Cellist Gabriel Martins and pianist Joseph Liccardo present a program of Bach, Schumann, and Ginastera live from the Chicago Cultural Center.
American cellist Gabriel Martins is the gold medalist of the V International David Popper Cello Competition in Hungary, and the silver medalist of the VIII International Tchaikovsky Competition for Young Musicians in Moscow as well as the 21st Sphinx Competition. According to legendary cellist Ralph Kirshbaum, Martins has “revealed heart, passion, intellect, and a finely-nuanced palette of colors in a compelling manner worthy of a seasoned artist.” He has performed as soloist with ensembles such as the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, New Russia State Symphony Orchestra, Sphinx Symphony Orchestra, Aspen Conducting Academy Orchestra, and Fukuda Ensemble (São Paulo). He is also the newest member of the SAKURA Cello Quintet, which has been described as “brilliant” and “superb” by the Los Angeles Times. Martins began playing the cello when he was five, studying with Susan Moses in Bloomington, Indiana. He was a fellowship student at the Aspen Music Festival and School for two summers, where he participated in the Finckel-Wu Han chamber music studio and won the concerto competition. He is currently an undergraduate student at the USC Thornton School of Music, studying with Ralph Kirshbaum. In his freshman year at USC, Martins won both the concerto competition and the solo Bach competition.
Joseph Liccardo is active as a chamber musician, soloist, and music educator. He has been praised for solo performances of “clarity and taste” (Wall Street Journal), and chamber performances of “transparent detail” (Boston Globe). Recent performances include recitals in New York, Baltimore, Boston, San Antonio, and other major cities across the U.S, as well as several tours of China. For the last four summers, he has participated in the Yellow Barn chamber music festival in Putney, Vermont, where he has performed a wide variety of repertoire ranging from standard classics to new 21st century works. In 2006 he won first prize in the Young Artist Division of the MTNA National Piano Competition. Joseph holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Eastman School of Music, and a Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School. In addition to his performance activities, he maintains a large private piano studio. He is on the faculty of the Center for Preparatory Studies in Music at Queens College, where he teaches private piano, chamber music, and group performance classes. His primary teachers include Donald Pirone, Douglas Humpherys, and Robert McDonald.