Our Faculty for Programs in Europe
Our faculty is comprised of outstanding performing artists who combine concert careers as chamber players with a dedication to teaching. They are passionate about sharing their expertise in an encouraging and supportive manner to help you achieve your individual musical goals. You’ll have the opportunity to hear them collaborate in faculty recitals and, for an additional fee, sign-up for private lessons during the week.
CAL WIERSMA (violin, viola) has an impressive biography as a soloist and chamber musician that is far too extensive to include here! He was a founding member of the prize-winning Meliora Quartet and was a member of the Manhattan String Quartet for 20 years. Cal is Associate Professor of Violin and Chamber Music at Ithaca College and maintains an active international career as a soloist and chamber musician. He is a noted performer of contemporary music and tours extensively with new music ensembles. His teaching and coaching prowess is as legendary as his keen sense of humor.
JITKA VLASANKOVA (cello) is a founding member of the Martinu Quartet and has an active career as a soloist, chamber musician, and recording artist. She has received numerous prizes in cello competitions at home as well as abroad (Prague Spring International Competition, Pablo Casals Competition in Budapest and others). Jitka has been a driving force behind the Play with the Professionals (PLAYWIP) program for amateur chamber players and is regularly invited to sit on juries of international competitions. Her intense focus as a performer and teacher is combined with a radiant and enthusiastic personality.
JOEL PITCHON (violin) is an active soloist, concertmaster, chamber music player, and Professor of Music at Smith College. Mr. Pitchon studied with Lewis Kaplan, Oscar Shumsky and Joseph Fuchs and received his degrees from The Juilliard School. He has served as the concertmaster for numerous orchestras, including the Orquestra Ciutat de Barcelona (Spain), the EOS Chamber Orchestra (NY), the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (guest), and the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra (guest). As a soloist and collaborator, he frequently performs with the New Baroque Soloists. The New York Times noted his playing in the EOS production of Stravinsky’s L'Histoire du Soldat as “...superb...” He has recorded two CDs for the Gasparo label: Four Sonatas for violin and piano, with the composer Clifton J. Noble, Jr. and New England Legacy, works by Quincy Porter, Walter Piston, and Amy Beach with pianist Jonathan Bass. Sun Threads, the chamber music of Augusta Read Thomas, was recorded with the Walden Chamber Players for ARTCD and New England Trios is his most recent critically acclaimed CD released by Bridge Records. Mr. Pitchon is currently the co-director of the Sage Chamber Music Society at Smith College, a member of the Elm Chamber Ensemble and a frequent performer with the New Baroque Soloists.
RADIM SEDMIDUBSKY (viola) is currently a member of the well-known Talich Quartet. A co-founder and member of the Skampa Quartet for more than 20 years, he is also a former member of the Pavel Haas Quartet. It seems that Radim just can’t resist playing quartets! He also enjoys an active international career as a chamber musician and soloist, touring Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. Radim has led chamber music classes on many continents and in 2001 was appointed visiting professor of chamber music at the Royal Academy of Music in London. He is Professor of Viola and Chamber Music at the Prague Conservatory. Radim's congenial wit and humor are a perfect complement to his wisdom and insight into playing quartets.