyed private master-classes with world-renowned musicians. He has played with the Philadelphia, San Francisco, Houston and Saint Louis Symphony Orchestras as well as the Israel Philharmonic under Zubin Mehta, Raphael Frübeck de Burgos and Leon Fleisher. He has given solo recitals in New York, Washington, Chicago, London, Frankfurt, Geneva, Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem. He has performed on BBC Radio 3, and played at the festivals of Ravinia, Marlboro, Santa Fe, Tanglewood, Prussia Cove (UK) and Verbier.

During 2003-4, Alon will have performed with the Baltimore, Vancouver and Saint Louis Symphony Orchestras and the Orchestre Nationale de l’Ile de France. Other highlights include re-engagements at the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts in Chicago, The Phillips Collection and Strathmore Hall in Washington, and Peoples Symphony Concerts in New York.

Colin Lawson
Mozart : Clarinet Concerto
3rd April 2004

Colin Lawson has an international profile as a period clarinettist and has played principal in most of Britain’s leading period orchestras, notably The Hanover Band, The English Concert and the London Classical Players, with whom he has recorded extensively and toured world-wide. Described recently as ‘a brilliant, absolutely world-class player’ (Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung) and ‘the doyen of period clarinettists’ (BBC Music Magazine), he has appeared as soloist in many international venues, including London’s major concert halls and New York’s Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall. His discography comprises concertos by Fasch, Hook, Mahon, Mozart, Spohr, Telemann, Vivaldi and Weber, as well as a considerable variety of chamber music. Among his most recent recordings is a highly-acclaimed disc of basset horn trios by Mozart and Stadler and a recital disc entitled ‘100 Years of the Simple-System Clarinet’.

Colin has an especially close association with Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, which he plays regularly on both period and modern basset clarinets. In addition to directing performances of the work, he has played it in collaboration with conductors such as Roy Goodman, Christopher Hogwood, Roger Norrington and Joshua Rifkin. He is also the author of a Cambridge Handbook to Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, which investigates the work’s genesis, composition and construction, as well as the career of the dedicatee Anton Stadler and his newly invented basset clarinet.

Colin’s other publications for Cambridge University Press include The Cambridge Companion to the Clarinet and a Cambridge Handbook to Brahms’s Clarinet Quintet. He is co-editor of a new series of Cambridge Handbooks to the Historical Performance of Music, for which he has co-authored an introductory volume (1999) and a written a book on the early clarinet (2000). He is also editor of the new Cambridge Companion to the Orchestra (2003). Combining an academic career with performing activities, he taught at the Universities of Aberdeen, Sheffield and London before his appointment in 2001 as Pro-Vice Chancellor at Thames Valley University, where he is Dean of the London College of Music & Media.

We are particularly grateful to Colin for agreeing to perform this concerto with us at short notice. Sarah Williamson, who was to have performed it, recently injured her arm in a car accident and is unable to play. We wish Sarah and her father, who was also injured, a full and speedy recovery.

Alice Neary
Finzi : Cello Concerto
12th April 2003

Alice Neary has won several major awards, including the 1998 Pierre Fournier Award. She was educated at Chetham’s School of Music and studied with Ralph Kirshbaum at the Royal Northern College of Music, and with Timothy Eddy at Stony Brook as a Fulbright Scholar.

Alice plays regularly with the pianist Gretel Dowdeswell. She is Principal Cellist of the Goldberg Ensemble and a member of Ovid and of the Britten Chamber Ensemble. In January 1999 she made her début at the Wigmore Hall to critical acclaim. Other recent performances include a BBC Radio 3 broadcast in the Young Artists’ Forum series, concertos with the English Chamber Orchestra and Israel Symphony Orchestra, recitals at the Bridgewater Hall, Wigmore Hall and Purcell Room, and appearances at the Manchester International Cello Festival and Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. Her repertory ranges from Bach to John McCabe and John Tavener, in whose Innocence she played the solo part in a recording for Sony Classical.

Alice has appeared three times with Finchley Chamber Orchestra, performing the First Cello Concerto of Shostakovich in November 1999, and Elgar’s Cello Concerto in June 2001 at St. Jude’s, Hampstead Garden Suburb and the following month in Trinity Church, Finchley, in each case to enthusiastic acclaim.

Adrian Wilson
Richard Strauss : Oboe Concerto
16th November 2002

Adrian Wilson was principal oboist of the National Youth Orchestra in 1996 and the National Youth Chamber Orchestra in 1997, performing under the baton of many of Europe’s eminent conductors. In 1996, and again in 1998, he reached the final of the BBC ‘Young Musician of the Year’ competition. He then studied at the University of Birmingham with George Caird and at the Birmingham Conservatoire with Jonathan Kelly and Celia Nicklin, receiving a first class degree for the Diploma in Professional Studies, gaining a placement with the CBSO as part of their professional training scheme, and also reaching the finals of the Yamaha Wind and Brass 2000 competition.

Moving to the Royal Academy of Music, he continued his studies with Dougie Boyd, Tess Miller and Celia Nicklin, trained with the LSO on their orchestral scheme, and performed with the BBC Philharmonic, the Hallé, Sinfonia 21, Birmingham Royal Ballet and the Nash Ensemble. He was winner of the Vivian Dunn prize for orchestral playing, the Harold Craxton prize for chamber music and the Andrew Sykes award. He was invited to perform at the Victoria and Albert Museum in a Proms Composer Portrait concert 2001 featuring the music of Esa-Pekka Salonen, which was broadcast live on BBC Radio 3. In 2002, he graduated with Distinction from the postgraduate performance course.

Adrian is now Principal Oboe of the Newly formed South Bank Sinfonia, and also on trial with the English National Ballet, the London Chamber Players and as Principal oboe with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra. He is a member of the prestigious European Union Youth Orchestra, and continues his studies with Alexei Ogrintchouk, solo oboe of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra. As a member of the Countess of Munster Recital Scheme, he regularly gives solo recitals and is a co-founder of the Regus Wind Quintet. Recent concerto performances include the Martinu, Mozart and Marcello concertos and Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for wind quartet and orchestra, as well as the Richard Strauss concerto for which we warmly welcome him to Finchley.