Asheville Chamber Music Series Continues With Pianist Michael Stephen Brown & Cellist Nicholas Canellakis

The performance is on May 10, 2024, at 7:30 p.m. EDT.

By: Apr. 22, 2024
Asheville Chamber Music Series Continues With Pianist Michael Stephen Brown & Cellist Nicholas Canellakis
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The internationally lauded Canellakis-Brown Duo - pianist Michael Stephen Brown and cellist Nicholas Canellakis - will be presented by the Asheville Chamber Music Series in recital on Friday evening, May 10, 2024, at 7:30 p.m. EDT at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville (1 Edwin Pl, Asheville, NC 28801). This concert will feature an eclectic program of familiar and rarely heard chamber music repertoire as well as the performers' own compositions and arrangements.

For up to fifteen years, the Duo has been honing its unique musical voice and presenting programs celebrating the standard literature, little-known gems, and original works and arrangements. The program follows:

Clara Schumann Romance from Piano Concerto, Op. 7

Claude Debussy Beau Soir

Sergei Rachmaninoff Sonata in G Minor for Cello and Piano

Lukas Foss Capriccio

Camille Saint-Saëns Romance, Op. 36

Michael Stephen Brown Prelude and Dance

Nicholas Canellakis Romance à GF (2022)

Niccolò Paganini Variations on One String "Moses" by Rossini

Don Ellis/arr. Canellakis Bulgarian Bulge

General admission of $45 and $25 tickets for youth under 25 are available for purchase online on the Asheville Chamber Music Series' website. For more information please visit the Canellakis-Brown Duo's website, pianist Michael Stephen Brown's website, and cellist Nicholas Canellakis' website.

Cellist Nicholas Canellakis and pianist-composer Michael Stephen Brown, comprising the Canellakis-Brown Duo, have been uniting their multi-disciplinary talents and honing their unique musical voice for over fifteen years. They bring their affectionate, brutally honest, and infectious rapport to the stage while presenting programs celebrating the standard literature, little-known gems, and original works and arrangements.

Their recent engagements include Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall in New York City, New Orleans Friends of Music, Rockport Music, the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, ArtPower in San Diego, the Four Arts in Palm Beach, Wolf Trap in Washington D.C., and Music@Menlo in Palo Alto, where they were featured as guest curators. They both are longtime artists of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center.

Pianist and composer Michael Stephen Brown has performed as soloist with the Seattle Symphony, the National Philharmonic, and the Grand Rapids, North Carolina, Wichita, New Haven, and Albany Symphonies. He has appeared in recital at Carnegie Hall, the Mostly Mozart Festival, and Lincoln Center. He regularly collaborates with his longtime duo partner, cellist Nicholas Canellakis, and has been featured at numerous festivals, including Tanglewood, Marlboro, Music@Menlo, Gilmore, Ravinia, Saratoga, Bridgehampton, Caramoor, Music in the Vineyards, Bard, Sedona, Moab, and Tippet Rise.

Mr. Brown recently toured his own Concerto for Piano and Strings (2020) throughout the United States and Poland with several orchestras. He has received commissions from the Gilmore Piano Festival; the NFM Leopoldinum Orchestra; the New Haven and Maryland Symphony Orchestras; Concert Artists Guild; Chamber Music Sedona; Music in the Vineyards; Shriver Hall; Osmo Vänskä, pianists Jerome Lowenthal, Ursula Oppens, Orion Weiss, Adam Golka, and Roman Rabinovich.

A prolific recording artist, his latest album Noctuelles, featuring Ravel's Miroirs and newly discovered movements by Medtner, was called "a glowing presentation" by BBC Music Magazine. He can be heard as soloist with the Seattle Symphony and Ludovic Morlot in the music of Messiaen, and as soloist with the Brandenburg State Symphony in music by Samuel Adler. Other albums include Beethoven's Eroica Variations; all-George Perle; and collaborative albums each with pianist Jerome Lowenthal, cellist Nicholas Canellakis, and violinist Elena Urioste. He is now embarking on a multi-year project to record the complete piano music by Felix Mendelssohn including world premiere recordings of music by one of Mendelssohn's muses, Delphine von Schauroth.

A recipient of many awards, Mr. Brown was the winner of the 2018 Emerging Artist Award from Lincoln Center and a 2015 Avery Fisher Career Grant. Other awards include the First Prize winner of the Concert Artists Guild Competition, the Bowers Residency from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (formerly CMS Two), and the Juilliard Petschek Award. Mr. Brown is a Steinway Artist.

Mr. Brown earned dual bachelor's and master's degrees in piano and composition from The Juilliard School, where he studied with pianists Jerome Lowenthal and Robert McDonald and composers Samuel Adler and Robert Beaser. Additional mentors have included András Schiff and Richard Goode as well as his early teachers, Herbert Rothgarber and Adam Kent. A native New Yorker, he lives there with his two 19th-century Steinway D's, Octavia and Daria.

Nicholas Canellakis has become one of the most sought-after and innovative cellists of his generation, praised as a "superb young soloist" (The New Yorker) and for being "impassioned ... the audience seduced by Mr. Canellakis's rich, alluring tone" (The New York Times). A multifaceted artist, Canellakis has forged a unique voice combining his talents as soloist, chamber musician, curator, filmmaker, and composer/arranger.

Recent concert highlights include concerto appearances with the Virginia, Albany, Delaware, Stamford, Richardson, Lansing, and Bangor Symphonies, the Erie Philharmonic, The Orchestra Now, the New Haven Symphony as Artist-in-Residence, and the American Symphony Orchestra in Carnegie Hall. He performs recitals throughout the U.S. with his longtime duo collaborator, pianist-composer Michael Stephen Brown, and recent appearances have included Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall, the Four Arts in Palm Beach, New Orleans Friends of Chamber Music, the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, and Wolf Trap near Washington D.C.

Mr. Canellakis is an artist of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, with which he performs regularly in Alice Tully Hall and on tour internationally, including London's Wigmore Hall, The Louvre in Paris, the Seoul Arts Center in Korea, and the Shanghai and Taipei National Concert Halls. He is also a regular guest artist at many of the world's leading music festivals, including Santa Fe, Ravinia, Music@Menlo, Bard, Bridgehampton, La Jolla, Hong Kong, Moab, Chamberfest Cleveland, and Music in the Vineyards. He was recently renewed as the artistic director of Chamber Music Sedona, in Arizona, where he has made a major impact through his dynamic programming and educational and community outreach.

A graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music and New England Conservatory, his teachers included Orlando Cole, Peter Wiley and Paul Katz, and he was a student of Madeleine Golz at Manhattan School of Music Pre-College. He began his Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center career as a member of the Bowers Program (formerly CMS Two), and he has also been in residence at Carnegie Hall as a member of Ensemble Connect.

Mr. Canellakis's next album with Michael Stephen Brown, (b)romance, featuring some of his original compositions and arrangements, will be released by First Hand Records in 2024.

Filmmaking and acting are special interests of Canellakis. He has produced, directed, and starred in several short films and music videos, including his popular comedy web series "Conversations with Nick Canellakis." His latest film, "Thin Walls," was nominated for awards at many prominent film festivals, and is currently available on Amazon Prime.

Mr. Canellakis plays on an outstanding Jean-Baptiste Vuillaume, from 1840.


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