ANNALIESE KOWERT began Suzuki violin studies at age 4 in Madison, Wisconsin. After soloing with the Madison Symphony Orchestra at 14, she became its youngest member two years later. She received her bachelor’s degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with Paul Kantor. She plays violin in the Miami Ballet and Atlantic Classical Orchestra but has been a member of the Florida Grand Opera, Palm Beach Symphony, Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra, the Cleveland Opera, RED: An Orchestra, the Madison Symphony, the Stony Brook Early Music Ensemble and the Transiberian Orchestra. Kowert has worked with the Stony Brook University Preparatory Department, the Cleveland Music Settlement, the Port Jefferson Suzuki Institute, Suzuki Strings of Madison and is an artist in residence in the West Palm Beach School District. She has spent several summers as an EMF fellow, where she is a member of the Festival Orchestra.
Ms. Anna Kate Mackle has been the principal harpist with The Florida Orchestra since 1999. A former EMF student, she has been on the faculty of Eastern Music Festival since 2000. She has been a featured concerto soloist with The Florida Orchestra four times, performing Ravel's Introduction and Allegro, Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez, Ginastera's Harp Concerto, and Takemitsu's Toward the Sea II. She has also performed concerti with Eastern Festival Orchestra, New World Symphony, Wheeling Symphony, Mansfield Symphony Orchestra, Baldwin-Wallace College Symphony Orchestra, and New Jersey Youth Symphony.
Ms. Mackle was previously principal harpist of the New World Symphony, the National Repertory Orchestra, Spoleto Festivals (Italy and USA), Sarasota Opera Orchestra,Ohio Light Opera Orchestra and Colorado Music Festival.
Ms. Mackle has a B.M. from Baldwin-Wallace College and a M.M. from the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with Alice Chalifoux at both institutions. In high school she attended the Mannes and Manhattan Schools of Music in the preparatory divisions.
Ms. Mackle has toured with Josh Groban, Chris Botti, Frank Sinatra, Jr., and has performed with several touring Broadway shows. She is also the principal harpist with St. Petersburg Opera and Opera Tampa, is on the faculty of St. Petersburg College, and was named one of Tampa Bay's top ten female musicians by Creative Loafing magazine in 2007.
Ms. Mackle is married to John Shaw, principal percussion of Eastern Music Festival and The Florida Orchestra. They live in St. Petersburg, Florida with their daughter Madeline and two cats.
Ann Choomack currently plays piccolo with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. She is also a founding member of the Atlantic Chamber Ensemble, a group of musicians dedicated to inviting 21st century audiences into the concert experience. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music she went on to complete her masters degree at the New England Conservatory in Boston. Before arriving in St. Louis, Ms. Choomack played with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra in Richmond, VA and participated in numerous music festivals including Music Academy of the West, National Repertory Orchestra, and the Tanglewood Music Center.
After playing Principal Horn with the North Carolina Symphony for 15 years (1992-2007), Andrew McAfee now focuses on mentoring through teaching horn at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and conducting as the Music Director/Conductor of the Triangle Youth Ballet (www.triangleyouthballet.org) and the Masterworks Reading Orchestra (www.masterworksro.com). He remains active performing in local ensembles including principal horn of the Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle and the NC Opera. He completed his Bachelor of Music in Performance at Northwestern University, where he studied horn with Dale Clevenger and other members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He has won national auditions and held regular positions with the Fresno Philharmonic, Honolulu, Columbus, New Mexico and North Carolina Symphony Orchestras. In 2009 at UNCSA, he completed his Master of Music in Orchestral Conducting. Solo appearances have included the Richard Strauss Concerto No. 1 and the Hubler Concertstuck for Four Horns with the North Carolina Symphony, Schumann's Concertstuck for Four Horns with the Longview (TX) Symphony, the Britten Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings with the Salisbury (NC) Symphony, again in 2011 with the UNC Symphony Orchestra and MET tenor Anthony Dean Griffey and in 2014 with the Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle. In January of 2015, he performed the American premiere of the Gleire Horn Concerto arranged for band by Tony Cheseaux, with the Fresno Community Concert Band. His website www.hornlessons.org features his horn and piano CD “A Passionate Horn,” technique videos and his horn book titled “The McAfee Method."
Amy Frost Baumgarten has been principal cellist of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra since 2000, and enjoys a multifaceted musical life performing opera, ballet, solo, and chamber repertoire. She also teaches at George Mason University, and has performed chamber music frequently there and at venues such as the Phillips Collection, the Yale Center for British Art, San Francisco Symphony's Chamber Music Sundaes, and the University of California at Berkeley Faculty Series. She has been guest artist with Colorado Chamber Players, the Smithsonian Chamber Orchestra, and the New Century Chamber Orchestra, and performs frequently on the Kennedy Center's Millennium Stage Series. She earned a BM with Orlando Cole and other members of the Curtis String Quartet at the New School of Music in Philadelphia, where she won the Montgomery Memorial Prize; and later earned an MM at the Yale School of Music. As a student of Aldo Parisot, she performed on the Grammy nominated Yale Cellos recordings for Delos. Ms. Baumgarten previously taught at the Hartt School of Music and Wesleyan University. A faculty member at Eastern Music Festival 1992 to 2003, she performed in numerous highly acclaimed chamber recitals broadcast by National Public Radio, and returned to the Festival in 2011.
A native of Arizona, ALEXANDRA MATLOFF is recognized as a versatile orchestral musician, chamber musician and soloist. She performs in the Civic Orchestra of Chicago and has held positions with the Eastern Festival Orchestra, the Mobile Symphony Orchestra and the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra. While in Florida, Matloff served as concertmaster of the Florida State University Symphony Orchestra for the 2014 Naxos release of Dohnányi’s Symphony No. 2 and Two Songs, Op. 22. Matloff was also a member of the Eppes String Quartet, the graduate string-quartet-in-residence at Florida State.
As an adjunct professor at Carthage College, Matloff is also on the faculties of the Chicago Institute of Music Education and the DePaul University Community Music Division as a registered Suzuki teacher. Matloff earned her Doctor of Music and Master of Music in violin performance from Florida State University. She completed a Bachelor of Music in violin performance at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music.
From Frankfort, Illinois, ALEX KRAWCZYK is pursuing a master's degree in trombone as a student of Carl Lenthe at the University of Indiana’s Jacobs School of Music. He received his bachelor’s degree in trombone performance with teacher certification from the University of Iowa, where he studied with David Gier and Jonathan Allen. Upon completion of his undergraduate work, he taught general music and fifth and sixth grade band in Iowa City for the remainder of the 2011- 2012 school year. Maintaining a busy performance schedule throughout the U.S. and Canada, he has participated and taught in numerous music festivals and orchestras.Krawczyk is an EMF alumnus.
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