2018 ARTIST LINEUP
Christine Harada Li – Violin
Artistic Director and Founder
Violinist Christine Harada Li, devoted to inspiring audiences through artistic excellence, has performed across the U.S.A., Canada, Japan, Germany, Italy, Austria, Spain, and Israel, and is a founding member of the award winning Koinonia Trio, which recently won 1st Prize in the Briggs Chamber Music Competition. In addition to performing, Christine takes leadership in various art organizations and serves as Co-Education Director at the Innsbrook Institute, Artistic Director and founder of the Anchorage Chamber Music Festival, and Vice President of the Anchorage Fine Arts Society. Christine graduated summa cum laude from University of Michigan School of Music, Theater and Dance and completed her Master of Music degree at the Hochschule für Musik in Hannover, Germany. Her principal teachers here were Yehonatan Berick, Elisabeth Kufferath, Anne Röhrig (baroque), and Arthur Greene (piano). Currently she is a Doctorate student studying with David Halen at the University of Michigan.
Nathaniel Pierce – Cello
Artistic Director and Founding Member
Nathaniel Pierce, cellist and tenor, is a highly active and versatile musician. He has performed as a soloist at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. and has also been a featured soloist with the Toledo, Dexter, Dearborn, Albany, Ann Arbor and Birmingham-Bloomfield Symphonies, as well as the University of Michigan and Indiana University symphonies. Pierce has won numerous top-prizes in competitions, including the Louis Potter Cello Competition, University of Michigan Concerto Competition, Indiana University Concerto Competition, the Matinee Musicale Competition, Kuttner Quartet Competition, and recently he won first prize at the Briggs Chamber Music Competition with the Koinonia Trio. He is a founding member and Co-Artistic Director of the Anchorage Chamber Music festival, and Co-Education Director at the Innsbrook Institute. As a child, he appeared on stage as a member of the children’s choir of the Brandenburg State Theater in Germany, where his parents were engaged as operatic soloists. In addition to his cello studies as a Doctorate student at the University of Michigan, he is studying voice with Martin Katz and David Daniels.
Nathan Giem – Violin
Violinist Nathan Giem has performed as a soloist, chamber musician and concertmaster in halls across Europe, Japan and the United States. Mr. Giem is based in Budapest, Hungary, where he serves as first concertmaster for the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra. Additionally, Nathan leads the Budapest Symphony Orchestra and Solti Chamber Orchestra. Formerly concertmaster for the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, Mr. Giem is in demand as a guest leader. Other ensembles he has served as guest concertmaster for include the Columbus (Ohio) Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Maestro Rossen Milanov, the Los Angeles Camerata Orchestra and the Accademia Gustav Mahler Festival Orchestra in Potenza, Italy. As first violinist of the Kuttner Quartet, Mr. Giem has performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. He has also performed in Carnegie’s Zankel Hall as a member of the Bloomington, Indiana-based Kolot Ensemble, and has participated in the Open Chamber Music Festival in Prussia Cove, Cornwall, UK. In the summers, Nathan enjoys coaching chamber music at the Indiana University String Academy, and participating in the Violin Society of America’s Annual Oberlin Acoustics Workshop, where he is Music Director.
Jonathan Ong – Violin
Singaporean-born violinist Jonathan Ong is a founding member of the acclaimed Verona Quartet, hailed as an “outstanding ensemble” (The New York Times) and lauded for their “interpretive strength and robust characterization” (Calgary Herald). He has performed across the world in international venues such as Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall, Lincoln Center, Beijing and Shanghai Concert Halls, Melbourne Recital Hall, and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Jonathan has been recognized with top prizes at international competitions across four continents, including the Concert Artists Guild International Competition, London’s Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition; the M-Prize, Osaka, Melbourne and Chesapeake International Chamber Music Competitions; the Fischoff and Coleman National Chamber Music Competitions; the Singapore National Violin Competition and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Young Artists Competition. As a member of the Verona Quartet, he was featured as Musical America’s “New Artist of the Month” in May 2016, and has appeared on National Public Radio, WQXR New York Classical Radio, WFMT Chicago Classical Radio and The Weekly Special on PBS. Jonathan is a graduate of The Juilliard School, Indiana University, the Cleveland Institute of Music and the Eastman School of Music. His principal mentors include Donald Weilerstein, Alexander Kerr, Paul Kantor, Fredell Lack, Lynn Blakeslee and Lynette Lim. He has served as a teaching assistant at The Juilliard School and Indiana University, and is on faculty at the Indiana University Summer String Academy.
Brendan Shea – Violin
Brendan Shea is an active soloist and chamber musician. His solo career has taken him across the globe as well, with performances in major venues in Europe and Asia, and across North America. In 2014 he partnered with his wife Yerin Kim to form the Shea-Kim Duo, which has competed internationally and performed recitals in Asia, Europe and North America. Their performances have been broadcasted by Klara Continuo in Belgium, PBC in South Korea, and WUFT Classic in Florida. Brendan has performed across the world in collaboration with many world class ensembles and as a soloist. He premiered Frederic Rzewski’s Night, Death, and Devil with the Emmy Award winning 8th Blackbird. As a founding member of the award winning Wasmuth Quartet (now Verona) he won every major chamber music competition in the U.S.A. and performed across the United States, Germany, and Japan. In addition to his performance career, Brendan is also a sought after violin teacher and chamber musician. He taught violin and chamber music at the Mahanaim School in Huntington, New York and Oberlin Conservatory in the spring of 2017 as a guest faculty. He also joined the Euclid Quartet in fall of 2016 as second violinist, and the faculty of Indiana University South Bend. He currently performs on a 2000 Samuel Zygmuntowicz generously on loan to him by Angela Ahn.
Edwin Kaplan – Viola
Violist of the award-winning Tesla Quartet, Edwin Kaplan continues to forge a versatile identity as a recitalist, chamber musician, and educator. He has performed on concert series across the North America, Europe and Asia, including the Wigmore Hall in London, Festival Mozaic in San Luis Obispo, the La Jolla Chamber Music Society, the National Academy of Sciences in Washington D.C., Tanglewood, Colorado College Summer Music Festival, Kneisel Hall, and with the Burlington Ensemble of Vermont. Recent engagements with the Tesla Quartet took him on a tour of Germany and Hungary where he performed at the Esterházy palace at which Haydn lived and worked. In addition, one of Edwin’s favorite projects is his quartet’s annual call for scores for which he combs through hundreds of recently composed string quartets submitted by composers from all over the world. Edwin is proud to serve his community as an advocate for music education. He is on the faculty of the Thurnauer School of Music, directed by Dorothy Roffman, where he instructs arts-focused teenagers in violin and viola performance.
Paul Sharpe – Double Bass
Paul Sharpe is the Artist-Teacher of Double Bass at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, and is active internationally as an orchestral and chamber musician and as a soloist. Recent performances and engagements have taken him all over the world, including recitals and masterclasses at Orfeo Music Festival in Vipiteno/Sterzing, Italy, the Paris Conservatory, Institutes of Music in Curitiba and Porto Allegre in Brazil, the University of Iowa, Cleveland Institute of Music, World Bass Convention (Wroclaw, Poland), and two of Brazil’s International Double Bass Encounters in Pirenopolis, Brazil. Solo engagements with orchestra have included appearances with the Winston-Salem Symphony Orchestra, Boise Philharmonic, Anchorage Symphony Orchestra, Orquestra de Camara Theatro Sao Pedro (Porto Allegre, Brazil), Lubbock Symphony Orchestra, the Dallas Chamber Orchestra, and Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival Orchestra, and Aspen Young Artists Orchestra. He has been a guest artist at MusicFest (Arizona), Orfeo (Vipiteno, Italy), Green Mountain Music Festival (Vermont), Pine Mountain Music Festival (Michigan), the Anchorage Festival of Music, the Festival of Two Worlds (Spoleto, Italy), and 20th Century Unlimited (Santa Fe, NM). In addition to his duties as professor at UNCSA he is Principal Bass of the Winston-Salem Symphony Orchestra and Piedmont Opera.
Hyejin Cho – Piano
Hye-Jin Cho has received top prizes in competitions, including Ewha Women’s University competition, the latter competition giving her the opportunity to play the Chopin F-minor Concerto with the University orchestra. Recently she won 1st prize in the Briggs Chamber Music Competition with her piano trio. She has appeared as soloist and chamber musician in concerts with the Chuncheon Youth Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Northern Illinois, in the Rising Artist Series at ECC Samsung Hall, and at Indiana University. In the summer of 2015, she played the Mozart G-major Concerto K. 453 on three concerts with the Northern Illinois Chamber Orchestra. She has all Mozart Concerti project with this orchestra. Hye-Jin Cho is a founding member of Koinonia Trio. Last summer, the trio toured Europe and will tour Asia this coming summer. She is also doing a ‘Schumann piano concert series’ in Freeport, Illinois to support the community.
Yerin Kim – Piano
Praised by the Calgary Herald as “lively, ebullient, and spikily accentuated performance…”, pianist Yerin Kim is an avid chamber musician and recitalist. She has given concerts in various festivals and recitals in major venues internationally, including The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., Carnegie Hall in New York, Place Flagey in Brussels and the Rolston Hall at the Banff Centre for the Arts in Canada. Her performances have been broadcast by the Klara Continuo radio station in Belgium, the NPR program Performance Today, WUFT Classic in Florida, and the PBC broadcasting station in Seoul, Korea. Partnering with her husband and violinist, Brendan Shea as the Shea-Kim Duo, she has competed internationally and performed recitals in Asia, Europe and North America. In 2016, their first CD of sonatas by Beethoven, Schubert, and Janacek was released by Ark Studio in Seoul, South Korea. Kim is equally passionate in teaching and has previously held faculty positions in Indiana University Bloomington as an assistant lecturer in piano pedagogy and as a Pre-college piano instructor. She also taught undergraduate piano students and coached chamber groups at State University of New York Stony Brook as a teaching assistant to the Piano Department and also as a chamber music faculty at the Pre-college Division. She recently joined the faculty of the University of Notre Dame.
Elizabeth Dickenson – Violin
Elizabeth Dickenson received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music in 2010, where she studied with Lynn Blakeslee, Mikhail Kopelman, and the Ying Quartet. In 2013 she received an Artist Diploma and Suzuki Certification from the Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver, studying with Linda Wang. While at Lamont, she had the privilege of performing in Showcase Lamont! both as a soloist and as a Chamber Competition winner as part of Syncopa Quartet. In the spring of 2012, she received a Recital of Distinction award for the first of her three solo degree recitals. During her time in Denver, Ms. Dickenson freelanced with many different musical organizations, playing all styles of music, while building a private teaching studio and sat as concertmaster with the Lakewood Symphony Orchestra for three concert seasons.
Ms. Dickenson now resides in Los Angeles, performing in numerous projects throughout the year. She is on faculty at SOL-LA Music Academy in Santa Monica. This fall she will begin as a teaching artist with another LA based program, Harmony Project.
Mack Holmberg – Cello
Mack Holmberg began his studies of the cello under the instruction of Art Braendel and Linda Ottum. He was principal cellist of the Anchorage Youth Symphony during their concert seasons as well as their international tours to China and Australia where they played venues in Beijing, Hong Kong, and Sydney.
He earned his Bachelors in Music Performance at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music where he was awarded the Premiere Young Artist scholarship with Faculty Award. During his four years, he studied under cellists Sharon Robinson, Eric Kim, and Susan Moses. Towards the end of his time at Jacobs, he had a substantial studio with the prestigious IU String Academy while learning the nuances of pedagogy from Susan Moses, Mimi Zweig, and Brenda Brenner. He has played in and observed masterclassses with great cellists Janos Starker, Richard Aaron, Arie Lipsky, Anthony Elliot, and Mark Kosower.