Chamber Music Series

Todd Palmer. Photo by Christian SteinerTodd Palmer, clarinet
Monday, September 26, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

Having been involved in an array of creative and diverse artistic presentations throughout his career, clarinetist Todd Palmer has appeared as performance artist, concerto soloist, recitalist, chamber music collaborator, educator, arranger, and presenter in a variety of musical endeavors around the world. He has appeared as soloist with many symphony and chamber orchestras including those of Houston, Atlanta, St. Paul, Cincinnati, Montréal, BBC Scotland, and has shared the stage with a variety of the world's most renowned artists and ensembles such as sopranos Kathleen Battle, Renée Fleming, Elizabeth Futral, Heidi Grant Murphy, Dawn Upshaw; and the St. Lawrence, Brentano, Borromeo, Chiara, Daedelus, Lark, Pacifica and Ying string quartets.

Mr. Palmer has collaborated with numerous composers including Thomas Adès, David Bruce, Ricky Ian Gordon, Christopher Rouse, Mason Bates, Ned Rorem, George Tsontakis, and Osvaldo Golijov. He commissioned Ricky Ian Gordon’s theatre work Orpheus and Euridice, which has been presented by numerous organizations including Great Performers at Lincoln Center, Chicago Opera Theater, Long Beach Opera, Roanoke Opera, Long Leaf Opera and Urban Arias of Washington D.C. He has also gone on to champion Osvaldo Golijov’s klezmer clarinet quintet The Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind and gave the world premiere of David Bruce’s Gumboots at Carnegie Hall with the St. Lawrence Quartet. He was the first wind player to be awarded the grand prize in the Ima Hogg Young Artist Auditions and later went on to win the Young Concert Artist International Auditions in NYC.

Palmer has appeared as recitalist and lecturer at major performing arts centers and universities in 48 states. His appearances abroad have included concerto, recital and chamber music performances in Germany, France, the Netherlands, Italy, England, Canada, Mexico, Columbia, Brazil, the Caribbean, Japan, Taiwan and China. He has been a participant for 20 years at Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston SC, and was a member of the highly popular touring group Spoleto Chamber Music USA, which was heard around the U.S. for 10 years and on annual NPR broadcasts. He has attended many other summer music festivals in the US and Canada over the years including Ravinia, Music@Menlo, Banff, La Jolla SummerFest, Bravo!, the Caramoor, Cartagena, Bridgehampton, Portland, Rockport, Halifax, and Vancouver Chamber Music Festivals. He also participated for five summers at the Marlboro Music Festival in Vermont, as well as the Tanglewood Music Festival where he received the Leonard Bernstein Fellowship. In addition to a wealth of chamber music performances, he has also held principal clarinet positions in the Minnesota Orchestra, Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, the Gotham Opera of NYC, the Grand Teton Festival, and in Lincoln Center's revivals of South Pacific and The King & I. Moreover, Mr. Palmer has also collaborated with director Robert La Page in The Nightingale and Other Fables at BAM, and choreographers Doug Varone, Lar Lubovitch and Mark Morris, for whom he gave the world premiere of Crosswalk, a new work for clarinet and dance especially created for him in 2013.

Also an arranger for a variety of mixed ensembles, Palmer has had many of his works performed at various festivals and venues throughout the country and on many annual broadcasts on NPR’s

Performance Today - these most notably being his Première Rhapsodie of Debussy (published by Boosey&Hawkes); chamber nonets of Weber’s Invitation to the Dance, and a suite from André Messager’s ballet The Two Pigeons.

Recordings for EMI, DG, Koch, Naxos and Ghostlight.

The Chiara Quartet. Photo by Lisa Marie MazzuccoThe Chiara Quartet
Wednesday, November 2, 2016, 7:30 p.m.

Renowned for bringing fresh excitement to traditional string quartet repertoire as well as for creating insightful interpretations of new music, the Chiara String Quartet captivates its audiences throughout the country. Lauded for its "highly virtuosic, edge-of-the-seat playing" (The Boston Globe), the quartet is currently Hixson-Lied Artist-in-Residence at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and was the 2015-2016 quartet-in-residence at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Founded in 2000, the Chiara is moving forward by taking a cue from the past. Harkening back to a tradition that is centuries old and still common among soloists, the Chiara Quartet has adopted a new way of performing: from memory. The Chiara has recently recorded Bartók by Heart, a 2-CD set featuring Bartók’s six string quartets, played entirely from memory, slated for release on August 26, 2016 on Azica. The quartet’s latest album, Brahms by Heart, was released in March 2014 to critical acclaim.

The Chiara Quartet regularly performs in major concert halls across the country and has toured China, Korea, and Sweden. Recent collaborators include The Juilliard String Quartet, Joel Krosnick, Roger Tapping, Simone Dinnerstein, Norman Fischer, and Paul Katz. The Chiara has been committed to the creation of new music for string quartet since its inception, and has commissioned composers such as Gabriela Lena Frank, Jefferson Friedman, Nico Muhly, Robert Sirota.

The Chiara trained and taught at The Juilliard School, mentoring for two years with the Juilliard Quartet, as recipients of the Lisa Arnhold Quartet Residency. Chiara (key-ARE-uh) is an Italian word, meaning "clear, pure, or light."

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