5301 Tuckerman Ln
Rockville, Maryland 20852

Who: Youth Orchestra of the Americas
Benjamin Zander, conductor
Gabriela Montero, piano

Where: The Music Center at Strathmore

When: Friday, August 7, 2009 at 8p.m.

Program: Bernstein's "Overture to Candide," Rachmaninov's "Piano Concerto No. 2," Beethoven's "Symphony No. 5 in C minor"

Tickets: $15 for adults, FREE for students; available at www.wpas.org, or by calling (202) 785-9727 or at www.strathmore.org or by calling 301-581-5100


Three Canadian Performers:

1) Melissa Amanda Wilmot, violin, Kelowna, British Columbia

Violinist Melissa Wilmot, age 21, is currently a student of Paul Kantor at the Glenn Gould professional School in Toronto where she just completed her first year of the bachelor level Performance Diploma Program.

During the ‘08-‘09 season Melissa performed regularly with the Royal Conservatory Orchestra where she has been either concert master, assistant concert master, or principal 2nd for all the concerts working under the baton of conductors Mario Bernardi, Uri Mayer, Peter Oundjian, and Yoav Talmi. Melissa is currently first violinist of the Annex Quartet which has been invited to perform live on Toronto’s Classical 96.3fm, at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, and at the Museum of Fine Arts in Montreal for Haydn 2009. She has received coaching from many renowned violinists including Andres Cardenes, Martin Chalifour, Andrew Dawes, Angele Dubeau, Jonathan Swartz, and Mimi Zweig. From 2005-2008 she was a student of Marc Destrube in Vancouver.

Born and raised in Kelowna, British Columbia, Melissa competed in local competitions from 1996-2008, and during the last six years she went on to the provincial and national finals. Melissa is the proud recipient of the 2007 city of Kelowna Civic Award in the category of 'Teen Honour in the Arts'. In 2006, Melissa received her ARCT diploma in violin performance from Royal Conservatory of Music. Melissa was concertmaster in both the 2007 and 2008 international Symphony Orchestra Academy of the Pacific. In 2007 and 2008, Melissa collaborated with professional dance company Ballet Kelowna in performances throughout British Columbia. She was a full time professional member of Okanagan Symphony Orchestra from 2001-2008 and featured on three occasions as soloist.

2) Julia Harguindey, bassoon, Montréal

Julia Harguindey was born in Argentina, but grew up in Canada. She currently studies bassoon with Mathieu Harel at the Montreal Music Conservatory. In September 2009, she will continue her studies at Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music. She began her professional career playing in orchestras throughout Quebec, such as Quebec Symphonic Orchestra and Sherbrooke Symphonic Orchestra. She recently won the 1st bassoon position with Trois-Rivieres Symphonic Orchestra. The 2009 United States-Canada Tour will be her second time participating in YOA concert tours.
3) Sarah Julianna Steeves, cello, Strathmore, Alberta

A native of Strathmore, Alberta, cellist Sarah Steeves has recently completed her Masters at McGill University studying with Brian Manker.
In 2007, she graduated from University of Toronto where she studied with Shauna Rolston. Previously, her principal teachers were Tom Mirhady (Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra) and Tanya Prochazka (University of Alberta). Sarah has received numerous awards and prizes including first places at Canadian Music Competitions and Alberta Provincial Music Festival, a Gold Medal for A.R.C.T. in Cello Performance from Royal Conservatory of Music and the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Scholarship. As a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral player, Sarah has performed at summer festivals such as Aldeburgh (UK), Banff, Le Domaine Forget, Orford, Toronto Bach and Toronto Summer Music Festival. She has performed with Mississauga Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra London and Sudbury Symphony Orchestras. Keenly interested in contemporary music, Sarah has performed at McGill University’s MusiMars and University of Toronto’s New Music Festivals. She has premiered new works by many young Canadian composers, including a commission of Kevin Lau’s Starsail in March 2008.

Throughout her career, Sarah has worked with many great musicians including the Leipzig String Quartet, Lawrence Lesser, Edgar Meyer, Aldo Parisot, St. Lawrence String Quartet and Janos Starker. In September 2009, Ms. Steeves begins her doctoral studies at University of Toronto.

Three Canadian Faculty:

1) Rob Weir, Bassoon - Canada, San Francisco Symphony

Born in Canada, studied at Curtis Institute of Music, Philadelphia. Rob has been a member of the bassoon section of the San Francisco Symphony since 1990. He has been on the faculties of The San Francisco Conservatory of Music, University of California, Berkeley, and UC Santa Cruz. He is the bassoon coach for the San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra, participated in festivals around the globe and been a member of YOA music faculty for the past 4 years.

2) Judy Loman, Harp - Canada, Principal, Toronto Symphony Orchestra

Ms. Loman has been Principal harpist with the Toronto Symphony since 1960, and has appeared as a soloist with that organization in Canada, the United States, and Europe. Ms. Loman's performances are heard frequently on CBC Radio and she has recorded for RCA, Columbia, CBC, Centre Disc, Aquitaine, Marquis and Naxos. Her playing has been featured in two films by Rhombus Media, presented by the CBC and TV Ontario. She is a recipient of Canada's Juno Award for best classical recording, and the Canada Council's Grand Prix du Disc.

3) John Estacio, Canada, 2009 YOA Composer-in-Residence

John Estacio has served as Composer in Residence for Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Pro Coro Canada, Calgary Philharmonic, and the Calgary Opera. These residencies yielded several orchestral and choral works including his opera Filumena. In addition to writing music during his residencies, he has also written for Vancouver Symphony, Toronto Symphony, l'Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal, Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, and CBC Radio Orchestra. John Estacio's 2009 residence with YOA is supported with assistance from Canada Council for the Arts.

Added by Hawkes on July 13, 2009

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