Attacca Quartet

First prize winners in the 7th Osaka International Chamber Music Competition in 2011, top prize winners and Listeners’ Choice award recipients in the 2011 Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition, and winners of the Alice Coleman Grand Prize in the 60th annual Coleman Chamber Ensemble Competition in 2006, the internationally acclaimed Attacca Quartet has become one of America’s premier young performing ensembles. Praised by The Strad for possessing “maturity beyond its members’ years,” they were formed at the Juilliard School in 2003 and made their professional debut in 2007 as part of the Artists International Winners Series in Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall. From 2011-2013 they served as the Juilliard Graduate Resident String Quartet, and for the 2014-2015 season they were selected as the Quartet in Residence by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

The Attacca Quartet recently completed a recording project of Haydn’s masterwork “The Seven Last Words of Christ on the Cross,” arranged by Andrew Yee and the Attacca Quartet. In his review for Gramophone, Donald Rosenberg wrote, “The Attacca Quartet explore the work’s range of expressive moods with utmost sensitivity to nuance and interplay .... They triumph in every respect, and are captured in such vivid sound that no telling Haydn detail is allowed to go unheard.” wrote, “It’s easily the most satisfying string version of the work that I’ve heard.”

In 2013, the quartet released the complete works for string quartet by John Adams on Azica Records. It was praised by Steve Smith of The New York Times as a “vivacious, compelling set,” describing the Attacca Quartet’s playing as “exuberant, funky, and … exactingly nuanced.” The Boston Globe also praised the release, stating, “Few [recent recordings] are as consequential as ‘Fellow Traveler,’ … superb performances.” The album was the recipient of the 2013 National Federation of Music Clubs Centennial Chamber Music Award. The quartet has been honored with both the Arthur Foote Award from the Harvard Musical Association and the Lotos Prize in the Arts from the Stecher and Horowitz Foundation.

The 2016-2017 season began with a bang as the Attacca Quartet opened for rock superstar Jeff Lynne’s ELO in two sold-out Radio City Music Hall performances. In addition, the quartet will be launching their new “Recently Added” series (first announced in a New York Times feature about the completion of their six-year traversal of all of Haydn’s 68 string quartets). The new project is dedicated to living composers who they feel have added significantly to the string quartet canon. The first season is taking place at Brooklyn’s National Sawdust and features the music of Caroline Shaw, Michael Ippolito and John Adams. At the same time, the Attacca will present an ongoing series at Trinity Lutheran Church in Manhattan entitled “Based on Beethoven,” featuring performances of the complete Beethoven string quartets, paired with works inspired by Beethoven from the “Recently Added” series. The group will serve as the inaugural Ensemble-in-Residence at the School of Music at Texas State University during the 2016-2017 season and will appear in concerts and master classes throughout the United States and South America.

The Attacca Quartet has engaged in extensive educational and community outreach projects, serving as guest artists and teaching fellows at the Lincoln Center Institute, the Boston University Tanglewood Institute, Vivace String Camp in New York, the Woodlands ChamberFest in Texas, Virginia Arts Festival, Bravo! Vail Valley and Animato Summer Music Camp at Florida International University in Miami. Since 2006, they have performed in yearly benefit concerts supporting the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation’s efforts. The members of the Attacca Quartet currently reside in New York City. They are represented by Baker Artists, LLC.

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Crossroute String Quartet

Simon MacDonald, violin; Christian Robinson, violin; Jonathan Ward, viola; Simon Fryer, cello.

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Fiearro String Quartet

Eleanor Hector, Meika Sonntag, Mayson Sonntag, Jonathan Craig Penner

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Catherine Cosbey, violin

Canadian violinist Catherine Cosbey adores chamber music. She first graced the concert stage at the tender age of twelve, as a member of her family ensemble, the Cosbey Trio, when she was a guest artist with the Regina Male Voice Choir in a highly memorable performance   predominantly because they were two-thirds redheads, though, possibly, the concert is only memorable in the mind of Ms. Cosbey who distinctly remembers the exhilarating feeling of walking out on stage. She was piqued by the performing bug.

Since then, Ms. Cosbey has performed all over the States, Canada, Europe, and Asia, and has been inspired by collaborating with many incredible artists, including Peter Frankl, Jeffrey Kahane, Michael Brown, Annie Fullard, the Tokyo Quartet, Richard Stoltzman, Jason Vieaux, Peter Salaff, Donald Weilerstein, James Dunham, Zuill Bailey, and Jana Baty.

As a founding member of the critically acclaimed Linden String Quartet, Ms. Cosbey is a prize-winner at the 2009 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, the 2009 Coleman Competition, the 2010 Hugo Kauder Competition, and the 2011 Borcciani Competition.

An avid teacher, Ms. Cosbey has taught all over the United States and Canada. With the Linden String Quartet, she has been the Graduate Quartet-in-Residence at the Yale School of Music, the Quartet-in-Residence at the Caramoor Center for Music and Arts, and has been in short-term residence all over the continent, including the Detroit Chamber Music Society, the University of Iowa, the Chamber Music Society of Logan, and Music at Port Milford.

Catherine holds degrees from Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music of Toronto, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the Yale School of Music where her principal teachers were Erika Raum and Paul Kantor. Other invaluable mentors include the Cavani Quartet, Peter Salaff, and the Tokyo Quartet.

This season, Ms. Cosbey is thrilled to be a member of the Pialli Quartet, the Quartet-in-Residence at Chamber Music Society of Mexico. In January 2015 she appeared with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra in Canada along with her brother Thomas Cosbey in a performance of Bach’s Double Concerto. Ms. Cosbey is also proudly the assistant director of Regina Summer Strings, a week-long chamber music institute in July in her hometown, Regina, Saskatchewan.

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Peter Cosbey, cello

Peter Cosbey, a graduate of the Royal Conservatory of Music’s Glenn Gould School as a student of Bryan Epperson, began his cello study in Regina with Cameron Lowe. His orchestral experience with the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra and the Regina Symphony Orchestra was recently expanded with a one year term as Assistant Principal Cello of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. Performances with The Cosbey Trio, Quinsin Nachoff, pianist Mariko Kamachi, and the Artists of the Royal Conservatory have been recorded for broadcasts on the CBC.

Frequently, Peter performs on the Alicier Arts chamber music series in Toronto. Peter has also appeared on the Mooredale Concerts series, the Niagara International Chamber Music Festival, Summer Music in the Garden at Toronto Music Garden, the Piano Salon series in Toronto, and the St. Clair County Community College’s Thursday at Noon Concert Series in Port Huron. At the Georgian Music concert series in Barrie he performed with the Hausmann String Quartet and Serouj Kradjian. Peter’s awards include the Dr. Howard Leyton-Brown bow award, the Director’s Gold Medal from the Conservatory of Performing Arts in Regina and top prize at the Regina Musical Club’s Recital Competition for 2006.

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Thomas Cosbey, violin

Thomas Cosbey has been Concertmaster of the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra since 2007. Mr. Cosbey began his career in Regina as a member of the Regina Symphony Orchestra and later served as Principal Second Violin of Sinfonia Toronto. He has been featured as soloist with the Regina Symphony Orchestra, the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, and Sinfonia Toronto, and has collaborated in concert with Gwen Hoebig, Paul Katz, Marc Durand, Steve Dann, and others. He has been broadcast often on CBC Radio, most recently with bassoonist Stéphane Lévesque.

Prize-winner at the National Music Festival, Mr. Cosbey has also claimed top prizes at numerous other competitions. Mr. Cosbey holds a Performance Diploma from the Glenn Gould School, where he studied with Erika Raum. He has also worked with Pinchas Zukerman, Lorand Fenyves and Mark Fewer.

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Katherine Dowling, piano

Praised by the New York Times for her “crystalline performances, gestural expressiveness, and careful attention to color”, award-winning Canadian pianist Katherine Dowling has performed across North America and the United Kingdom.  Equally compelling as a solo, collaborative, and ensemble performer, Katherine holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from Stony Brook University (December, 2014).

Recent engagements include her solo debut with the Britten-Pears Festival Orchestra under the baton of Oliver Knussen at the Aldeburgh Festival, a cross-Canada tour with violinist Joshua Peters under the auspices of the Eckhardt-Gramatté National Music Competition, regular performances as a member of California-based ensemble Son à Trois, solo recitals at live@CIRMMT (Montréal) and Gallery 345’s ‘Art of the Piano’ series (Toronto), and appearances at the Ottawa, Regina, Ritornello, and Silicon Valley chamber music festivals. Upcoming projects include her Dutch debut at the Orlando Festival and adjudicating the National Finals of the Canadian Music Competition. Dr. Dowling is further familiar to audiences as a multi-year fellow of the Tanglewood Music Center, as a New Fromm Fellow, as a Britten-Pears Young Artist, and through extensive involvement at The Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.

She credits her teacher Gil Kalish, as well as Henri-Paul Sicsic and Janice Elliott-Denike, as the major influences in her musical life.

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Mariko Kamachi, piano

Mariko Kamachi Cosbey began her studies at the age of five with Mitsuo Yoshino in Japan. After immigrating to Canada in 1996, she continued her education at the Royal Conservatory of Music’s Glenn Gould School as a student of Leslie Kinton.

Mariko is an active chamber musician. In Toronto, she performed in the Alicier Arts chamber music series, and in the Canadian Opera Company’s Free Concert Series at the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre. In Regina, she performed a recital with cellist Peter Cosbey in the Regina Musical Club concert series which was broadcast nationally on CBC radio.

Mariko has been teaching piano since 2000. In 2003, she taught at the Summer Arts Camp in Harquail, Cayman Islands. Since 2008, she has taught at the Regina Summer Strings Camp. Her students routinely receive First Class Honours marks for Royal Conservatory Practical Examinations. She is able to teach in either English or Japanese.

As well as teaching, Mariko is an active accompanist. Not only does Mariko play with students, she is equally adept at assisting students’ musicianship, able to offer performance tips to ensure players reach their full potential for exams, auditions and festivals.

In her spare time, Mariko accompanies at the Regent Park School of Music, a non-profit music school for youth-in-need in Toronto.

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Joshua Peters, violin

Born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Joshua Peters is currently the 2nd Assistant Principal Second Violin of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Mr. Peters is the First Prize Winner of the 2015 Eckhardt-Gramatté Music Competition, the First Prize Winner of the 2014 WMC Doris McClellan Competition, two Sylva Gelber Foundation Awards, and the 2015 Golden Violin Award from McGill University. Particularly drawn to the performance of chamber music, Peters has collaborated with many renowned musicians including Menahem Pressler, Kim Kashkashian, André LaPlante, Steven Dann, and members of the Emerson, Concord, St. Lawrence, Guarneri and Pacifica quartets. He has also studied with members of the Alban Berg, Guarneri, Cleveland, Juilliard, Kronos, Miró, and Takács String Quartets. As a soloist, he has performed with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra on numerous occasions as well as the San Francisco Conservatory Orchestra and I Medici de Montréal.

Mr. Peters began his violin studies as a student of Gwen Hoebig and Karl Stobbe. He continued at McGill University and at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, studying with Jonathan Crow, Denise Lupien, Ian Swensen and Axel Strauss. Mr. Peters plays on a ca. 1869 J.B. Vuillaume Violin and Vuillaume model bow, on generous loan from the Canada Council for the Arts Musical Instrument Bank.

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Hillary Sametz, viola

A Regina native, Hillary has enjoyed a varied career as both a Violist and a Pianist. During her time in Regina, Hillary was a member of the Regina Symphony Orchestra for several seasons, and completed her Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto (ARCT) certification in both Piano and Viola Performance, studying with Dr.Jamie Syer, and Ernest Kassian respectively.

Hillary received her Bachelor of Music in Viola Performance from Brandon University (BU) in 2008, studying with Nancy Nehring, Mark Rudoff, and Kerry DuWors, and was the recipient of the University Gold Medal. During her time at BU, Hillary played with the BU Orchestra as Principal Viola and was featured as a guest soloist as a winner of the BU Concerto Competition. Hillary also performed with the Brandon Chamber Players, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, and as a founding member of the nationally-broadcast Isabelle Mills Ensemble.

Some of Hillary’s favourite musical experiences include: working as a member of the string quartet-in-residence at the Centre for Opera in Sulmona, Italy; discovering a love for teaching while on faculty with the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music in Ramallah, Palestine, and traveling across Palestine and Israel in a concert tour; and playing piano for musicals including West Side Story, Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris with the Golden Apple Theatre, and Baby with Regina Light Lyric. Most recently, Hillary was engaging in masterclasses and concerts at the Scotiafestival of Music in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

An avid volunteer, Hillary has worked on various projects including an HIV/AIDS and environmental awareness initiative in South Africa, sung for senior citizens at the local Extendicare, and taught piano at inner-city schools through the Heart of the City Piano Program.

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Michelle Zapf-Bélanger, violin

Canadian violinist Michelle Zapf-Bélanger is a performer and music teacher based in Thunder Bay, Ontario. This is her fourth season performing as a section violinist with the Thunder Bay Symphony.

Born in Montréal, Ms. Zapf-Bélanger grew up in Toronto, and is a graduate of the Etobicoke School of the Arts and the Young Artist’s Performance Academy at the Royal Conservatory of Music. She holds a Performance Diploma from the Glenn Gould School in Toronto.

An enthusiastic chamber musician, Ms. Zapf-Bélanger performs frequently with Consortium Aurora Borealis. She has toured internationally with Quartetto Constanze, an all-female string quartet praised in the press for having “a maturity beyond their years, with most impressive, tight ensemble playing.” On a recital tour of Iceland in 2006, the group premiered String Quartet No. 1 by Thordur Swineburne on Icelandic radio.

Ms. Zapf-Bélanger plays on a beautiful English violin from the workshops of W. E. Hill & Sons. Her violin celebrated its centennial anniversary in 2011.

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