Soloist, chamber musician, and the CCM-CSO Diversity Fellow for University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and the Cincinnati Orchestra, cellist Anita Graef appears with pianist and artistic director of the International Chamber Artists, Patrick Godon. Their program includes works of Robert Schumann and Richard Strauss performed live from the Chicago Cultural Center for this Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert.
A native of Chicago, Anita Graef began her cello studies at age four, going on to make her concerto debut at age twelve. She went on to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Michigan’s School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, where she studied with professor Anthony Elliott. Following this, she began pursuing a Master’s Degree at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, under the tutelage of Ilya Finkelshteyn. She frequently appears with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra as a CCM-CSO Diversity Fellow.
In the past, she has had occasion to work with cellists such as Stephen Geber, Johannes Moser, Felix Wang, Yehuda Hanani, and has studied with several members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, including Jonathan Pegis, Richard Hirschl, and Brant Taylor. She has performed in several orchestras under the baton of maestros such as Leonard Slatkin, Miguel Harth-Bedoya, JoAnn Falletta, Louis Langree, James Conlon and Keith Lockhart.
She has participated in the 79th season of the Brevard Music Festival as principal cellist, the Catskills Chamber Music Festival, as well as Credo Chamber Music Festival at Oberlin Conservatory. She is a member of the Juliani Ensemble, where she has collaborated with members of both the Chicago Symphony and Lyric Opera Orchestra, among others. She was recently awarded the Silver Prize with Distinction at the Young Classical Virtuosos of Tomorrow international competition. Upcoming appearances include performances with the New World Symphony, the Tanglewood Music Festival, as well this debut performance on the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert series, broadcast nationally on 98.7 WFMT.
Patrick Godon made his debut as soloist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in May 2007, playing one of the solo piano parts, along with Mary Sauer, in Colin McPhee’s Tabuh-Tabuhan: Toccata for Orchestra and Two Pianos, with Alan Gilbert conducting. Since 2016, Patrick has performed the Principal Keyboardist duties regularly with the CSO on piano, celesta, organ, and synthesizer. He made his debut with the CSO as second keyboardist at Ravinia in 2003.
He was invited to play principal keyboard on the CSO's 2018 East Coast Tour, January 2017 European Tour; second keyboard on the CSO's 2005 European Tour and for eight CSO Carnegie Hall performances. In 2015 he began performing regularly as organist with the CSO. He has played under leading conductors including Alsop, Barenboim, Boulez, Colnot, Conlon, Davis, Dutoit, Eschenbach, Haitink, Maazel, Muti, Nagano, Robertson, Salonen, Slatkin, and Tilson Thomas. He has served as rehearsal pianist for Daniel Barenboim and Deborah Voigt for Schoenberg’s Erwartung. Godon also performs as orchestral keyboardist with the Virginia, Delaware, Milwaukee, and Peoria Symphony Orchestras. He is in demand as a collaborative pianist and has performed many live broadcasts on Chicago classical station WFMT.
Patrick Godon is artistic director and pianist for the International Chamber Artists (ICA), a chamber music ensemble that he founded in 2006. ICA showcases a diverse group of professional musicians and performs a wide variety of repertoire. Through educational components during performances, ICA seeks to sustain the future of classical music audiences. ICA performs a series of 5 concerts at St. Gregory the Great Church in Chicago, and also has been featured on WFMT, at the Chicago Cultural Center, the Morse Theater, St. James Cathedral, the Belden Stratford Hotel, the Schaumburg Prairie Center for the Arts, and the Harris Theater for Music and Dance. ICA went on its first international tour to Germany in September 2009 to critical acclaim. Discover more about this exciting ensemble here.