Yang to Begin Lee's Presidential Concert Series

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Alumni Hero
Lee University welcomes pianist Joyce Yang to the Dixon Center as opening performer in the 22nd Presidential Concert Series on Tuesday, Nov. 12, at 7:30 p.m. Yang’s playing has been called “vivid and beautiful” by the The New York Times, and the LA Times said she played with “compelling virtuosity and sensitivity.”

At age 25, Yang has established herself as one of the leading artists of her generation through her innovative solo recitals and notable collaborations with the world’s top orchestras. She was a silver medalist at the Van Cliburn Competition in 2005. In 2010 she was awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant, one of the most prestigious prizes in classical music.

This past season, Yang appeared for the first time with the San Francisco Symphony, led by Alondra de la Parra, returned to the Chicago Symphony under James Conlon at Ravinia, and performed as concerto soloist with Edo de Waart in Milwaukee, Sydney, Melbourne, Malaysia and Hong Kong. A Steinway artist and an avid chamber musician, Yang appears frequently with the Takàcs Quartet and tours with violinist Stefan Jackiw and the Miró Quartet.

Including Yang, this Presidential Concert Series features a dynamic mix of accomplished musicians.

On Jan. 23, Chameleon Arts Ensemble of Boston will hit the stage, featuring Lee’s own Gloria Chien. In their home base of Boston, the Chameleon Arts Ensemble has distinguished itself by superb artistry, luminous performances, and dynamic musical dialogues. Chameleon integrates old and new repertoire into innovative chamber music programs. The concert will also feature guest artists Rafael Popper-Keizer, cello, who has previously appeared at Lee with the ensemble; Deborah Boldin, flute; Chien, piano; Tessa Lark, violin; Kelli O’Conner, clarinet; and Peter Sulski, violin.

As part of its visit to the area, the ensemble will also offer masterclasses for students, a performance for local elementary students, and a family concert at the Hunter Museum of American Art in Chattanooga, in addition to the series performance in Dixon Center.

The concert series will continue with St. Olaf Choir on Feb. 14, 2014. Since its founding in 1912, the St. Olaf Choir has set a standard in the choral art, serving as a model for choirs of all levels. The ensemble’s annual tour brings its artistry and message to thousands of people across the nation and around the world.

The choir has taken 13 international tours and performed for capacity audiences in the major concert halls of Norway, France, South Korea, New Zealand, Australia, New York City, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, Dallas, and the Twin Cities. The St. Olaf choir is returning to the Presidential Concert Series after a 2003 performance that drew a large and responsive crowd to Conn Center.

“Ning and Friends” will close out the season on April 8, 2014, featuring violinist Qian Zhou and Lee’s Ning An on piano.

Since winning the First Grand Prize and all the five major prizes at the Marguerite Long-Jacques Thibaud Competition in Paris in 1987, Zhou has been in the first rank of world-class violinists of her generation. She has recorded seven CDs with the Naxos and Marco Polo labels and has also appeared in two documentaries, one of which is Isaac Stern's Oscar-winning From Mao to Mozart.

Zhou has performed with the Baltimore Symphony, BBC Symphony, VVC Scottish Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Rome Symphony Orchestra, Spanish National Orchestra, Russian Philharmonic, Beijing Central Philharmonic and Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, among others. She currently serves as head of strings and assistant professor of violin at the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music.

An, an assistant professor of music at Lee’s School of Music, is hailed by the New York Concert Review as a musician who “combines a flawless technique and mastery of the instrument with an expressive power that is fueled by profound and insightful understanding.”

An’s prizes from the Queen Elizabeth, Cleveland, and William Kapell Piano competitions led to performances across the globe, from Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital and Milan’s Salle Verdi to Beijing’s Great Hall of the People. He has performed with some of the world’s great ensembles, including the Ysaÿe, Daedalus, and Takács quartets, as well as with renowned instrumentalists Paul Neubauer, Andres Diaz, and Soovin Kim.

Tickets will be available at the Lee University Box Office in the Dixon Center or by phone (423-614-8343) one week prior to each concert, from 3-6 p.m.

For more information about the Presidential Concert Series, please visit or call the School of Music at (423) 614-8240.