Prokofiev - Quintet, Op. 39
Setsuko Otake - oboe
Benjamin Baron - clarinet
Louise Owen - violin
Alissa Smith - viola
David Romano - bass
Copland - "Appalachian Spring"
Will Curry - conductor
Helen Campo - flute
Benjamin Baron - clarinet
Gilbert Dejean - bassoon
Louise Owen - violin
Rachel Handman - violin
Yuko Naito-Gotay - violin
James Tsao - violin
Alissa Smith - viola
Whitney Lagrange - viola
Emily Brausa - cello
Caleb van der Swaagh - cello
David Romano - bass
Eric Ebbenga - piano
Will Curry, conductor
Will Curry is currently the violist and assistant conductor for the Broadway revival of Fiddler on the Roof, and previously held the positions of violist and second assistant conductor for the recent Broadway revival of Les Misérables. Prior to his time in New York, he was engaged as the associate conductor for the Mirvish's Les Misérables in Toronto and the assistant conductor for the U.S. touring production of Les Misérables. Will has released two albums, Fill in the Words and The Time of Year for Miracles, with actor-singer Ian Patrick Gibb, and is a recording artist for Orlando-based music producer Rick McKee. A graduate of Northwestern University, Will studied viola with Roland Vamos, conducting with Victor Yampolsky, and participated in master classes with Martha Katz, Peter Slovik, Li-Quo Chang, and Clara Takarabe.
In the arts-administration field, Will studied arts marketing with Joann Scheff Bernstein at Northwestern and graduated with a minor in arts administration. In Chicago he previously served as the digital media manager for Baroque Band—the city's premier period-instrument orchestra.
Also active as a conductor, music director, and orchestrator, Will attended the Pierre Monteux School as a conductor in 2009, where he studied with Michael Jinbo, and music-directed The Wizard of Oz and Little Shop of Horrors while at Northwestern. His orchestration credits include performances by Andrew Lippa, Carole Shelley, Christine Ebersole, Harvey Evans and Jim Brochu, Daniel Reichard, and cast members from the twenty-fifth anniversary production of Les Misérables.
Helen Campo, concertmaster
The South China Morning Post declared that flutist Helen Campo “had such dazzlingly beautiful tone, that she could only be called extraordinary... she displayed stunning lucidity, colour, and figuration.” In addition, Leonard Bernstein said, “Miss Campo plays the flute the way I wish I could sing.” Since her debut at the age of 14, Ms. Campo has made hundreds of solo appearances, from concertos with the Philadelphia Orchestra and other orchestras in the Academy of Music, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center and the Hong Kong Cultural Center, to a guest television appearance with the Muppets. The youngest flutist to win Concert Artists Guild International Competition, and the first flutist to win Artists International Distinguished Artists Award, she has been the subject of feature articles in several national magazines.
Helen also won the position of Acting Associate Principal Flutist with the Houston Symphony and has performed as Assistant Principal with the Baltimore Symphony. She has also been a long time principal substitute with the NYC Ballet, NYC Opera, and NY Philharmonic, and has performed in the Principal Flute, Second Flute, and Piccolo positions with all three organizations. She has made many recordings with the NY Philharmonic, including a great deal of wonderful repertoire on the piccolo, including Ravel's Daphnis and Chloe, Stravinsky's Song of the Nightingale and Firebird. In addition, she has also performed Barber's Summer Music and Nielsen's Quintet with members of the NY Philharmonic on their chamber music series and in a lecture demo led by Maestro Alan Gilbert. Helen is also a member of the New York Pops, Westfield Symphony, and was the flutist for Nickelodeon’s #1 TV show Wonderpets! and Backyardigans. She can be heard on many television commercials and films and has been the Principal Flutist of 11 Broadway shows, currently, Wicked.
A long time proponent of New Music, more than 20 solo and chamber works have been written for her. In addition to her accomplishments in the field of classical music, Ms. Campo has also performed and recorded with Ray Charles, Michael Jackson, Tony Bennett, James Taylor, Radio City Rockettes, Stevie Wonder, PDQ, Bach, Sting, and Rosie O’Donnell among many others, with appearances on the David Letterman show including performances with Aretha Franklin, The Musician Rodriguez from the movie Searching for Sugarman, the Today Show and many others.
Helen graduated at the age of 16 as valedictorian of her high school class, was awarded the Chadwick Medal upon graduation from New England Conservatory with honors and distinction, and the School-wide Graduate Achievement Award with honors and distinction from Queens College, where she attended as a fellowship student. Upon graduation from Queens, she took the LSAT and scored in the 92nd percentile in the country. In spite of this, she decided to forego the pleasures of law school and stick with the flute. She was also a member of the Tanglewood Fellowship Orchestra, Sasha Schneider’s New York String Orchestra, and studied with Murray Panitz, John Krell, Julius Baker, Robert Stallman, John Heiss, and Robert Langevin.
Setsuko Otake, oboe
Oboist Setsuko Otake enjoys a diverse career as a chamber musician, orchestral performer, and teacher. As a soloist, she has performed with the New York Symphonic Ensemble on a tour of Japan and Southeast Asia, and gave the premiere performance of Yoshihro Kanno's Water Leaf 4 for oboe and chamber orchestra with the North/South Consonance.
Throughout the U.S. and Japan, Setusko has presented chamber-music recitals with various woodwind quintets and trio groups—including a 2002 recital debut at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall. She currently holds the second oboe/English horn position with the Riverside Symphonia in Lambertville, New Jersey, and, as a freelance oboist, has regularly appeared with a number of Broadway shows, including On the Town, Les Misérables, The King and I, Peter Pan, The Wizard of Oz, Aida, Wicked, Ragtime, Porgy and Bess, and Mary Poppins.
Ms. Otake received her bachelor's degree from the Toho Gakuen School of Music, and her master's degree from the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with former New York Philharmonic oboist Joseph Robinson. During the summer, she is an oboe and chamber-music coach at the Summerkeys Music Festival in Lubec, Maine.
Benjamin Baron, clarinet
Hailed as a player of great "emotion, skill, and intensity" (Sioux City Journal), who "played with reverence" (New York Sun) and demonstrated "clean, incisive clarinet playing" (American Record Guide), New York–based clarinetist Benjamin Baron enjoys a diverse career as a performer, educator, and clinician. Formally a member of the orchestra for the critically acclaimed Broadway revival of On the Town, Benjamin has performed on several other shows including Wicked, The King and I, and The Phantom of the Opera. Baron has also performed with the New York Pops, American Ballet Theater Orchestra, American Composers Orchestra, West Point Band, Belgian Radio Orchestra, and the London Winds, and has toured across North America, Europe, and Asia.
Baron can be heard as principal clarinet and soloist on recordings with the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas, Chamber Orchestra of New York, and the Knights Chamber Orchestra, all currently available on the Sony, Naxos, and Orange Mountain Music labels. As principal clarinet with the New York Symphonic Ensemble, Benjamin performed the Mozart Clarinet Concerto on the orchestra's thirty-fifth year of summer tours throughout Japan.
As an educator, Benjamin serves as the director of instrumental music at Manhattan's Calhoun School, and is an adjunct associate professor of music at Lehman College, City University of New York. He regularly presents master classes and clinics at universities throughout the United States, and has also taught within the precollege departments of the Manhattan School of Music and Mannes College The New School for Music.
Baron's book, The Audition Method, written in collaboration with Mark Nuccio, is currently available through GIA Publications. He is a D'Addario Performing Artist and an Artist/Clinician for Buffet Music Group.
Gilbert Dejean, bassoon
Bassoonist Gilbert Dejean is a graduate of the Manhattan School of Music, where he studied with Leonard Hindell and Steve Maxym. He is a member of the American Symphony Orchestra, Chappaqua Orchestra, and the Saratoga Opera, and regularly performs with the Orchestra of St. Luke's, Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, Stamford Symphony, New York City Ballet, and New York Philharmonic.
Dejean performed in the orchestra for the Broadway productions of The Scarlet Pimpernel and West Side Story. He has recorded for BIS, Telarc, and Albany Records, and is a member of the Moose Hall Chamber Ensemble, which performs annually at the Inwood Shakespeare Festival.
Louise Owen, violin
Praised as a "brilliant performer" by the Boston Globe, violinist Louise Owen has enjoyed a diverse musical path—performing annual chamber music concerts with world-renowned pianist Menahem Pressler, touring North America and Europe with Barbra Streisand, and, since 2011, serving as concertmaster while on tour with Harry Connick Jr. Louise made her Broadway stage debut opposite Christopher Walken in James Joyce's The Dead, and other Broadway credits include The Producers, South Pacific, On a Clear Day, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, and the current Lincoln Center production of The King and I. She maintains an active freelance life in New York City, playing in many of New York City's leading ensembles and giving marathon solo recitals whenever possible.
Louise has been featured twice on 60 Minutes—in the "Endless Memory" segment and its follow-up story, "Memory Wizards," the Emmy-nominated profiles about people with an extremely rare ability called Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory.
Rachel Handman, violin
Originally from Hyde Park, NY, violinist Rachel Handman's virtuosity and improvisational ability appears in many musical forms, including classical, bluegrass, Irish, pop and folk. Currently playing in the Broadway show Something Rotten!. Rachel is Associate Concert Master of the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra. With recent and upcoming performances at Carnegie Hall, she also plays in the New York Oratorio Society Orchestra under the direction of Kent Tritle. She has toured Mexico with Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas, and Germany, both on stage and in the orchestra with the shows My Fair Lady and On The Town.
Loving travel and exposure to other cultures, Rachel lived in La Paz, Bolivia where she was in the National Symphony of Bolivia, concertized with a string quartet, and eventually joined a Salsa band named Guapacha!. After returning to the states, Rachel began fiddling and immersing herself in different folk and fiddle styles. She has performed at many festivals including the Doc Watson Festival, Carolina in the Fall, and Winter-Hawk among others. Rachel has also played with Natalie Merchant, Roberta Flack, and the legendary Ray Charles.
She teaches fiddle workshops at Summer Strings, a music camp run by her family in Poughkeepsie, NY, and is a resident visiting artist at Music at Port Milford chamber music festival. Rachel is thrilled to be a part of Broadway Chamber Players!
Yuko Naito-Gotay, violin
Yuko Naito-Gotay, a native of Tokyo Japan, is one of New York's most sought after violinists and performs with leading orchestras such as The New York City Opera, Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, Springfield Symphony, New Haven Symphony Orchestra, American Composers Orchestra, Westchester Philharmonic, and the Long Island Symphony. Yuko’s Broadway credits include performing on shows such as Something Rotten, Kinky Boots, The King and I, and Hamilton. She is a former member of the first violin section of the St. Louis Symphony.
As a recitalist and as a founding member of the Proteus Ensemble, Yuko has performed throughout. A graduate of the prestige Curtis Institute of Music, Yuko holds advanced degrees from both Yale and the Manhattan School of Music.
James Tsao, violin
James Tsao, originally from Los Angeles, received his Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Violin from the Juilliard School. Now he is a member of both the American Symphony Orchestra and the New Jersey Symphony.
His previous Broadway shows were Oklahoma, Never Gonna Dance, The Light in the Piazza, South Pacific, and Ghost the Musical. He has toured nationally and internationally with Barbra Streisand and performed this past summer on the Tonight Show with Celine Dion.
Alissa Smith, viola
Australian violist Alissa Smith spent five years as the violist of the award-winning Canberra String Quartet, which included a two-year residency with the Emerson String Quartet at the Hartt School of Music. Her tenure with the Canberra String Quartet included appearances at the Park City, Aspen, Bravo! Colorado, and Steamboat Springs Music Festivals, as well as recitals at Carnegie Hall, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston, and the Berkshire Chamber Music Series. She continued her studies in New York City at the Juilliard School, where she served as a teaching fellow.
A versatile freelancer, Alissa recently appeared at the Ravinia Festival with the Knights Chamber Orchestra, and toured Australia and North America with the Australian Chamber Orchestra. She has performed with the Orchestra of St. Luke's, Sarasota Opera, Klangforum Wien, and the American and Houston Symphony Orchestras. Chamber music appearances include the Costa Rican International Chamber Music Festival, Lincoln Center's Beethoven Festival, Carmel Bach Festival, and the Staunton Music Festival. International performances include the Sydney Festival with Lou Reed and the Istanbul International Jazz Festival supporting Antony and the Johnsons.
Alissa has held Broadway chairs in the Broadway production of If/Then, American Idiot, South Pacific, as well as performing on the shows Matilda, Motown, The Lion King, Big Fish, Follies, Bombay Dreams, The Apple Tree, Taboo and more. She has recorded for numerous movie soundtracks including Perfume: The Story of a Murderer, Casanova, Julie and Julia, and True Grit. Most recently Alissa can be heard with Dawn Upshaw and the Australian Chamber Orchestra on Maria Schneider's Grammy Award–winning Winter Morning Walks.
Whitney Lagrange, viola
Whitney La Grange (Violin/Viola) is from McAllen, TX. She received her Bachelor of Music from The Juilliard School. She also attended Yale University on full scholarship in the Artists Diploma Program and received her Master of Music Degree from the University of Illinois Champagne/Urbana where she was a teaching assistant. She has enjoyed the variety of playing in orchestras, on Broadway shows, recordings, chamber music, new music, and rock/pop gigs. She is currently playing violin/viola on the hit Broadway Show, Matilda.
Emily Brausa, cello
New York City cellist Emily Brausa continues to lead a diverse and dynamic performing career throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. She has toured and recorded with such artists and ensembles as Ra Ra Riot, Talib Kweli, Beck, ACME, Artemis Ensemble, and American Ballet Theater. A two-time Juilliard grad, Emily just finished performing in the 2014 Radio City Christmas Spectacular, performed on several Broadway musicals including Les Misérables and Cinderella, and held at the cello chair on Broadway's award winning Fun Home.
Caleb van der Swaagh, cello
Known for his wide-ranging repertoire and musical curiosity, cellist Caleb van der Swaagh is an accomplished chamber musician and soloist. He is a recent alumnus of Ensemble ACJW (now know as Ensemble Connect) - a program of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School, and the Weill Music Institute in partnership with the New York City Department of Education. Caleb is the recipient of the Tanglewood Karl Zeise Memorial Cello Prize and the Manhattan School of Music Pablo Casals Award, and was also a grant recipient from the Virtu Foundation. As a chamber musician, Caleb has performed with the Borromeo String Quartet, The Knights, A Far Cry, and the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players with recent appearances at the Chelsea Music Festival, Garth Newel Music Center and Birdfoot Festival. An advocate of contemporary music, Caleb has worked with such composers as Steve Reich, Alvin
Lucier, Philippe Manoury, and David Lang, and has premiered many works by composers of his own generation. He also performs his own arrangements and transcriptions of compositions that range from Renaissance viola da gamba music to jazz.
A native New Yorker, Caleb graduated magna cum laude from Columbia University as part of the Columbia-Juilliard Exchange program with a degree in Classics and Medieval & Renaissance Studies. Caleb received his master’s degree with academic honors from New England Conservatory and later studied at the Manhattan School of Music. His primary teachers are Bonnie Hampton, Bernard Greenhouse, Laurence Lesser, and David Geber. Caleb plays on a cello made by David Wiebe in 2012. For more information, visit www.calebvanderswaagh.com.
David Romano, bass
Bassist David Romano, a native of New Haven, Connecticut, received his undergraduate degree in performance from the University of Connecticut. After earning a master's degree in performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music, he was appointed principal bass of the Orquestra Symphonica de Galicia in La Coruña, Spain. After playing with the Gothenburg Symphony in Sweden, Romano returned to New York, where he currently plays with the Orchestra of St. Luke's, Brooklyn Philharmonic, New York Pops, Little Orchestra Society, American Ballet Theatre Orchestra, and Eos Chamber Orchestra.
On Broadway, David has performed with The Lion King, The Drowsy Chaperone, Mary Poppins, Anything Goes, Shrek, Les Misérables, On the Town, and Cabaret, and was the bass player for the first two years of the first national tour of The Lion King. He has also recorded and played with such artists as Barbra Streisand, Dave Brubeck, Quincy Jones, Clark Terry, Wynton Marsalis, Elton John, Carly Simon, Joni Mitchell, Kenny G, and Metallica.
Eric Ebbenga, piano
Eric Ebbenga is a freelance music director and pianist both in New York. Since relocating to New York, he has performed in the orchestras for On The Town, Beautiful, Cinderella, and Les Miserables - where Eric was also an assistant and associate conductor. Most recently he was associate conductor for The Producers at Papermill Playhouse. Favorite music directing credits include the regional and west coast premieres of The Scottsboro Boys (dir. Susan Stroman), as well as The Light in the Piazza (dir. Joe Calarco), Candide, Pacific Overtures, A Little Night Music, Grey Gardens, Sunday in the Park with George, Next to Normal, and See What I Wanna See.