The final concert of the 22-23 season of Chamber Music Palisades will feature duo pianists Bernadene Blaha and Kevin Fitz-Gerald who are highly acclaimed international performers who give masterclasses all over Europe and have been piano professors at USC for many years.
The concert will take place on Wednesday, April 19, at 8 p.m. in St. Matthew’s sanctuary, 1031 Bienveneda Avenue, and music will range from the works of Rosini to Ibert to Brahams.
In addition to the pianists, there will be a first-class woodwind quintet that includes oboist Jennifer Johnson Cullinan, clarinetist Michelle Zukovsky, bassoonist Duncan Massey, horn player Amy Jo Rhine and flutist Susan Greenberg, who is also the CMP Artistic Director.
This promises to be an outstanding program and KUSC host and long-time CMP association Alan Chapman will provide in-person program notes.
Pianist Blaha has been heralded in performances throughout North America, Europe, Australia, Asia, and Mexico. Her playing has been described as a “brilliant command of the piano.” Currently residing in Los Angeles, Blaha has been a member of the Keyboard Faculty at the Thornton School of Music, University of Southern California since 1993 where she is Professor of Piano Performance.
Pianist Fitz-Gerald’s performances have garnered international acclaim recognizing him for his “hypnotically powerful and precise” pianism and “dynamic and distinguished” interpretations. Concert tours and major performances have taken place throughout North America, South America, Asia, Europe, and Australia and are frequently recorded for national and international radio and television networks.
He also regularly performs duo piano recitals with his wife Blaha and is Professor of Keyboard Studies and Keyboard Collaborative Arts at the USC Thornton School of Music.
Flutist Susan Greenberg playing has been described by the Los Aneles Times as “brilliant,” “elegant” and “supple.” She was a member of the LA Chamber Orchestra for 36 years and appeared as guest soloist with the San Francisco and Oakland Symphonies, the Santa Monica Symphony, the Napa Valley Symphony, and at the Hollywood Bowl. She received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UCLA, and is presently the flute professor at Pepperdine University.
Originally from Colorado, oboist Jennifer Johnson Cullinan is Second Oboe/English Horn of the Los Angeles Opera, Principal Oboe of the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra and Second Oboe of the Santa Barbara Symphony. In 2013, she received the position of Oboe Lecturer Faculty at the University of California at Santa Barbara. She is also on the faculty at the Pasadena Conservatory of Music.
Clarinetist Michele Zukovsky recently retired from the Los Angeles Philharmonic, an orchestra she joined at the age of eighteen. She has been a guest soloist with many orchestras around the world, including the world premiere performance of John Williams’ Clarinet Concerto with the Boston Pops. She is active as a teacher of master classes throughout the world, and she is currently on the faculty of the USC Thornton School of Music and the Pasadena Conservatory of Music.
A native of Minneapolis, Duncan Massey is principal bassoon of the New West Symphony Orchestra, the Riverside County Philharmonic and Opera Santa Barbara. He has performed as an extra bassoonist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Pacific Symphony, and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. He graduated from USC in 1984 where he was a student of Norman Herzberg and was the recipient of the USC School of Music Outstanding Graduating Senior of the Wind and Percussion Department award.
Amy Jo Rhine, a native of Lebanon Pennsylvania, was appointed by Gustavo Dudamel as Third Horn of the Los Angeles Philharmonic during the 2014-15 season. Prior to that, Rhine was a member of the Memphis-based IRIS orchestra from 2001-2014. Rhine received her training from Verne Reynolds at the Eastman School of Music earning a BM degree and Performer’s Certificate and with James Decker at the University of Southern California.