Saturday, January 20th, 2018 at 7:30pm
Reception at 6:30pm
Hoffman Auditorium, University of Saint Joseph, West Hartford
|BEETHOVEN||Leonore Overture No. 3|
|MOZART||Abduction from the Seraglio Overture|
|WISE Foundation Soloists|
Natalie Hodges is a junior at Harvard University concentrating in English with a secondary in Music and studying violin with Ying Xue of the Parker Quartet. She has also studied with James Maurer and Basil Vendryes and worked with Donald Weilerstein at the Aspen Music Festival in the summers of 2016 and 2015, as well as with Jan Mark Sloman at Meadowmount in the summer of 2013. In the summer of 2017, she performed for Vadim Repin and served as associate concertmaster at the Interharmony International Music Festival in Acqui Terme, Italy. While at Aspen, she was a fellow in the American Academy of Conducting Orchestra (2016) and played in the Aspen Festival Orchestra and the Aspen Philharmonic (2015), and her quartet was selected to perform in masterclasses given by the Pacifica Quartet and by Donald and Vivian Weilerstein. Natalie has played for Misha Quint, Almita Vamos, Hyo Kang, Claude Sim, Stirling Trent, Wendy Sharp, James Buswell, Lucy Chapman and Tong Wei Dong. She is the concertmaster of the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra and served as concertmaster of the Denver Young Artists Orchestra during the 2013-14 and 2014-2015 seasons. She was a member of the Colorado Young Sinfonia from 2010-2012.
Natalie has participated in a number of violin competitions. In November 2013, she was a winner in the American Protégé International Competition of Romantic Music and had the opportunity to perform at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall in April 2014. She won the Denver Young Artists Orchestra concerto competition in December 2013 and performed the Sibelius violin concerto at Boettcher Concert Hall in May 2014. She was named to the 2017-2018 fellowship roster of the Young Musicians Foundation of Colorado in December 2016, having been a roster member in the 2013-2014 season as well. In February 2012, Natalie received first prize in the senior division of the Aurora Symphony Orchestra youth concerto competition, and she also placed first in the high school division of the Broomfield Symphony Orchestra youth concerto competition. In 2010, Natalie won the Colorado Youth Symphony Orchestra (CYSO) concerto competition. She received Honorable Mentions after competing in the Denver Philharmonic Orchestra and Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra concerto competitions in 2009. In 2007, Natalie won the Colorado Young Sinfonia concerto competition.
Natalie served as Concertmaster of the CYSO for the 2009-10 season. In 2010, she traveled to China for three weeks with a group comprising members of the Boulder Youth Symphony, Longmont Youth Symphony and CYSO and was concertmaster of that traveling orchestra.
Natalie is a founding member of InTune String Ensemble, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to raising money for charities benefitting children in need. She has also volunteered with El Sistema Colorado since its inception in 2011. For fun, Natalie enjoys singing, writing, cooking, spending time with her brothers and sister, and performing chamber music.
Leland Ko is a 19 year old cellist from Weston, MA. He was most recently a disciple of cellist, teacher, and Cleveland Quartet co-founder Paul Katz of the New England Conservatory (NEC), and is now studying at Princeton University for his undergraduate studies. Prior to that, Leland was a long-time student of Ronald Lowry. In 2011, Leland was admitted to the Perlman Music Program (PMP) in New York – a place that has meant home to him ever since – run by Itzhak Perlman and his wife. For six summers, Leland studied with Ronald Leonard, former principal cellist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, as well as with Merry Peckham, who helped cultivate in Leland an intense passion for chamber music.
From its founding until last year, Leland was also co-principal cellist of the Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra (BPYO) under the leadership of Benjamin Zander. With the orchestra, he has toured all across Europe – the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Germany, Switzerland, and most recently Spain. The BPYO has been an indispensable piece of the lives of Leland and countless others, as it has opened his eyes to new attitudes to both music and life.
Leland is also a dedicated tennis player (and even more of a dedicated tennis fan), having played competitively on the USTA circuit through much of his youth and serving as a stalwart on his high school’s team as well as the Princeton club tennis team. In the last few years, Leland has also become a distance runner, which conveniently complements his other passion for eating (and cooking) food.
Simon Péter Várallyay was born in Budapest, Hungary on July 29th, 1997.
At the age of 6 Simon began his studies at Pátzay János Music School in Gyöngyös, Hungary, where he spent twelve years under the instruction of Róbert Várallyay. The first nine years were spent working with piano, while the last three were spent in the organ course. In the midst of this, between 2010 and 2011 Simon also took part in a special program of Béla Bartók Secondary School of Music, in Budapest, with piano teacher Balázs Kecskés. From 2012 to 2016, Simon took the piano main course from Béla Bartók as well under the guidance of Zoltán Fejérvári and Erzsébet Kőrösiné Belák.
Last year Simon was a first year student of the Franz Liszt Academy of Music in Budapest, studying piano from András Kemenes and chamber music from Zoltán Fejérvári.
Over the years, Simon has won numerous different prizes from his experiences taking part in several national music competitions in Budapest and Hungary.