Shanghai Quartet performing

Strings-Harp-Guitar

Shanghai Quartet
Quartet Website

The Shanghai Quartet came to Montclair State University in 2002 as ensemble-in-residence. They serve as the core faculty in the strings program, teaching individual lessons, coaching chamber ensembles, and performing for the university and surrounding communities. Cellist Nicholas Tzavaras is coordinator of the strings program.


Yi-Wen Jiang
Yi-Wen Jiang
Artist-in-Residence
Shanghai Quartet
Violin
973-655-7734
jiangy@montclair.edu

Violinist Yi-Wen Jiang was born into a musical family in Beijing where both parents were professional musicians. Beginning his violin studies with his father at age six, Jiang made his concerto debut at the age of 17 with the Central Opera House Orchestra in Beijing where he played the Prokofiev D Major Concerto Opus 19. After winning top prize at the first China Youth Violin Competition in 1981, Jiang was accepted to study with Professor Han Li at the Central Conservatory of Music. In 1985, after receiving a full scholarship from McDonnell-Douglas, Jiang came to the United States to study with Taras Gabora and Michael Tree. In 1990, with the support of the Ken Boxley Foundation, he went to Rutgers University to work with Arnold Steinhardt of the Guarneri Quartet. Other teachers included Gérard Poulet and Pinchas Zuckerman. As a prizewinner at the Montreal International Competitions he appeared as a soloist with the Victoria Symphony and Montreal Symphony. Jiang had appeared at many international music festivals by the age of 22. He has recorded for the Record Corporation of China. As a composer, Jiang has arranged over 50 pieces for string quartet and other instruments, many pieces composed with Eastern repertoire and Western influence. In addition to his extensive touring and recordings schedule, Jiang maintains a close relationships with his students. Jiang teaches at Montclair State University and the Bard College Conservatory of Music. He is also guest professor at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing and the Shanghai Conservatory.


Weigang Li
Weigang Li
Artist-in-Residence
Shanghai Quartet
Violin
973-655-7613
liw@montclair.edu
Quartet Website

Weigang Li began studying the violin with his parents when he was five and went on to attend the Shanghai Conservatory Middle School at age 14. In 1981 he was selected to go to study for one year at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music through the first cultural exchange program between the sister cities of Shanghai and San Francisco. After graduating from the Shanghai Conservatory in 1985, he continued his studies at Northern Illinois University and later studied and taught at the Juilliard School. His teachers have included Shmuel Ashkenasi, Tan Shu-Chen, Li Mu-Zhen and Isadore Tinkleman. Mr. Li was featured in the 1980 Oscar winning documentary film From Mao to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China. He made his solo debut at 17 with the BBC Symphony Orchestra and has appeared as soloist with Shanghai Symphony, China Philharmonic, BBC Scottish Symphony and Asian Youth Orchestra. He is a founding member and first violinist of the Shanghai Quartet. Since 1983 the Quartet has performed nearly 3000 concerts in 35 countries and recorded numerous CDs, including a highly acclaimed set of Complete Beethoven String Quartets. He also holds the title of guest concert-master of Shanghai Symphony Orchestra.


Michael Ludwig
Michael Ludwig
Artist-in-Residence
Violin
Main Office: 973-655-7212
Michael Ludwig – Website

Hailed by The Strad magazine for his “effortless, envy-provoking technique…sweet tone, brilliant expression, and grand style,” Michael Ludwig enjoys a multi-faceted career as a soloist, recording artist and chamber musician. As a soloist, he has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, Boston Pops, KBS Symphony in Seoul, Korea, Beijing Symphony, and the Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra, collaborating with such conductors as JoAnn Falletta, Sir Georg Solti and John Williams. He has recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Lithuanian National Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic and Virginia Symphony. As a chamber musician, he has performed with Christoph Eschenbach, Wolfgang Sawallisch, Yefim Bronfman, Sarah Chang and Jean-Yves Thibaudet. His chamber music performances include appearances at the Prague Spring Music Festival, New Hampshire Music Festival, and a benefit appearance for the Terezin Music Foundation at Symphony Hall in Boston. Michael Ludwig studied violin with his father, Irving Ludwig, who was a violinist in the Philadelphia Orchestra and music director of the Lansdowne Symphony Orchestra.


Mary Ann Mumm
Mary Ann Mumm
Adjunct Professor
Violin
Main Office: 973-655-7212
mummm@montclair.edu

Mary Ann Mumm made her solo debut with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra at age 15, the first prize recipient of the MSO Young Artists Competition. She continued studies at Indiana University with Josef Gingold and served as his graduate teaching assistant. Ms. Mumm also studied with Ivan Galamian and Tadeusz Wronski. Ms. Mumm’s past positions include Assistant Professor of Violin at Northwestern University and violinist in the MET Orchestra. Her ongoing chamber music engagements include numerous international festival performances as well as the New York Chamber Music Festival at Symphony Space. Ms. Mumm’s 2011 world premier recording of the F. Alfano Piano Quintet (Naxos) received international praise and three Grammy award nominations. Ms. Mumm serves on the international faculties of the Youth Orchestra of the Americas and Filarmonica Joven de Colombia. She coached FJC for the first international broadcast performance of “From the Top” (2012). During her tenure as President of the American String Teachers Association-NJ the state was honored with five national awards, ASTA@MSU winning Best College Chapter.


Honggang Li
Honggang Li
Artist-in-Residence
Shanghai Quartet
Viola
973-655-7727
lih@montclair.edu

Honggang Li began his musical training studying the violin with his parents at the same time as his brother, Weigang. When the Beijing Conservatory reopened in 1977 after the Cultural Revolution, Mr. Li was selected to attend from a group of over five hundred applicants. He continued his training at the Shanghai Conservatory and was appointed a faculty member there in 1984. Mr. Li has also served as a teaching assistant at the Juilliard School and has appeared as soloist with the Shanghai Philharmonic and the Shanghai Conservatory Orchestra. In 1987 he won a violin as a special prize given by Elisa Pegreffi of Quartetto Italiano at the Paolo Borciani competition in Italy.


Kathryn Lockwood
Kathryn Lockwood
Adjunct Professor
Viola
Main Office: 973-655-7212
lockwoodka@mail.montclair.edu
Kathryn Lockwood – Website

Violist Kathryn Lockwood has been hailed internationally for her exceptional talents. The Cleveland Plain Dealer proclaimed, “…Lockwood played the vociferous viola cadenza with mahogany beauty and vivid character.” She is the violist of the renowned Lark Quartet and the unique viola and percussion duo, duoJalal. As a member of Lark, she released two CDs: All Higdon and Composing America (Bridge Records). With duoJalal, she released A Different World (Innova). As an original member of Pacifica Quartet, she performed internationally and was heard live on NPR’s Performance Today. She has collaborated on recordings with violist Michael Tree and composer Easley Blackwood. In 2005 Kathryn released a solo recital CD of Viola Music by Inessa Zaretsky, Fireoptics, about which Strad declared “Lockwood is absolutely inside the music’s idiom finding appropriate tonal shadings.” A native of Australia, she moved to the United States in 1991. She has taught at Rutgers University, Northwestern University, University of Chicago, Music Institute of Chicago and National Music Camp in Australia. She earned her master’s degree with Donald McInnes at the University of Southern California, and her Bachelor of Music Degree from the Queensland Conservatorium of Music with Elizabeth Morgan.


Nicholas Tzavaras
Nicholas Tzavaras
Artist-in-Residence
Shanghai Quartet
Cello
Strings Program Coordinator
973-655-6998
tzavarasn@montclair.edu

Praised by the New York Times for his “richly singing” sound, Nicholas Tzavaras is an active a chamber musician and educator. He has performed at the Marlboro, Santa Fe, Taos, and Radio France (Montpellier) Festivals, toured with multiple artists including the “Musicians from Marlboro” and Madonna, appeared on MTV, VH1, the David Letterman Show, and at the White House performing for President Clinton. He joined the internationally renowned Shanghai Quartet in 2000. He is artist-in-residence and coordinator of the string department at the Cali School, and a guest professor at the Shanghai and Central Conservatories in China. Since 2008 he is the guest principal cellist of the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Tzavaras is a graduate of New England Conservatory and State University of New York at Stonybrook where his teachers were Laurence Lesser and Timothy Eddy. He founded the cello program at the Opus 118 Music Center in East Harlem and serves on its advisory board. Mr. Tzavaras’ family appear in the Academy Award nominated documentary Small Wonders and is the subject of the motion picture Music of the Heart starring Meryl Streep. He appears with the Shanghai Quartet in Woody Allen’s Melinda Melinda.


Tomoko Fujita
Tomoko Fujita

Adjunct Professor
Cello
Main Office: 973-655-7212
Tomoko Fujita – Website

Hailed as “first-rate” by the Boston Globe, cellist Tomoko Fujita enjoys an active musical life as soloist, chamber musician, and educator. She has recently performed on the Dame Myra Hess Series in Chicago and at the Nicholas Roerich Museum in New York City with pianist Luba Poliak, and has collaborated with esteemed artists such as Itzhak Perlman, members of the Cleveland, Emerson, and Juilliard String Quartets, dancer Wendy Whelan, and the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company. As a founding member and the cellist of the Bryant Park Quartet for ten years, she has presented numerous concerts and interactive outreach presentations, nationally and internationally, and released a CD album entitled “BPQ”. Currently, she is a member of the New York Chamber Music Co-Op, a new creative performance collaborative in New York City. Dr. Fujita is a graduate of Rice University, The Juilliard School, and Stony Brook University. In addition to being the Director of the Stony Brook University Young Artist Program, she is Adjunct Assistant Professor of Cello at Hofstra University, and coaches at the New York Youth Symphony Chamber Music Program. In the summers, Tomoko is in residence at the Kinhaven Music School in Weston, VT.


Frances Rowell
Adjunct Professor
Cello
Main Office: 973-655-7212
rowellf@mail.montclair.edu

A versatile and enterprising cellist dedicated to musical outreach, Frances Rowell received bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Juilliard School. In 1992 the city of Allentown, PA bestowed on Ms. Rowell its Arts Ovation Award for outstanding achievement in the performing arts. She has premiered several cello works written for her, including Gwyneth Walker’s North Country Concerto with the Pennsylvania Sinfonia Orchestra in 1995 and Douglas Oven’s Concerto for Cello with the Allentown Symphony Orchestra in 1996. Ms. Rowell has been a member of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra since 1995. As a member of the Craftsbury Chamber Players she performs chamber music each summer in her home state of Vermont. Ms. Rowell is a past Coordinator of the NJSO’s REACH Program (Resources for Education and Community Harmony). She is currently on the roster of Young Audiences of New Jersey in a string quartet program. She also serves Young Audiences as a teaching artist working with young soloists from the radio program From the Top in presentations in public schools. In addition, she holds a United States patent for a portable endpin resonating platform for the cello.


Kevin Brown
Adjunct Professor
Double Bass
Main Office: 973-655-7212
brownke@montclair.edu


Jeremy McCoy
Jeremy McCoy
Adjunct Professor
Double Bass
Main Office: 973-655-7212
Jeremy McCoy – Website

Jeremy McCoy is Assistant Principal double bass with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, Mr. McCoy played one season with the National Arts Centre Orchestra of Canada before joining the MET in 1985. He has performed as recitalist for the International Society of Bassists and CBC Radio and as concerto soloist at the National Arts Centre, with the Louisiana Philharmonic, the Atlantic Chamber Orchestra and the Lake Tahoe Summerfest Orchestra. Summer festival appearances include Marlboro, Kneisel Hall, Banff, Mostly Mozart, Bowdoin, the Grand Tetons and Ottawa Chamberfest. Mr. McCoy was a founding member of Sequitur and Ensemble Sospeso and also appeared regularly with Speculum Musicae, presenting premiere performances and recordings of chamber works by eminent contemporary composers. As a commercial session player, he has played on dozens of motion picture soundtracks and recorded with a diverse group of popular artists. He has also produced his own recordings, Dialogues with Double Bass, an eclectic program of duos, and “Baroque Legacy”, a collection of transcriptions for double bass. Mr. McCoy has given master classes throughout the United States, in Canada, Sweden and Japan and has contributed articles to Strings Magazine. He also serves on the faculties of the Manhattan School of Music and the National Youth Orchestra of Canada.


Linda McKnight
Linda McKnight
Adjunct Professor
Double Bass
Main Office: 973-655-7212
mcknightl@montclair.edu

Linda McKnight has taught double bass at MSU for over a decade, as she has at Manhattan School, Columbia University and Columbia Teachers College. She studied with Frederick Zimmermann at the Juilliard School and with Stuart Sankey, Joseph Cascelli, Warren Benfield, Henry Portnoi and Homer Mensch. She has performed extensively in orchestras and chamber groups throughout New Jersey and New York, including Wayne (NJ) Chamber Orchestra, Colonial Symphony of New Jersey, Masterwork Messiah productions at Carnegie Hall, and Opera Orchestra of New York. She has been a featured guest artist in workshops and clinics across the United States. She succeeded her teacher, the late Frederick Zimmermann, as Master Teacher of Double Bass for the New Jersey Summer Conference of the American String Teachers Association, a position she has held for two decades. She is published in String Tones, Tempo, American String Teacher, and International Society of Bassists magazines. Her edition of Paul Ramsier’s Pieces for Friends is available through Boosey and Hawkes.


André Tarantiles
André Tarantiles
Adjunct Professor
Harp
Main Office: 973-655-7212

André Tarantiles received his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from Indiana University School of Music. He has concertized throughout the United States and performed as soloist in all the major concert halls in New York City. He has appeared on national television accompanying opera stars including Aprile Millo, Benita Valente, Renée Fleming, Marcello Giordani, Ramon Vargas and Christine Goerke. Currently principal harpist for several ensembles including the Metropolitan Opera Guild, New York City Opera National Company, Glimmerglass Opera Festival, Arizona Opera Wagner Festival, New Jersey State Opera, the Center for Contemporary Opera, Teatro Grattacielo and the Casals Festival in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He has also performed in orchestras backing up headliners as diverse as Placido Domingo, Marilyn Horne, Ella Fitzgerald, Shirley Jones, Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gormé, Tony Bennett, Johnny Mathis, Connie Francis, Roberta Flack, John Denver, Whitney Houston, Natalie Cole and Patti Lupone. He has performed in The Fantasticks (the world’s longest running musical), Radio City Musical Hall and on Broadway (harp and synthesizer). Mr. Tarantiles is featured on CDs for several labels and he is also the official harpist of St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York City.


Darren O'Neill
Darren O’Neill
Assistant Professor
Guitar
Program Coordinator
Research Methods
Main Office: 973-655-7212
oneilld@montclair.edu

Darren O’Neill is that rare combination of scholar and performer. Mr. O’Neill earned
his Bachelor of Arts degree in Music from Castleton State College in Castleton, VT and
his Master of Arts degree in Music from Montclair State University. Both degrees
centered about guitar performance. He earned his Master of Library Service degree
from Rutgers University in New Brunswick, NJ. As a member of Trio Brioso (flute, viola,
and guitar) he gave his Carnegie Hall debut in 1997 as the result of winning the Artists
International New York Debut Competition that same year. As a member of the Nova
Segno Duo (with Dennis Cinelli), he has performed and recorded on antique instruments
from the historic collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and was featured in the
2011 exhibition, Guitar Heroes! He has also spent significant time editing and
proofreading the re-engraving of works by Fernando Sor (1778-1839) under the
supervision of Dr. Brian Jeffery, Tecla Publications. His career as a librarian has seen
him working in the Music Research Division of the New York Public Library for the
Performing Arts. He is an honorary member of both Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia (music) and
Alpha Psi Omega (theatre).


Stephen Benson
Stephen Benson
Adjunct Professor
Jazz Guitar
973-655-7212
bensonst@montclair.edu

Guitarist Stephen Benson is a freelance performer who has remained active on the studio, jazz and Broadway scene for twenty years. He holds a Bachelor of Music from the Hartt School of Music in Hartford, CT, and a master’s from Manhattan School of Music. He has taught at Hartt School of Music and the Turtle Bay Music School in New York. Benson toured Europe as a member of the Giora Feidman Trio, performed at the Carnevale in Venice, Italy, for two years and at the Grand Canyon Music Festival in Arizona. He has worked extensively on Broadway in such shows as The Lion King, 42nd Street, and Wicked. He performs many styles of jazz from bebop to fusion to blues and R & B and has worked with artists including Phoebe Snow, John Sebastian and Evelyn Blakey.


David Graessle
David Graessle
Adjunct Professor
Guitar
Main Office: 973-655-7212
graessled@montclair.edu

David Graessle is a versatile guitarist that has been featured on WFDU-FM, was a soloist at WPU’s 50th anniversary alumni concert, and was selected to play a masterclass for Jason Vieaux. He also studied ensemble playing in Italy, performing concerts in Rome and Venice. He’s performed hundreds of engagements as a soloist, with the guitar/mandolin duo World View, and as a member of the NJ Guitar & Mandolin Society. Currently, he is recording his debut album for solo classical guitar with works by Bach, Barrios and Villa-Lobos. Graessle holds an MA in guitar performance from Montclair State University where he studied with Darren O’Neill, a BA with teaching certification from William Paterson University, and is a longtime student of GFA winner Kevin Gallagher. A teacher at the Community High School of Bergen County since 1997, Graessle also chairs the music department and is the theatre department’s musical director. Additionally, he has recorded two rock albums with his band The Other Half, continues to perform as a duo with his twin brother, and is the founding director of Rockin’ Summer Camp, a musical summer program for teens.


Sylwia Kloc
Sylwia Kloc
Adjunct Professor
Guitar
Main Office: 973-655-7212
klocs@montclair.edu

Sylwia Kloc, a native of Poland, is an active soloist, chamber music player and a teacher. Her repertoire ranges from the Renaissance to the 20th century’s most current compositions. Ms. Kloc received both her Bachelor and Master Degrees from Mannes College of Music. She studied with Frederic Hand and was awarded the merit scholarship for her excellence in performance. Ms. Kloc and violist Elena Rojas form the ensemble Colloquio di Corde. The duo plays a variety of music, although its main focus is commissioning works from modern-day composers. Ms. Kloc plays Renaissance lute, Baroque guitar, and studied privately with the renowned early music player Dennis Cinelli. In the Spring of 2007 Ms. Kloc premiered and recorded “Ancient Visions” a concerto for Renaissance lute and guitar ensemble by Terry Champlin. She was a scholar recipient for the 2006 “Music in Compostela Festival” in Spain where she studied with Jose Luiz Rodrigo.


Jason Priset
Jason Priset
Adjunct Professor
Lute/Guitar
Collegium Musicum
Main Office: 973-655-7212
prisetj@montclair.edu

Based in New York City, Dr. Jason Priset is a regular soloist and performer in the United States. Priset has appeared in concert and as a soloist for Bach Vespers, the Chamber Music Society of Detroit, Early Music New York, Voyces of Staten Island, and the Riverside Symphony to name a few, including performances in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center in Manhattan. Priset holds a Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA) from Stony Brook University and specializes in a variety of plucked guitar and lute related instruments. Aside from an active performance career Dr. Priset is also the Director for the Lute Society of America Summer Seminar.


James Smith Jr.
James Smith, Jr.
Adjunct Professor
Guitar
Main Office: 973-655-7212
smithjam@montclair.edu

James W. Smith Jr. holds an MA degree in Music History and Literature from Long Island University and a DMA in Early Music Performance from SUNY at Stony Brook. Mr. Smith received educational training from the Lincoln Center Institute in Aesthetic Education and has served as a Senior Teaching Artist for the Tilles Center Arts and Culture Institute and Lecturer at Dowling College. Additionally Mr. Smith is an Assistant Adjunct Professor at Suffolk County Community College.  Early Music America called James Smith’s baroque guitar playing “dynamically appealing.”  As an early music specialist Mr. Smith has performed on theorbo, lute and baroque guitar with New York City Opera, Early Music New York, and Polyhymnia, among other ensembles. Operas performed include: Handel’s Flavio, Almira and Agrippina; Monteverdi’s Orfeo, and L’Incoronation di Poppea; and Cavalli’s L’Ormindo. Mr. Smith’s repertoire and collection of historical replica instruments allows him to understand and demonstrate the evolution of the guitar’s technique and style from its 16th century origins through its flourishing in the 19th and 20th century literatures. His most recent project La Guitaromanie with Guitarist Sylwia Kloc is a lecture/demo showing the various types of guitars and historic notational systems, with a performance of compositions representing each era.


Ardith Collins
Ardith Collins

Adjunct Professor
Strings Technique
Main Office: 973-655-7212
collinsa@montclair.edu


Tamara Freeman
Tamara Freeman
Adjunct Professor
Chamber Music Coach
973-655-7212
freemanta@montclair.edu

Dr. Tamara Reps Freeman, Holocaust ethnomusicologist, educator and recitalist is the musicologist for the Association of Holocaust Organizations, the international alliance of Holocaust museums, state commissions, and education programs. Dr. Freeman teaches classes and faculty workshops based on her dissertation, Encouraging Racial Respect Through Holocaust Music: An Interdisciplinary Curriculum. In 2014, Dr. Freeman received an alumni award from the Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam, for creating one of the five most significant music education innovations in the school’s 125-year history. She performs lecture-recitals of music composed, sung, and played in the WWII concentration camps on her 1935 Joseph Bausch viola, a rescued Holocaust relic. Her many performance venues include the Chautauqua, NY Summer Institute, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC, and the New Jersey State House. Publications include Giving Voice to Democracy in Music Education, Diversity and Social Justice, Routledge Publishers, 2015, and the music curriculum for the 2014 Emmy nominated film, Defiant Requiem (journeysinfilm.org).


Theresa Salomon
Adjunct Professor
Early Music / Baroque Violin
Main Office: 973-655-7212
salomont@montclair.edu