Curtis on Tour: Piano Quartet

Prize-winning violinist Richard Lin (’13) and Roberto Díaz (’84), internationally acclaimed violist and president and CEO of the Curtis Institute of Music, join masterful cellist Gary Hoffman, the Nina and Billy Albert Chair in Cello Studies at Curtis, and celebrated virtuoso pianist Steven Lin (’15) for a tour of Asia in the fall of 2023. An exciting concert of iconic works and audience favorites, the program features Haydn’s playful and pensive Piano Trio No. 28 in D major, Schumann’s sweeping, energetic Piano Quartet in E-flat major, and Brahms’s dramatic “Werther” Quartet. This majestic, brooding tour-de-force for piano and chamber ensemble was inspired by Goethe’s novel, The Sorrows of Young Werther.

Tour Period

November 2023

Additional dates may be available.

Artists

  • Taiwanese-American violinist Richard Lin is the Gold Medalist of the 10th Quadrennial International Violin Competition of Indianapolis, which took place in September of 2018.

    Highlights of Mr. Lin’s 2021-2022 performances include concerts with the National Symphony Orchestra in Taiwan and a tour of Japan with the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra. In the United States, he will appear with the Baton Rouge Symphony and the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra. Multiple recitals in Taiwan, Texas, California, and Pennsylvania will culminate in a Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium recital debut in June 2022. Passionate about chamber music, Richard will will give concerts in the United States as a member of Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Bowers Program and perform at Music@Menlo.

    Richard has collaborated with numerous orchestras and performed at celebrated concert venues throughout the world including the Tokyo Symphony Orchestra under conductor Norichika Iimori at Tokyo’s Suntory Hall. Other orchestras with whom he has worked are the NDR Radiophilharmonie; Indianapolis, North Carolina, Shanghai and Singapore symphonies; Poznań, Łódź, Polish Baltic, Nagoya, Taiwan, and Oklahoma City philharmonics; Hong Kong Sinfonietta, National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa, Munich Chamber Orchestra, Amadeus Polish Chamber Orchestra, and the Royal Chamber Orchestra of Wallonia among others.

    He released his first album on the Fontec label in 2013 featuring works for violin and orchestra by Beethoven, Bartók and Brahms performed with the Sendai Philharmonic and conductor Pascal Verrot. The following year, he released the complete Brahms Sonatas for Piano and Violin with his brother, pianist Robert Lin.

    Richard has amassed a startling collection of top prizes at major international competitions including 1st Prize at the Sendai International Violin Competition; 3rd Prize in the Joseph Joachim International Violin Competition in Hannover; and 2nd Prize at the Singapore and Michael Hill International Violin competitions. A dedicated teacher, Richard is on the faculty of the National Taipei University of Education.

    Born in Phoenix, Arizona and raised in Taiwan, Richard began his violin studies at the age of four. He gave his public debut at age eleven performing the Saint-Saëns Violin Concerto No. 3 with the Taipei Symphony Orchestra. Richard graduated from the Curtis Institute of Music and The Juilliard School where he studied with Aaron Rosand and Lewis Kaplan respectively. As part of his Indianapolis prize, Richard has the use of the 1683 “ex-Gingold” Stradivarius and 2017 Sam Zygmuntowicz for four years.

  • A violist of international reputation, Roberto Díaz is president and CEO of the Curtis Institute of Music, following in the footsteps of renowned soloist/directors such as Josef Hofmann, Efrem Zimbalist, and Rudolf Serkin. As a teacher of viola at Curtis and former principal viola of the Philadelphia Orchestra, Mr. Díaz has already had a significant impact on American musical life and continues to do so in his dual roles as performer and educator.

    As a soloist, Mr. Díaz collaborates with leading conductors of our time on stages throughout North and South America, Europe, and Asia.  He has also worked directly with important 20th- and 21st-century composers, including Krzysztof Penderecki—whose viola concerto he has performed many times with the composer on the podium and whose double concerto he premiered in the United States—as well as Edison Denisov, Jennifer Higdon, Ricardo Lorenz, and Roberto Sierra. His recording of Jennifer Higdon’s Viola Concerto won the Grammy for Best Contemporary Classical Composition in 2018.

    As a frequent recitalist, Mr. Díaz enjoys collaborating with young pianists, bringing a fresh approach to the repertoire and providing invaluable opportunities to artists at the beginnings of their careers. In addition to performing with major string quartets and pianists in chamber music series and festivals worldwide, Mr. Díaz has toured Europe, Asia, and the Americas as a member of the Díaz Trio with violinist Andrés Cárdenes and cellist Andrés Díaz. The Díaz Trio has recorded for the Artek and Dorian labels.

    Mr. Díaz’s recordings on the Naxos label with pianist Robert Koenig include the complete works for viola and piano by Henri Vieuxtemps and a Grammy-nominated disc of viola transcriptions by William Primrose. Also on Naxos are Brahms sonatas with pianist Jeremy Denk and Jonathan Leshnoff’s Double Concerto with violinist Charles Wetherbee and the Iris Chamber Orchestra led by Michael Stern. Mr. Díaz’s live performance of Jacob Druckman’s Viola Concerto with Wolfgang Sawallisch and the Philadelphia Orchestra is available on New World Records. He has also recorded the Walton Viola Concerto with William Boughton and the New Haven Symphony for Nimbus Records, and works for viola and orchestra by Peter Lieberson with Scott Yoo and the Odense Symphony Orchestra and for Bridge Records.

    Since founding Curtis on Tour in 2007, Mr. Díaz has taken this successful initiative to North and South America, Europe, and Asia, performing chamber music side-by-side with Curtis students and other faculty and alumni of the school. His tenure as president of Curtis has also seen the construction of a significant new building which doubled the size of the school’s campus; the introduction of a classical guitar department and new conducting and string quartet programs; and the launch of Curtis Summerfest, summer courses open to the public. In the fall of 2013 Curtis became the first classical music conservatory to offer free online classes through Coursera.

    Also under Mr. Díaz’s leadership, Curtis has developed lasting collaborations with other music and arts institutions in Philadelphia and throughout the world and established a dynamic social entrepreneurship curriculum, supported by a prestigious Advancement Grant from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage. Designed to develop the entrepreneurial and advocacy skills of young musicians, this curriculum includes the project-based Community Artist Program (CAP) and the post-graduate Community Artist Fellowship program, which gives recent Curtis graduates the opportunity to dedicate a year of arts-based service to the community.

    Mr. Díaz received an honorary doctorate from Bowdoin College and was awarded an honorary membership by the National Board of the American Viola Society. In 2013 he became a member of the prestigious American Philosophical Society founded by Benjamin Franklin. As a member of the Philadelphia Orchestra, he was selected by then-music director Christoph Eschenbach to receive the C. Hartman Kuhn Award, given annually to “the member of the Philadelphia Orchestra who has shown ability and enterprise of such character as to enhance the standards and the reputation of the Philadelphia Orchestra.” He received a bachelor’s degree from the New England Conservatory of Music, where he studied with Burton Fine; and a diploma from the Curtis Institute of Music, where his teacher was his predecessor at the Philadelphia Orchestra, Joseph de Pasquale. Mr. Díaz also holds a degree in industrial design.

    In addition to his decade-long tenure as principal viola of the Philadelphia Orchestra, where he performed the entire standard viola concerto repertoire and gave a number of Philadelphia Orchestra premieres, Mr.  Díaz was principal viola of the National Symphony under Mstislav Rostropovich, a member of the Boston Symphony under Seiji Ozawa, and a member of the Minnesota Orchestra under Sir Neville Marriner. He plays the ex-Primrose Amati viola.

  • Cellist Gary Hoffman gained international renown as the first North American to win the Rostropovich International Cello Competition in 1986. He has appeared as a soloist with the Chicago, London, Montréal, Toronto, San Francisco, Baltimore, and National symphony orchestras; the English, Moscow, and Los Angeles chamber orchestras; Orchestre National de France; Orchestre de la Suisse Romande; the Netherlands and Rotterdam philharmonics; and the Cleveland and Philadelphia orchestras, among many others. He has collaborated with such celebrated conductors as Herbert Blomstedt, Andrew Davis, Jésus Lopez-Cobos, Kent Nagano, André Prévin, Mstislav Rostropovich, and Pinchas Zuckerman.

    Mr. Hoffman performs in major recital and chamber music series throughout the world, as well as at such prestigious festivals as Ravinia, Waterloo, Marlboro, Aspen, Bath, Evian, Vancouver, Verbier, Mostly Mozart, Prades, Santa Fe, Schleswig-Holstein, Stresa, Storioni, Hong Kong International, and Festival International de Colmar. Notable venues include Théâtre du Châtelet, Théâtre des Champs Elysées, the Royal Concertgebouw, and the Kennedy Center. He is a frequent guest performer with the Emerson, Tokyo, Borromeo, Brentano, and Ysaÿe string quartets; as well as the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. He has premiered the concertos of Laurent Petitgirard, Joel Hoffman, Renaud Gagneux, Gil Shohat, Graciane Finzi, and Dominique Lemaître; and performed the French premiere of Elliott Carter’s Cello Concerto.

    Hailing from Vancouver, Canada, Mr. Hoffman was the youngest faculty appointee in the history of Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, where he served for eight years. He leads master classes around the world including appearances at the Ravinia Festival, Manchester International Cello Festival, Mozarteum University Salzburg, and the Kronberg Academy, where he is also closely involved with the institution’s festival and Academy Master program.

    Residing in Paris, Mr. Hoffman is an active recording artist with the BMG (RCA), Sony, EMI, and Le Chant du Monde labels. He performs on a 1662 Nicolo Amati, the “ex-Leonard Rose.”

    Mr. Hoffman joined the Curtis Institute of Music faculty in 2021. He also serves as master in residence for cello at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Brussels.

  • Steven Lin is establishing himself as one of the most distinctive and original artists of his generation. He first made his debut with the New York Philharmonic at the age of 12. Recently, he made a sensational Carnegie Hall debut playing the Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto no. 1, and has been hailed by the New York Times for playing that is “…immaculately voiced and enhanced by admirable subtleties of shading and dynamics.”

    His recent debuts include Kansas City Symphony Orchestra with Michael Stern, Fort Worth Symphony Orchestras with Miguel Harth-Bedoya, National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico with Carlos Miguel Prieto, Western Australian Symphony Orchestra with Asher Fisch. He has also performed with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra under Gerard Schwartz, Costa Rica National Symphony under John Nelson, Israel Philharmonic Orchestra under Asher Fisch, and Baltimore Symphony under Keith Lockhart. Recent Recital appearances include major cities across the Asia, US and Europe at venues such as Gasteig in Munich, Louvre in Paris, National concert hall of Dublin, National concert hall of Taipei, Carnegie Hall in New York, Kennedy Center in Washington DC, Shanghai Concert Hall, and Hamarikyu Hall in Tokyo. In the 2021-2022 season, Steven will embark on his recital tour in the Basque region of Spain. Additional highlights include debut at the Berlin Philharmonie with Curtis on Tour and Karajan Academy and recitals across Europe, United States, and Asia. He has regular recital appearances in Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Washington Performing Arts, Sonoma State Green Center, The Smithsonian Museum of American Art in DC, University of Alabama, Pittsburg State University, Shenandoah University, and National Chopin Foundation in the USA. In the 2018-19 season, He made his debuts in Dubai and Bahrain Spring Festival in the Middle East. He also returned to Taiwan for a Three-city recital tour in spring 2019. A Frequent performer with summer festivals, he has appeared including the Bravo! Vail Valley Festival, the WQXR Beethoven Sonata Marathon, New Hampshire Music Festival, and DITTO music festival in Korea, Finca World Piano Festival in the Canary Islands, Aspen music festival, the Aspen Chamber Music Workshop, under the mentorship of David Finckel and Wu Han, and the La Jolla Music Society’s SummerFest, curated by violinist Cho-Liang Lin. As a chamber musician, he has collaborated with Gidon Kremer and Misha Maisky.

    Steven Lin’s artistry was clear from an early age when he was accepted by The Juilliard School on a full scholarship to study with Yoheved Kaplinsky at the age of ten, which in turn led to his debut with the New York Philharmonic in Avery Fisher Hall when he was only 12. He has appeared on radio broadcasts including NPR’s From The Top and WQXR’s Young Artists Showcase, and he is featured prominently in the Cliburn Competition documentary film, Virtuosity, which premiered on PBS in 2015.

    Steven Lin completed the Artist Diploma program at the Curtis Institute of Music, under the guidance of Robert McDonald, and before that, he earned both Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees at The Juilliard School, studying with Mr. McDonald and Matti Raekallio. When not making music, Steven describes himself as an ‘NBA basketball fanatic,’ a source of great pride and commitment which began when he was eight years old.

Repertoire

HAYDN Piano Trio No. 28 in D major, Hob.XV:16

SCHUMANN Piano Quartet in E-flat major, Op. 47

–intermission–

BRAHMS Piano Quartet No. 3 in C minor, Op. 60

Subject to change.

Media

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