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Recognized as a multifaceted and charismatic musician, Swiss-Venezuelan violinist Simón Gollo enjoys a successful international career as a soloist, chamber musician, and conductor. At the same time, he is a committed recording artist, artistic director, and pedagogue. Simón Gollo has appeared on countless stages across Europe, Asia, and the American continent from Canada to Chile. His long career has led him to perform at prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall (New York), Cadogan Hall (London), the 92nd Street Y’s Kaufmann Concert Hall (New York), the National Gallery of Art (Washington, DC), Bolívar Hall (London), the Teatro Teresa Carreño (Caracas), the Auditorio Blas Galindo (Mexico City), the Auditorio Manuel de Falla (Granada), and the Teatro Mayor (Bogotá), and for renowned organizations such as the BBC Proms Festival, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, and the Chamber Music Society of Detroit. He has collaborated in these performances with international figures such as Alessio Bax, Ricardo Morales, Dmitri Berlinsky, Monique Duphil, Edicson Ruiz, Paul Rosenthal, John Novacek, Alissa Margulis, Jakob Koranyi, Miguel da Silva (Ysaÿe Quartet), Richard Young (Vermeer Quartet), Randolph Kelly, and the Cuarteto Latinoamericano, among many others. As a soloist, Simón Gollo has performed the greatest violin concertos with prestigious orchestras such as the Orquesta Sinfónica de Venezuela, Filarmónica de Bogotá, Orquesta Sinfónica de Salta (Argentina), Central Ohio Symphony (USA), Chamber Orchestra of San Antonio (USA), and the Orquesta de Caxias do Sul (Brazil), under the baton of prominent conductors such as Conrad van Alphen, Theodore Kuchar, and Carlos Izcaray. He obtained the Fundación Cisneros 2012 scholarship to attend the Aspen Music Festival, where he took lessons from renowned professors Alex Kerr and Naoko Tanaka. He received his musical education in Switzerland under the tutelage of his mentors Anne Bauer, Gyula Stuller, Gabor Takacs and Patrick Genet. From 2012 to 2019, Simón Gollo was a member of the Dalí String Quartet and La Catrina Quartet—ensembles specializing in Latin American music—participating in numerous successful tours and performances within and outside of the United States. His discography with La Catrina Quartet, which includes a Latin Grammy–nominated recording, is available on the RYCY Productions, Inc., and Summit Records labels. His passion for chamber orchestras led him to join the Orchestra of St. Luke’s in New York and to play leading roles in major festivals, tours, and concerts with other chamber orchestras such as the Camerata Nordica (Sweden), Post Classical Ensemble (Washington, DC), Dallas Chamber Symphony, and Classical Music Institute Chamber Orchestra (San Antonio). In January 2020 he was guest concertmaster for the Orquesta Ciudad de Granada under the baton of Michał Nesterowicz. Simón Gollo is currently a permanent member of the Reverón Piano Trio and guest first violinist of the Cuarteto Q-Arte, which tours, records, and performs throughout Colombia and Europe. Simón Gollo is a gifted and committed pedagogue who keeps a very busy schedule teaching both violin and chamber music. He has served on the faculty of the Summit Music Festival in New York and regularly collaborates as a substitute professor at the Juilliard School Pre-College Division (class of Naoko Tanaka). For six years, he served as a violin professor at the internationally recognized and acclaimed program El Sistema and at the Mozarteum de Caracas, both in Venezuela. He is now an assistant professor of violin at New Mexico State University (NMSU), and he joins the faculty roster at the California Orchestra Institute in 2020. Appointed conductor of the New Mexico State University Philharmonic in 2016, Simón Gollo has experienced extraordinary growth in this facet of his career that has not gone unnoticed. He has received numerous invitations to conduct both youth and professional orchestras in the United States, Mexico, El Salvador, Colombia, Brazil, and Venezuela. Simón Gollo is a recording artist for the international recording label IBS Classical.
Regularly tours the Americas, Europe and Asia as solo recitalist, chamber musician and concerto soloist; in the latter capacity he has presented over thirty concerti with dozens of orchestras. Following a summer filled with re-engagements at major festivals throughout the United states and Canada, John Novacek’s current season is highlighted by his returns to Massachusetts’ Springfield Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of Kevin Rhodes, and Orquesta Filarmónica de la Ciudad de México, conducted by Scott Yoo. He also continues his collaborative work with violinist Leila Josefowicz, performing at Amherst College, The Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York City’s Park Avenue Armory and Washington, DC’s Library of Congress and The Phillips Collection. John Novacek’s major American performances have been heard in New York City’s Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ Avery Fisher Hall and Alice Tully Hall, 92nd Street Y, Columbia University’s Miller Theater, Merkin Concert Hall, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Symphony Space, Washington’s The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Boston’s Symphony Hall, Chicago’s Symphony Center and Los Angeles’ Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Hollywood Bowl and Royce Hall, while international venues include Paris’ Theatre des Champs-Elysées, Salle Gaveau and Musée du Louvre, London’s Wigmore Hall and Barbican Centre, as well as most of the major concert halls of Japan. He is also a frequent guest artist at festivals, here and abroad, including New York City’s Mostly Mozart Festival, California’s Festival Mozaic and those of Aspen, Cape Cod, Caramoor, Chautauqua, Colorado College, Great Lakes, Mendocino, Mimir, Ravinia, Seattle, SummerFest La Jolla, Wolf Trap, BBC Proms (England), Braunschweig (Germany), Lucerne, Menuhin and Verbier (Switzerland), Majorca (Spain), Sorrento (Italy), Stavanger (Norway), Toulouse (France) and Sapporo (Japan). He has also made his debut with the Orquesta Filarmónica de la Ciudad de México. John Novacek is a much sought-after collaborative artist and has performed with Joshua Bell, Matt Haimovitz, Leila Josefowicz, Cho-Liang Lin, Yo-Yo Ma, Truls Mork, Elmar Oliveira and Emmanuel Pahud, and, as well as the Colorado, Harrington, Jupiter, New Hollywood, St. Lawrence, SuperNova and Ying string quartets. He also tours widely as a member of Intersection, a piano trio that includes violinist Kaura Frautschi and cellist Kristina Reiko Coooper. John Novacek took top prizes at both the Leschetizky and Joanna Hodges international piano competitions, among many others. He studied piano with Polish virtuoso Jakob Gimpel at California State University, Northridge, where he earned a Bachelor of Music degree, summa cum laude. Subsequently, he earned a Master of Music degree from New York City’s Mannes College of Music, where his instructors were Peter Serkin in piano and Felix Galimer in chamber music. Mr. Novacek’s coaches in composition included Frederick Werle, Aurelio de la Vega and Daniel Kessner. John Novacek’s own compositions and arrangements have been performed by the Pacific Symphony, The 5 Browns, Concertante, Manasse/Nakamatsu Duo, Harrington String Quartet, Ying Quartet, Millennium, Quattro Mani and The Three Tenors. He has recorded over 30 CDs, encompassing solo and chamber music by most major composers from Bach to Bartók, as well as many contemporary and original scores. Mr. Novacek records for Philips, Nonesuch, Arabesque, Warner Classics, Sony/BMG, Koch International, Universal Classics, Ambassador, Pony Canyon, Four Winds, Arkay, Virtuoso and EMI Classics. CD titles include Road Movies (2004 GRAMMY nomination as “Best Chamber Music Performance”), Great Mozart Piano Works, Spanish Rhapsody, Novarags (original ragtime compositions), Classic Romance, Hungarian Sketches, Intersection, Romances et Meditations and, with Leila Josefowicz, Americana (GRAMOPHONE: “Editor’s Choice”), For the End of Time, Shostakovich and Recital (BBC MUSIC MAGAZINE: 5 stars/June 2005’s chamber choice). John Novacek is a Steinway Artist.
Associate Professor of Violin at Florida State University, violinist Benjamin Sung is also a Faculty Artist and violin coordinator at the Brevard Music Center, and principal second violin of the Brevard Music Center Orchestra. Some concert highlights include the Brevard Music Festival; a complete Beethoven cycle with pianist David Kalhous; an appearance with the FSU University Symphony Orchestra in Piazzolla’s Estaciones Portenas for the ASTA National Conference; and a TED talk for TEDx Fargo. An enthusiastic advocate of contemporary music, Sung has recorded the music of composers Steve Rouse and Marc Satterwhite for Centaur Records, has performed and taught for Studio 2021 at Seoul National University, and has worked with many of the greatest composers of this generation, including John Adams, Pierre Boulez, George Crumb, and Helmut Lachenmann. In 2012, he released an album of new American works entitled FluxFlummoxed on Albany Records, a recording hailed by Fanfare Magazine as “a brilliant performance of four superb works” with “impeccable intonation and tone production.”
Dr. Ingrid Gerling, a violinist native of Porto Alegre, Brazil, has performed extensively as a soloist, recitalist, and chamber musician throughout the United States, South America, Europe, and Asia. Currently she holds the positions of Orchestra Director and Professor of Violin at both San Jacinto College and the University of St. Thomas. She is also on faculty for the American Festival of the Arts Chamber Music Academy. As a very passionate and dedicated chamber musician, she is a member of the Axiom Quartet, a professional string quartet based in Houston that is now in their seventh season. She also has a violin and piano duo with concert pianist, Dr. Andreea Mut. Gerling was selected to be a DaCamera Young Artist Fellow for the 2015-2017 season, a highly competitive engagement which led her to perform numerous chamber music concerts throughout Houston. Recordings of Dr. Gerling can be found on the PARMA and IBS CLASSICAL labels.
Randolph Kelly has enjoyed a distinguished and multifaceted career as principal violist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. He was signed by André Previn in 1976 and has since played under the direction of Lorin Maazel and Mariss Jansons. Previn once wrote that Kelly “transformed his section into what I believe is the best viola section of any orchestra in America.” In addition to his orchestral career, Kelly’s virtuosity as a soloist and chamber musician has been celebrated around the world. He has collaborated with such artists as Yo-Yo Ma, André Previn, Pinchas Zukerman and Trauls Mork, among others. He has recorded and toured extensively with the Los Angeles Piano Quartet and has been invited to perform as a guest artist at chamber music festivals in Japan, Australia, Europe, China, Taiwan and Russia. He made his European solo debut when Lorin Maazel invited him to play the Walton Concerto with the National Orchestra of France. In addition to his rigorous performing schedule, Kelly has recorded a wide range of music for the Albany, Naxos, Music Masters and IBS Classical labels.
Maki Kubota is an award-winning cellist who has performed for audiences internationally to great acclaim. A member of the Houston Symphony Orchestra, he has also appeared with the New York Philharmonic, Dallas Symphony Orchestra, and Charleston Symphony Orchestra. As a chamber musician he has collaborated with artists such as Lynn Harrell, Jeremy Denk, Glenn Dicterow and Karen Dreyfus, performing at venues such as the Library of Congress, the Embassy of Singapore, and the Morgan Library. Some highlights include appearances in Europe for a tour with the Houston Symphony, Colombia for a performance with the Medellin Philharmonic and faculty residency for their national Youth Philharmonic, Granada Spain to record for IBS Classical, Santa Barbara as a guest performer at the Music Academy of the West and San Diego for La Jolla Summerfest, as well as other engagements as a teacher, recitalist and chamber musician. Maki Kubota was appointed as a cellist with the Houston Symphony by Andres Orozco-Estrada in 2016. He plays a cello made in 1767 by Johannes Theodorus Cuypers.
Considered one of the greatest exponents of the belcantist repertoire of recent years, Mariola Cantarero has also obtained important triumphs as a soprano of the leading theaters in Europe, and beyond our continent in America and Asia. She has performed under the baton of world-renowned conductors like Zubin Mehta, Alberto Zedda, Jesús López Cobos, Daniel Oren, Bruno Campanella, and Roberto Abbado. Cantorero has received numerous awards for her career such as “Premio Ópera Actual”, “Revelación del Círculo de Amigos del Liceo”, “Premio Imagen de la Ciudad de Granada”, “Ojo Crítico de RNE”, “La Mención de Honor de la Diputación de Granada”, and “La Medalla de Oro de la Ciudad de Granada”, as well as “La Medalla de Oro de Andalucía”. Her extensive discography includes: “Luisa Fernanda” with Plácido Domingo at the Teatro Real in Madrid, “Falstaff” directed by Zubin Mehta at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, “La Gazza Ladra” at the Rossini Opera Festival, “Il Viaggio a Reims” at the Liceo de Barcelona, or” I Puritani” at the Amsterdam Opera.

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Written between 1889 and 1891, the Concert is unique in the chamber music repertoire—scored for solo violin and piano with string quartet. Chausson entitled it Concert (French for concerto) rather than “Sextet,” but the work lies somewhere between a double concerto, in which the two solo instruments are pitted against an entire orchestra, and a sextet, in which all the instruments are more or less equal. Chausson dedicated the Concert to Eugène Ysaÿe, who played the solo violin part at the premiere in Brussels on March 4, 1892. The Crickboom Quartet played the remaining string parts, and Auguste Pierret, the pianist.

The artists on this CD perform at prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall (New York), Cadogan Hall (London), 92nd Street Y’s Kaufmann Concert Hall (New York), National Gallery of Art (Washington DC), Bolívar Hall (London), Teatro Teresa Carreño (Caracas), Auditorio Blas Galindo (México, DF), Auditorio Manuel de Falla, (Granada), the Teatro Mayor (Bogotá), and for renowned organizations such as the BBC Proms Festival, the Philadelphia Chamber Music Society, and the Chamber Music Society of Detroit.

Ernest CHAUSSON: Concert for Violin, Piano and String Quartet in D major, op.21 – IV.Trés animé (selec.)

SIMÓN GOLLO, violin soloist
JOHN NOVACEK, piano soloist

String Quartet:
Benjamin Sung (violin I)
Ingrid Gerling (violin II)
Randolph Kelly (viola)
Maki Kubota (cello)