Join us Fridays at 7pm for Musical Chairs, hosted by Michael Brooks. Each week Michael chats with a member of the Pacific Northwest classical music community and plays some of their favorite works, sharing stories and background. Fascinating people sharing great music--every Friday night.
July 10 - Efe Baltacigil
Turkish cellist Efe Baltacıgil was acclaimed by audiences and critics alike in February 2005 when he and pianist Emanuel Ax performed Beethoven’s Cello Sonata No.1 at a Philadelphia Orchestra concert with only 10 minutes of rehearsal. Mr.Baltacigil, the Orchestra’s Associate Principal Cellist, and Mr. Ax, the evening’s soloist, were called upon when a winter snowstorm prevented most of the Orchestra from reaching the concert hall. After that performance, The Philadelphia Inquirer wrote: “Baltacigil is a highly individualized solo artist. His gorgeous sound, strong personality, and expressive depth suggest an artist about to have a major career.”Mr. Baltacigil has performed the Brahms Sextet withPinchas Zukerman, Midori and Yo-Yo Ma at Carnegie Hall for Isaac Stern’s memorial, and participated in Mr. Ma’s Silk Road Project. He has also appeared as soloist in the Schumann Cello Concerto with the Curtis Chamber Orchestra conducted by Otto-Werner Mueller. He has toured with Musicians from Marlboroand is a member of Lincoln Center’s Chamber Music Society Two. Mr. Baltacigil was born in Istanbul, Turkey. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Mimar Sinan University Conservatory in Istanbul in 1998 and an Artist Diploma from The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia in 2002, where he studied with Peter Wiley and David Soyer. He was the recipient of The Curtis Institute’s Jacqueline DuPréScholarship.
July 17 - James Ehnes
James Ehnes was born in 1976 in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada. He began violin studies at the age of four, and at age nine became a protégé of the noted Canadian violinist Francis Chaplin. He studied with Sally Thomas at the Meadowmount School of Music and from 1993 to 1997 at The Juilliard School, winning the Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Achievement and Leadership in Music upon his graduation. Mr. Ehnes first gained national recognition in 1987 as winner of the Grand Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Competition. The following year he won the First Prize in Strings at the Canadian Music Festival, the youngest musician ever to do so. At age 13, he made his major orchestral solo debut with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. He has won numerous awards and prizes, including the first-ever Ivan Galamian Memorial Award, the Canada Council for the Arts’ Virginia Parker Prize, and a 2005 Avery Fisher Career Grant. James has been honoured by Brandon University with a Doctor of Music degree (honoris causa) and in 2007 he became the youngest person ever elected as a Fellow to the Royal Society of Canada. In 2010 the Governor General of Canada appointed James a Member of the Order of Canada, and in 2013 he was named an Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Music, limited to a select group of 300 living distinguished musicians. James Ehnes plays the "Marsick" Stradivarius of 1715. He currently lives in Bradenton, Florida with his family.
July 24 - Kevin Krentz
Kevin Krentz, cello, is a native of Atlanta, Georgia. Although he began his musical life as a cellist at 12, he soon dropped the cello to sing for the rest of his youth. He only decided to devote his energies to the cello at the age of 20 after finally deciding on a career in music after such a late start. He then studied with Gary Hardie at Baylor University where he was three quarters of the way through a pre-med program. Kevin made quick progress and thereafter studied with Florian Kitt of the Hochschule in Vienna, was assistant to Owen Carman, at Michigan State University and The Meadowmount School for Strings, and was assistant to Toby Saks at the University of Washington. Kevin has performed in Masterclass for Janos Starker, Matt Haimovitz, Paul Katz, and Timothy Eddy. From his late start, Kevin has gone on to perform throughout the U.S. as well as Austria, Italy, Canada and Great Britain as recitalist and soloist. He has been featured on NPR in multiple broadcasts of live performances as well as KING FM's Live! By George program and has performed throughout the U.S. to critical acclaim. Since 2007, Kevin has been Artistic Director of the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival. The Festival draws musicians from all over the nation to perform for sold out crowds in a fabulous barn perched a thousand feet above the glorious Methow Valley. Kevin is a dedicated and well-known teacher in Seattle and has presented at the American String Teachers Association National Convention. Mr. Krentz plays a cello by Robert Young, made in 2008, and is inventor of the only technology to play-in violin family instruments that actually plays their strings at fortissimo for weeks, changing pitch every 12 hours, to speed them to their best sound.
July 31 - Sarah Chang
Sarah Chang is recognised as one of the world’s great violinists. Since her debut with the New York Philharmonic at the age of 8 she has performed with the greatest orchestras, conductors and accompanists internationally in a career spanning more than two decades. In 2012, she will have recorded exclusively for EMI Classics for 20 years. Ms. Chang tours extensively throughout the year. Highlights in 2010/11 in the UK and the US include appearances with the London Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra (Washington), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Pittsburgh and Detroit Symphony Orchestras. She will also perform in Norway, Romania, Austria, Canada, Poland and Denmark. Ms. Chang appears regularly in the Far East and returns to Seoul for concerts with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and to Guangzhou to perform with the Symphony Orchestra as part of the Asian Games Opening Festival. In recital, Ms. Chang regularly travels internationally and her last season tour included visits to cities such as London, Zurich, Dublin, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Moscow and St. Petersburg. As a chamber musician, she has collaborated with such artists as Pinchas Zukerman, Wolfgang Sawallish, Yefim Bronfman, Leoif Ove Andsnes, Yo Yo Ma, the late Isaac Stern and members of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2006, Ms. Chang was honored as one of 20 Top Women in Newsweek Magazine’s “Women and Leadership, 20 Powerful Women Take Charge” issue. In March 2008, Ms. Chang was honored as a Young Global Leader for 2008 by the World Economic Forum (WEF) for her professional achievements, commitment to society and potential in shaping the future of the world.
MUSICAL CHAIRS ARCHIVE
Click here for an archive of past Musical Chairs episodes.
Musical Chairs host Michael Brooks came to Seattle from the East Coast more than 20 years ago. It didn't take long for Mike to become enthralled with the Northwest's nature and hospitality. He joined KING FM in the spring of 2007 and has enjoyed the return to his "radio roots." His first radio job was at a classical station in his hometown of Baltimore, Md.