Were You There
Rolston String Quartet
Luri Lee, violin | Emily Kruspe, violin | Hezekiah Leung, viola | Jonathan Lo, cello
The lauded Rolston String Quartet has made a name for itself in recent years thanks to its many prestigious awards and competition achievements, including taking major prizes at the Banff, Astral, Yellow Springs, M-Prize and Bordeaux competitions. They have also just been awarded the coveted Cleveland Quartet Award.
On the heels of their Banff win, the Rolstons immediately embarked upon the Competition’s tour, taking them to Germany, Italy, Austria, Canada, and the U.S. In the fall of 2017, the Rolston String Quartet became the Yale School of Music’s fellowship quartet-in-residence. They have previously served as the graduate quartet-in-residence at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, and participated in residencies and fellowships at the Académie musicale de Villecroze, Aspen Music Festival, Banff Centre, McGill International String Quartet Academy, Norfolk Chamber Music Festival, Robert Mann String Quartet Institute, St. Lawrence String Quartet Seminar, and the Yehudi Menuhin Chamber Music Festival.
Notable collaborations for the RSQ include performances with renowned artists Andrés Díaz, Gilbert Kalish, Mark Morris, Donald Palma, Jon Kimura Parker, and Miguel da Silva, as well as worked with composers John Luther Adams and Brian Current. Their primary mentors include the Brentano Quartet, James Dunham, Norman Fischer, and Kenneth Goldsmith, and the quartet has received additional guidance from the St. Lawrence String Quartet, Barry Shiffman, Miguel da Silva, and Alastair Tait. The Rolston String Quartet was formed in the summer of 2013 at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity’s Chamber Music Residency. They take their name from Canadian violinist Thomas Rolston, founder and longtime director of the Music and Sound Programs at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.
Davóne Tines, baritone
One of the world’s most heralded young singers, the charismatic, genre-bending bass-baritone Davóne Tines has quickly become a compelling and much sought-after vocalist. The thirty-year-old singer has already collaborated with many of the world’s finest new music composers including John Adams, Kaija Saariaho and Matthew Aucoin, and has cemented his status as a musical artist of uncommon depth and astonishing power.
Tines grew up in Virginia, singing in his local Baptist church choir and playing the violin. He attended Harvard as an undergrad where he played violin in the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra and sang in the school’s Dunster House Opera. His senior year he performed in Stravinksy’s Rake’s Progress and was coached by fellow Harvard classmate/composer Matthew Aucoin. After Harvard, Tines attended Juilliard where he received an advanced degree and was then quickly cast in roles in Europe, where he’s since performed in a wide variety of operatic and symphonic contexts.
Breakout performances were given on both sides of the Atlantic in 2015 when Davóne Tines made his Dutch National Opera debut opposite French countertenor Philippe Jaroussky in the premiere of Kaija Saariaho ’s Only the Sound Remains. The Los Angeles Times hailed him as “the find of the season,” for performances with the Calder Quartet and with members of ICE at the Ojai Music Festival.
More recently he has starred in the San Francisco Opera premiere of John Adams’ Girls of the Golden West and a debut at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in the role he originated in a production of Matthew Aucoin’s Crossing directed by multi Tony Award-winning director Diane Paulus. Recent highlights include TInes performing John Adams’ El Niño with the London Symphony Orchestra, Bruckner’s Te Deum with the Charlotte Symphony, Kaija Saariaho’s True Fire with the Orchestre national de France, and a program exposing the Music of Resistance by George Crumb, Julius Eastman, Dmitri Shostakovich, and Caroline Shaw with leading members of the San Francisco Symphony at SoundBox.
MICHAEL SCHACHTER, piano
Born and raised in New England, Michael spent his formative years immersed in omnivorous musical activity: absorbing the strains of Jewish cantillation, performing piano concerti, leading jazz combos, accompanying musicals and gospel groups, conducting Renaissance choral music, and studying Southeast Indian classical (Karnatak) music in Chennai. His work — composition, writing, and teaching alike — reflects a uniquely broad versatility and depth of humanist inquiry. Michael’s new vaudeville oratorio, The Black Clown, will premiere at the American Repertory Theater in the 2018–19 season. Starring bass-baritone Davóne Tines, and featuring a libretto co-written by Michael and Mr. Tines, the category-resistant work realizes the poetic vision of Langston Hughes’ dramatic monologue of the same name.
In recent years, Michael’s music has been commissioned and performed by ensembles such as the Minnesota Orchestra, the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra, the Boise Philharmonic, the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra, the 21st Century Consort (the resident new music ensemble of the Smithsonian institution), the Brentano Quartet, among many others. His works have received honors from organizations such as BMI, ASCAP, and the American Composers Forum.