Arts & Culture Maplewood Schools / Kids South Orange

American String Quartet Holds Masterclasses at Columbia High School

From South Orange-Maplewood School District Fine Arts Supervisor James Manno:

Pictured front row left to right: Jasmine Quraishi, Henry Mecinski, Olive Fretts Howard, Imogen Pranger, Frida Rahmani, Allesandra Hill, Ella Opdenberg. Back row: Michaela Deutsch Dornfeld, Margaret Conrad Poor, Peter Winograd (American String Quartet), Kayla Bobb, Wolfram Koessel (American String Quartet), Todd Van Beveren (CHS String Program Teacher).

The Columbia High School String Orchestra Program recently hosted masterclasses with American String Quartet members Peter Winograd (violinist) and Wolfram Koessel (cellist). Students from each of the high school’s string ensembles had the opportunity to receive coaching and musical words of wisdom from Mr. Winograd and Mr. Koessel.

Pictured is Columbia High School’s highest level string ensemble Virtuosi which performed its current piece, Dohnanyi Piano Quartet No.2 Op.15 in Eb, for the American String Quartet members and used feedback they provided, in regard to musicianship, tone, dynamics, balance and other areas, to make immediate improvements in performance and artistry.

Internationally recognized as one of the world’s finest quartets, the American String Quartet has spent decades honing the luxurious sound for which it is famous. The Quartet will celebrate its 45th anniversary in 2019, and, in its years of touring, has performed in all 50 states and has appeared in the most important concert halls worldwide.

Peter Winograd (violin) joined the American String Quartet in 1990. He gave his first solo public per­for­mance at the age of 11, and at age 17 he was accepted as a scholar­ship student of Dorothy DeLay at The Juilliard School. Re­cog­nized early as an ex­cep­tion­ally prom­is­ing young artist, Winograd was a top prize winner in the 1988 Naumburg Inter­na­tional Violin Competition. He then made his New York debut to critical acclaim and has since appeared as a guest soloist with numerous orchestras and in recital across the country and abroad, including annual collaborative performances with cellist Andrés Díaz at the Florida Arts Chamber Music Festival. In 2002 Winograd performed the Sibelius Violin Concerto with the Hartford Symphony; his father, Arthur Winograd, was the featured guest conductor. Winograd has been a mem­ber of the violin and chamber music faculties of the Manhattan School of Music and the Aspen Music School (where the American is Quartet-in-Residence) since 1990.

Since his Carnegie Hall debut in 1994, Wolfram Koes­sel (cello) has performed as a cham­ber musician, recitalist and soloist through­out the world. The Strad praised his “ex­cep­tion­al­ly attractive cello playing.” As a soloist he has per­formed con­certos through­out the United States as well as with Japan’s Osaka Symphony Orchestra and or­ches­tras in Ger­many and South America. He also has appeared often with the New York Meta­mor­pho­ses Or­ches­tra, which he cofounded in 1994. His collaborations include performances with leg­end­ary tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain, distinguished dancer Mikhail Barysh­ni­kov, and cellist Yo Yo Ma, among many others.

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