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Charles Wadsworth



CHARLES WADSWORTH is an international favorite, acclaimed both as a pianist and as the creator of chamber music events worldwide. He first drew international attention in 1960 at the Festival of Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy, where he originated the Festival's famed Midday Concerts (Concerti di Mezzogiorno). In 1977 he started the chamber concert series of the Spoleto USA Festival in Charleston, SC, which he continues to direct, perform as pianist and introduce as its acclaimed host.

In 1969, he organized and performed in the opening concerts of Alice Tully Hall. As Founding Artistic Director of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, he then led twenty seasons of concerts with wit and originality, bringing chamber music unprecedented interest and acceptance. He commissioned 65 new chamber works from celebrated composers such as Boulez, Barber, and Bernstein as well as young composers. He presented in his concerts such artists as Beverly Sills, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, and André -atts, and brought to public attention such then-new artists as Kathleen Battle, Richard Goode, Yo-Yo Ma, Peter Serkin, Pinchas Zukerman and Jessye Norman. The wealth and variety of repertoire he unearthed and the success of his superlative programming have inspired new generations of virtuoso artists to perform chamber music, and fostered the creation of chamber music festivals and organizations throughout the United States and around the world. For these achievements he has been honored by the French Government as a Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters, and by Italy as a Cavaliere Ufficiale in the Order of Merit.

In 1996 for the Olympics in Atlanta, Mr. Wadsworth created a spectacular concert in which Pinchas Zukerman, Itzhak Perlman, Lynn Harrell and Frederica Von Stade performed along with other notable artists. He is Artistic Director of the Musical Masterworks series in Old Lyme, CT, and chamber concert series in Beaufort, Columbia, Hilton Head and Camden, South Carolina. He plays regularly from coast to coast with his "Spoleto USA Chamber Music" group and "Charles Wadsworth and Friends" programs. In June 2001, he inaugurated the musical component of a new multi-arts Festival at Espace Pierre Cardin in Paris, sponsored by The French American Center for the Arts.

Mr. Wadsworth has been honored by New York with the Handel Medallion, the City's highest cultural award, and honorary Doctorates from the University of South Carolina, Converse College and Connecticut College. He has performed for Presidents Kennedy, Nixon, Ford, Carter and Reagan at the White House. The City of Newnan, Georgia recently honored its hometown celebrity by renovating and renaming the Art Deco municipal auditorium, the Charles Wadsworth Auditorium, in which he has presented concerts annually since 1990.

Since winning the first prize in the 1986 Naumburg International Cello Competition, ANDRÉS DÍAZ has exhilarated both critics and audiences with his intense and charismatic performances. A 1998 awardee of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant as well as a generous grant from the Susan W. Rose Fund for Music, he is currently artist-in-residence at Brevard Music Center in Brevard, North Carolina. Born in Santiago, Chile, he began studying the cello at the age of five. Three years later he moved to Atlanta, Georgia, and studied at the Georgia Academy of Music with Martha Gerchefski. He graduated from the New England Conservatory, where he worked with Laurence Lesser and Colin Carr, and currently plays an active role in chamber music performances with the Conservatory's faculty. He served for five years as associate professor of Cello at Boston University and was co-director of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute Quartet Program. He plays a 1698 Matteo Goffriller Cello and a bow made by his father, Manuel Díaz.

Violinist CHEE-YUN'S combination of flawless technique, beautiful tone and compelling musical temperament has quickly captured the attention of the music world. Her brilliant artistry has been shared with audiences and praised by critics on five continents.

Career highlights include appearances at the Kennedy Center's "Salute to Slava" gala honoring Music Director Mstislav Rostropovich, the Mostly Mozart Festival including the orchestra's tour to Japan, the Pacific Music Festival in a premiere of Lou Harrison's Suite for Violin and String Orchestra, the inaugural concert at the Danny Kaye Playhouse in New York City, and a performance with Michael Tilson Thomas in the inaugural season of Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall. Other recent highlights include her tours of the United States with the San Francisco Symphony and of Japan with the NHK Symphony and the Tokyo Metropolitan Orchestra, performances across three continents of the Penderecki Concerto No. 2 with the composer at the podium, and a performance at the American Ballet Theatre's Fall Gala.

Chee-Yun has performed with many of the world's foremost orchestras, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, the London Philharmonic, the Toronto Symphony, the Houston Symphony and the National Symphony and with such distinguished conductors as Hans Graf, James DePreist, Jesus Lopez-Cobos, Krzysztof Penderecki, Neeme Järvi and Pinchas Zukerman. She has appeared with the Atlanta Symphony, the Orchestra of St. Luke's at Alice Tully Hall, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Dallas Symphony, the Oregon Symphony, the New York Chamber Symphony, the Detroit Symphony, the Rochester Philharmonic, the Utah Symphony and the Cincinnati Symphony. Overseas, she has toured with such orchestras as the Haifa Symphony, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, Germany's Braunschweig Orchestra and the MDR Radio Leipzig and has performed with the St. Petersburg Camerata, the Bamberg Philharmonic, the Bilbao Symphony, the London Festival Orchestra, the Nagoya Philharmonic, the KBS Symphony Orchestra and the Seoul Philharmonic.

TODD PALMER'S virtuosity, art of phrasing and ebullient stage presence have brought him a stellar reputation as a solo and chamber music clarinetist that is attained by few artists on his instrument. Born in Hagerstown, Maryland, he began playing the clarinet at age 16 following seven years of study on the trumpet. In New York, he studied at the Mannes College of Music under the tutelage of Gervase de Peyer, and received the Outstanding Performance and Academic Excellence Awards upon graduating. He made his NY recital debut at Weill Hall and his concerto debut with the Houston Symphony as the first wind player ever to receive the Grand Prize in the Ima Hog Young Artist Competition.

Since winning the 1990 Young Concert Artist International Auditions, Mr. Palmer has appeared as recitalist, concerto soloist and clinician at major performing arts centers and universities in 47 States and has been given virtually unanimous praise for his supreme mastery of his instrument and unerring musicianship. He has also been consistently lauded for his engaging and inspirational outreach programs for young audiences. His appearances abroad have included concerto, recital and chamber music performances in Germany, France, Italy, England, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, the Caribbean, and Japan where his performance with pianist Ignite Solzhenitsyn was broadcast nationwide.

Mr. Palmer is in great demand as a chamber music performer and has appeared at many music festivals including nine years at Spoleto USA, Tanglewood, Ravinia, La Jollier SummerFest, Bravo!, the Caramoor, Bridgehampton, Portland, and the Vancouver Chamber Music Festivals. In addition, he 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. He has also toured throughout the years with Musicians from Marlboro and annually with Spoleto USA Chamber Music and can be heard on National Public Radio's Performance Today annually. He has been a guest artist with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and has collaborated with the Brentano, Borromeo, Colorado, St. Lawrence and Orion Quartets. He has also been clarinetist of choice in Schubert's Shepherd on the Rock with sopranos Kathleen Battle, Renée Fleming, Roberta Peters, and Dawn Upshaw. Mr. Palmer has had a close association with composer Osvaldo Golijov since 1997 and was named editor-in-chief of his Dreams and Prayers of Isaac the Blind for publication. In addition to Mr. Golijov, Mr. Palmer has also worked directly with composers Richard Rodney Bennett, Kenji Bunch, John Corigliano, Aaron JayKernss, Oliver Knussen, Steven Mackey, Stephen Prutsman, Kevin Puts, Ned Rorem, George Tsontakis, and Ricky Ian Gordon, who composed the monodrama Orpheus and Euridice for Mr. Palmer which was premiered in October, 2001 at Cooper Union in New York City.

Pianist WENDY CHEN won the 1997 Young Concert Artists International Auditions and was awarded the Bruce Hungerford Prize. The Young Concert Artists Series has presented Ms. Chen in recital at New York's 92nd Street Y, sponsored by YCA's Mortimer Levitt Career Development Award for Women Artists, in recital at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, in her New York concerto debut with the New York Chamber Symphony at Alice Tully Hall, and in the "YCA Encores" Series at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall.

At the age of fifteen, Ms. Chen debuted with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under conductor Andre Previn. Since then, she has appeared with the Utah Symphony, the Boston Pops, the Pacific Symphony, the Cincinnati and Baltimore Chamber Orchestras, the Florida Philharmonic, the Hartford Symphony, California's Chamber Orchestra of the South Bay, the Lake Charles Symphony, the Champaign-Urbana Symphony, the Mansfield (OH) Symphony, the Chamber Orchestra of Albuquerque, the Yakima Symphony, the Auckland Philharmonia and the Wellington Sinfonia in New Zealand, and the Orquesta Ossodre in Uruguay.

Ms. Chen continues to perform numerous works as soloist with orchestra this season, including the Shostakovich Concerto No. 1 with the Cincinnati Symphony, the Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini with the Paducah Symphony, Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue with the Phoenix and Wichita symphonies, and concertos with the West Shore Symphony in Michigan and the South Dakota Symphony. In recital, she performs for the University of Louisville, the Artist Series in Tallahassee, Allied Concerts in Minnetonka, MN, the City of Lakewood (CO) Cultural Center, and the Lee County (SC) Arts Council.