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Kate Stenberg, Evan Kahn, Miles Graber
December 6, 2022
Kate Stenberg, Evan Kahn, Miles Graber

Dmitri Shostakovich: Trio No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 8 (1923)

Rebecca Clarke: Trio (1921)

A leading interpreter of contemporary chamber music, violinist Kate Stenberg has performed in a dozen countries across the globe.  NewMusicBox describes her playing as “highly virtuosic and deeply communicative…full of character and presence”. As a champion of new music, Stenberg has premiered over a hundred solo and chamber works including compositions by Gabriela Lena Frank, Peter Sculthorpe, Chinary Ung, Ronald Bruce Smith, Tania León, Charles Amirkhanian, Per Nørgård, and Kui Dong.  Her recordings are available on New World Records, Sono Luminus, Newport Classics, New Albion, and Other Minds Records. Her latest CD release with Other Minds Records includes a world premiere recording of Lou Harrison’s Sonata for Unaccompanied Violin.

Currently, Stenberg performs regularly with pianist Sarah Cahill.  The Stenberg|Cahill Duo is dedicated to promoting the American experimental tradition and expanding it through the commissioning of new work.  “Contemporary music fans are fortunate to have this simultaneously authoritative and approachable pair,” writes the San Francisco Classical Voice.  Stenberg|Cahill Duo appearances include performances at the Mendocino Music Festival, San Francisco Performances PIVOT, Berkeley Chamber Performances, Cal State Fullerton New Music Festival, Berkeley Museum of Art and Pacific Film Archive, Mills College’s Music in the Fault Zone Festival, and Other Minds New Music Séance,.  The duo has recently commissioned works from Pamela Z, Roscoe Mitchell, and Aaron Gervais.

Kate Stenberg’s passion for chamber music led her to develop and commission new chamber music as co-founder of the Left Coast Chamber Ensemble (1993-1998) and Real Vocal String Quartet (2004-2006). From 1995-2015, she served as first violinist of the award-winning Del Sol String Quartet, which actively commissioned new quartet repertoire. The Del Sol Quartet twice earned the top prize of Chamber Music America’s ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming. Her festival performances have included Other Minds, Ojai Music Festival, Cabrillo, Centre Acanthes (France), Banff (Canada), Nirmita Composer’s Institute (Cambodia/Bangkok), and Chengdu Contemporary Music Festival (China).

In 2022, Stenberg founded The Mycos Project with Irene Sazer – a collective of multi-media artists, educators, and scientists whose mission is to expand climate change through the arts, ecological sciences, and Indigenous practice.  She has also collaborated and premiered work alongside choreographers Janice Garrett, Charles Moulton, and Nancy Karp.  She frequently plays in the San Francisco Symphony and can be heard on recordings with the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, New Music Works, and Maestro Ustad Ali Akbar Khan.

Bay Area native Kate Stenberg holds degrees from the San Francisco Conservatory and the Eastman School of Music.  She maintains an active teaching schedule and when she is not immersed in her music scores, she can be found enjoying Taiji or hiking trails in her beloved Sierra Nevada.

California-based cellist Evan Kahn has been praised as “a cellist deserved of serious listening” for bringing his “electrifying … nuanced and colorful” style to all of his collaborations, from concerti to chamber music to contemporary performances. He has commissioned and premiered over 60 works by composers from around the world, including his father’s Cello Concerto.

Evan holds principal positions in four orchestras — New Century Chamber Orchestra, Symphony San Jose, Opera San Jose, and the San Jose Chamber Orchestra. Dedicated to the orchestral craft, he has also performed with the Cleveland Orchestra, LA Opera, San Francisco Symphony, and as acting principal cellist with the Britt Music and Arts Festival. In April/May 2018, he served as Artist-in-Residence with Performance Today at NPR, sharing some of his favorite works for cello and his philosophies on music and life. In February 2019, he was named Musical America’s New Artist of the Month. He is resident cellist for a number of Bay Area small ensembles, including Ninth Planet, After Everything, and the Farallon Quintet.

Evan attended Aspen Music Festival on a fellowship for four summers, where he studied with Darrett Adkins and played co-principal in the Aspen Academy of Conducting Orchestra, the Aspen Philharmonic as an Orchestral Leadership Fellow, and as a fellow in the Aspen Contemporary Ensemble. Other summers were spent playing chamber music at the Taos School of Music, as resident cellist at the Cactus Pear Music Festival in San Antonio, and the New York String Orchestra Seminar, where he served as principal cellist.

Evan received a Master’s in Chamber Music at San Francisco Conservatory of Music, studying with Jennifer Culp. He graduated with college and university honors from Carnegie Mellon University, studying with David Premo. Before college, he took lessons in Los Angeles with John Walz, Timothy Loo, and Karen Patch. Other important mentors include Paul Hersh, Thomas Loewenheim, Amos Yang, Mark Kosower, Robert DeMaine, and Bonnie Hampton.

In addition to performing and teaching, Evan enjoys playing Dungeons and Dragons and watching British television. He plays on a cello by Italian luthier Carlo Carletti, c. 1900, and a bow made for cellist Lynn Harrell by archetier Paul Martin Siefried.

Miles Graber received his musical training at the Juilliard School, where he studied with Anne Hull, Phyllis Kreuter, Hugh Aitken, and Louise Behrend. He has lived and worked in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1971, where he has developed a wide reputation as an accompanist and collaborative pianist for instrumentalists and singers. He has performed with numerous solo artists, including Sarah Chang, Cho-Liang Lin, Camilla Wicks, Axel Strauss, Mimi Stillman, Judith LeClair, Frederica von Stade, Martha Aarons, and Lev Polyakin. Mr. Graber has accompanied violinists Robin Hansen, Christina Mok, Natasha Makhijani, Stuart Canin, Roy Malan, and Mariya Borozina, cellists Michael Graham, Robert Howard, Thalia Moore, and Stephen Harrison, clarinetist Tom Rose, and flutists Gary Woodward, Amy Likar, Sasha Launer, and Ai Goldsmith.

He is a member of the chamber groups MusicAEterna, GGR Trio, Alcyone Ensemble, the Sor Ensemble, Mira Trio, and the new music group Sounds New.

Mr. Graber has been associated with such ensembles as the New Century Chamber Orchestra, Midsummer Mozart, the Oakland Symphony, the Berkeley Symphony, the California Symphony, the Santa Rosa Symphony, Oakland Lyric Opera, Berkeley Opera, and Opera San Jose. He has accompanied master classes of Midori, Joseph Silverstein, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, Pamela Frank, Alexander Barantchik, James Galway, Lynn Harrell, Yo-Yo Ma, Robert Lipsett, Ronald Leonard, Leon Fleisher, Alisa Weilerstein, Jeanne Baxtresser, Paula Robison, and Kim Kashkashian. He has been a frequent performer with members of the San Francisco Symphony, San Jose Symphony, Berkeley Symphony, California Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, San Francisco Symphony Youth Orchestra, Oakland Symphony, Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra, UC Berkeley Symphony, and members of the faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.

Mr. Graber is a staff accompanist at the San Domenico Conservatory in San Anselmo, California, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and Northern California Flute Camp in Carmel Valley. Other accompanying posts include the Mondavi Center for the Arts Young Artist Competition, the Irving M. Klein International String Competition, and the Summer Brass Institute.