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Livia Sohn and Pedja Mužijević with Ayane Kozasa and Gabriel Cabezas

Chamber Ensemble

Sunday Concert

In-Person Sold Out. Livestream Tickets Available. / Online / In-Person

Virtual Tickets
$15 virtual tickets | $10 members
sohn et all new

The 2023/24 season closes with a special performance by a group of elite chamber musicians, led by violinist Livia Sohn and pianist Pedja Mužijević, regular performers at the prestigious Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina. Sohn and Mužijević begin the program with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s refined Sonata for Violin and Piano in D major, K 306. Anchoring the program is the world premiere of a new piece for violin and piano by Stanford-based composer Jonathan Berger titled Nach Rechts, Nach Links, inspired by Paul Klee’s painting of the same name in the Phillips’s permanent collection that serves as our season-wide visual theme.

Klee’s influence as a painter, teacher, and theorist is as pronounced in music as it has been in the visual arts, and Berger’s new work for violin and piano extends the tradition of many direct musical responses to Klee’s art and legacy. To conclude the performance, Sohn and Mužijević are joined by violist Ayane Kozasa and cellist Gabriel Cabezas, members of the Owls string quartet. The ensemble presents Robert Schumann’s Piano Quartet in E-flat major, Op.47 (1842), a work of subtlety and bravura, romantic sweep and deep wells of emotion.

This event will be broadcast live from the Music Room on May 5 at 4pm. To reserve a ticket, follow the link above to register. All registered ticket holders will receive a link directing them to a livestream webpage where the performance can be accessed. Ticket holders will be able to watch this performance “On Demand” for 48 hours following the broadcast time.

Cellist Gabriel Cabezas is a true 21st century musician. Recently named one of “23 Composers and Performers to Watch in ’23” by the Washington Post, he is a prolific and sought-after soloist and collaborator, as comfortable interpreting new works as he is with the pillar scores of the cello repertoire. Gabriel has appeared with America’s finest symphony orchestras, including those of Philadelphia, Chicago, Cleveland and New York, and has premiered dozens of new works by some of the most brilliant composers of his time.

He recently released Lost Coast, a dynamic album of original music composed by Gabriella Smith inspired by her reflections on climate change, which she has seen devastate her home state of California. The album was named one of NPR Music’s “Favorite Albums Of 2021” and a “Classical Album to Hear Right Now” by The New York Times.

Gabriel will premiere Lost Coast, reimagined by the composer as a daring work for solo cello and orchestra, with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and Gustavo Dudamel in May 2023.

Gabriel is a member of the acclaimed chamber sextet yMusic. Their virtuosic execution and unique configuration have attracted high profile collaborators—from Paul Simon to Bill T. Jones to Ben Folds— and inspired an expanding repertoire of original works by prominent composers including Caroline Shaw, Missy Mazzoli, Nico Muhly and Andrew Norman.

Gabriel recently co-founded quartet collective Owls, described as “a dream group...” by the New York Times. While weaving together new compositions with original arrangements of music ranging from the 1600s to the present, Owls' distinctive instrumentation (violin, viola, and two cellos) allows them access to beautiful and exhilarating new sound worlds—effectively guaranteeing that each performance is uniquely them and without limits.

He is also a co-founder of Duende, a new music and contemporary dance collective that focuses on the interaction between musicians and dancers in the realization of new scores. Gabriel has recorded extensively as a studio musician, appearing on releases by Phoebe Bridgers, John Legend, Rufus Wainright and Taylor Swift, among many others.

In 2016, Gabriel received the Sphinx Medal of Excellence, a career grant awarded to extraordinary classical Black and Latinx musicians, who, early in their professional career, demonstrate artistic excellence, outstanding work ethic, a spirit of determination, and ongoing commitment to leadership. Gabriel studied at the Curtis Institute of Music under Carter Brey.

Hailed for her "magnetic, wide-ranging tone" and her "rock solid technique" (Philadelphia Inquirer), violist Ayane Kozasa is a sought-after chamber musician, collaborator, and educator. Since winning the 2011 Primrose International Viola Competition—where she also captured awards for best chamber music and commissioned work performances—Ayane has appeared on stages across the world, from Carnegie, Wigmore, and Suntory Hall to Ravinia, Aspen, and the Marlboro Music Festival. She is a passionate advocate for the expansion of viola repertoire, and has commissioned multiple new works featuring the viola, including “American Haiku” by Paul Wiancko and “K’Zohar Harakia” by Judd Greenstein.

Ayane has developed a career that revolves around the art of chamber music. As a founding member of the Aizuri Quartet for 11 years, she developed her skills of launching a brand new ensemble. The quartet was the 2018 quartet-in-residence at the Metropolitan Museum and the grand prize winners of both the Osaka International String Quartet Competition and MPrize Chamber Arts Competition. The Aizuri Quartet’s debut album, Blueprinting—which features the music of 5 American composers, all commissioned by the quartet—was nominated for a Grammy Award and named one of NPR’s top 10 classical albums of 2018. With collaboration being a deep part of their identity, they performed with artists such as Wilco, Marcy Rosen, Michi Wiancko, Jonathan Biss, and Maeve Gilchrist. Their devotion to education brought them to young musicians around the world, and they crafted a unique student composer workshop format that they implemented at institutions such as the University of Southern California, Princeton University, and New York Youth Symphony. In 2020, the quartet launched AizuriKids, an interactive web series for children that explores relationships between music and themes ranging from astrophysics to cooking. Their dedication to the art of the string quartet for 11 years was recognized by Chamber Music America, and in 2022 the quartet received the Cleveland Quartet Award.

Currently, Ayane is a member of the duo Ayane & Paul with composer and cellist Paul Wiancko, with whom she collaborated on Norah Jones’ album “Pick Me Up Off the Floor.” The duo has appeared at several festivals, including Spoleto Festival USA, Brooklyn Chamber Music Society, and the St. Lawrence String Quartet Seminar. Ayane’s most recent passion project Owls is a quartet collective with violinist Alexi Kenney and cellists Gabriel Cabezas and Paul Wiancko. Owls share an uncommonly fierce creative spirit, weaving together new compositions with original arrangements of music ranging from the 1600s to the present, and have played at series such as the Baryshnikov Arts Center in NYC and The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C.

Other collaboration highlights include performances with world-renowned artists such as Tessa Lark, Steven Banks, Nobuko Imai, and the Kronos Quartet. As a seasoned orchestral performer, Ayane has performed with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, A Far Cry, Philadelphia Orchestra, East Coast Chamber Orchestra, the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, as well as the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, where she served as principal violist from 2012 to 2016. 

Much of Ayane’s current work involves mentoring aspiring young musicians through programs like the Meadowmount School of Music, Green Lake Chamber Music Camp, and Olympic Music Festival. She is currently on the viola faculty at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and has been guest faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and Northwestern University. Taking inspiration from her mentors the Cavani Quartet, Ayane has developed several education-based music shows curated especially for the youth in a festival’s community including Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts and Spoleto Festival. Ayane is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music, Kronberg Academy in Germany, and Cleveland Institute of Music, where she studied viola with Misha Amory, Roberto Díaz, Nobuko Imai, and Kirsten Docter. Aside from music, she enjoys hiking, drawing, and creating animation.

Pianist and curator Pedja Mužijević has defined his career with creative programming, unusual combinations of new and old music, and lasting collaborations with artists and ensembles. He has performed with the Atlanta Symphony, Dresden Philharmonic, Milwaukee Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Orquesta Sinfonica in Montevideo, Residentie Orkest in The Hague, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Santa Fe Pro Musica and Shinsei Nihon Orchestra in Tokyo. Pedja has played solo recitals at Alice Tully Hall, 92Y and The Frick Collection in New York, Terrace Theater at Kennedy Center, Dumbarton Oaks, Phillips Collection and National Gallery in Washington, DC, Casals Hall and Bunka Kaikan in Tokyo. His Carnegie Hall concerto debut playing Mozart Concerto K. 503 with Oberlin Symphony and Robert Spano was recorded live and has been released on the Oberlin Music label.

Pedja’s interdisciplinary projects include touring with Mikhail Baryshnikov and the White Oak Dance Project throughout the United States, South America, Europe and Asia and with Simon Keenlyside in Trisha Brown’s staged version of Schubert’s Winterreise at Lincoln Center in New York, Barbican in London, La Monnaie in Brussels, Opera National de Paris, as well as Holland, Lucerne and Melbourne festivals. Combining his two passions, music and food, Pedja performed works by Ravel and Mussorgsky followed by a multi-course dinner prepared by chef David Bouley in his Test Kitchen in New York.

Highlights of 2021/22 season are performances of Framing Time, staging of Morton Feldman’s Triadic Memories with lighting design by Burke Brown and choreography by Cesc Gelabert in Barcelona and Madrid, concerts for Castleton Festival, Bay Chamber Concerts, Orchestra of St. Luke’s and Chamber Music Chicago, as well as Beethoven Fourth Piano Concerto with Battle Creek Symphony and Anne Harrigan for the Gilmore Piano Festival.

Highlights of 2022/23 season are appearances in the chamber music series of St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, as well as workshops entitled What Is a Concert” at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and the Colburn School in Los Angeles. Pedja also returned to perform at Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, SC, Bay Chamber Concerts in Rockport, ME and at Verbier Festival in Switzerland.

Pedja is the artistic administrator at Baryshnikov Arts Center in New York and artistic advisor at Tippet Rise Art Center in Montana, where he curates concerts, as well as film shoots for dozens of musicians. He also directs Concert in 21 st Century residency at the Banff Centre, where he explores concert as a format and the ways it can be more relevant today.

Hailed by Opus Magazine as “a stunning musician”, violinist LIVIA SOHN performs widely on the international stage as concerto soloist, recitalist, and festival guest artist in North America, Europe, and Asia. The Strad Magazine says, “Livia Sohn possesses a remarkably lithe and transparent tone of exceptional purity. [Her] virtually blemishless accounts are nothing short of remarkable. Even when under the most fearsome technical pressure at high velocity, every note rings true with pinpoint accuracy.”

Following an active summer that started with a return appearance at the Spoleto Festival USA in Charleston, SC, Livia went on to perform at The Newport Music Festival in Rhode Island, Bay Chamber Concerts in Rockport, Maine, and the Orlando International Music Festival in The Netherlands. Highlights of Livia’s 2017-18 season includes performances of the Brahms Concerto for Violin and Cello with cellist Joshua Roman, and recital appearances for Chamber Music San Francisco with tenor Michael Schade, as well as performances in Washington DC, Los Angeles, and Salt Lake City.

This past season saw Livia performing with orchestras from Mexico, Korea, Iowa, and California, as well as chamber music and recitals in Rome, Venice, San Francisco, New York, and Massachusetts, playing repertoire ranging from Telemann to Sean Shepherd. In 2016, a recording of opera transcriptions for violin and piano entitled “Opera Fantasies, Volume 2”, was released on the Naxos label, featuring Livia and pianist Benjamin Loeb, which included world premieres by composers Daron Hagen and Jonathan Berger.

Livia has been a guest soloist in North America with the symphony orchestras of Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Seattle, Milwaukee, Edmonton, Rochester, Austin, Phoenix, New York Chamber Symphony, Boston Pops, and Brooklyn Philharmonic San Antonio, Oregon, Dayton, Winston-Salem, Hartford, Cheyenne, Quad Cities, Green Bay, Boca Raton, Louisville, I Musici de Montreal, and Aspen Festival Orchestra, among others. She has performed with many eminent conductors, including Yehudi Menuhin, Jesus Lopez-Cobos, James DePreist, Gerard Schwarz, Sidney Harth, Myung-Whun Chung, William Eddins, Grant Llewellyn, Lukas Foss, Jane Glover, Junichi Hirokami, Murry Sidlin, and Jorge Mester.

Internationally, she has performed as soloist with the Budapest Philharmonic, Berlin Symphony, Cologne Philharmonic, Iceland Symphony Orchestra, Mexico City Philharmonic and Boca del Rio Philharmonic in Mexico, Hungarian Radio Philharmonic, Orchestra del Teatro Marrucino di Chieti in Italy, Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, Czech National Symphony Orchestra, Limburgs Sinfonie Orkest in Holland, The City of London Sinfonia, Asia Philharmonic Orchestra, Korea’s Seoul and Pusan Philharmonics, and the Wuhan Philharmonic in China. She performed a multi-city tour with South Africa’s National Symphony and KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestras and has performed solo recitals in Spain, Mexico, Cyprus, Israel, and Japan.

An avid chamber musician, Livia has been a guest artist at festivals such as the Kuhmo Chamber Music Festival in Finland, Cartagena International Music Festival in Colombia, Spoleto Festival USA, Aspen Music Festival, Caramoor International Music Festival, Edmonton Chamber Music Society, Newport Music Festival, Bay Chamber Concerts, Maverick Concerts, Brevard Festival, Chamber Music Society of Sonoma, Sewanee Summer Music Festival, Prince Albert Music Festival in Hawaii, Festival of the Sound and Pender Harbour Music Festival in Canada, and Festival de San Miguel de Allende in Mexico.

In recital, Livia has appeared at New York City’s Mostly Mozart Festival, Chicago’s Ravinia Festival, Washington D.C.’s National Gallery of Art, Stanford University’s Lively Arts series, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and Jordan Hall in Boston, Dame Myra Hess series in Chicago, Gwinnett Performing Arts Center in Atlanta, Xavier University in Cincinnati, University of Connecticut, Peace Center for the Performing Arts in South Carolina, and the Broad Stage in Los Angeles.

Born from her love of chamber music, Livia is part of the piano trio Latitude 41, which was formed in 2009 with pianist Bernadene Blaha and cellist Luigi Piovano. Their debut CD of Schubert’s monumental Trio in E flat major, and Schubert’s “Notturno”, was released in 2011 on the label Eloquentia to rave reviews. Their recording of the piano trios by Camille Saint-Saëns was released in March 2015 to similar acclaim. Among other places, they have performed in Vancouver, New York, Los Angeles, Boston, and San Francisco. Highlights from this season will see them perform in Port Townsend, Washington, and Rome, Italy. This past May, they trio had the honor of performing in Carnegie’s Zankel Hall in its Annual Notable Occasion concert.

National Public Radio’s “Performance Today” hosted Livia as an Artist-in-Residence for five days, during which she gave live interviews and performances of a different program each day. Other career highlights include performing at the inaugural concerts of Harris Hall at Aspen, and her performance with Lukas Foss and the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra at the “11th Annual New Year’s Eve Concert for Peace”, held at New York City’s Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine before an audience of 10,000.

In addition to the CDs she has recorded with Latitude 41, last year the Eloquentia label released a disc of Livia playing the concertos of Benjamin Britten and living composer Jonathan Berger. Gramaphone Magazine says of this recording, “Sohn’s playing…is shot through with angst and urgency…”, and The Strad Magazine says “Violinist Livia Sohn gives a committed account of the solo part, and she demonstrates an ease in getting through the notes, even where Britten sets his formidable double-stopping challenges.” Livia can be heard on the Naxos label in the CDs “Opera Fantasies”, which features opera arrangements for violin and piano (and includes three world premiere transcriptions), and “Miracles and Mud”, featuring works by Jonathan Berger. She can also be heard on iTunes performing the Dvorak and Khachaturian Concertos in a live recording with the Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra.

Livia gave her first public performance at age eight. In 1989, at the age of 13, she won First Prize in the Yehudi Menuhin International Violin Competition, where she was also awarded the Audience Prize. She attended the Juilliard Pre-College Division from the age of seven, at which time she began her studies with Dorothy DeLay and Hyo Kang. She continued under their tutelage at the Juilliard School, where she also studied chamber music with the legendary Felix Galamir. Livia plays on a J. B. Guadagnini violin crafted in 1770, and a Samuel Zygmuntowicz made in 2006. She has been on faculty at the Music Department of Stanford University since 2005, and makes her home in the Bay Area.

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