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Gualala Arts Chamber Music Series presents:
Strauss, Tomkins, Zivian Trio

Sunday, November 8, 2009 at 4:00 p.m.
at the Gualala Arts Center
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Pianist Eric Zivian, cellist Tanya Tompkins and violinist Axel Strauss will perform at Gualala Arts Center on Sunday, November 8, 2009 at 4:00 p.m.

Strauss, Tomkins, Zivian Trio Each of these highly acclaimed musicians enjoys a full and active international schedule as a recitalist, soloist, and chamber musician. What these musicians share, in addition to their universally recognized technical brilliance, is a passion for making the music come alive. Individual stars in their own right, together they make musical fireworks wherever they perform.

In 1998, violinist Axel Strauss became the first German artist ever to win the Naumburg Violin Award, and in the seasons since, he has been equally acclaimed for his virtuosity and his musical sensitivity. The Salt Lake Tribune praised his well-rounded artistry by saying, "Strauss quickly established that he is a virtuoso to be reckoned with. But amid his technical acumen, there was a genuine musician. His interpretive prowess was delightful."

Mr. Strauss, who has been residing in the United States since 1996, maintains a busy performance schedule and serves as Professor of Violin at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. He has been heard on concert stages throughout Europe since his recital debut in Hamburg at the age of sixteen. One year after his debut he won the silver medal at the Enescu Competition in Romania and performed the Tchaikovsky Concerto with the Bucharest Philharmonic. Mr. Strauss has been recognized with many other awards, including top prizes in the Bach, Wieniawski and Kocian competitions.

After violin studies in Germany with Prof. Petru Munteanu he began working with Dorothy DeLay at The Juilliard School and became her teaching assistant in 1998. He has also worked with Itzhak Perlman, Felix Galimir, and Ruggiero Ricci, and at the Marlboro Music Festival with Mitsuko Uchida, Andras Schiff, and Bruno Canino.

Mr. Strauss made his American debut at the Library of Congress in Washington DC and his first of many New York concerts was presented at Lincoln Center's Alice Tully Hall in 1998. He has given recitals in major US cities and has appeared as soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Hamburg Symphony, the Seoul Philharmonic, the Shanghai Symphony, the Utah Symphony, the New York Chamber Symphony and the Budapest Philharmonic. He has worked with conductors such as Maxim Shostakovitch, Rico Saccani, Joseph Silverstein, Gerhardt Zimmermann and Pedro Halffter. Mr. Strauss also toured Japan with the Philharmonic Violins Berlin. He frequently performs at music festivals in the States and abroad, including the Moab Music Festival in Utah, the International Music Academy and Festival in Seoul in Korea, and the Kammermusiktage Mettlach in Germany. His recordings include the Violin Concerto and the Sonatas Opus 120 by Brahms, the Duo for Violin and Cello by Kodaly and a selection of Mendelssohn's "Songs Without Words," arranged for violin and piano. Most recently a recording of a recital at New York's Steinway Hall has been released on DVD. Axel Strauss performs on an outstanding violin by J.F. Pressenda, Turin 1845, on extended loan through the generous efforts of the Stradivari Society in Chicago.

Tanya Tomkins studied at the University of Southern California with Gabor Rejto and went on to receive her bachelor of fine arts degree from the California Institute of the Arts as a student of Ron Leonard. She moved to Holland to study with the cellist Anner Bijlsma and in 1987 earned a soloist's diploma at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. Inspired by Mr. Bijlsma, Tomkins became interested in the performance of music on original instruments. As a member of the Trio d'Amsterdam (with clarinetist Eric Hoeprich and fortepianist Stanley Hoogland), she made a New York debut at the Frick Collection, which was recorded for National Public Radio and also appeared in Lincoln Center's "Great Performers" series in 1996. The trio recorded a CD for Koch. She has performed and recorded with orchestras such as The Classical Band (Sony), La Petite Bande (Harmonia Mundi), La Stagione Frankfurt (Harmonia Mundi), the Netherland Bach Society, Ensemble Bouzignac (Vanguard) and L'Orchestre des Champs-Elysees under the direction of Philip Hereweghe (Harmonia Mundi).

During the fourteen years Tanya Tomkins was living in Holland, she was primarily active as a chamber musician, performing throughout Europe and the United States to critical acclaim. For five years she played with the award-winning Euridice Quartet. The quartet recorded a CD of the string quartets by Ravel and Debussy (Vanguard). She has also recorded a CD of French Impressionist music with the Renoir Ensemble, a harp quintet specializing in 20th century music. She has performed with the Amsterdam-based SoLaRe String Trio throughout Europe, the U.S., and Israel.

Tomkins has been invited to play in many chamber music festivals throughout Europe and the U.S., including the Amsterdam Chamber Music Society, Rondje Romantiek and the Moab Chamber Music Festival in Utah. She has appeared as a chamber musician at the 92nd Street Y in New York and has played numerous times in the Concertgebouw Kleine Zaal as a recitalist and in chamber music concerts. She is currently a member of the Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra with whom she has appeared as a soloist, and she performs regularly with the American Bach Soloists. In 2001, she was the winner of the international Bodky Competition for Early Music Soloists. Currently, she is performing in recitals across the United States as the cellist in the Tomkins-Zivian Duo, a San Francisco chamber music ensemble specializing in music performed on period instruments.

Eric Zivian was born in Michigan and grew up in Toronto, Canada, where he attended the Royal Conservatory of Music. After receiving a diploma there, he left home at age 15 to attend the Curtis Institute of Music, where he received a Bachelor of Music degree. He went on to receive graduate degrees from the Juilliard School and the Yale School of Music. He studied piano with Marina Geringas, Gary Graffman and Peter Serkin. He attended the Tanglewood Music Center as a performer in 1988 and 1989, studying chamber music with Gilbert Kalish, Peter Serkin, Joel Krosnick, and others. He has won numerous prizes for young pianists, including the Charles Miller / Sergei Rachmaninoff Award upon graduation from the Curtis Institute of Music and the Grace B. Jackson Award for Outstanding Achievement and Notable Contributions to the Program as a Whole at the Tanglewood Music Festival.

Mr. Zivian has appeared as a soloist in Toronto, New York, Philadelphia, and the San Francisco Bay area. He has performed Mozart and Beethoven concertos with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and the Beethoven Triple Concerto with the Santa Rosa Symphony and the Festival Orchestra at "Music in the Mountains" in Grass Valley. Recently, he has begun performing on original instruments, and he owns two period fortepianos. He is a member of the Zivian-Tomkins Duo, a fortepiano-cello duo that has performed in San Francisco, San Diego, Seattle, San Rafael, Berkeley, Davis, Boston and Washington, D.C. He is also a member of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble and has performed with the Empyrean Ensemble, Earplay, and Alternate Currents. He is a frequent guest artist on the San Francisco Conservatory's faculty chamber music series.

Tickets are $20 for advance purchases; $5 more on the day of the concert (buy your tickets early!). Children and young people ages 7 through 17 are admitted free.

For advance purchase, go to Brown Paper Tickets or call them at 800-838-3006.
To purchase in person, visit the Gualala Arts Center or Dolphin Gallery in Gualala.

The Gualala Arts Center, located at 46501 Old State Highway in Gualala, CA,
is open weekdays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and weekends from noon to 4:00 p.m.
Please call (707) 884-1138 for more information, or email

Serving the coastal communities of northern Sonoma & southern Mendocino Counties.