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The Quartets of Debussy & Ravel

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The Quartets of Debussy & Ravel

Monday, May 20, 2024—7:00pm

Monday, May 20, 2024—7:00pm
In Your Community
1 hour and 30 minutes
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At Cass Community United Methodist Church
3901 Cass Ave, Detroit, MI 48201

The only string quartets written by French masters Debussy and Ravel invite comparison. Written just 10 years apart, both quartets are characteristically passionate and colorful, but each takes its own path. Debussy’s music breathes free, breaking away from musical traditions, where Ravel thrives within the rules, finding room to surprise inside the bounds of expectation.

Program

CLAUDE DEBUSSY
String Quartet in G minor, Op. 10
MAURICE RAVEL
String Quartet in F major

Artists

Rachel Harding Klaus

Born in Chicago, Rachel Harding Klaus studied violin with David and Linda Cerone at the Cleveland Institute of Music, where the faculty awarded her the coveted Joseph and Elsie Scharff Prize in Violin and the Dr. Jerome Gross Prize. Previous teachers have included Michael Avsharian, Steven Shipps, and Sonja Foster.

In the fall of 2004, she won the concerto competition at the Cleveland Institute of Music and performed the Bartók Concerto with the CIM Orchestra. In June of 2005, Harding Klaus was a prizewinner in the International Irving M. Klein String Competition, the Kingsville Performers Competition, and the Stulber International String Competition. She was also the grand prize winner of the Corpus Christi International String Competition. She has soloed with various orchestras including the Asheville, Kalamazoo, Corpus Christi, and Colorado symphonies.

Harding Klaus is an avid chamber music player and was a violinist for many years in the Harding Piano Trio along with her two sisters. The Harding Trio won prizes in the Fischoff, Coleman, and ASTA chamber music competitions. In 2009, Harding Klaus won a position with the Colorado Symphony as Assistant Concertmaster. In 2012, Harding Klaus joined the DSO as a member of the second violin section, moving to the first violin section the following year.

Jing Zhang

Violinist Jing Zhang began studying the violin at the age of four. She entered the Shanghai Conservatory of Music on the Fu Cheng-Xian Scholarship at age ten as the youngest of only four violinists accepted that year. She received her master’s and bachelor’s degrees in violin performance from the New England Conservatory where she studied with Donald Weilerstein.

Zhang has performed extensively around the world, and her most memorable concert performances include those given in the US, Canada, Australia, Singapore, and her native China. She has appeared in numerous recitals and programs including the Temple Israel’s Schmier Concert in Detroit; the premiere of the Perlman Music Residency Program in Vermont; and many others at New England Conservatory and Shanghai Conservatory where she has often been invited to visit back and play as a top graduate and renowned alumna. Zhang has also performed as a soloist with the Xiamen Philharmonic Orchestra, the Shanghai Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra, and the Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie.

Zhang has won multiple national and international competitions including fourth prize at the Fourth International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians, the Gold Award in the Second "Pu Gong Ying" National Violin Competition, and third prize in the Seventh National Youth Violin Performance Competition. She was a semi-finalist in the 2009 Queen Elisabeth International Violin Competition and in the 2012 San Diego Symphony auditions for violin. Zhang was a finalist in the 2011 Cleveland Orchestra and the 2012 Chicago Symphony Orchestra auditions. She has attended festivals such as the Morningside Music Bridge Summer Camp in Canada, the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado, the Perlman Music Program, and the Perlman Music Program’s Chamber Music Workshop.

Outside of her mastery of the violin, Zhang starred in a 2002 Chinese film Together which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. In her spare time, Zhang enjoys spending time with her friends and being outdoors.

Mike Chen

Mike Chen received a Bachelor and Master of Music from Northwestern University studying violin with Blair Milton. In 1999 he began playing the viola and studied with Li-Kuo Chang. His other teachers included Michael Strauss, Peter Slowik, Keith Conant, and Baird Dodge.

Chen was a member of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra from 2012 to 2018, a member of the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra from 2003 to 2012, and prior to that, a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago from 1992 to 1995. He has performed with the Detroit Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, and Chicago Symphony. In 2017, Chen joined the Cincinnati Symphony on its European Festivals Tour.

He received a master’s degree in conducting at Northwestern University in 1999, studying with Victor Yampolsky and Mariusz Smolij. His other conducting teachers include Gilbert Varga, David Zinman, and Murry Sidlin.

Chen was a conducting fellow at the American Academy of Conducting in Aspen, Colorado in 2008. He has also served as Assistant Conductor of the Saint Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra, Guest Conductor of the Webster University Community Music School’s Young People’s Symphony Orchestra, and Guest Conductor of the Indianapolis Symphony Side-by-Side Orchestra.

David LeDoux

David LeDoux joined the DSO in 2012, coming to the orchestra from the Syracuse Symphony where he previously served as Principal Cello.

LeDoux has appeared as a soloist with the Syracuse Symphony, the Skaneatelas Festival Chamber Orchestra, the Tulsa Philharmonic, the Oklahoma State University Symphony, the Louisiana Sinfonietta, and the Mid-Texas Symphony.

LeDoux is an active and avid chamber musician, performing for many years with the Syracuse Society for New Music. As a committed private teacher, he previously served as a cello instructor for Imagine Syracuse—a music program in an inner-city school that was modeled after the El Sistema program in Venezuela.

Past professional engagements for LeDoux include serving as Principal Cello with the Baton Rouge (LA) Symphony, the Mississippi Gulf Coast Symphony, and the Louisiana Sinfonietta.

LeDoux has studied with Ronald Leonard, Dennis Parker, and Kari Padgett Caldwell. A resident of Madison Heights, LeDoux’s hobbies include reading, running, and watching movies.

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