Concerts and Tickets

The ACP is proud to present the talented musicians who will perform during our 42nd Season.

 

Cello
Julie Albers
Julie Albers

JULIE ALBERS (cello), American cellist Julie Albers is recognized for her superlative artistry, her charismatic and radiant performing style and her intense musicianship. She was born into a musical family in Longmont, CO and began violin studies at the age of two switching to cello at four. She moved to Cleveland during her junior year of high school to pursue studies through the Young Artist Program at the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied with Richard Aaron. At the age of 17 she made her major orchestral debut with the Cleveland Orchestra and thereafter has performed in recital and as soloist with orchestras throughout North America, Europe, Korea, Taiwan, New Zealand and Australia.

Julie has received various awards including the Grand Prize in South Korea's Gyeongnam International Music Competition and Second Prize in Munich's Internationaler Musikwettbewerbes der ARD. Past seasons have included appearances with the orchestras of Colorado, Indianapolis, Nashville, Saint Paul, San Diego, Seattle, Vancouver, and Munchener Kammerorchester among others. In addition to solo performances Julie participated in a three year residency with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center Two and regularly appears at chamber music festivals around the world. She is currently active with the Albers String Trio and the Cortona Piano Trio. Ms Albers is Assistant Professor and holds the Mary Jean and Charles Yates Cello Chair at the McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University in Macon, Georgia. October of 2005 marked the release of her solo debut recording on the Artek Label.

Clarinet
Laura Ardan
Laura Ardan

LAURA ARDAN (clarinet) is the Principal Clarinet for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO), where she holds the endowed Robert Shaw Chair, and has been performing there since 1982.

She has been a featured soloist with the Orchestra in works by Mozart, Weber, Debussy, Copland, Bernstein, Finzi, Rossini, Shaw, and Michael Gandolfi, and has also performed with the Cleveland Quartet.

Ms. Ardan has performed in the Tanglewood, Marlboro, Mostly Mozart, and Bellingham Music Festivals, and as a guest artist in "Emanuel Ax Invites..." on the Great Performers series at Lincoln Center. A frequent guest of the Atlanta Chamber Players, Georgian Chamber Players, and Emory Chamber Music Society, she plays regularly at the Highlands Chamber Music Festival in North Carolina and the Grand Teton Chamber Music Festival in Wyoming.

A student of Roger Hiller and Stanley Drucker, Ms. Ardan attended The Juilliard School of Music on scholarships from both Juilliard and the Naumburg Foundation. Before joining the ASO, she was a resident clarinetist and teaching artist at the Lincoln Center Institute for four years. She also played in the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra for two seasons.

Photo by J.D. Scott for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

Bassoon
Andrew Brady
Andrew Brady

ANDREW BRADY (bassoon) joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in January 2016 as Principal Bassoon. Andrew was formerly Principal Bassoonist with the Louisiana Philharmonic, a position he held since 2013.

Andrew is from Johnson City, TN, where he began his musical studies on saxophone but was drawn to switch to bassoon at age 14, after seeing the quirky instrument at a band clinic. Four years later he performed on NPR’s From the Top; and in 2010 he received the Grand Prize in the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts Competition, adjudicated by members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. In January 2011, Andrew performed Mozart’s Bassoon Concerto with the Seattle Symphony under invitation from then Music Director Gerard Schwarz. While in Seattle, he gave free public concerts as well as interactive demonstrations in area schools.

An active soloist, Andrew has performed concertos by Mozart, Weber, and Zwilich with the Southeast Symphony, the Los Angeles Doctor’s Symphony, and The Colburn Orchestra, respectively. Enthusiastically involved in music education, he has worked as a teaching artist with the Harmony Project’s Youth Orchestra Los Angeles program, where he assisted underserved teens in learning to play bassoon.

Andrew has appeared with the Los Angeles Opera Company orchestra, and recently with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra of New York in Carnegie Hall and abroad on European tours. He has attended many music festivals including Sunflower Music Festival, Music Academy of the West, and the Tanglewood Music Center. Mr. Brady received his Bachelor of Music degree from The Colburn School Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Richard Beene. Other teachers include Anthony Parnther, Rick Ranti and Suzanne Nelsen.

Violin
David Coucheron
David Coucheron

DAVID COUCHERON (violin) joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra as Concertmaster in September 2010. At the time, he was the youngest concertmaster among any major U.S. orchestra.

Throughout his career, David has worked with conductors including ASO Music Director Robert Spano, Michael Tilson Thomas, Simon Rattle, Mstislav Rostropovich, David Zinman, Roger Norrington, Simone Young, and Charles Dutoit. He has performed as a soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra (Maxim Vengerov conducting), Sendai Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, and Trondheim Symphony Orchestra. He has played solo recitals at the Oslo Chamber Music Festival, Carnegie Hall, Wigmore Hall (London), the Kennedy Center, the Olympic Winter Games (Salt Lake City), as well as in Beograd, Chile, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Serbia, Singapore, and Shanghai. David’s chamber music performances have included appearances at Suntory Hall, Wigmore Hall, the Oslo Chamber Music Festival, and Alice Tully Hall. His recordings with his sister, pianist Julie Coucheron, include “David and Julie” (Naxos/Mudi) and “Debut” (Naxos). Some of his awards and recognitions include first prize at the Concorso Internazionale di Musica “Citta di Pinerolo” competition (Turin, Italy), first prize at the Princess Astrid Competition (Trondheim, Norway), and third prize at the Manchester International Violin Competition (Manchester, U.K.). David also serves as the Artistic Director for the Kon Tiki Chamber Music Festival in Oslo, Norway.

Originally from Oslo, Norway, David began playing violin at the age of three. He earned his Bachelor of Music degree from The Curtis Institute of Music, his Master of Music from The Juilliard School, and his Master of Musical Performance from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, studying with teachers including Igor Ozim, Aaron Rosand, Lewis Kaplan, and David Takeno. David plays a 1725 Stradivarius.

Piano
Julie Coucheron
Julie Coucheron

JULIE COUCHERON (piano) has established an international career, winning first prize in all the national competitions she has attended, in addition to winning prizes in Italy, Germany and in the United States. Ms. Coucheron has worked with musicians such as Lazar Berman, Claude Frank, Emanuel Ax, Vladimir Feltsman, John O’ Connor, Elton John and Chistopher O’Riley and has toured Europe, America, South America and Asia, playing in great halls like Verizon Hall, Wigmore Hall, Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center. She earned her Bachelors and Masters degrees with honors from the Royal Academy of Music in London studying with Christopher Elton and Michael Dussek in addition to getting her teaching Diploma at the same institution. Ms. Coucheron is Artistic Director at the Fjord Cadenza Music Festival in Norway and is also a frequent guest artist at festivals such as the Oslo Chamber Music Festival, Bergen International Music Festival, the Kon Tiki Classical Music Fest, Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival and at La Jolla Summerfest. Since graduating from the Royal Academy of Music in 2009 she regularly tours Europe and America as a freelance soloist and chamber musician.

Trombone
Brian Hecht
Brian Hecht

BRIAN HECHT (trombone), a native of Dallas, Texas, joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra as Bass Trombone in September 2013. Prior to joining the Atlanta Symphony, Brian held the bass trombone position with the United States Navy Band in Washington, DC.

He has performed with other major ensembles throughout his career including the New York Philharmonic, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Philadelphia Orchestra (under the baton of Simon Rattle), San Francisco Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Alabama Symphony Orchestra, Naples Philharmonic, Washington National Opera, Lyric Opera of Baltimore, and the Kennedy Center Ballet.

Brian has been a featured soloist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, U.S. Navy Band, U.S. "Pershing's Own" Army Band, University of Texas Trombone Choir, University of Georgia Trombone Choir, University of Central Arkansas Trombone Choir, Texas State University Trombone Choir, Penn State Trombone Choir and the Georgia Brass Band. He can be heard on several of the U.S. Navy Band's CD’s and DVD’s as well as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra's CD's "Vaughan Williams: Dona Nobis Pacem" and "Christopher Theofanidis' Creation/Creator".

He has been the recipient of numerous performance awards including first prize at the Zellmer-Minnesota Orchestra Trombone Competition, Edwards Big 12 Bass Trombone Solo Competition, and the ETW's Trombone Quartet Competition. In addition, he was a finalist in three major international competitions including the ITA's Edward Kleinhammer Competition, the Donald Yaxley Competition, and the International Trombone Quartet Competition.

Brian received his Master of Music degree from Northwestern University, where he studied with Michael Mulcahy, Charles Vernon, and Peter Ellefson. He earned his Bachelor of Music degree from The University of Texas at Austin, where he studied with Dr. Nathaniel Brickens. Other influential teachers include Jon Bohls of the Dallas Metroplex area and Charles Villarrubia at UT-Austin.

Violin
Helen Hwaya Kim
Helen Kim

HELEN HWAYA KIM (violin), made her orchestral debut with the Calgary Philharmonic at the age of six, and has gone on to become a respected and sought-after artist. She has appeared as a soloist with the Boston Pops at Boston's Symphony Hall, as well as with the Milwaukee and Atlanta Symphony Orchestras.

Ms. Kim earned her Bachelor and Master's Degree from the Juilliard School, where her teachers included Cho-Liang Lin and Dorothy DeLay. While attending Juilliard, she was a winner of the Juilliard Concerto Competition and served as concertmaster of the Juilliard Orchestra. She is the recipient of more than one hundred national and international awards. In 1992, she won the prestigious Artists International Competition in New York and, as a result, gave debut recitals at Carnegie Weill Hall and the Aspen Summer Music Festival.

A native of Canada, Ms. Kim has been engaged by many of Canada's leading orchestras, including the National Arts Center Orchestra, Montreal Metropolitan Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony, Calgary Philharmonic, McGill Chamber Orchestra, and the Windsor, Regina, Victoria and Prince George Symphonies. She has also appeared with the DeKalb, New Orleans, Aspen and Banff Festival Orchestras, and with orchestras in the United Kingdom, Germany and Poland.

Ms. Kim has toured extensively throughout Canada and the United States, including performances at Alice Tully Hall and the Sante Fe and La Jolla International Music Festivals, where she performed with Cho-Liang Lin, Gary Hoffman, Andre Previn, and the Orion String Quartet. She performed Bach’s Double violin concerto with Hilary Hahn at the 2002 Amelia Island Chamber music festival.

An avid performer of new music, she can be heard on the recent CD release of the works of Alvin Singleton on Albany records. Helen performed the world premiere of the “Concertino” by Chen Yi, scored for solo violin and orchestra that was commissioned especially for her and the KSU Orchestra and was recorded for future CD release in 2015.

Ms. Kim currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia, where she served as assistant and associate concertmaster for the Atlanta Symphony for three seasons. She is currently the assistant concertmaster of the Atlanta Opera Orchestra and associate professor of violin at Kennesaw State University.

Violist
Julianne Lee
Julianne Lee

JULIANNE LEE (violin/viola) has a distinctive career as both a violinist and violist, appearing frequently as a soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player. Currently the assistant principal second violinist of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, she has been a member of the violin section since 2006. Lee has toured with the Marlboro Music Festival as well as multiple international tours with the Australian Chamber Orchestra as guest principal violist. In past summers, she has been invited to perform at numerous music festivals including the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, Chamber Music at the Banff Centre, and the Marlboro Music Festival. Lee graduated with an unanimous First prize at the Conservatoire Superieur de Paris in France. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in both violin and viola performance from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, and a Master’s Degree from the New England Conservatory.She is a member of ensemble Mistral and on faculty at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School and Berklee College of Music.

Viola
Catherine Lynn
Catherine Lynn

CATHERINE LYNN (viola) is Assistant Principal Violist of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra; she joined the ASO and the Atlanta Chamber Players in 2002. Ms. Lynn is on the faculty of Kennesaw State University and a viola coach for the Atlanta Symphony Youth Orchestra. In 2014, she will perform the Bartok viola concerto with the KSU Symphony Orchestra. Prior to coming to Atlanta, Ms. Lynn performed with the Rosseels String Quartet and was a frequent guest with the Michigan Chamber Players. She was Principal Viola of the Flint Symphony Orchestra in MI and taught at the Ann Arbor School for the Performing Arts. Ms. Lynn received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Alabama and her Master of Music and Doctorate of Musical Arts degrees from the University of Michigan.

Photo by J.D. Scott for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

Soprano
Ann Marie McPhail
Ann McPhail

ANN-MARIE MCPHAIL (soprano) is Atlanta-born and is one of the region’s most seasoned performers and is quickly establishing herself as a versatile lyric soprano in the United States. She attended Clark Atlanta University for Music Education and received a Master’s in Voice Performance from Georgia State University.

Ms. McPhail made her career debut with the Houston Ebony Opera as the Countess in Mozart’s, The Marriage of Figaro. Her accolades include winner of the Rose-Palmai Tenser Vocal Competition, winner of The American Traditions Competition, and “Diva Goddess” in the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games, Closing Ceremonies.

Ms. McPhail’s credits include singer in Tyler Perry’s movie, For Colored Girls and “Strawberry Woman” in the Atlanta Opera’s 2011 production of Gershwin’s famed Porgy and Bess where she received mention in Opera News.

Recently she covered the role of Clara in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess with the Royal Danish Opera Theatre in Denmark, Copenhagen. This summer she was soloist at the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC with the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, sang at the Opening Ceremony of the Human and Civil Rights Museum in Atlanta, Ga. and participated in the Footsteps of Mandela Concert at Riverside Church in New York.

Ms. McPhail’s upcoming engagements include the Annual St. Paul’s Episcopal Church Christmas Concert, Human Relations Celebration at First UMC of Cumming and a concert at Spelman College.

Ms. McPhail has served as an artist affiliate at Agnes Scott College, Spelman College and Talladega College. She has sung with Paris Comique Opera, Atlanta Opera, Houston Ebony Opera, Opera Ebony, Macon Symphony Orchestra and Savannah Symphony Orchestra.

Bassoon
Laura Najarian
Laura Najarian

LAURA NAJARIAN (bassoon) has played second bassoon with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) since 2005.

Prior to her appointment with the ASO, Laura was Principal Bassoon of the Savannah Symphony for 15 years and spent her summers as Principal Bassoon of the Des Moines Metro Opera. She has also performed with orchestras in Jacksonville (FL), Charlotte, Charleston, Omaha, the North Carolina and Utah Symphonies and the Houston Grand Opera. Summers during college were spent at Tanglewood and the Aspen Music Festival and more recently at the Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival.

Laura graduated from the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music with a Bachelor of Music and studied with Otto Eifert. She later studied with K. David Van Hoesen at the Eastman School of Music, where she received a Master of Music in Performance and Literature degree and a Performer's Certificate while serving as a graduate teaching assistant.

Artistic Director, Piano
Elizabeth Pridgen

ELIZABETH PRIDGEN (Artistic Director, piano) Pianist Elizabeth Pridgen has distinguished herself as a soloist and chamber musician and has appeared in concerts at Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall, Merkin Hall, the Tilles Center on Long Island, Spivey Hall in Atlanta, and the "Rising Stars Series" at the Ravinia Festival. Ms. Pridgen has also performed at Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall, and the Kosciuszko Foundation, and in recitals in London, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Washington D.C., Miami, San Francisco, and throughout the Southeast and Caribbean.

Appointed Artistic Director of the Atlanta Chamber Players in 2014, Ms. Pridgen is leading the ensemble into its 41st season. Ms. Pridgen performs regularly at festivals including the Rome Chamber Music Festival in Rome, Italy, the Strings Music Festival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, the Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival, the Aspen Music Festival, the River To River Festival, the Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival, the Water Island Music Festival, and the Madison Chamber Music Festival. An avid chamber performer, she has collaborated with artists such as Elmar Oliveira, Robert McDuffie, Yo-Yo Ma, Lynn Harrell, Hilary Hahn, Sarah Chang, Anne Akiko Meyers, Jennifer Koh, Nadja Salerno- Sonnenberg, the Diaz String Trio, Cuarteto Latinoamericano, and the American String Quartet. She performs regularly with violinist Amy Schwartz Moretti and cellist Julie Albers as a member of the Cortona Trio and with the Georgian Chamber Players.

Ms. Pridgen is currently a Distinguished Artist and Piano Chair at the McDuffie Center for Strings and holds the G. Leslie Fabian Piano Chair at the Townsend School of Music at Mercer University. She received her Master of Music degree at the Juilliard School where she studied with Joseph Kalichstein and earned her bachelor's degree at the Peabody Conservatory of Music as a student of Ann Schein.

Cello
Brad Ritchie
Brad Ritchie

BRAD RITCHIE (cello) Originally from Portland, Oregon, Brad Ritchie is currently in his 20th season as cellist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Atlanta Chamber Players. He earned his Bachelor of Music at Indiana University where he studied with Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi and Janos Starker. In his senior year, his string quartet won the school's Kuttner Quartet Competition, which provided them with a year of recitals and trips to a number of chamber music competitions from Osaka, Japan to Evian, France. Following a summer of quartet concerts in Europe, Mr. Ritchie enrolled in the Musikhochschule in Freiburg, Germany and earned his graduate degree studying with Adriana Contino. After completing his studies in Germany, Mr. Ritchie played for two years in the New World Symphony in Miami under Michael Tilson Thomas. In 1997 he became a member of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, at which time he also joined the Atlanta Chamber Players. During his 17 years with the ACP, he has made recordings on the CRI, ACA Digital, and MSR labels, and toured extensively, including performances at Carnegie Hall, Boston's Jordan Hall, the American Cathedral in Paris, France, and in the International Chamber Music Festival in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. In addition to his commitments to the ASO and ACP, Brad has played with many other chamber music and new music ensembles in and around Atlanta including Riverside Chamber Players, Thamyris, Emory Chamber Players, Franklin Pond Quartet, GLO-ATL, and Bent Frequency, as well as annual concerts with faculty at Kennesaw State University and recitals with Robert Henry in Highlands, NC. He is a founding member of the contemporary music ensemble Sonic Generator, currently in its 8th season in residence at Georgia Tech University. A highlight of his past summer was to play for a wedding reception at which Clark Howard was in attendance. In his spare time, Brad likes traveling to distant lands, running through the woods, and finding new places to eat.

Photo by J.D. Scott for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

Cello
Christopher Rex
Christopher Rex

CHRISTOPHER REX (cello), , Christopher Rex joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra as Principal in 1979, the same year in which he became the first cellist ever to win the string prize in the biennial Young Artists Competition of the National Federation of Music Clubs. Since then he has appeared as a recitalist and chamber musician across the nation.

Following his studies at the Curtis Institute of Music with Orlando Cole and at the Juilliard School with Leonard Rose, he was a member of the Philadelphia Orchestra under Eugene Ormandy for seven seasons. He has taught at Gettysburg College, the New School of Music in Philadelphia, Georgia State University, and the Eastern Music Festival in Greensboro, North Carolina. He shared Acting Principal duties for the New York Philharmonic's European tour in 1988.

Christopher's solo performances with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra include works by Brahms, Beethoven, Strauss, Tchaikovsky, Shostakovich, Bloch, Elgar, Schumann, Dvořák, Saint-Saëns, Haydn, Herbert, Hindemith, Prokofiev, Barber, Golijov, and Stephen Paulus.

Christopher directs the Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival, which he founded, and the Madison Chamber Music Festival in Georgia. A regular performer at the Highlands Chamber Music Festival in North Carolina, he has been principal cellist of the orchestras at the Colorado Music Festival in Boulder and the Grand Teton Music Festival in Wyoming. He has performed as a soloist at the Montreal Chamber Music Festival, Brevard and Eastern Music Festival in North Carolina and the Chautauqua Festival in New York. He served on the board of directors of Chamber Music America for six years, is head of the Cello Department of Georgia State University School of Music, and is on the chamber music faculty of the of the McDuffie Center for Strings at Mercer University in Macon.

Clarinet
Alcides Rodriguez
Alcides Rodriguez

ALCIDES RODRIGUEZ (clarinet), a native of Venezuela, was appointed bass clarinetist with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in September of 2005. Before joining the ASO, Alcides was the second and bass clarinetist with the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. He received his Masters Degree in Music Performance from Northwestern University. He studied clarinet with Russell Dagon, bass clarinet with J. Lawrie Bloom and chamber music with Larry Combs. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Music from Baylor University, where he studied with Richard Shanley.

Alcides began his musical training in 1987 in the Youth Symphony Orchestra of his hometown of Guanare, Venezuela. He continued his clarinet studies at the National Conservatory of Music of Venezuela with Professors Valdemar Rodriguez and Luis Rossi. While in Venezuela, he also studied with distinguished clarinetists Jorge Montilla, Daniel Granados, and Carlos Mujica, and participated in master classes with Walter Boeykens, Paul Meyer, and Eddy Vanoosthuyse. As a soloist, he has been featured on many occasions with the Portuguesa State Symphony Orchestra in Venezuela, the Northwestern and Baylor University Orchestras, performing works of Mozart, Rossini, Weber, Nielsen, Francaix and Copland. His festival engagements have included the New Hampshire Music Festival, the National Repertory Orchestra, the National Orchestral Institute, and the Pacific Music Festival in Japan. Alcides also has an avid interest in the folk music and instruments of Venezuela. In 2005, he was featured with the Jacksonville Symphony performing the Concerto for Maracas and Orchestra by Ricardo Lorenz. Mr. Rodriguez is an Artist Clinician for Rico and Buffet Crampon and plays Buffet clarinets exclusively.

Photo by J.D. Scott for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

Flute
Todd Skitch
Todd Skitch

TODD SKITCH (flute). Hailing from Canada, flutist Todd Skitch joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) in September 2013. He is also a member of the Atlanta Chamber Players and is the Artist-in-Residence at Kennesaw State University. Mr. Skitch started his orchestral career with the Memphis Symphony Orchestra in 1997 after completing degrees at the University of Toronto and McGill University in Montreal, where his principal teachers were Timothy Hutchins and Nora Shulman. Mr. Skitch’s distinguished career as a teacher and symphony musician includes many credits: an original member of the IRIS Orchestra with Michael Stern; Bellingham Festival of Music; Memphis Chamber Music Society; Tanglewood Music Center; Blossom Music Festival at Kent University, where he received the Maurice Sharp Award for outstanding flute applicant; Spoleto Festival USA; and the National Repertory Orchestra.While in Memphis, Mr. Skitch served as the Chair of the Board of Directors and the Orchestra Manager for the Memphis Youth Symphony. He also specialized in preparing young flutists for All-State competitions and college auditions. Mr. Skitch has been heard on CBC Radio-Canada, WKNO-Memphis, and as a soloist with the Memphis Symphony and IRIS Orchestra. In 2003 Todd joined the Canadian group Ensemble Noir on a historic, three-nation African tour to Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa.

Trumpet
Stuart Stephenson
Stuart Stephenson

STUART STEPHENSON (trumpet) joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO) as Principal Trumpet at the beginning of the 2013-14 season.

A Fairfax Station, Virginia native, Stuart began playing trumpet at age ten and also plays the piano. He holds a bachelor’s degree from The Juilliard School and a master’s degree from Northwestern University.

Stuart’s notable teachers include Barbara Butler, Charlie Geyer, Chris Martin, Tom Rolfs, Tom Cupples, Adel Sanchez, Raymond Mase, and Mark Gould.

Stuart has performed at the Aspen Music Festival, Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival, and Tanglewood Music Center, and maintains a private trumpet studio in Atlanta.

Oboe
Elizabeth Koch Tiscione
Elizabeth Koch Tiscione

ELIZABETH KOCH TISCIONE (oboe), a native of Hamburg NY, began her position as Principal Oboe of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in 2007 and made her chamber music debut a few weeks later with the ACP at Spivey Hall. Mrs. Tiscione has been playing the oboe since the age of nine. She studied at the Interlochen Arts Academy under Daniel Stolper and the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia under Richard Woodhams. In addition to her position in the ASO, Mrs. Tiscione has performed as soloist with the Great Lakes Chamber Orchestra, the Colorado College Summer Music Festival, the World Youth Symphony, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, and the Atlanta Symphony. She has also performed with the orchestras of Buffalo, Rochester, St. Paul, St. Louis, Baltimore, and Philadelphia. An avid chamber musician, Mrs. Tiscione has performed with many groups, including the Atlanta, Ritz, and Georgian Chamber Players. She has participated in the Cape Cod, Amelia Island, Twickenham, and Tannery Pond Chamber Music Festivals, and has been a guest artist with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. In the summers she is a member of the Grand Teton Music Festival Orchestra. Mrs. Tiscione is on the faculty of Kennesaw State University and has presented masterclasses all over the country. Her love for teaching has taken her as far as Colombia where she is a faculty member with Festicamara, in Medellin. Recently married, Elizabeth and Michael Tiscione live in Smyrna/Vinings with their dog and two cats and they share a love of California wine.

Photo by J.D. Scott for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra

Trumpet
Michael Tiscione
Michael Tiscione

MICHAEL TISCIONE (trumpet), originally of Monroe, NY, joined the trumpet section of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra during the 2002-2003 season. He left the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra to join the San Francisco Symphony as second trumpet for the 2010-2011 season and has since returned to the Orchestra, where he is currently Acting Associate Principal Trumpet and Second Trumpet.

Michael has traveled across the US to perform with many notable ensembles, including the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Toronto Symphony, Utah Symphony, Indianapolis Symphony, and IRIS Chamber Orchestra. During the summer months he serves as second trumpet with both the Sun Valley Summer Symphony and the Bellingham Music Festival Orchestra. In 2015, he began performing as principal trumpet with Festival Mozaic in San Luis Obispo, CA, and in the section at the Strings Festival in Steamboat Springs, CO.

Recent solo engagements have included appearances with the United States Military Academy at West Point, the Georgia Philharmonic, and with the Georgia Brass Band at the 2012 International Trumpet Guild Conference. An avid chamber musician, Michael has been a member of the Atlanta Symphony Brass Quintet since 2005. He performs and records with the Burning River Brass, has recently toured China with the Chicago Symphony Brass Quintet, and performs regularly with the Atlanta Chamber Players as well as at the Amelia Island Chamber Music Festival. He is currently an adjunct faculty member at Kennesaw State University following temporary appointments at the University of Georgia and Georgia State University. Tiscione is married to the Principal Oboe of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Elizabeth Koch Tiscione.

Michael holds degrees from Indiana University (BM) and Northwestern University (MM). His teachers have included John Rommel, Charles Geyer, Barbara Butler, and John Charles Thomas.

Double Bass
Daniel Tosky
Daniel Tosky

DANIEL TOSKY (double bass) joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in January 2016. Previously, he was a member of the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, FL and has performed with the New York Philharmonic and Philadelphia Orchestra as a guest musician. He has held fellowships at orchestral festivals including the Aspen Music Festival, Music Academy of the West, and the New York String Orchestra Seminar. Other festival appearances include Le Domaine Forget, the Brevard Music Center, and the Wabass Institute.

Outside of the orchestra, Daniel has performed as a chamber artist in Europe and Asia, and recently performed Nino Rota's Divertimento Concertante with the Western Piedmont Symphony. Equally enthusiastic about arts education, he is devoted to keeping music in schools. He teaches privately and has traveled to Colombia, South America on invitation of La Academia Filarmónica de Medellín to offer lessons and masterclasses.

A native of North Carolina, Daniel began his musical education in the public school system and would go on to attend the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where he had the opportunity to study under pedagogue Lawrence Hurst. After completing his studies at IU, he would gain a master’s degree as a member of the Orchestral Performance program at the Manhattan School of Music, working with Timothy Cobb. Other influential teachers include Peter Lloyd, Jeffrey Turner, Hal Robinson and Orin O'Brien.

Trombone
Nathan Zgonc
Nathan Zgonc

NATHAN ZGONC (trombone) joined the trombone section of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in 2011. Nathan has received numerous awards, including special prizewinner at the Budapest International Trombone Competition and first place at the Zellmer, Frank Smith Memorial, and Robert Marsteller solo competitions.

In 2009 Nathan spent the summer as the Principal Trombone of the Seattle Symphony for Wagner's Ring Cycle. He has also performed with the San Francisco, Cincinnati, National, and Houston symphony orchestras, as well as the Kennedy Center Opera Orchestra. Mr. Zgonc previously held positions with the Vancouver Symphony, Utah Symphony and Opera, Sarasota Orchestra, San Antonio Symphony, Oregon Symphony, and United States Navy Band.

Originally from Fairview, Oregon, Nathan studied at Indiana University, San Francisco Conservatory, and Manhattan School of Music. His teachers include David Finlayson, Mark Lawrence, and Keith Brown. He is featured on recordings with Vancouver Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, Oregon Symphony, U.S. Navy Band, and Seattle Symphony.

In September 2010, Nathan gave the world premiere of Aura by Tony DiLorenzo in honor of his mother, Lorely Zgonc — the late concertmaster of the Portland Opera and Ballet.

Featured Guest Artists for the 42nd Concert Season

Violin
Andrés Cárdenes
Andres Cardenes

ANDRÉS CÁRDENES (violin) is recognized worldwide as a musical phenomenon, Grammy-nominated Andrés Cárdenes parlays his myriad talents into one of classical music’s most versatile careers. An intensely passionate and personally charismatic artist, Cuban-born Cárdenes has garnered international acclaim from critics and audiences alike for his compelling performances as a violinist, conductor, violist, chamber musician, concertmaster, and recording artist.

Since capturing Second Prize in the 1982 Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition in Moscow, Mr. Cárdenes has appeared as a soloist on four continents with over 100 orchestras including The Philadelphia Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, St. Louis Symphony, Moscow Philharmonic, Dallas Symphony, Helsinki Philharmonic, Shanghai Symphony, Sinfonica Nacional de Caracas, Sinfonica de Barcelona, and the Bavarian Radio Orchestra. He has collaborated with many of the world's greatest conductors, including Lorin Maazel, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Mariss Jansons, Charles Dutoit, Christoph Eschenbach, Sir André Previn, Leonard Slatkin, Jaap van Zweden, David Zinman and Manfred Honeck.

As an ambassador for music of our time, Mr. Cárdenes has commissioned and premiered over 70 works by American, Turkish and Latin American composers such as David Stock, Mike Garson, Erberk Eriylmaz, Leonardo Balada, Ricardo Lorenz, Eduardo Alonso-Crespo, Roberto Sierra, and Marilyn Taft Thomas. His concerto repertoire includes over 100 works, ranging from the Baroque era to the present.

Mr. Cárdenes has thrice served as President of the Jury of the Stradivarius International Violin Competition and in 2011 joined the jury of the Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition in St. Petersburg, Russia.

A Cultural Ambassador for UNICEF from 1980-1991 and an indefatigable spokesperson for the arts, Mr. Cárdenes has received numerous awards for his teaching, performances, recordings and humanitarian efforts, most notably from the Mexican Red Cross and the cities of Los Angeles and Shanghai. He was named Pittsburgh Magazine’s 1997 Classical Artist of the Year and received the 2001 “Shalom” Award from Kollell’s International Jewish Center and the 2013 Chesed-Kindness Award from the Chabad Foundation for promoting world harmony and peace through music.

Mr. Cárdenes was appointed Concertmaster of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra by Maestro Lorin Maazel in 1989 and departed after the 2010 season to concentrate on his conducting, solo and chamber music careers.

As an acclaimed chamber music player, Andrés Cárdenes has performed with artists such as Yo-Yo Ma, Pinchas Zukerman, Christof Eschenbach, Jon Kimura Parker, Andre Previn, Jaime Laredo, Elliot Fisk, Leonard Slatkin, and Joseph Silverstein. Ensembles include Lincoln Center Chamber Players, Miami String Quartet, Gryphon Trio, Miro Quartet, Fry Street Quartet, Amernet Quartet, Ying Quartet, Shanghai Quartet, and the Cuarteto Latinoamericano.

He has been the violinist of the Diaz Trio since 1995 and has been a member of the Carnegie Mellon Piano Trio since 1991.

Among his many distinctions are a Grammy nomination in 1991 for his recording of the Tchaikovsky and Arensky Piano Trios with Mona Golabek and Jeffrey Solow.

From 2008-14, Cárdenes was Music Director of Strings Music Festival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, where Cárdenes also served as conductor of the Strings Festival Orchestra.

Tenor
Timothy Miller
Timothy Miller

TIMOTHY MILLER (tenor) is an active performer with both national and international credits. Operatic roles include Monastatos and First Armored Man in Mozart’s Die Zauberflӧte, Street in Davis’ X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X, Un Messaggero in Verdi’s Aida, and Parpignol in Puccini's La Boheme. In June of 2008, Timothy sang the role of Crab Man in critically acclaimed performances of Porgy and Bess at the Opéra-Comique in Paris and on tour in Luxembourg, Granada, and Normandy. He has also appeared in concert performances of Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s Magnificat, and a concert version of excerpts from Richard Strauss’ Der Rosenkavalier performed with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. In March 2013, Timothy sang the role of Comrade Alexander Ossipon in the world premier of Curtis Bryant’s The Secret Agent with libretto by Alan Reichman.

Perhaps most widely recognized for his stirring renditions of "God Bless America” during the seventh inning stretch of Atlanta Braves home games, Timothy has extended his exposure well beyond the concert stage. Soloist for the 2011 Georgia Gubernatorial Inauguration Ceremony, featured artist promos for Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim, and featured artist in the December 2012 edition of The Atlantan Magazine “Patrons and Players” rounds out a growing list of memorable career highlights. In April 2016, Timothy made his debut with the Georgia Symphony as tenor soloist in Beethoven's ninth symphony.