Music Director and Conductor
Steven Byess is a dynamic and passionate conductor, hailed by critics as “masterful and brilliant,” “creating the epitome of instrumental elegance,” and capturing “the full spirit and vitality of the score perfectly.” Recognized for his musical versatility, multi-faceted presence on the podium, and passion for music education, he is devoted to promoting a life-long love and enthusiasm for music and the arts.
Steven is celebrating his 9th season as music director of the Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra (Oregon), and also serves as the music director of the Arkansas Philharmonic Orchestra, and the North Mississippi Symphony Orchestra. He conducted the U.S. premiere of Russian violinist Alexander Markov’s Rock Concerto at Carnegie Hall in New York, and was selected by Walt Disney World Entertainment to conduct the 2000 NFL E*TRADE Super Bowl Halftime show, where he performed for a television audience of 88 million fans.
As a passionate advocate for the arts, Steven is sought after for his speeches on the arts, music, and education, and has organized collaborations with numerous choruses, chamber music ensembles, and festivals. He wrote and co-directed a PBS presentation, Count On It!, designed to connect music and mathematics for children grades K-3. Since 2013, he has shared this passion with over 80,000 children around the country as a conductor of the Carnegie Hall Weill Music Institute Link Up orchestral education concerts.
A prolific conductor of opera from grand to contemporary, his performances include Puccini’s La Bohème and a critically acclaimed production of Robert Ward’s The Crucible at the International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv, Israel; Puccini’s Madama Butterfly with Greensboro Opera; Bizet’s Carmen with Emerald City Opera (Colorado); Copland’s The Tender Land, Sullivan’s H.M.S. Pinafore and The Pirates of Penzance, and a collaboration with composer Ricky Ian Gordon on his opera “27” with Intermountain Opera (Montana); and Weill’s Street Scene and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance with the Eastman School of Music Opera Theatre. Steven has been a guest conductor at the Pine Mountain Music Festival in Michigan for their productions of Le tragédie de Carmen (Bizet/Brook), a highly acclaimed production of Leonard Bernstein’s Candide, collaborating with the composer’s daughter Jamie Bernstein, and Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte.
Steven is the former associate music director of the Ohio Light Opera where he conducted over 80 productions and 21 commercial recordings, including repertoire ranging from well- to little-known operas and operettas to blockbuster classic American musical theater works.
In addition to over 60 symphonic performances in the 2022-2023 season, Steven will conduct ballet productions of The Nutcracker, Giselle, The Sleeping Beauty, and Appalachian Spring.
Maestro Byess’ podium is sponsored by Grant & Gretchen Hatton and Lindsay & Christopher Kolar
Music Director Emeritus
Huw Edwards was the Music Director of Portland Columbia Symphony from 2000 to 2012, and after his final concert was immediately named the orchestra’s Conductor Emeritus. From 2002 to 2005 Mr. Edwards was Music Director of the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestras and a faculty member at the Marrowstone Music Festival from 1998-2005. Mr. Edwards moved to Seattle after seven wonderful seasons (1995-2002) as Music Director of the Portland Youth Philharmonic, a tenure which included numerous innovations, recordings, a coveted ASCAP Award and landmark tours to Canada, New Zealand and Australia.
Active as a guest conductor and clinician Mr. Edwards has performed with numerous orchestras all over the world – including Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, the British Isles, Canada, and throughout the USA. Huw has felt enriched teaching music courses at the South Sound Senior Center, which he continues to do.
Born in Wales, Great Britain, Mr. Edwards holds degrees from the University of Surrey in England and Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Mr. Edwards was also a lecturer at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL and a Doctoral candidate (1991-95). Mr. Edwards has been active as a conductor since the age of 17 when he was appointed Music Director of the Maidstone G&S Society in England—a post he held for six years—and came to the United States in 1988 on scholarship to attend SMU in Texas. He is deeply indebted to his principal teachers: Simon Johnson and Barry Wordsworth (London), Anshel Brusilow and Eduardo Mata (Dallas), and Victor Yampolsky (Chicago).
Huw enjoys travel and discovery, golf with close buddies, his wine-group friends, rejuvenating sessions at The Yoga Loft, and is looking forward to the freedom of simplicity by spending more of his time with family near London and revisiting places in Europe.
Charismatic violinist and presenter Casey Bozell offers performances and music experiences which engage and inspire audiences across the Pacific Northwest. Her bold and colorful playing “draws out strong emotions” (The Linfield Review) and casts new light on traditional repertoire. As a presenter, Casey shares a magnetic enthusiasm for music which, when coupled with her approachable and cheerful personality, widens and deepens audiences and their connection to classical music.
In addition to her role as concertmaster of the Portland Columbia Symphony, Casey is the concertmaster of the Newport Symphony and is also a member of the Portland Opera Orchestra and Oregon Ballet Theater. Recent solo engagements include appearances with the Newport Symphony, Beaverton Symphony, Linfield Chamber Orchestra, and the Central Oregon Chamber Orchestra as well as guest artist recitals at the University of Northern Colorado, Eastern Oregon University, and Linfield College. An adept chamber musician, Casey is a founding member of the Hammers and Bows piano trio and Element String Quartet.
When not on stage or in the pit, Casey finds herself behind a microphone, as host of the podcast Keep Classical Weird, which has had over 15,000 downloads in more than 80 countries. These fascinating shows cover a wide variety of intriguing topics cherry-picked from the world of classical music, and broken down in inventive, relatable ways. As the Newport Symphony News noted, “Her enthusiasm was infectious…(and she) had no difficulty holding my attention.”
Passionate about developing creativity and musical literacy in young people, she serves on the faculty of the Young Musicians and Artists summer camp (since 2010), and was a Violin and Viola Instructor at Concordia University for ten years where she directed the Concordia University String Ensemble. Past positions also include teaching at Corban, Pacific and Marylhurst Universities. Her students have participated in the Metropolitan Youth Symphony, Pro-Arte Youth Orchestra, Oregon All-State Orchestra, and have won college scholarships and concerto competitions across the Pacific Northwest region.
Casey’s greatest mentors include Gerardo Ribeiro, Richard Fuchs, and Harold Wippler. She received her Bachelors of Music Performance from the University of Northern Colorado, and her Masters of Music Performance from Northwestern University. She plays on an 1874 Frederic Diehl violin.
Casey Bozell’s chair is sponsored by Starseed Foundation
Haeun Jung is a violinist based in Portland, OR. In high school, she was named National YoungArts Foundation’s Honorable Mention winner and won the Washington state championships for violin solo and chamber music. Her summer experiences include Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Great Mountains Music Festival & School, and the Sarajevo Chamber Music Festival. In the past, she is privileged to have studied with Carol Sindell, Anna Lim, and Cho-Liang Lin, and received masterclasses from Christian Tetzlaff, Boris Brovtsyn, Clara Jumi-Kang and the Muir String Quartet. After graduating from Princeton University with an A.B. in Molecular Biology and a Certificate in Violin Performance, Haeun went on to study at Rice University Shepherd School of Music for her Master’s of Music.
Haeun Jung’s chair is sponsored by the Gresham Center for the Arts Foundation
Principal Second Violin
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Alberta Barnes has been a violinist with Portland Columbia Symphony since 2015. Originally from Boise, Idaho, she graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Violin Performance from the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music in Appleton, Wisconsin. She currently freelances in the Portland area, and is also a core member of the Newport Symphony. Between gigs, she works full time in the ophthalmic field. When she isn’t playing the violin, she enjoys spending time with family and working at various local craft fairs with her sister.
Portland Columbia Symphony violinist Brian Bennett plays many musical roles in the Portland area, including concertmaster for Washington Chamber Orchestra (Bravo! Concerts Northwest) and section violinist with the Portland Chamber Orchestra and the Oregon Coast Music Festival Orchestra. In addition to his private violin and guitar studios, he also teaches violin and theory at Portland’s Community Music Center. Holding a great passion for writing music, Brian is President of MusicTools Software, which creates innovative composition applications. He enjoys art and literature, and loves the outdoors, gem hunting, and photography.
Brian Bennett’s chair is sponsored by Laura Spurrell/Micah Fund, OCF
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Violin & Personnel Manager
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Stacy Edgar’s chair is sponsored by Sue and Al O’Halloran
Erin Ferree, a native of Las Vegas, began her violin studies at the age of eight, and received her Bachelor of Music Education from Loyola University in New Orleans. She has taught string orchestra in the Gwinnett County Public Schools in Georgia, Washoe County School District in Nevada, North Clackamas School District in Oregon, and the Evergreen Public Schools in Washington. As a clinician, she has judged orchestra festivals and Solo and Ensemble festivals in Georgia, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington.
Erin’s performance journey has taken her all over the United States, as well as to France and Costa Rica. An Oregon resident since 2001, she has performed with the Portland Chamber Orchestra, Bravo! Vancouver, and Oregon Chamber Players. She also enjoys playing chamber music whenever possible.
When not teaching, practicing, or performing, she can be found perfecting her scone recipe or exploring the Pacific Northwest with her husband and daughter. Erin has been a proud member of Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra since 2002.
At nine years old, Cherie was seduced by the sound of bluegrass fiddle, and begged her grandparents for a violin. In a hopeful effort to keep her off the streets, they gave in, and soon Cherie was “entertaining” her family with dubious efforts at such favorites as “Hot Cross Buns” and the ever-popular “Twinkle, Twinkle.”
Eventually the family grew weary of these time-tested tunes, so they sent Cherie off for private lessons with Lydia Woods (in Salem) in hopes she could learn something else. Much to their relief, she did.
At Southern Oregon State College, Cherie considered her talent as a violinist and decided the most prudent course of action was to major in Business Administration. Music, however, was always plucking at her heartstrings, so she took a minor in music, all the while taking lessons from Dr. Fred Palmer.
Cherie has been a member of Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra since about 1984 and has also subbed for many other local orchestras, playing both violin and viola (but not at the same time). She attends various workshops and camps during the year where she can feed her chamber music habit to her heart’s content.
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Jody Morrissette joined the Portland Columbia Symphony as principal second violin in 2002. Prior to moving to Portland, she played professionally in Sacramento, Los Angeles, Topeka, and New York. Originally from Buffalo, Ms. Morrissette holds degrees in music and music therapy. As a board certified music therapist, she has worked in pediatric intensive care, oncology, Alzheimer care, special education, and music theater for adults with disabilities. With violin in hand, previous memorable experiences include the honor of a duet performance with Isaac Stern, the eccentric world of studio recording in Hollywood, theater and opera orchestras, chamber groups, radio, schools, movie soundtracks, playing Irish tunes on the roof of the car in traffic jams, and of course family weddings. When not performing, Jody enjoys exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her family.
Jody Morrissette’s chair is sponsored by Joanne Wakeland
Originally from Boulder, CO, Nic earned his Bachelor of Music at the University of Colorado, studying under Oswald Lehnert and members of the Takács Quartet. In the summers during his college years, Nic performed with the Colorado Light Opera and other local music festivals. Upon graduation, he played with the Boulder Philharmonic Orchestra and Boulder Chamber Orchestra. He then moved to Portland, OR to study with Carol Sindell at Portland State University where he earned his Master of Music. He currently runs a private violin teaching studio and performs with orchestras such as Portland Columbia Symphony, Portland Opera, Eugene Symphony, and others. On top of his teaching and orchestral playing, Nic enjoys playing chamber music with friends.
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Stephen Shepherd has performed throughout the country since leaving Kansas City, MO for the University of Iowa where he completed his Bachelor’s Degree in music performance. He relocated to Pittsburgh, PA to work towards a Master’s in Music performance and Artist Diploma degrees, and, upon receiving them, decided to pursue a Doctorate of Musical Arts degree at the University of Iowa, completing the terminal degree in 2003. His orchestral playing includes several seasons with the Westmoreland, Wheeling, and Cedar Rapids symphonies and the Cedar Rapids Opera Orchestra before moving to the Pacific Northwest in 2003. In addition to serving as Assistant Concertmaster for Portland Columbia Symphony this season, Stephen has served as the concertmaster of the Linfield Chamber Orchestra in McMinnville, OR, is a regular performer with the Portland Chamber Orchestra, and is the Associate Concertmaster of the Vancouver (WA) Symphony. He is fortunate to have a lovely wife, Lanette and two daughters, Josie and Jasmine.
Lori has been a core member of Portland Columbia Symphony since she arrived in Portland in 1986. She’s also a long-time member of the Newport Symphony, and has played with various other Portland-area groups over the years. Before coming to Oregon, Lori played with orchestras in Germany and in Delaware. She loves to play chamber music and is a member of several chamber ensembles.
Lori began her musical journey with piano and added violin at age eight thanks to the public school music program near Tacoma, WA. After graduating from high school and the Tacoma Youth Symphony she continued on to college and the University of Washington orchestra.
With a chemical engineering degree from the University of Washington, Lori worked as an engineer in Delaware, Germany, and Portland. She then delved into the non-profit realm with various environmental and sustainability projects. Lori and her husband have grown twin children and live in a house they built themselves, near Sherwood. They tend their young organic hazelnut orchard and like to hike when possible!
Charlyn has played the viola since the seventh grade, and orchestra and chamber music have always provided an enjoyable avocation for her. She was principal viola in the Palatine Hill (Portland Columbia Symphony) until 1987, when she started her career in nursing. She was also a member of the Portland Opera for 12 years, and rejoined Portland Columbia Symphony in 1997. Playing chamber music continues to be a passion as well; currently she plays in the Trillium Piano Quartet.
As a nurse she worked for Legacy Health for 32 years, in Pediatrics, Pediatric Oncology, and for the Legacy Cancer Institute. She is also involved in disaster preparedness and response activities in Tualatin.
Her other enjoyable pursuits include travel, beading, and cooking. She shares daily life with her husband and two cats.
Charlyn Wilson’s chair is sponsored by Jim Claypool.
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Kim Burton’s chair is sponsored by Adele and Ted Pelletier
“When my elementary school music teacher walked into my third grade class, I raised my hand and said I wanted to play the viola. Five years later I was accepted into the New York Youth Symphony. where I was introduced to challenging orchestral repertoire.” From there, violist Jean Daniels attended summer music programs at the Luzerne Music Center, the NY State Summer School for the Arts, and Tanglewood. In college, she continued playing viola but chose to pursue academic interests beyond music. Today, Jean works as a mental health therapist and nurse practitioner in private practice, and encourages her clients to follow their musical and artistic pursuits to promote mind-body connection, self-expression, and emotional balance. Jean notes, “Playing with PCSO does all these things for me, and I’m grateful to the donors and audience members who support us!”
Cynthia Scott is currently principal violist in Portland Columbia Symphony. She also plays regularly with the Portland Chamber Orchestra, the Newport Symphony, the Oregon Coast Music Festival Orchestra, and the Chehalem String Quartet. She has previously been a member of the Portland Opera, the Oregon Ballet Theatre, the West Coast Chamber Orchestra, and the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra.
Cynthia teaches violin and viola in her own thriving studio, at the Community Music Center, and in the elementary strings program in the Lake Oswego School District. She is co-Director of the Oregon Suzuki Institute, a summer camp for Suzuki students of cello, piano, viola, and violin. She has been a clinician at the Anchorage Suzuki Institute and the Advanced Suzuki Strings Institute at Stanford University.
Cynthia graduated summa cum laude in violin performance from Lewis & Clark College and completed her Master’s in Music (with an emphasis on Suzuki pedagogy) at the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati.
In her spare time, she enjoys gardening, quilting, reading, and relaxing with her two cats.
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Katherine Schultz began her musical journey as a violinist at age 3 in her local Suzuki program, but after 11 years of whining about having to practice while standing up her mother finally let her switch to the cello (she would now give anything to be able to practice while standing up.) In attempts to learn to sound less like a violinist playing the cello, she attended Interlochen Arts Academy and earned her BM and MM in Music Performance from Northwestern and Rice Universities. Along the way she played with groups such as the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and the Houston Symphony, and was awarded a fellowship from the Tanglewood Music Center in Lenox, MA.
Katherine moved from Houston to the Pacific Northwest in 2001, and to this day still maintains an intimate relationship with her Light Therapy Lamp. Her first job was as assistant principal cellist of the Tacoma Symphony. She tired of the drive immediately and thus resigned 12 years later. Katherine currently serves as the principal cellist of the Portland Chamber Orchestra, assistant principal of the Oregon Ballet Theatre orchestra, and a member of the Portland Opera orchestra. She can be found playing with many other local ensembles (some of whom even actually invited or hired her) such as Amadeus Chamber Orchestra, Eugene Symphony, and Cascadia Composers, and music festivals such as Siletz Bay, Sunriver, and Oregon Coast.
Katherine’s first chamber music experience was attending a live performance of the Beaux Arts Trio as a 6-year-old, during which she got the hiccups 3 times. She has since developed a passion for the repertoire and camaraderie of small ensemble performance. In addition to being a featured chamber musician at the Siletz Bay Music Festival, Katherine has performed on the All-Classical radio show Thursdays @ Three with various groups such as the Lovejoy Trio. She plays with the WildWood and Stumptown string quartets and the viola/cello combo Atomic Duo.
Katherine’s interests include forcing her students to record themselves practicing, hunting for her frisbee in the woods at the disc golf course, and traveling to places that don’t require sleeping outdoors.
Kyle joined the cello section of Portland Columbia Symphony in 2015. During the day, he is a practicing attorney with an emphasis in real estate law, making sure to leave time for practicing and performing on the side. Born and raised in Portland, Kyle performed with the Portland Youth Philharmonic and was cello section leader in the Metropolitan Youth Symphony his senior year of high school. During that time, he benefited from his studies with Hamilton Cheifetz. He went on to earn a degree in cello performance at Brigham Young University – Idaho, studying with Robert Tueller. He was the winner of the music school’s concerto competition in 2007 and a quartet competition at Boise State University. He attended the Aspen Music Festival and School in the summer of 2008, and later earned his law degree at Brigham Young University law school. Scarcely a year has gone by since starting the cello at age 11 that Kyle has not been performing with an orchestra of some kind. In addition to PCSO, Kyle performs with ARCO-PDX and welcomes the opportunity to perform in chamber and orchestral settings. He lives in Sherwood, Oregon with his wife, Kellie and two children, Wesley and Ella.
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Born in Xinjiang, China, Quinn Kun Liu began her cello studies at age of eight and won her first cello competition at ten. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Cello Performance at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music in China and Master’s Degree from University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music, where she received a full scholarship.
As an orchestra musician, Quinn has played in a variety of orchestras such as San Diego Symphony Orchestra, Inland Valley Symphony, Hangzhou Philharmonic Orchestra and Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra in China. Quinn is an active chamber musician and she has been invited to perform in several music festivals in the U.S. and Asia. In addition to music performance, Quinn is very experienced in teaching cello as well as working in music administration. In 2013, she was nominated to coach the cello section in Kurt Sassmannshaus’ Starling Foundation in Cincinnati. In the area of administration, Quinn has been the executive assistant of the Great Wall International Music Academy since 2012. In February 2015, she was the administrative assistant in the Virtuoso Music Academy.
Quinn moved to Portland, Oregon in 2017 and joined Portland Columbia Symphony in 2019. Currently, Quinn manages her home studio in the Bethany area, and has worked as the executive assistant at the Bravo! International Music Academy since 2016.
Aside from music, Quinn has a great interest in fashion, travel, and fine food, and she also works as director of operations at Abroad & Future Inc. for International Education Programs.
A Midwest native, Anne has made Portland her home since 2015. She began her cello studies at the Lawrence University Conservatory of Music in Wisconsin, and completed her B.M. in Cello Performance at DePaul University in Chicago. There, Anne studied with her beloved Gilda Barston, both in applied cello and in long-term Suzuki Pedagogy. Additional Suzuki training was completed with many prominent teachers at the both the Chicago and Oregon Suzuki Institutes. Studio teachers also included Joseph (Sam) Sciachitano, and in master class with Lynn Harrell.
In addition to her role with Portland Columbia Symphony, Anne has played summers with the Breval Music Festival Orchestra (NC), the Chicago Civic Symphony, the Idaho State Civic Symphony, and the Green Bay Symphony. She has also performed extensively in the Chicago area with many chamber ensembles.
Anne has pioneered and taught for numerous Suzuki cello programs, including the Chicago Music Institute, Chicago Waldorf School, Baker Demonstration School, Univ. of Wis.-Oshkosh, American Suzuki Institute, Idaho State University, Rose City Music Academy, and many wonderful Suzuki programs in the Chicago area. She served as director of the Idaho State Summer Music Camp, and has maintained private cello studios in Wisconsin, Illinois, Idaho, and now with her own Sato Cello Studio in Beaverton, Oregon. She is an active member of the OSA (Oregon Suzuki Association) and the SAA (Suzuki Association of the Americas).
In Chicago, Anne had an additional 15-year career as a massage therapist, and in Portland studied at the School of Traditional Western Herbalism. She adores gardening, loves cooking, and revels in the abundant nature of Oregon while hiking and gathering medicinal herbs. Her adult children and husband are the joys of her life.
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Andrew Harmon is a double bass performer and teacher in the Portland area, where he plays with the Portland Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Tacoma, and Amadeus Chamber Orchestra, among other ensembles. He joined Portland Columbia Symphony in 2019. Before moving to Portland, Andrew was principal bass of the Peoria Symphony Orchestra from 2012–2015 and a member of the Illinois Symphony Orchestra (Springfield) from 2008-2015. He has also performed with the Rockford Symphony, Heartland Festival Orchestra, Opera Illinois, Lincolnwood Chamber Orchestra, Madison Symphony (WI) and International Beethoven Project. He has been a clinician with the Metropolitan Youth Symphony (Portland), Vancouver Youth Chamber Orchestra, and the Vancouver and Lake Oswego school districts. A St. Louis native, Andrew studied with members of the St. Louis Symphony, Chicago Symphony and Lyric Opera. He earned a B.A. in English and music from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville and a MA in the humanities from the University of Chicago. In his free time, Andrew enjoys hiking and biking with his wife and young daughter Estére.
Double bassist David Knaub grew up around the fringes of the Eastman School of Music where his father taught, and was babysat by some of the finest future brass players of the world. His long but narrow fingers and his orthodontist directed young David’s interests away from low brass and towards the double bass. “It’s kind of similar,” he says. “The pieces with really good trombone parts usually have really good bass parts too.”
Among his teachers have been bass players from the Rochester Philharmonic, New York City Ballet Orchestra, and the Houston Symphony. David performed seven seasons with the Houston Civic Symphony and the Houston Sinfonietta, and has played with Portland Columbia Symphony since 1989. Demonstrating the versatility of the double bass, he has also played in a big band, a cowboy band, a blues band, and in pit orchestras for musicals.
David is a retired mechanical engineer, and holds 43 patents. When not practicing, he enjoys biking, hiking, kayaking, and restoring an old house with his biggest fan, Katie.
David Knaub’s chair is sponsored by Bass Angels
Flutist Adam Eccleston has gained international recognition as a soloist, recitalist, chamber and orchestral musician. At 19 years old, he made his solo debut in New York performing Borne Carmen Fantasy for Flute and Orchestra. He is the winner of multiple awards including the New York Flute Club Competition and most recently, First Prize in the 2021 Golden Classical Music Award International Competition for which he was featured at Carnegie Hall. Adam is the Artist in Residence Emeritus for All Classical Portland Radio Station and sits as Chair of the Recording Inclusivity Initiative. He is also a Radio Host and Producer for the station. Adam can also be seen performing with the Oregon Symphony.
A firm supporter of arts education, Adam Eccleston has worked extensively with social change organizations such as, BRAVO Youth Orchestras, where he is the Director of Orchestral Programs. He is a faculty member of the Global Leaders Program that empowers arts changemakers to grow organizations that impact communities.
A native of New York City, Adam Eccleston grew up in Germany where he studied with Eric Lamb and Thaddeus Watson at Hochschule fur Musik und Darstellende. He currently holds two masters degrees in music performance and music education and studied at SUNY Purchase with Tara Helen O’Connor and Paula Robison at New England Conservatory of Music. In his spare time he enjoys baking and watching reruns of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Flute & Piccolo
Second flute and piccolo player Gail Gillespie moved to Portland in 2009, shortly after retiring as principal flute of the U.S. Marine Band, “The President’s Own,” in Washington, D.C. During her 30-year tenure there, she served 26 years as principal flute, and was often featured as a soloist with both the band and White House chamber orchestra. Born in Hawaii, Gail received her Bachelor of Music in Performance, with honors, from the New England Conservatory of Music, in Boston, Massachusetts.
Her primary flute instructors include Jean Harling, Paula Robison, James Pappoutsakis, and Toshiko Kohno. Since “retiring” to Portland, Gail has been an active freelance musician, subbing with the Oregon, Newport, and Vancouver symphonies, as well as other groups in the area. A member of the Portland Columbia Symphony since 2013, Gail also teaches flute lessons in a studio in NE Portland.
Gail sings alto in the choir at Westminster Presbyterian Church in NE Portland, and often plays flute during services there. The kindness and beauty of Oregon bring her great joy.
Gail Gillespie’s chair is sponsored by Col. Mary J. Mayer, USAF (Ret.)
After a very long hiatus, Alicia Charlton finally came to her senses and joyfully picked up her clarinet again! Principal clarinet of PCSO since 2010, Alicia is an active freelance musician, teacher, and clinician in the Portland area, and currently serves as the Orchestra Representative to the PCSO Board. Alicia also holds positions with Portland Chamber Orchestra and Newport Symphony, and is a regular substitute with the Portland Opera orchestra. She has performed in numerous orchestras and musical theater productions, including the Oregon, Portland Festival, Vancouver, and Walla Walla symphonies, Broadway Rose, Lakewood, and Clackamas Repertory theatres, Pixie Dust Productions, and Mock’s Crest’s Gilbert & Sullivan productions. Alicia also delights in exploring the chamber music repertoire with various ensembles at every opportunity, especially with her quartet, Clarinets à la Mode, and with the PCSO Wind Quintet. She has attended the Apple Hill Center for Chamber Music Summer Festival in New Hampshire, several International Clarinet Association conferences, and is a regular participant at Into the Woods, a local chamber music retreat, where she plays her heart out with like-minded chamber music aficionados.
Alicia Charlton’s chair is sponsored by Donald & Johnny Adamson
Steve Gordon began his musical education on the accordion at the age of seven, started playing the clarinet in grade school, and took up the saxophone in high school. As principal clarinetist in the Marin Youth Orchestra, his solo performances included Concerto for Clarinet, Strings, and Harp by Aaron Copland, Prokofiev’s Overture on Hebrew Themes, and Mozart’s Symphonia Concertante.
In college he honed his skills on all three instruments, playing periodic gigs in California’s wine country and becoming a member of the award-winning UC Berkeley jazz ensembles. Experience with the jazz ensembles included backing up Sonny Rollins, Hubert Laws, Ed Shaughnessy, and Freddie Hubbard in the 70’s. He also played accordion, clarinet, and saxophone in vaudeville shows at Harvey’s Casino in Lake Tahoe and with a traveling circus for two months during three summers.
After college, Steve attended medical school at UCLA. Music took a back-seat to medical studies for the next several years as he completed a residency at OHSU and established his medical practice. After a hiatus of about 10 years, the lure of music became too difficult to resist and he re-entered the music scene. He has been an active member of Clarinets à la Mode, a chamber music group featuring four clarinets, since 2000. He became a regular member of Portland Columbia Symphony in 2014, and recently joined the Ne Plus Ultra Jass [sic] Orchestra, in which he plays clarinet and alto saxophone.
Steve has played accordion at local restaurants and at charity events, and enjoys a world-wide audience on YouTube. This medium brought him to the attention of a movie producer who selected his original composition and performance of “Ravenna” for use in the Sony Pictures Movie Jodorowsky’s Dune (2014). His performances of a variety of music genres on different accordions have a combined total of over 500,000 views.
Steve Gordon’s chair is sponsored by Susan & William Smith
Prinicpal oboist of Portland Columbia Symphony since 1990, Brad studied with world-renowned oboist Marc Lifschey during the 1970’s while living in the Bay Area. Mr. Lifschey was principal oboe with the San Francisco symphony at the time, and notably, principal in the Cleveland Orchestra under Szell in the 1960’s. Since returning from the Bay Area to Portland, Brad has performed with the Oregon Symphony, Portland Opera, Portland Chamber Orchestra, the Vancouver Symphony and the Newport Symphony. In the Bay Area, Brad performed with the Berkeley Orchestra under Kent Nagano, and the Santa Rosa Symphony.
Brad is a founding member of the Madero Winds ensemble featuring a woodwind trio and woodwind quintet.
Dagny Rask Regan, a native Portlander, is now in her 20th season with Portland Columbia Symphony as second oboe. She is a freelance musician and teacher in the Portland area, with a full music studio of 48 oboes, bassoons, and pianists. She also holds a position as bassoonist with the Bach Cantata Choir Orchestra. She has performed with the Portland Festival Symphony, Portland Singing Christmas Tree, Portland Christian Center, and Oregon Chamber Players, and has subbed with Vancouver (WA) and Newport symphonies. Dagny also plays in several smaller chamber ensembles, including Bassoon Conspiracy and the Double Reed Divas.
Before Dagny joined PCSO, she sang and played for dozens of weddings and wrote award-winning songs. Her husband Mike is a retired band director and the bass player for the band, Crazy 8s, and their son Kenny is an active composer in the L.A. area. When she’s not playing or teaching music, Dagny retreats to her beach condo in Lincoln City. She enjoys reading, cooking, and running.
Ann van Bever has played English horn in Portland Columbia Symphony since 2002. She has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in music from Southern Methodist University (Dallas, TX) and has a law degree from Marquette University Law School (Milwaukee, WI). She practiced law for 17 years before returning to music as a full-time profession. In addition to Portland Columbia Symphony, she plays oboe and oboe d’amore in the Bach Cantata Choir Orchestra and principal oboe in the Oregon East Symphony (Pendleton), and enjoys chamber music as a member of the Double Reed Divas and the Meadowlark Ensemble. She is a busy freelance player throughout Oregon and Southwest Washington and teaches a small studio of private oboe students.
Ann and her husband, Peter, are avid supporters of music in Portland. Both have served on the board of Chamber Music Northwest, Peter has served on the Portland Opera board, and Ann is a member of the PCSO board. Since 1983, she has attended an annual summer chamber music camp in Vermont and in 1997 started a similar chamber music camp in the Portland area called “Into the Woods.” Before moving to Portland in 1993, Ann lived in California, Texas, Florida, and Wisconsin, and was an active musician and supporter of the arts in each of the communities she lived in. In addition to music, she loves food, traveling, reading, and word games.
Margaret McShea hails from Texas, where she received her degree in Bassoon Performance from the University of Texas in Austin. She and her trombonist husband moved to the Pacific Northwest long enough ago to have a native Oregonian son and are never moving again!
Margaret plays both bassoon and contrabassoon with regional symphonies such as the Vancouver (WA) Symphony and Oregon State University Orchestra, and she is also a chamber music specialist, performing regularly with several groups, including the PCSO Wind Quintet, which does outreach to children through concerts in schools and libraries around Oregon. She has a soft spot for vocal works, and has enjoyed being in the “pit” for countless musical theater and opera productions, as well as on the stage with local choral groups Portland Gay Men’s Chorus, Oregon Repertory Singers, Willamette Master Chorus, Bravo Vancouver, Portland Vocal Consort and Portland Symphonic Choir. In the past few years, she has also branched out into studio recording and music videos with groups such as ARCO-PDX.
When not playing music, Margaret can be found in the great outdoors, gardening or camping and hiking with family and friends.
The Bassoon Section is sponsored by Diana & William Dameron
Bassoon & Contrabassoon
Nicole Buetti has composed extensively for chamber ensembles and large ensembles of various configurations, as well as children’s music and music for media. She spent several years in the Los Angeles area working as a composer in the film and television industries, and has had music commissioned and licensed for use all over the world. She has been honored for her film score work at the Wild Rose International Film Fest, Dodge Grant Association, and Telly Awards Association.
Nicole co-owns Goes to Eleven Media, a music and media company specializing in recorded music for film and television and children’s educational songs. In 2017, she released her 6th album of songs for kids called Just Be You! which was honored with both a Parent’s Picks Award for Top 5 Best Preschool and Elementary Music CD’s of 2018 and a 2017 Educational CD of the Year by Creative Child Magazine. Her song “Halloween Masquerade Waltz” won Fan Favorite in the 10th Annual Independent Music Awards’ Best Holiday Song category.
In addition playing contrabassoon and bassoon in Portland Columbia Symphony, Nicole performs in the Vancouver (WA) Symphony, Oregon East Symphony, and the Oregon Coast Music Festival, and is an active freelancer in both Oregon and Washington as well as abroad. She has performed with the Haydn Music Festival Orchestra in Vienna, and as a soloist and chamber music artist with the Assisi Performing Arts Festival in Italy, where she was appointed Composer in 2013. Nicole has also published several works for chamber groups and wind bands, which are available from Forton Music, Brotons-Mercadal Publishing and JW Pepper.
When she is not composing or performing, Nicole teaches bassoon at the University of Portland and has her own private teaching studio. She believes aspiring musicians should be open to different musical experiences – embrace the weird and whimsical. She loves being involved in all styles and genres of music especially music for children.
The Bassoon Section is sponsored by Diana & William Dameron
As the daughter of an opera singer and a music store owner it only followed that Jennifer Harrison would grow up to be a musician. Choosing the instrument which she felt possessed the most gorgeous tone, she began a life as a French horn player at the age of 11. As a teen she had the fortune of playing at the Tanglewood Music Festival in Massachusetts under the baton of Leonard Bernstein.
After her college studies at Northwestern University, Jen played with the New Mexico Symphony for one year and thoroughly relished working as a symphonic player. Since moving to Portland she has been freelancing across the Pacific Northwest region as a classical and pop rock horn player. She is currently a member of the Portland Opera Orchestra, Eugene Symphony, Portland Chamber Orchestra, Portland Brass Quintet and Northwest Horn Orchestra. Jen is also a regular substitute with the Oregon Symphony and Oregon Ballet Theatre Orchestra. In the summertime Jen has been involved with the Sunriver Music Festival.
When she is not playing the horn, she can be found doing garden design, hiking the trails of the Pacific Northwest, and playing guitar and ukulele in rock bands.
Currently living in Salem, Derek is an active freelancer in the Willamette valley. In addition to Portland Columbia Symphony, he has played with the Newport Symphony and Vancouver Symphony. In 2018, he received his B.S. in Civil Engineering from Portland State University. Derek began his musical studies in saxophone as a child, and later in voice. Not caring for the improvisational nature of the saxophone and after having developed a love for orchestral music, Derek ambitiously took on the challenge as an adult of learning one of the most notoriously difficult instruments: the French horn. While he was attending PSU, he took lessons from Dr. Daniel Partridge and Dr. Melissa Robinson with the goal of being proficient enough to play in the university orchestra by the time he graduated. He fell in love with the instrument and quickly rose to being the principal player of the university’s wind symphony, orchestra, opera, and had a senior recital as a non-major.
In Salem, Derek co-founded the wind quintet, Ventus, plays principal horn with Salem Philharmonia Orchestra, and 2nd horn with Salem Orchestra. He lives with his two Tonkinese cats and works for ODOT as a traffic signal timer. In his free time, he enjoys learning new skills needed to work on his house and tends his garden.
No bio available.
The French Horn Section is sponsored by Drs. Karen & Cliff Deveney, & the OSHU Department of Surgery
Doug Riggs’ chair is sponsored by Carole & Wendell Cook/Nancy’s Flowers
No bio available.
Trumpeter James Smock has enjoyed a varied career playing for symphony orchestras, Elvis tribute artists, chamber ensembles, and rodeo bands. Since 2010 Mr. Smock has been the principal trumpet of the Portland Chamber Orchestra, with concert highlights including “Frankenstein!” (H.K. Gruber) and “The Diary of Anne Frank” (Grigory Frid). James is also an audience favorite at the PCO’s annual performance of Handel’s Messiah.
Mr. Smock has toured internationally with the acclaimed, award winning Elvis tribute artist Justin Shandor, and can also be heard serenading oxen and wild horses every year at the Happy Canyon Indian Pageant and Wild West Show at the famous Pendleton Round-Up. He’s played with the Boise Philharmonic, the Des Moines Metro Opera, the Oregon Symphony, the Chicago and Washington chamber orchestras, and the Britt Festival Orchestra.
James lives outside Longview, Washington with his beloved wife Rebekah and the savage feline Zuul. He has been principal trumpet of Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra since 2018.
The Trumpet Section is sponsored by The Walker Family Foundation
Joe Klause received his Bachelor’s Degree in Trumpet Performance from the New England Conservatory in Boston after having graduated from the Pre-College Program at Juilliard in New York. At the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, he continued his studies receiving a Master’s Degree in Dalcroze Eurhythmics (the study of music through movement) and an Artist Diploma in Chamber Music (with the Redline Brass Quintet, of which he is a founding member). After his time at music school, Joe put his skills to good use and built an ice cream sandwich business, Peace Pie, which now has five stores in three states up and down the East Coast. Feeling satisfied that he scooped enough ice cream, Joe moved to Oregon in 2017 to follow his passion for music.
Aside from performing with Portland Columbia Symphony, Joe is a regular performer with the Eugene Symphony, Portland Chamber Orchestra, the Astoria Music Festival, and the Sun River Music festival. He is a member of the Rose City Brass Quintet, Rose City Brass Trio, and the Portlandia Brass Ensemble. He also performs with many other local orchestras, musicals, wind ensembles and festivals in and around the Pacific Northwest Aside from an extensive private studio, Joe teaches at the Community Music Center of Portland and was a Teaching Artist at the BRAVO youth orchestra program. He gives regular clinics at nine different Portland Metro area high schools, middle schools, colleges, and youth orchestras. Joe is an endorsed Conn Selmer Bach artist.
The Trumpet Section is sponsored by The Walker Family Foundation
Jason is a proud member of Portland Columbia Symphony’s trumpet section. Also second trumpet in the Portland Choir Orchestra, Jason is an active freelance musician, and has performed with the Newport and Vancouver (WA) symphonies, as well as Symphony Tacoma. He has performed as a soloist with the Assisi Performing Arts Festival in Assisi, Italy, and can be heard on the popular children’s album Just Be You (by In A World Music Kids) on the album’s title track, “I’m Me.” He has also done several other recordings for In A World , including “The Zombie Puppet Parade” and “Día de los Muertos.”
Jason received his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees in Trumpet Performance from the University of Northern Colorado, and has studied primarily with Bill Pfund and Dr. Robert Murray. Originally from Colorado, Jason moved to the Portland area for a position at the Monette trumpet company, where he is the Operations Manager.
When not playing the trumpet, Jason can usually be found on the golf course and is the 2019 Club Champion at Camas Meadows. He also enjoys sampling the wines of the Pacific Northwest with his wife Nicole (bassoonist and contrabassoonist with PCSO).
The Trumpet Section is sponsored by The Walker Family Foundation
Greg Scholl has played trombone in Portland Columbia Symphony since 1996; he became principal trombone in 2000. He is also principal trombone in the Vancouver and Newport symphonies, and plays locally in the Portland Brass Quintet and the Portland Festival Symphony. He has performed with the Oregon Ballet Theatre, the Oregon Symphony, the Portland Opera, the Salem Chamber Orchestra, the Portland Chamber Orchestra, the Portland Symphonic Choir, the Willamette Master Chorus, and the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus, as well as the Oregon Repertory Singers and the Portland Symphonic Choir. Greg was formerly second trombone in the Austin Lyric Opera, and is currently the trombone and low brass instructor at Pacific University.
He obtained a trombone performance degree at the University of Texas at Austin, where he studied with Donald Knaub. Prior to that he studied with Peter Kline and David Brown in San Antonio, TX. Greg plays in the Portland modern jazz duo Dos Hermanos de Hale Bopp. Greg also plays guitar and trombone in a variety of styles with local bands and performers the Rhythm Dogs, Goombahttsi, and Elvis Presley Tribute Artist Justin Shandor.
After rejecting the millions of dollars people offered him to play the trombone, Greg obtained a law degree in 1995 from Lewis & Clark Northwestern School of Law. During most business days he can be found practicing law as the director of the capital case team at the Metropolitan Public Defender. He enjoys spending time with his family and dogs, reading, camping and hiking, collecting things like Conan the Barbarian comic books, LP records, and concert recordings of the Grateful Dead, and being married to incredible principal bassoonist Margaret McShea.
The Trombone Section is sponsored by Mardy & Hank Stevens, in memory of Dr. Milton L. Stevens, Jr.
Trombone & Personnel Manager
John grew up in Hillsboro, and is an active freelance musician on the west coast. He took private lessons locally, and played with the Portland Youth Philharmonic in middle and high schools. John is second trombone with the Portland Columbia Symphony, and plays regularly with Vancouver Symphony, Newport Symphony, and other ensembles around town, as well as occasional appearances with the Portland Opera, and the Portland Festival Orchestra. John teaches privately in the Portland-Metro area. He attended Portland State University and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where he received a degree in Music Performance. He was a member of the Marin Symphony, and regular substitute with the Dallas Wind Symphony, Texas Wind Symphony, Garland Symphony, and a founding member of the trombone quartet Slide Handlers while living in Dallas, Texas. John loves the outdoors, movies, and listening to all types of music. He has been married to his amazing wife Karen for over 30 years, and loves raising their daughter.
Story about how I came to play trombone
As a kid, I did not have the hand strength and dexterity needed to play many instruments, and my mom knew this. A few months before instrument selection in elementary school, she started playing lots of classical music with strong trombone parts; Wagner, Mahler, Respighi, Schostakovich, brass quintets, etc. This had the desired effect, as when I was choosing, I asked, “What was that instrument in that Mahler thing?” When I chose trombone, my mother breathed a sigh of relief knowing it was something I could play and stick with. Over 45 years later, I’m still with it, and love to play with PCSO and our wonderful low brass section of Greg Scholl, John Ohnstad, and James Kuzmic. Being able to play this amazing music with friends, and under the fabulous leadership of Steven Byess is both a privilege and a pleasure.
The Trombone Section is sponsored by Mardy & Hank Stevens, in memory of Dr. Milton L. Stevens, Jr.
John joined Portland Columbia Symphony in August of 2014. In addition to performing in PCSO, John is also the bass trombonist for the Siletz Bay Music Festival, Big Horn Brass, Trombone 8, and the Art Abrams Swing Machine Big Band, and is a founder of the Rose City Trombones. John has also performed with the Portland Youth Philharmonic, the Tucson, Vancouver, and Newport symphonies, the Oregon Ballet, the Salem Chamber Orchestra, the Portland Opera, and the Oregon Symphony.
While attending the University of Arizona, John performed in all instrumental groups, musical performances, and opera productions. After graduating with a degree in Marketing and a Minor in Music Performance, John won an audition to perform in the Walt Disney World All-American Orchestra’s production of Celebrate Broadway. John has recorded three albums with the Art Abrams Swing Machine Big Band and is a featured soloist on the latest album, Speak Low, Swing Hard.
John was recently selected by international audition as a Fellow for the Alessi Seminar, presented by Joseph Alessi, principal trombone of the New York Philharmonic.
John continues to enjoy a fun and exciting career in sales as Director of Business Development for CAI Logistics. When not playing on his bass and contrabass trombones, John can be found with his lovely wife and two boys, and riding his really, really big bike.
The Trombone Section is sponsored by Mardy & Hank Stevens, in memory of Dr. Milton L. Stevens, Jr.
No bio available.
Jay Steele’s chair is sponsored by Catherine Holder
Principal Tuba (2021-2022)
A native of Portland, Oregon, Joe earned his Bachelor of Music degree in Performance from the University of Oregon. He went on to earn his Master of Music degree in Performance from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. He continued his musical studies in Chicago, earning a Professional Diploma in Orchestral Studies from Roosevelt University. During his time at the University of Oregon, Joe took 1st place in the Artist Solo Tuba Division at the Northwest Tuba-Euphonium Conference in 2013. Joe was the inaugural tuba player in the Graduate Brass Quintet at BGSU. He was also a mentor for the Detroit Symphony Civic Youth Ensembles. While in Chicago, Joe was an Associate Member with the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, the training orchestra of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. In 2016, he was a finalist in the Arnold Jacobs Mock Orchestra Audition Competition at the International Tuba-Euphonium Conference.
Joe is an Associate Artist with the Rodney Marsalis Philadelphia Big Brass. He has performed with orchestras in the greater Midwest area including the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, Toledo Symphony, Elgin Symphony, and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Locally, Joe is currently the Principal Tuba of the Portland Opera and has performed with the Oregon Bach Festival, Eugene Symphony, Vancouver Symphony (WA), Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra Brass Quintet and Brass Ensemble, Rose City Brass Quintet and the Oregon Symphony. Joe’s primary teachers include Michael Grose, David Saltzman, Charles Schuchat and Gene Pokorny.
An advocate for the marching performing arts, Joe has worked with marching band programs in Oregon including Sunset High School, McNary High School, West Salem High School, and most recently Century High School, respectively.
Currently serving a one-year term.
Michael Charles Smith is a marimba soloist, film/media composer, singer-songwriter, and teacher residing in Portland, Oregon. His compositions have been used in commercials and documentaries for companies like Uber, Google, Snapchat, Audi, Adidas, Subaru, Umpqua Bank, Allstate Insurance, Weight Watchers, Intel, and more. He currently works as the composer for One Hundred Seconds documentaries.
As an accomplished marimba soloist, Michael covers everything from Bach to Radiohead and Ray Charles to George Gershwin, making him a hit with listeners of all ages. He performs solo marimba for wedding ceremonies, country clubs, business conferences, vineyards, and private parties.
Michael is the owner of MarimbaLab, a company that teaches music abilities through arrangements of popular music for marimba. All arrangements are published and are played by marimba groups all over the country. Currently MarimbaLab runs classes at Riverdale Grade School and High School in Portland. Kids become published arrangers at the age of 10!
Michael studied at the University of Oregon with Charles Dowd and at Portland State University with Joel Bluestone. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Music.
Mike Smith’s chair is sponsored by Carol Colleen
Bethany Evans, a native of Salem, Oregon, began her musical studies at age five. She started studying the harp four years later and found her passion. She received a B.M. in Harp Performance from the University of Arizona summa cum laude and graduated with a 4.0 GPA from the University of Oregon’s Master of Music program in Harp Performance. Ms. Evans also has a law degree from Willamette University College of Law, and a Certificate in Dispute Resolution. She has performed extensively throughout Europe and the United States, including with the World Harp Congress and the Oregon Bach Festival, and has multiple award-winning recordings. She has an active private teaching studio, and is on the faculty of Western Oregon University and Chemeketa Community College as harp instructor. Ms. Evans has an adult harp ensemble in her teaching studio, with which she frequently performs at memory care homes in the Salem area. She was principal harpist for the Salem Symphony, is the principal harpist for Salem Orchestra, and has been the harpist for Portland Columbia Symphony Orchestra since 2014. Her greatest devotion is being a mom to her daughter, son, and the muse for much of the art by her amazing husband, Kamron Coleman.
Bethany Evans’ chair is sponsored by Col. Mary J. Mayer, USAF (Ret.)
JáTtik Clark began his professional music career as Principal Tuba of the Oregon Symphony in the fall of 1999, after being chosen for the position in May of the same year, at age 23. Since then, he has also become active as a chamber musician, soloist, instructor, and clinician both locally and nationally.
As an orchestral tubist, JáTtik has been invited to perform with the Chicago, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Grant Park, and Seattle symphonies. His varied chamber music experience includes performances and recordings with numerous groups including Pink Martini, Big Horn Brass, Third Angle Music Ensemble, Chamber Music Northwest, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. He has performed as a featured soloist at the Grand Teton Music Festival, Vancouver (WA) Symphony, and the Corvallis-OSU Symphony, in addition to the Oregon Symphony. He also gave the Northwest premiere of Oregon Symphony Pops conductor Jeff Tyzik’s Dance Suite for Tuba and Orchestra with the Portland Columbia Symphony. Additionally, JáTtik was featured as a guest co-soloist with the “Pershing’s Own” United States Army Band in Washington, D.C.
JáTtik also serves as Co-Principal Tuba of the Grand Teton Music Festival in Jackson Hole, WY, and Principal Tuba of the Sunriver Music Festival. He also holds the teaching position of Applied Tuba-Euphonium Instructor at Portland State University and Lewis & Clark College, along with being Co-Instructor of Tuba-Euphonium at Oregon State University.
JáTtik earned a bachelor’s degree in music performance (cum laude) from the University of South Carolina and a master’s degree in performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. His primary teachers were Timothy J. Northcut and Dr. Ronald Davis, with additional instruction from Gene Pokorny, Floyd Cooley, James Jenkins, Michael Grose, Steve Norrell, and Michael Mulcahy.
Born in San Francisco in 1968, Brett Deubner began his studies at the Eastman School of Music in New York where his principal teachers were Zvi Zeitlin on violin and Martha Katz and John Graham on viola. Since the world premiere performance and subsequent critical acclaim of Lalo Schifrin’s Triple Concerto with the Grammy award-winning New Jersey Symphony, he has gone on to perform world-wide as soloist with over 70 orchestras in 11 countries. Recent engagements include concerts with the Reading and Peninsula symphonies, the Oregon Sinfonietta, the Coastal Symphony of Oregon, the Bismarck Symphony, the Bemidji Symphony of Minnesota, Reus Festival in Spain, the Southern Cross Philharmonia of Australia, and the Suzhou Youth Symphony of China.
Deubner has a great commitment to chamber music and has worked with Pinchas Zukerman, André Michel-Schub, the Tokyo Quartet, Vermeer Quartet, and Colorado Quartet, as well as Guy Deplus, Alexander Fiterstein, Ransom Wilson, and Carol Wincenc. He was the founder of the Elements Quartet based in New York City which premiered new works by Lucas Foss, David Del Tredici, and David Sampson. These collaborations have taken him to the Kent-Blossom Festival, Norfolk, the Round Top Festival, and festivals in Sweden, Italy, and South America.
As a recording artist, Deubner has built an extensive discography of viola concerti, sonatas, chamber music, and solo works on Naxos, Albany, Innova, and Centaur. His most recent recording – three works for viola and orchestra by American composers Max Wolpert and Amanda Harberg, with the Southern Arizona Symphony – received universal acclaim: “Deubner’s strong tone, especially in the thin upper register, is notably exploited in these two concertos, but it is the warmth and body of texture he draws from his instrument makes compelling listening of whatever he is playing.” (Gramophone)
In 2015 Deubner received the Certificate of Congressional Recognition for his “commitment to cultural and musical exchange.” He is currently on the string faculty of the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College in New York City.
Dr. Brian Dunbar, a native of St. Augustine, FL, enjoys performing as a soloist, orchestral performer, and chamber musician, in addition to his activities as a flute instructor. He earned a Doctor of Musical Arts from Louisiana State University, Master of Music from the University of Michigan, and Bachelor of Music from Stetson University. Dr. Dunbar is the Assistant Professor of Flute at the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam. Previously he held teaching positions at Southern University and A&M College, Southeastern Louisiana University, and Louisiana State University.
Brian has considerable experience as a performer in multiple settings of professional performance including concerto, recital, chamber, solo, studio, and orchestral contexts. He has been recognized in the Monroe Symphony League Marjorie Stricklin Emerging Artists, Stetson University and Louisiana State University Concerto, Sankyo Flutes Orchestral Excerpts, Music Teachers National Association and the Louisiana Flute Society competitions. In 2018, he received First Prize in the inaugural International Low Flutes Festival Alto Flute Competition in Reston, VA. He has performed at The National Flute Association Annual Convention in Chicago, San Diego, and Orlando, and Salt Lake City. Additionally, he is a featured collaborator at the annual New Music on The Bayou Summer Festival in Rutson, LA.
Brian has participated in performances internationally and throughout the United States. Appearances have included U.S. & European tours as a counselor and member of the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp International Exchange Program and as a guest lecturer and performer at the Initiatives Meetings and Publications on Artistic Research “Hands on Flute” conference in Aveiro, Portugal. He has performed in the flute sections of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Acadiana Symphony, Dearborn Symphony, Battle Creek Symphony, and Sphinx Symphony Orchestra, in addition to other regional orchestras throughout the United States.
Prioritizing engagement in the broader community, Brian has served on the Board of Directors for numerous community organizations and is a former Teaching Artist and Development Officer for Kids’ Orchestra, an El-Sistema inspired non-profit organization in Baton Rouge, LA. He is also a member of several dynamic music organizations, including The National Flute Association’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee, Music Teacher’s National Association, and is a member of the globally recognized Sphinx Organization, which aims to promote inclusion and diversity in the arts.
His primary teachers include Susan McQuinn, Amy Porter, and Katherine Kemler. Brian has also received performance guidance from artists such as Julien Beaudiment, Julia Bogorad, Adrian Brett, Leone Buyse, Marianne Gedigian, Michael Hasel, Beate-Gabriela Schmitt, Ransom Wilson and many others.
Sir Yehudi Menuhin has written, “He is without doubt one of the most brilliant and musical of violinists…Alexander Markov will certainly leave his mark on the music lovers of the world and in the annals of the violin virtuosi of our day.” Awarded a prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 1987, Markov made his New York debut recital at Carnegie Hall in 1983. A Gold Medal winner at the Paganini International Violin Competition, he has appeared as a soloist with some of the world’s most celebrated orchestras including the Philadelphia Orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris, the Montreal Symphony, Budapest Festival Orchestra and the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra. Markov has performed with such conductors as Lorin Maazel, Charles Dutoit, Christoph Eschenbach, Franz Welser-Möst and Ivan Fischer, and has been sharing stages with Martha Argerich and other luminaries.
Alexander Markov’s recent headlining concerts at Carnegie Hall were filled to capacity and his upcoming engagements are scheduled in USA, Europe, Russia, Japan, the Middle East and South America.
Alexander Markov’s reputation in the 19th-century romantic virtuoso repertoire is second-to-none. One of the few violinists in the world who performs the entire set of the 24 Paganini Caprices in a single recital, he is featured in the internationally acclaimed film about great violinists, “The Art of Violin,” directed by the legendary film director Bruno Monsaingeon. His CD release and the video of the 24 Paganini Caprices, distributed world-wide by Warner Classics International, caused a sensation and became a best-seller.
In 2006, Warner released the long-awaited DVD of the 24 Paganini Caprices and it instantly became one of the best-selling classical DVD’s on Amazon. Many Caprices were posted by fans around the world on YouTube and some clips have over three million hits.
Markov’s musical journey goes beyond his work as a classical violin soloist. While attending high school, he discovered and fell in love with rock music – a love affair that merged with his first love, classical music, when he has co-written The Rock Concerto with James V. Remington who also custom-designed Markov’s gold, 6-string electric violin. Built by Barry Lipman, the new, patented electric violin is one-of-a-kind in the world and has a unique sound capable of creating the most extreme contrasts from the soft and sweet to the most powerful and dramatic. The vision of the project is to bridge a gap between rock and classical audiences closer together and to attract young people who otherwise never go to a symphony. Markov continues to write numerous new compositions combining classical and rock genres featuring the electric violin, orchestra, rock group and a choir.
Alexander Markov was born in Moscow and studied violin with his father, concert violinist Albert Markov. By the time he was eight years old, he was already appearing as a soloist with orchestras and in double concertos with his father. The father and son team still perform together in duo-program repertoire in concert halls worldwide. Markov emigrated to the U.S. with his parents and received his United States citizenship in 1982.
Pianist Miki Sawada, whose performance made The Boston Globe’s Best Of Arts 2021 list “The classical concerts that made me fall in love with live music again,” is known as a fearless musician who is taking classical music where others are not.
Through her signature project Gather Hear Tour, Miki is traveling the country state-by-state with a piano in a van to perform in community gathering spaces instead of concert halls. The mission is to connect with Americans across socioeconomic and political boundaries through music; Gather Hear attempts to find what unites us as humans in this nation of deep divide. Miki has given more than 70 free concerts in Alaska (2017), West Virginia (2018), Massachusetts (2021), Utah (2021), and Louisiana (2022), very often in rural communities where no live classical music is available. [www.gatherhear.com]
When not trucking around with her own piano, Miki enjoys a career of solo and chamber music, with a special affinity for contemporary music. Miki has been featured at venues and occasions such as: Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, Helsinki Music Centre, The Arctic Philharmonic (Norway), the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Joe’s Pub at the Public Theater (NYC), Roulette (Brooklyn), MATA Festival (NYC), Toronto Summer Music Festival, Music on Main (Vancouver), Chicago Symphony Center’s Macy’s Day of Music, the Banff Centre, New Music New Haven, PianoFest in the Hamptons, Art Base (Belgium), and Moulin d’Andé (France). She has been featured for live interviews and performances on WQXR (NYC), WFMT (Chicago), KUAC (Fairbanks), West Virginia Public Broadcasting (Charleston), and All Classical Portland (Oregon). In the summers, she is a faculty member of Heifetz Institute in Virginia. She has commissioned several solo pieces with support from New Music USA, and in 2021 released her debut album “A Kind of Mirror” featuring music for piano and electronics by composer Brendon Randall-Myers.
Miki holds degrees from Yale School of Music (Artist Diploma), Eastman School of Music (Master of Music) with Natalya Antonova and Northwestern University (Bachelor of Music) with James Giles. Miki was named one of 22 Outstanding Women of 2020 by Eastman School of Music.
Miki is an ultramarathon runner and raced 80 miles through the Idaho mountains this summer. She lives in Boston with her husband Kristopher Tong (Borromeo Quartet) and their rescue German Shepherd mix named Shakira.