2023 Concerto & Aria Concert
MacPhail Concerto & Aria Concert is the premiere student performance event at MacPhail. Performers undergo competitive auditions to be selected for the final concert. The concert features soloists in performance with a chamber-size orchestra, conducted by Mark Mandarano. This year’s concert will also be live streamed. See the YouTube link, below.
Congratulations to all of the students and teachers who gave an audition, and to those selected to perform! For the list of performing students, see the concert program, below.
Joseph D., piano student of Sara Langmead
Piano Concerto No. 23 in A Major, K. 488, Mvt. II: Adagio; III. Allegro assai by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Finneas H., marimba student of Robert Adney
Concerto for Marimba and Orchestra, Mvt. II:Lamento (Lament); IV: Despedida (Farewell)
by Ney Rosauro
Ally H., cello student of Joe Kaiser
Cello Concerto No. 1 in C Major, Mvt. I: Moderato by Joseph Haydn
Christina J., gayageum student of Soojin Lee
The Sound of the Night, Mvt. I: Dreamy; II: Lively, III: Passionately; IV: Solemn by Byungki Hwang
Maria K., piano student of Julia Elkina
Piano Concerto in G minor No. 1 Op. 25, Mvt. I: molto allegro con fuoco by Felix Mendelssohn
Summer L., cello student of Andrea Glass
Cello Concerto in C Minor, Mvt. I: Allegro by J.C Bach & Henri Casadesus
One additional student was selected to perform with the Civic Orchestra of Minneapolis, conducted by Cary John Franklin.
Jessica S., piano student of Jose Uriarte
Piano Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 18, Mvt. I: Moderato by Sergei Rachmaninoff
The panel of judges included:
Dr. Kathryn E Ananda-Owens, piano (St. Olaf College)
Dr. Benjamin Downs, piano (Shattuck St. Mary’s School)
Jill Mahr, flute (St. Olaf College)
Mary Sorlie, violin, conducting (Great Twin Cities Youth Symphonies)
Mark Mandarano has conducted performances at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and other important venues in the U. S. and abroad. In both 2017 and in 2018, he was invited to act as a cultural ambassador to Russia performing the music of Gershwin (2017) and Bernstein (2018), with concerts in numerous cities including the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory. Mandarano has led performances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Houston Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Nürnberger Symphoniker, Ural Philharmonic, New York City Opera and the Moscow Chamber Orchestra. He has worked with conductors such as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Christoph von Dohnányi, Antonio Pappano, Mstislav Rostropovich, Sir Roger Norrington, Valery Gergiev, Osmo Vänskä and Leonard Slatkin.
An advocate of the music of living composers, he has conducted performances of works by Karel Husa, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Steven Stucky, John Corigliano, Ellen Zwilich, Melinda Wagner, Libby Larsen, David Bruce, Nico Muhly, and others. His association with Slatkin led to Mandarano conducting the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center. Mandarano is the artistic director and conductor of the Sinfonietta of Riverdale (NY), which he founded in 2008, and has been the Director of the Macalester Symphony Orchestra since 2012. In 2021, he commissioned new works for the Macalester Orchestra intended for asynchronous performance — the subsequent video of these 5 Pandemic World Premieres has received more than 60,000 views on youtube. In 2022, Mandarano was named Artistic Director of the Minnesota Youth Symphonies, one of the top youth orchestra programs in the nation. Mandarano’s second CD has just been released on Albany Records and includes music for string orchestra by Husa, Srtucky, Elgar, Bruckner and Coleridge-Taylor.
Joseph, a junior in high school, began playing piano at around six years old and studied with Dr. Philip Low for seven years. He also studied music theory with local teacher and composer Sharon Kaplan, and spent about six months learning from jazz pianist Mary Louise Knutson. In addition to piano, Joey studied the Flute with Tara Meade, professor of Flute at St. John’s University, for five years. After nearly a year-long break from studying piano, he began lessons again with Dr. Sara Langmead, his current teacher, in August of 2021. Joey has played in numerous MMTF recitals and MMTA contests and recently participated in the SPPTA Piano Concerto Competition. In February 2023, Joey won 2nd place in the MMTF Mozart Piano Concerto competition. At school he’s involved with the music department, having played with the jazz band, marching band, and Pit Orchestra. Outside of music and school, Joey enjoys spending time outdoors hiking, skiing, jogging, biking, traveling, and loves to read, cook, and play games. While considering making piano into his career, Joey is eagerly looking forward to where music takes him in the future.
Finneas has been taking marimba lessons at MacPhail for 10 years, three of which have been with Bob Adney. He is currently a senior in high school. An Instrumental Scholarship recipient, Finneas is a former member of both the Macphail Percussion Ensemble and the Minnesota Boychoir. Finneas also participates in Track and Field, the National Honor Society, Speech, and Ethics Bowl.
“I am incredibly honored to be picked to perform at such a prestigious event. The concerto I am playing has a long history, and I am looking forward to adding my name to the list of performers who have played this incredible piece.”
Ally has been studying the cello at MacPhail with Joe Kaiser for nine years. She has participated in Cello Rock, Sartory Summer Camp, MacPhail Honors Recital, voice, piano (RCM level 9) , and Suzuki orchestra. Her interests outside of music include tennis, robotics, FPS and crocheting. In addition to cello she has studied voice with Mikyoung Park and piano with Miryana Moteva.
“I feel very honored to be selected to play in the Concerto and Aria competition, and I’m very excited about this opportunity to play as a soloist with an orchestra.”
I first started learning Gayageum when I lived in South Korea around the age of 12. After learning for 2 years, I moved to the States with my own Gayageum. When I came to Minnesota, one of my friends told me about a Gayageum teacher at MacPhail and that’s when I met Dr. Soojin Lee and resumed my Gayageum journey. Since then, I performed at MacPhail through Honors Recital, Performance Festival along with Gayageum studio, and this very Concerto and Aria concert.
In 2021, I participated in the 8th Annual Korean Traditional Music and Arts Competition, which was sponsored by the Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism and won the fourth prize.
Maria’s musical achievements include:
- 2nd place in 2023 MMTA Young Artist Competition Senior division
- Multiple performance scholarships through MacPhail: Peter Jackson Keyboard Scholarship(2022-2023), Agnes
- Barnwell Sanders Kemp Piano Scholarship(2021-2022), Chaya Gelfand Piano Scholarship(2020-2021)
- Multiple honors recitals through MacPhail
- Participated in GTCYS Philharmonic orchestra playing violin
- Back to Bach Regional Director of Hennepin County region
“I feel immensely excited as it is my first time playing with an orchestra(not counting my teacher as an accompanist), and very proud of my hard work in preparing the concerto. I am incredibly grateful to my teacher for the long hours she put in helping me prepare, making accommodations for my schedule and providing me with endless support. I am also thankful for my friends and family for supporting me!”
Summer is a current member of the Concert Orchestra for the Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphony (GTCYS), MacPhail Sinfonia Orchestra as well as MacPhail Chromatic String Quartet. She performed in multiple master classes including
(in chronological order): Theresa Richardson, David Carter, Ivalas String Quartet, Arianna Quartet, Julius Quartet and David Holmes. She was awarded Third Place in the 2022 American Music Talent Competition, and Honorable Award of the 2021 American Classical Young Musician Awards. She also performed at the MacPhail Junior Honors Recitals in 2019, 2021 and 2022.
In addition to the music world, Summer enjoys reading, drawing, video games, skiing, swimming, lacrosse, climbing and hanging out with friends. She is also a very good helper to take care of our yellow lab, Jelly and two guinea pigs, Peanut and Butter.
Jessica is a pianist performing in her second MacPhail Concerto and Aria concert. A student of Jose Uriarte, she will be performing Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 by Sergei Rachmaninoff, Mvt. I: Moderato. Jessica has studied piano with Yun-Yun Feng, Eleanor Sokoloff, and Susan Starr. She received first prize in the Marion Garcia Piano competition at Penn State University, and has attended the Masterworks Festival in 2003 and 2005. She has been awarded The Elise Midelfort Piano Scholarship, The Agnes Barnwell Sanders Kemp Piano Scholarship, and The Theone Walker Brown Scholarship from MacPhail.
Jessica holds a BA in Music from Rutgers University and the DipABRSM from Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. She has served as accompanist for the Saint Paul Ballet, the Princeton Ballet School, and Rutgers University, and has been a volunteer church pianist for over 15 years.
Jessica works as a freelance web developer and also teaches piano to young students. She enjoys painting, playing computer and board games, and volunteering at the Minnesota Orchestra.
“I am once again really thankful that MacPhail Center for Music provides this opportunity for students to share their gifts and hard work over the years. I’m thrilled to have the experience of performing a concerto with a full orchestra this year. It’s a total dream come true for me. I especially want to thank José, my teacher, for the tireless hours of lessons in preparation for this performance. To my friends and family—thank you for continually cheering me on.”