Matthew Strauss has been applauded throughout the United States as an energetic percussionist and timpanist with a diverse musical background. In addition to his positions as Percussionist with the Houston Symphony and Timpanist with the American Symphony Orchestra at the Bard Music Festival, Mr. Strauss is currently an Associate Professor of Percussion at Rice University, Lecturer at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music and faculty member at the Texas Music Festival at the University of Houston.
Richard Brown, a native of Philadelphia, earned his bachelor of music from Temple University in Philadelphia and his master´s degree from Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. He started his career with the Chamber Symphony of Philadelphia in 1968. He played in the United States Army Band in Washington D.C., and then moved to Houston to perform with the Houston Symphony, a position he held for eight years. While in Houston, he established the percussion department at The Shepherd School of Music.
David Kirk has served on The Shepherd School of Music faculty since 1982. His duties at the Shepherd School include teaching private lessons and holding master classes.
Principal Trombonist with the Houston Symphony, Allen Barnhill joined the orchestra in 1977 and has been featured as a soloist on numerous occasions. His 2008 world premiere of Cindy McTee’s Solstice for Trombone and Orchestra was hailed by the Houston Chronicle: “Barnhill played with masterful control. His tone was burnished, his legato a pleasure for its seamlessness, and his power and agility impressive.” Winner of the Swiss Prize at the 1979 Geneva International Solo Competition, he has made numerous solo appearances with orchestras, bands, in solo recitals and as a chamber musician.
Trumpet lessons began at age 6. Between the ages of 7 and 10, he played in the highly esteemed Joliet, Illinois band program. By age 12, radio performances in Peoria, Illinois hinted at his future professional career. While attending Northwestern University, he performed as Principal Trumpet with Chicago Lyric Opera. He joined the Chicago Symphony Orchestra following his senior year. During his 12 years with the CSO, he was Principal with the Grant Park Symphony Summer Orchestra. The Houston Symphony engaged him as Principal in 1978, where he performed for three seasons.
Performing solo and ensemble concerts as well as giving master classes on the double bass and period instruments on four continents, Paul Ellison is the Lynette S.
Hailed by New York Newsday for “extraordinary musicianship,” American cellist Brinton Averil Smith continues to win rave reviews throughout the United States and around the world. Smith’s debut recording of Miklos Rozsa’s Cello Concerto with the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra received widespread international critical acclaim, with the Gramophone Awards Issue praising Smith as a “hugely eloquent, impassioned soloist,” while his recording of chamber music of Fauré with violinist Gil Shaham on his Fauré Album was chosen by numerous critics as one of the best albums of the year.
Desmond Hoebig, Professor of Cello at The Shepherd School of Music at Rice University, has had a distinguished career as a soloist, orchestral and chamber musician.
Desmond was born in 1961 and raised in Vancouver, Canada. He studied with James Hunter, Jack Mendelsohn and Ian Hampton. In 1978 he moved to Philadelphia to study with David Soyer at the Curtis Institute of Music. He received his BM and MM at the Juilliard School with Leonard Rose and Channing Robbins, and participated in master classes with Janos Starker and Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi at the Banff Centre.
Norman Fischer has concertized on five continents and in 49 of the 50 United States. He was cellist with the Concord String Quartet through its 16-year career and winner of the Naumburg Chamber Music Award, two Grammy nominations and an Emmy. In over 1000 concerts the quartet performed 18 Bartok cycles, 36 Beethoven cycles and premiered 50 works. They also recorded 40 works for RCA Red Seal, Vox, Nonesuch and CRI. Mr.