Cellist Mark Chambers headlines Faculty Concert Series

Music professor, cellist Mark Chambers is joined by two of his colleagues and frequent collaborators, violinist Jacques Israelievitch and pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico, for a concert Feb. 8 at York University. The performance, featuring works by three contemporary Canadian women composers with a dash of Mozart thrown in for good measure, is part of the Department of Music’s Faculty Concert Series, taking place in the Tribute Communities Recital Hall at York’s Keele campus.

A highlight of the recital will be the world premiere of Katarina Curcin’s Unorthodox Obsession. Commissioned by the Ontario Arts Council and composed specifically for these artists, this challenging work incorporates a variety of tempi and a wide range of styles, including some folkloric themes. It calls for the three musicians to perform independently, showcasing their technique and artistry in a wild, improvisational style.

Larysa Kuzmenko’s Suite of Dances, Kelly-Marie Murphy’s Give Me Phoenix Wings to Fly and Mozart’s Trio for Violin, Violoncello and Piano in C major, K. 548 round out the program.

Above: Cellist Mark Chambers (far right) in rehearsal with violinist Jacques Israelievitch
and pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico

Chambers has been a member of the faculty in York’s Music Department since 2005. He has performed extensively throughout the United States and Ontario as both a chamber musician and orchestral player. A former Theodore Presser Foundation Fellow, he studied cello with Martha Gerschefski, Mark ChambersLubomir Georgiev and David Miller. His research interests include Baroque music, period instrument performance practice, the “Tartini Tone” and scordatura-altered tunings for strings.

Left: Mark Chambers

An internationally known violinist, Israelievitch served as concertmaster of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra for two decades before joining York’s Music Department in 2008. He has appeared as chamber musician with such luminaries as Emanuel Ax, Yefim Bronfman and Yo-Yo Ma. Israelievitch performs regularly with the Naumburg Award-winning New Arts Trio and in the Israelievitch Duo with his son, percussionist Michael Israelievitch. His extensive discography includes the Juno-nominated Suite Hebraique with pianist John Greer; the Tchaikovsky ballets with the St. Louis Symphony; and the first complete recording of Kreutzer’s 42 Etudes for solo violin.

One of Canada’s foremost pianists, Petrowska Quilico has appeared in solo recitals, chamber settings and with orchestras on four continents. Widely recognized as an innovative and adventurous artist, she is a longtime champion of contemporary and Canadian music, and has premiered more than 100 works by leading North American and European composers. Her numerous recordings include a Juno-nominated CD of Glenn Buhr’s Piano Concerto with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and several critically-acclaimed discs of the music of Ann Southam. She was a featured performer at the National Arts Centre’s 50th anniversary concert in 2009, and was honoured last year, together with composer Constantine Caravassilis, as the winner of the inaugural Harry Freedman Recording Award given by the Canadian Music Centre.

This concert is the fourth of five performances in the 2010-11 Faculty Concert Series, spotlighting faculty artists in York’s Music Department. The series concludes with the Ron Westray Ensemble on March 1.

Tickets are $15, or $5 for students and seniors. For tickets, contact the Box Office at 416-736-5888.