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North/South Chamber Orchestra to Conclude its 37th Consecutive Season this Month

On Tuesday evening June 20, The North/South Chamber Orchestra will conclude its 37th consecutive season performing four works by living composers from the Americas.

Featured will be premieres of compositions by Canadian Leslie Opatril and Argentinean Leonardo Suarez Paz as well as NY premieres of works by Americans Max Lifchitz and Meira Warshauer.

Soloists for the occasion will include soprano Carol Wilson; piccolo virtuoso Mary Byrne; violinist Leonardo Suarez Paz and cellist Leo Grinhauz. The ensemble will be conducted by its founder Max Lifchitz. The event will take place at the intimate but acoustically superior auditorium of Christ & St Stephen's Church (120 West 69th Street) on Manhattan's Upper West Side. The free-admission event will start at 8 PM and end around 9:30 PM. The auditorium is ADA accessible. No tickets or reservations needed.

Since its inception in 1980, the North/South Consonance, Inc. has brought to the attention of the New York City public over 1,000 works by composers hailing from the Americas and elsewhere representing a wide spectrum of aesthetic views. Its activities are made possible in part, with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; the BMI Foundation; the Music Performance Trust Fund; and the generosity of numerous individual donors.


Meira Warshauer's music has been performed to critical acclaim throughout North America, Europe, South America, the Middle East, and Asia. Her musical palette is wide, ranging from traditional Jewish prayer modes to minimalist textures with rich melodic contours, and from joyful jazz-influenced rhythms to imaginative orchestrations of the natural world. Being heard in New York for the first time, her work In Memoriam for solo cello and strings was written during the days of watching the horror of the September 11, 2001 attacks: the collapse of the World Trade Center, the attack on the Pentagon, the plane crash in Pennsylvania. In the preface to her heartfelt score the composer writes that "....writing the work was my way of holding each other in our loss while reflecting reflects my sadness and our collective sadness."

Leonardo Suarez-Paz is a much sought-after violinist and composer from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Wynton Marsalis described him as a "unique spirit and a virtuoso extraordinaire on the violin who can easily communicate across cultures." He has toured throughout Europe and Japan and served as violin soloist for the Broadway shows Forever Tango and Tango Argentino. Being heard for the first time, Suarez Paz's Nuevos Aires (New Melodies) is a concerto for violin and strings in three contrasting movements that combines the elements derived from Jazz and Baroque music with the tangy rhythms of the Nuevo Tango.

Canadian Leslie Opatril began her studies at the Victoria Conservatory of Music and is now completing an undergraduate degree in music composition at the University of Ottawa (Ottawa, Ontario). She describes her Tangled Thoughts for piccolo and strings as "....being inspired by anxiety and despair. The work's contrapuntal texture creates a web of tangled thoughts. But the listener should keep an ear out - perhaps not all the thoughts should lead to despair!"

A dynamic figure in America's musical life, Max Lifchitz was born in México City and has lived in New York since 1966. Active as composer, pianist and conductor, he was awarded first prize in the 1976 International Gaudeamus Competition for Performers of Twentieth Century Music held in Holland. The San Francisco Chronicle described him as "a stunning, ultra-sensitive pianist" while The New York Times praised Mr. Lifchitz for his "clean, measured and sensitive performances." The American Record Guide referred to him as " of America's finest exponents of contemporary piano music." His recently completed Forget Me Not for voice and strings was inspired by poetry of the 19th century American writer Lillian E. Curtis. The cycle consists of four contrasting songs that deal with descriptions of nature as well as feelings of nostalgia, love and longing.

Soprano Carol Wilson has performed in prestigious opera houses throughout the world including those in Frankfurt, Stockholm, Vancouver, Netherlands, Taipei, Dresden, Stuttgart, Bonn, Hannover and Manitoba. She earned much critical acclaim for her Metropolitan Opera appearances as Marschallin in Richard Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier. A strong advocate of music by 20th and 21st century composers, Ms. Wilson has appeared as soloist with the American Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestra of St. Luke's, and the Duesseldorf Symphoniker.

Piccolo virtuoso Mary Byrne has performed as a soloist and chamber musician throughout North America and Europe. Trained at the University of Michigan Byrn resides in Victoria, British Columbia where she performs with the Sydney Classical Orchestra and the Victoria Symphony while teaching at the Victoria Conservatory.

Cellist Leo Grinhauz studied at Indiana University where his mentors included Janos Starker and Bernard Greenhouse. A native of Buenos Aires, Argentina Grinhauz grew up in Montreal and performed for several seasons in the Montreal Symphony Orchestra cello section. In addition to performing for several Broadway shows ensembles he has recorded several albums featuring chamber music from the Americas.

For the complete North/South concert series schedule please visit

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