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Chicago violist Doyle Armbrust graduated with honors from Northwestern University and went on to study with Donald McInnes at the University of Southern California where he earned a Masters Degree in Viola Performance. Mr. Armbrust is currently principal violist of both Camerata Chicago and the Firebird Chamber Orchestra in Miami, Florida. After returning to Chicago having completed a three-year fellowship in
the New World Symphony as rotating principal violist under Michael Tilson Thomas, Mr. Armbrust began an active freelance career including commercial engagements as sideman for The Beach Boys, Jewel, Richard Marx, Lupe Fiasco, and the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Positions not involving pyrotechnics include guest coach of the DePaul University Chamber and Symphony Orchestra viola sections, as well as violist for the Miami Music Project, an organization bringing classical music
to under-served children throughout Florida’s Miami-Dade County. An avid proponent of music by contemporary composers, Mr. Armbrust performs regularly on the Chicago Symphony’s MusicNow Series, is a core member of the Anaphora, New Millennium Orchestra and Accessible Contemporary Music ensembles, and has been a guest artist with both the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) and Eighth Blackbird. Mr. Armbrust is also violist for Corky Siegel’s Chamber Blues, an internationally-touring Blues- juxtaposed-with-Classical group based in Chicago, led by harmonica virtuoso Corky Siegel.
In 2009, Mr. Armbrust was hired by TimeOut Chicago to write for its Opera & Classical and Music sections, and is often found scribbling notes at the back of the Empty Bottle, the Lyric Opera House, and everywhere in between.
Violist David Auerbach earned a DMA from Stony Brook University in December 2007, where he was a scholarship student of Katherine Murdock. Previously, he received a Masters Degree from the Juilliard School under the tutelage of Samuel Rhodes, and a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with majors in both Music Performance and Molecular Biology. Mr. Auerbach has given numerous solo and collaborative recitals throughout New England and the Midwest, and has been a prizewinner
in several competitions, including the 2005 Chicago Viola Society Competition. A dedicated chamber musician, Mr. Auerbach has participated in the music festivals of Ravinia, Kneisel Hall, and Norfolk, and he has performed with chamber groups several times in Carnegie’s Weill and Zankel Recital Halls. Since moving to the Twin Cities in the fall of 2007, Mr. Auerbach has been a top substitute with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Minnesota Orchestra, and is the Principal Violist of the Minnesota Opera Orchestra.
Cellist Daniel Cline is currently a member of the Rockefeller String Quartet, the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, and faculty member at Hendrix College. Originally from Northfield, Illinois, Mr. Cline was born into a musical family where he began cello studies at the age of five. His father, Roger, is a bassist with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. His mother, Elizabeth, is a violinist with the Lake Forest Symphony and Peninsula Music Festival in addition to maintaining a large teaching studio, and his sister Jennifer is as a member of the viola section of the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, DC. Daniel decided to pursue music as a
career, rather than aviation, which led him to Rochester, New York, where he earned a Bachelor of Music degree at the Eastman School of Music. Mr. Cline also holds a Master of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music. His teachers have included Hans Jorgen Jensen, Steven Doane, Richard Aaron, and Stephen Geber. Daniel’s master class performances include those for Yo-Yo Ma, Lynn Harrell, and Janos Starker.
In addition to music, Daniel enjoys pursuing interests in hiking, sailing, cooking and electronics. Mr. Cline is also a licensed pilot, skydiving enthusiast, and a runner—having completed six marathons.
Former Violist, Fry Street Quartet
Mimc Faculty 2008-09
Hailed for his “glorious strength” and “elegance,” Russell began violin lessons at age five in the public schools, and has since blazed a remarkable trail as a soloist, chamber musician, teacher and clinician. A founding member of the critically acclaimed Fry Street String Quartet who recorded, taught, and performed on stages throughout the world, Russell recently performed his swan song with the quartet—a marathon cycle of all 17 Beethoven String Quartets in one week’s time. His newest project, The Dueling Fiddlers, with acclaimed fiddler Adam DeGraff, turns classical music on its head and combines modern pop and rock songs with a raw energy, creativity, and style that has audiences of all ages on the edge of their seats. Russell attended Madeline Island Music Camp as both a camper in the 90’s and as a faculty member with The Fry Street Quartet, and credits both experiences as highlights of his career.
"At the age of 24, I graduated with a Maste's Degree in Arts Administration from UW-Madison, and played my very first solo recital. After a few weeks of perusing job opportunities, I discovered that I really didn't want to be an arts administrator, but I wanted to play the violin. My teacher (Vartan Manoogian) suggested that I go up to Madeline Island, immerse myself in music, and see where it led. All of the inspiring coachings, lessons, and camaraderie were just what I needed to get me started, and I haven't looked back since. Many thanks to MIMC for helping to make my dream a reality!"
Conductor, Kentucky Opera, New York City Opera, Washington National Orchestra
"The summer I spent on Madeline Island provided me with my very first ensemble experience with the Schumann Piano Quintet. Such great music with a wonderful faculty and beautiful surroundings."
Currently a freelance violinist in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Emilia Mettenbrink is a sub violinist with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, the Minnesota Orchestra, and the Minnesota Opera. She performs as the Principal Second violinist for the Firebird Chamber Orchestra in Miami, Florida. She toured Paris last year performing Porgy and Bess with Opèra Comique and the New World Symphony and spends her summers as the concertmaster and solo violinist for the CCM Opera Spoleto Festival (previously Opera-Lucca) in Italy. In her most recent solo engagement she performed the Lou Harrison Violin Concerto with the New World Symphony percussion section in the spring of 2009.
Emilia grew up in Minneapolis Minnesota and attended Madeline Island Music Camp while she was a student of Mary West. Madeline Island was one of her first experiences with chamber music and it made an impression on her that has lasted into adulthood. She sought out chamber music opportunities as
well as opera in her summers with the Aspen Music Festival while pursuing a Bachelors as a student of Paul Kantor at the University of Michigan. She received her Masters degree from the University of Wisconsin—Madison in 2003 and at the same time was the Assistant Concertmaster of the Madison Symphony Orchestra. In her spare time, Emilia is a certified yoga instructor and avid practitioner of the Bikram method and other hot styles of yoga. She loves hiking, biking and has a great love for travel and experiencing new things. Emilia enjoys playing traditional and mixed chamber music and hopes to continue her professional career with work in the orchestral field in both the United States and abroad.
Andrew Meyer, violinist and educator, has studied the violin since the age of three. His teachers have included artists such as Sergiu Luca, Vartan Manoogian and James Dunham. Mr. Meyer has been the recipient of many awards, such as the Milwaukee Symphony Young Artists competition finalist, Madison Symphony Young Artists competition runner up, Wisconsin ASTA competition runner up and University of Wisconsin—Madison concerto competition finalist. Mr. Meyer has performed recitals and concerts across the United States, as well as
in Austria, Germany, Spain and China. He has recently given master classes and performances at the Sichuan Conservatory (China), and has been asked to adjudicate competitions such as the Children’s Foundation of the Arts, and the World Music Competition in Singapore. Mr. Meyer currently resides in Houston, Texas, where he is the Director of Violin Studies at River Oaks Elementary School.
Toronto Symphony Orchestra
Second-prize winner of the 2006 Walter W. Naumburg competition, violist Eric Nowlin has performed extensively throughout the United States as well as abroad. He has been described by the Springfield (MO) News-Leader as “having a full, warm tone, expressive phrasing, and effortless technical command that suggest an artist twice his age” and by the Santa Cruz Sentinel as “displaying the remarkable capabilities of the viola, with a rich tone and sensitive interpretive skills”.
Past accomplishments include receiving first prize in the 2003 Irving Klein International String Competition; first prize in the 2002 Hellam Young Artists Competition; grand prize in the 2001 Naftzger Young Artists Competition; and winner of the 2001 Juilliard Viola Concerto Competition, which led to a performance of Hindemith’s Konzertmusik with Roberto Minzcuk conducting the Juilliard Orchestra in Alice Tully Hall.
Performances have included solo engagements with the Springfield Symphony in Missouri, Santa Cruz Symphony, Peninsula Symphony, and the Kumamoto Symphony in Japan, as well as recitals in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and Mexico. Mr. Nowlin has been featured on NPR, WQXR in New York, WGBH in Boston, WFMT
in Chicago, as well as television programs in Wisconsin and California. He is an active chamber musician,
currently serving as violist of the New Orford String Quartet. Mr. Nowlin has participated in festivals such as the Marlboro Music Festival in Vermont and the Steans Institute for Young Artists at Ravinia. He is a regular member of the Jupiter Chamber Players in New York City, and has also toured with Musicians from Marlboro and Musicians from Ravinia’s Steans Institute.
In addition to solo and chamber music performances, Mr. Nowlin recently won the position of Associate Principal Viola with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, and started in the 08-09 season. He previously played regularly as a substitute in the viola section of the New York Philharmonic, performing with them during their residency at the Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival as well as on their European tour in 2008; and has served as a guest principal with Cleveland’s Citymusic and New York City’s Metropolis Ensemble.
Mr. Nowlin was chosen as the recipient of a Rachel Elizabeth Barton Foundation Grant in 2004, an award intended for the advancement of young artist’s performance careers.
Mr. Nowlin received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from The Juilliard School, as a scholarship student of Samuel Rhodes.
Born in Wisconsin, John Patek began violin lessons before his third birthday. He was a member of the Milwaukee Youth Symphony winning the concerto competition at all four levels and serving as concertmaster for Senior Symphony. John was a student of Joan Rooney and then continued his studies at the University of Wisconsin with the late Vartan Manoogian. There he soloed with the UW-symphony performing Scottish Fantasy and was a member of the Madison Symphony and the Wisconsin Chamber orchestra. After graduating in 2004, John began studying with Stefan Muhmenthaler in Switzerland. He was a member of the Chamber Orchestra of Neuchatel and served as the concertmaster for the conservatory orchestra.
Currently John is a member of the Madison Symphony Orchestra, Waukesha Symphony and still performs regularly in Switzerland. He maintains a private violin studio and teaches at Milwaukee Montessori School.
Rebecca Graduated from the University of Wisconsin— Madison in 2004 with a BA in Biochemistry. While attending the University she took private lessons with Vartan Manoogian. During college, she was a member of the Madison Symphony Orchestra under John Demain. In addition to classical, Rebecca enjoys playing improv and fiddle music. She is the four-time Champion of the Wisconsin state-fair fiddle contest.
Principal Horn Player,
Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra
"Madeline Island was a tremendous chamber music experience for for me. Working with such fine professionals and such fine students was a thrill. I would recommend it to anyone who loves to play and learn chamber music. I am honored to be asked back to teach!!"
Violinist Stephanie Skor holds a Bachelor of Music Degree with Honors in Violin Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Nicholas Kitchen, first violinist and co-founder of the Borromeo String Quartet. Skor’s first adventure in the professional music world was a U.S. tour with Jethro Tull. Since then, she has maintained a more traditional classical performance career in Boston. Skor is a member of the critically-acclaimed chamber orchestra Discovery Ensemble conducted by Courtney Lewis, recently named Associate Conductor of the Minnesota Orchestra. Discovery Ensemble, which regularly appears on WGBH radio, is committed to bringing classical music to children who are without music programs in the Boston public schools. Skor performed for five seasons with the Gardner Chamber Orchestra of the Isabella Stuart Gardner Museum, conducted by Douglas Boyd. At NEC, Skor became enthusiastically involved in John Heiss’s Contemporary Ensemble and has now premiered over 20 new works for chamber ensembles and solo violin. Her most recent recital program, with pianist Tim Bozarth, featured works by Franck, Ravel, Ives, and a world premiere by Boston composer Michael McLaughlin.
Skor recently became more involved with the symphony orchestras of Boston. She served as concertmaster of the Boston Opera Collaborative for two seasons, and last year won positions with the Atlantic Symphony Orchestra and the Plymouth Philharmonic Orchestra. Skor has participated in many festivals, including the National Orchestral Institute, the Mannes Beethoven Institute, Bowdoin International Music Festival, and of course, four summers at the Madeline Island Music Camp.
class of '02, '03, '04, '05 and alumni performer at the Madeline Island Music Camp's 25th Anniversary Celebration in 2010, was invited to join the Academy (Ensemble ACJW) in New York from 2012 to 2014. Wottrich will perform in varied chamber groups at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall with other members of the Academy from Juilliard and Stony Brook.
Pianist Tyler Wottrich has developed a successful and multi-faceted career as both a soloist and chamber musician. As a soloist he has appeared with the Minnesota Youth Symphonies playing Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” and been a prizewinner in the Thursday Musical and Mechelke competitions, as well as the PianoArts national competition. As a collaborative pianist, Wottrich has performed numerous recitals throughout the United States and Europe, appearing with such artists as flutist Keith Underwood, violinist Yair Kless, members of the African-American choral group Sounds of Blackness, and with Nina Ananiashvili, Bolshoi Ballet prima ballerina and Director of the Georgian National Ballet. Wottrich’s collaboration with the Georgian National Ballet in March 2008 received a glowing review in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune: “Pianist Tyler Wottrich was fearless in Stravinsky’s Duo Concertante, and he played Bizet’s Variations Chromatiques lovingly.” Wottrich began his studies with Gail Olszewski and continued on to study with Distinguished McKnight Professor Lydia Artymiw at the University of Minnesota. Tyler Wottrich graduated from the University of Minnesota summa cum laude in May 2009 with degrees in both piano performance and mathematics. He is currently pursuing a Master of Music degree at SUNY Stony Brook, studying with Gilbert Kalish.