Program: Schubert: Moments Musicaux Nos 1 & 2
Brahms: Fantasies Opus 116 Nos 1 – 3
Tchaikovsky: Reverie Du Soir, Op. 19 No 1
Rachmaninoff: 3 Preludes – G Major, G# Minor and Bb Major
Second Half: Brahms Piano Quartet in C Minor Opus No 60
Background Pianist Dmitry Rachmanov has garnered much acclaim for his passionate performances, refined musicianship and brilliant pianism. Critics of major publications have called his playing "dazzling, thrilling, soulful, and deeply moving." Hailed as an “indisputable musician” by the Brussels' Le Soir and “suave and gifted pianist” by the New York Times, Rachmanov has been heard at venues such as New York's Carnegie Hall, Washington DC's Kennedy Center, London's Barbican and South Bank Centres, and Beijing Concert Hall, and his tours brought him to Mexico, Europe, Russia, Turkey and the Far East. He has collaborated as a soloist with the London Soloists Chamber Orchestra, Ukraine National Symphony, National Orchestra of Porto, Portugal, Manhattan Philharmonia, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, among others. A strong proponent of the Russian repertoire, he gave the US premiere of Boris Pasternak's Piano Sonata, broadcast nationwide by the NPR, and his recital "The Art of the 19th Century Russian Character Piece" was noted by the New York Times for "considerable color and focus" he brought to each work. He has recorded for Naxos, Omniclassic, Master Musicians and Vista Vera labels, and his upcoming albums include a CD of chamber works by composers from Southern California to be released by the Parma Records label in 2012. Rachmanov's most recent 2011 Naxos album, recorded on period pianos in collaboration with the pianist Cullan Bryant and entitled “Beethoven and his Teachers” was proclaimed "an outstanding release' by the American Record Guide.
Dr. Dmitry Rachmanov is a founding member of the Scriabin Society of America and an active member of the American Liszt and Beethoven Societies. He is a Professor of Piano at California State University, Northridge, where he serves as Chair of Keyboard Studies. A sought-after master class clinician and lecturer, Dr. Rachmanov has served on the faculties of Manhattan School of Music, Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University, and has appeared as a guest artist at schools such as Royal Northern College of Music, Shanghai Conservatory and Beijing Central Music School, UCLA, University of Chicago, University of Michigan, Arizona State University and Indiana University at Bloomington. Dr. Rachmanov has been a frequent presence at international festivals and has served as an adjudicator at competitions in the US and in Europe, such as the Gina Bachauer International Piano Competition in Salt Lake City, Utah, and the Brahms International Competition in Poertschach, Austria.
Rachmanov is a graduate of The Juilliard School and he holds the DMA from Manhattan School of Music. He won prizes at the Kapell, Senigallia and Awerbuch competitions, held a fellowship from the American Pianists Association, and was a recipient of the ArtsLink grant and the George Schick Award for Outstanding Musicianship, presented by the Manhattan School of Music. In 2008 Rachmanov was named the Jerome Richfield Memorial Scholar of the year at California State University, Northridge. Dmitry Rachmanov is a Steinway Artist.
Rowena Hammill- cello: Originally from Australia, she came to the US to study with Raya Garbousova at Northern Illinois University and then was assistant to Janos Starker at Indiana University for her master’s degree. While at IU she was winner of the concerto competition and awarded the Performer’s Certificate. For the next four years she served as Professor of Cello at the University of Northern Iowa before moving to Los Angeles in 1989 to take up the same position at California State University, Northridge. In 1990 she joined the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, an ensemble with which she performed for ten years, eventually as Associate Principal. She was concurrently the Associate Principal Cello of Los Angeles Opera, a position she still holds. In 2008, she moved with her family to Vashon Island in Puget Sound and is now actively performing in the Pacific Northwest, dividing her time between Los Angeles and Seattle. She has toured with I Solisti Veneti, appeared as soloist with the Minnesota Orchestra and the Chamber Orchestra of Iowa, and has won prizes in the Washington International Competition, the Minnesota Young Artist Competition and the Carmel Music Competition. She has performed at many summer music festivals, including the Bach Aria Festival, the Ravinia Festival, the Oregon Bach Festival and the New Hampshire Music Festival. Rowena has recorded for the Erato, Dorian and Centaur labels and has also played on hundreds of film and television sound tracks.
Violist Heather Bentley has dedicated herself to chamber music, both as a performer and an educator. She is currently Principal Viola of the Northwest Sinfonietta, the resident chamber orchestra at Seattle’s Benaroya Hall. From 2002 - 2008 Heather was Conductor of the Northwest School Chamber Orchestra, taking the orchestra on tour to Europe and China. She also performs as Concertmaster of the ensemble “Scrape” - a 17 piece improvising string orchestra featuring original music by jazz legends Jim Knapp and Eyvind Kang. From 2003 - 2011 she performed with Odeonquartet, premiering numerous new works alongside classic chamber repertoire at venues such as the Nordstrom Recital Hall, Seattle’s Town Hall and the
Triple Door as well as the Moscow Conservatory of Music and Philharmonic Hall in Odessa, Ukraine. Her commitment to educating young people is reflected in her work at the Seattle Conservatory of Music, where she was Director of Chamber Music from 2001 till 2010 in a program that now boasts an average of ten ensembles working throughout the academic year. In 2007 she joined the music faculty at Seattle’s prestigious Lakeside School for an educational project to revamp and revitalize the school’s music program. Heather teaches violin and viola to many of the members of Lakeside’s five orchestras in addition to running a chamber music program for the advanced players in the Upper School. A graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where she was the 1985 winner of the Conservatory Concerto Competition, she holds a Masters in Chamber Music and a Bachelors in Viola Performance. She writes a blog about music at http://hemidemisemithoughts.blogspot.com