Introducing the Pur ti Miro Quartet

I’m pleased to introduce the Pur ti Miro Quartet, a newly formed quartet of Juilliard students who will be premiering Reflections on Espionage and October in Galicia, both for voice and string quartet, on the Imaginary Timescapes performance.  While they have only recently begun playing together as a quartet, they have all been making music together in various combinations and ensembles for a long time.  I’m thankful to violinist and soprano Elizabeth Derham (profiled separately here) for connecting me with the Pur di Muro Quartet.  In addition to Elizabeth on violin, I would like to introduce the rest of the players in the quartet:

Violist Isabel Hagen is an active chamber musician and an avid performer of new music, performing with new music ensembles such as Ensemble Signal and the Wordless Music Orchestra.  She frequently works with composers, and has worked with John Adams, Charles Wuorinen, and Steve Reich.  Isabel is currently an undergraduate student at the Juilliard School studying with Masao Kawasaki, where she was a finalist in Juilliard’s 2011 viola concerto competition and is a two-time recipient of the Rosemary Glyde Scholarship awarded by the New York Viola Society.

Cellist Sofia Nowik  studies with Darrett Adkins at Juilliard, where she is a graduate student and a principal cellist in the Juilliard Orchestra. She also plays as a freelance musician throughout the tri-state area, performing in orchestras and as both a soloist and a chamber musician for numerous concerts, recitals, and recording projects. Sofia premiered Tim Keyes’ The Mighty Mississippi, a concerto for cello and large-scale orchestra and choir with the Tim Keyes Consort, and she also appeared as a soloist with the Manalapan Symphony Orchestra, Central Jersey Symphony Orchestra, and the Livingston Symphony.

Sofia has served as both principal and assistant principal with the New Jersey and New York Youth Symphonies, respectively, and as well as with the Plainfield Symphony. As one of the musicians chosen to represent the Juilliard Orchestra , she was invited this past summer to co-lead the cello section in a special joint project with the Royal Academy of Music (London) under the direction of composer and conductor John Adams. This collaboration produced two performances, one in New York City as part of the Lincoln Center Summer Festival and a culminating performance in London at the BBC Proms Festival. Sofia is also a cello mentor and coach at the Juilliard School Pre-College Division, a member of the Juilliard School’s contemporary ensembles New Juilliard Ensemble and Axiom, and a Teaching Assistant for the Liberal Arts Department at the Juilliard School.

Praised by The New York Times as “spellbinding,” violinist Alex Shiozaki regularly premieres new works between performances of more traditional repertoire. Equally at home with music new and old, he has appeared as a soloist on stages from Carnegie Hall to Harvard University’s Paine Hall. For several summers, he has been invited to Tanglewood as a New Fromm Player, specializing in contemporary music.

Described by conductor David Effron as “a natural leader,” Alex has led as concertmaster the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra, Juilliard Chamber Orchestra, New Juilliard Ensemble, Harvard Bach Society Orchestra. He has performed with Ensemble ACJW, Le Train Bleu, and Second Instrumental Unit in NYC, with the New World Symphony in Miami, and with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra on their tour to Japan.  Highlights of his appearances a chamber musician include being featured on the Wednesdays At One concert series at Alice Tully Hall, in the Focus! Festival at the Juilliard School with the Mark Morris Dance Group, and in a New York Times multimedia feature performing Stravinsky’sL’histoire du soldat under the baton of Alan Gilbert.

Come hear this vibrant ensemble as we collaborate on February 16th! (Tickets, $20, are available here; proceeds befenit the Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund.)

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