Carter Chamber Music Series at ESU to open Aug. 28


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To mark its 22nd year of bringing exceptional chamber music to the Pocono region, East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania’s Carter Chamber Music Series will open its season Thursday, Aug. 28, at 7:30 p.m. with Music of Spain, Mexico and South America.

The program will include Sonata for Violin and Piano by Argentine composer Floro M. Ugarte and selections by composers Carlos Cassado of Spain, Manuel Ponce of Mexico, Carlos Guastavino of Argentina, and others.

Noted violinist Christopher Collins Lee and pianist Robert Miller, ESU distinguished professor emeritus of music and artistic director of the series, will be the featured performers.  

The concert will be in the Cecilia S. Cohen Recital Hall of ESU’s Fine and Performing Arts Center, Normal and Marguerite streets.

General admission to the concert is $25, $10 for students 18 and under, and $8 for ESU students with current ID.  Reservations, which are held until five minutes before the concert, are available by calling 570-422-3483, ext. 2 or by email at esuarts@esu.edu. Tickets also will be available at the door.

The New York Times termed Christopher Collins Lee “an impressive, stylish violinist with something special to say.”  He has performed as soloist with Leopold Stokowski, Herbert von Karajan and Arthur Fiedler among other conductors and has recorded for the CBS, RCA, Desto, Everest, Artista, Delos and Quattro Corde labels. 

Lee has been concertmaster of the New Jersey Symphony and is currently the concertmaster of the Reading Symphony and of the Merida Symphony in Mexico. He is just returning from a summer concert tour in Vienna, Austria.

Works which have been premiered by Lee, some also in their first recording include Aaron Copland’s Ballades for Violin and Piano with Leonard Bernstein playing the piano; variations from the opera, Daphne by Richard Strauss; Darius Milhaud’s Second Sonata; Final Alice by David del Tredici; and Concertino by Xavier Montsalvadge.

Lee became a protégé of Zino Francescatti at the age of 16, touring with him throughout Europe. He earned a B.F.A. and M.M. degree from the Juilliard School of Music, a doctorate from SUNY Stony Brook and five honorary doctorates from foreign institutions. His principal teachers were Dorothy DeLay, Arthur Grumiaux, Henryk Szeryng and Nathan Milstein.

Lee holds the State Department title of Official Musical Ambassador of the United States, and has toured the world more than 40 times under their auspices. 

Lee has received numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Grant, Fulbright, National Arts Club, Artists International, Carl Flesch International Violin Competition, J.S. Bach Competition, Tibor Varga International Violin Competition, the Samuel Chozinoff Award; and the Fritz Kreisler Prize.

Miller earned a bachelor of music degree from the University of Michigan and master’s and doctoral degrees from the Peabody Institute of Johns Hopkins University.  A former faculty member of the Interlochen Center for the Arts, where he was Van Cliburn’s rehearsal pianist, Miller has made numerous solo, chamber, and concerto appearances throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

He has appeared numerous times as Guest Artist with the New York Philharmonic Ensembles in their subscription series at Merkin Hall.  As winner of the F. Lammot Belin Arts Scholarship, he performed a solo recital at the Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and at the Salle Cortot in Paris.  He recently appeared in a solo recital at the Sydney Opera House.

Miller has also collaborated in chamber music performances with musicians.


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