Salon at the Hotel Rex
Wednesday, October 26, 2016 | 6:30pm
About This Performance
The acclaimed cellist of the beloved Cypress Quartet opens the Salon season with a program of her favorite music for her instrument. Our musical conversation with this engaging chamber musician will feature sonatas by Rachmaninoff and Beethoven.
A graduate of The Juilliard School and a Fulbright Scholar, cellist Jennifer Kloetzel has concertized throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. A founding member of the Cypress String Quartet, Ms. Kloetzel has toured the world and performed at outstanding venues such as the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Lincoln Center, the Chautauqua Institute and the Ravinia Festival, the Lobkowicz Palaces in both Vienna and Prague, as well as prominent colleges and conservatories nationwide.
Ms. Kloetzel is noted for her elegant playing and her vibrant tone. She has given numerous recitals, including concerts for San Francisco Performances and on WQXR in New York. Strad Magazine hailed, “Cellist Jennifer Kloetzel is impressively passionate…” In the past few seasons, she performed the world premiere of a Cello Suite by Daniel Asia and a Cello Concerto, Cloud Atlas and unaccompanied cello work Lift, that were both written for her by MIT composer Elena Ruehr. The San Jose Mercury News proclaimed, “Cellist Jennifer Kloetzel shines in premiere” and called her a “terrific soloist…with a robust and earthy sound.” Ms. Kloetzel has recorded the Ruehr Cello Concerto with the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, which was released to critical acclaim in October 2014. Lift is the title track of an all-Ruehr disc, released in January 2015 on the Avie label. Ms. Kloetzel is winner of The Juilliard School’s top award, the “Peter Mennin Prize for Outstanding Leadership and Achievement in Music”, and a Presser Music Award, as well as a Fulbright Grant to England. In 2004 she was honored with the McGraw-Hill Companies’ “Robert Sherman Award for Music Education and Community Outreach” in recognition of her years of outreach work in schools and community centers. She has appeared at the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, the Sarasota and Aspen Music Festivals, the Britten-Pears School, the Prague Mozart Academy, and performed as cellist of the Cassatt Quartet during the 1995–96 season.
Growing up near Baltimore, Ms. Kloetzel began her cello studies at age six. Her teachers included Aldo Parisot, William Pleeth, Harvey Shapiro, Stephen Kates and Paula (Virizlay) Skolnick, as well as members of the Juilliard String Quartet, the Amadeus Quartet and the Cleveland Quartet. After performing with pianist Andre Previn at the La Jolla Chamber Music Festival in 1992, Ms. Kloetzel was invited to appear as one of his select “Rising Stars” at the 1993 and 1994 Caramoor Festivals in New York.
From 2003–2009, Ms. Kloetzel taught cello and chamber music at San José State University, where the Cypress String Quartet was Ensemble-in-Residence. She has given master classes at The Juilliard School, San Francisco Conservatory and at universities throughout the U.S. In September 2016 Ms. Kloetzel was named adjunct professor of cello and chamber music at University of California, Santa Barbara.
Ms. Kloetzel has been featured numerous times on National Public Radio’s Performance Today and her performances have been broadcast on radio stations from coast to coast. As a member of the Cypress String Quartet, she has received the Copland Award for championing living American Composers and has also commissioned and premiered more than thirty works. Ms. Kloetzel has recorded 16 CDs with the CSQ, most recently the entire cycle of Beethoven Quartets on the Avie label. She has performed as principal cellist of the Concert Artists of Baltimore, the Baltimore Opera and the Juilliard Orchestra. In addition, she is a frequent guest soloist with orchestras, performing concertos by Brahms, Dvorak, Elgar, Lalo, Shostakovich, Beethoven and Haydn.
Pianist Robert Koenig has established a reputation as a much sought-after collaborative pianist and chamber musician. He performs regularly in major centers throughout the world with many of this generation’s most renowned musicians. Recent engagements have included performances at Carnegie Hall in New York, The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, The Concertgebuow in Amsterdam, The Louvre Museum in Paris, and Royal Festival Hall in London. He has performed with many of today’s leading artists including Sarah Chang, Hilary Hahn, Pamela Frank, Augustin Hadelich, Zuill Bailey, Sara Sant'Ambrogio, Roberto Diaz, Elmar Oliveira, Aaron Rosand, The Miro String Quartet, and The St. Lawrence String Quartet.
Mr. Koenig has appeared at many festivals including Aspen, Ravinia, Banff, Saratoga, Caramoor, the Seattle Chamber Music Festival, the El Paso Pro Musica, Chamber Music Northwest, West Branch International Festival and Academy, the Campos do Jordao Festival in Brazil, and the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York. He is frequently heard on radio and television including ABC’s Good Morning America and CBS This Morning. Mr. Koenig was staff pianist at both The Juilliard School and The Curtis Institute of Music, and from 2000–2007 he served as Professor of Piano and Piano Chamber Music at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. With the assistance of the University of Kansas Center for Research, Mr. Koenig commissioned renowned American Composer Lowell Liebermann to write a new trio for flute, cello and piano. In the fall of 2007, he assumed the position as Professor and Head of The Collaborative Piano Program at The University of California Santa Barbara. Mr. Koenig has recorded for Artek, Ambassador, Biddulph, Cedille, CRI, Decca, Eroica, and Naxos. His CD of transcriptions for viola and piano by William Primrose on Naxos with violist Roberto Diaz was nominated for “Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (without orchestra)" at the 49th Annual Grammy Awards.
Born in Saskatchewan, Robert Koenig began his formal training at the Vancouver Academy of Music with Lee KumSing and Gwen Thompson and later studied at the Banff School of Fine Arts and the Academie Musicale di Chigiana in Siena, Italy. During this time he received several awards from the Canadian Government including a Canada Council Project Grant. He completed both his Bachelors and Masters degrees in Accompanying at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia where he studied with Dr. Vladimir Sokoloff and chamber music with Felix Galimir and Karen Tuttle.