Thursday, March 15, 2007

Jump Right In!

Every once in a while you get the opportunity to do something good. You might hesitate wondering if you are up to the task. I write today to urge you to jump right in! We recently had the opportunity to host a Chamber Music Fund Raiser for our local Gem Theatre. Preparing a sit down dinner for 50 people seems daunting to me, the queen of the weenie roast. But my support group said yes, and we jumped right in.

Wow! The music was superb, and the reward of listening to our three performers for an hour far outweighed our meager efforts to provide the festivities that went with it. We listened to compositions by Teleman, Boccherini, Couperin and Tartini. Classical musicians hide out in universities, not really seeking artificial promotion. Yes, they love to perform to live audiences, they love encores and applause, but they seem to me to be more about perfection, and passing that perfection along to a select few that are up to the task.

At we are still considering offering CDs of unique and independently produced music, but as yet have not ventured into that arena. Below are the bios on our wonderful performers. Remember, jump right in when asked to help! Ruth Mitchell

Photo by Bruce Stockbridge
Felice, Stephen and Rossitza

Rossitza Jekova-Goza heads the String Area of the Music Department of the University of Arkansas, where she teaches violin, viola and chamber music. She attended Louisiana State University and holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in violin performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music. Dr. Goza has been concertmaster of the Baton Rouge Symphony orchestra and the Verbier Festival Orchestra in Switzerland, and currently serves as concert master of the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra. She has made numerous solo appearances in several countries. She is both an engaging soloist and a perceptive and inspiring teacher. Dr. Goza serves on the faculty of ENCORE School for Strings and is a member of the Fulbright Trio. this fall she will be joining the string faculty at the University of Oklahoma School of Music.Rossitza is an avid student of all the arts, a voracious reader of the great Russian, Bulgarian and American novelists and poets, and is married to conductor David Goza.

Felice Magendanz Farrell, received her early musical training on the piano, violin and cello with her parents in Utica, New York. She continued her musical studies in Rome, Italy with her older sister, Donna Magendanz Guarino. She received her Bachelor and Master Degrees of Music with the Performers Certificate at Indiana University. Her first major appointment was with the Minnesota Orchestra as assistant principal ch=cellist. Later, she was solo cellist for the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. She was later accepted into the Affiliate Artist Management of New York City and was on the faculty of the Eastman School of Music. There in New York, Mrs. Farrell met her Husband and moved to Little Rock, Arkansas.Mrs. Farrell began a chamber music series at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, taught at the University of Central Arkansas, and continues teaching privately, as well as performing locally with colleagues. Recently she has conducted master classes at Louisiana State University, the Chautaqua Music Festival in New York, Indiana University, and the Minnesota Northern Lights Chamber Festival.She has been instrumental in t he Formation of the Bechstein Hall Concert Series in Little Rock, a series that features chamber music as well as jazz and vocal music.

Stephen Gates is a native of Boston, where he began his study of the cello at age seven. His education includes the Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard College, the Master of Music degree from Yale School of Music and the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Gates has played with the Boston Opera company and the Boston Pops Orchestra as well as serving as Associate Principal cellist with the New Haven, Connecticut, and Austin, Texas, Symphony Orchestras, and was principal cellist of the North Arkansas Symphony for 22 years.
Dr. Gates has been a guest soloist with three of “Arkansas’s orchestras and with the Music Festival of Arkansas and has been heard numerous times on AETN. Other engagements have included recitals in Boston. Birmingham, and Little Rock, and a concerto appearance with the Grand Junction, Colorado, Symphony. Professor Gates was appointed Department Chair, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, in 1998.

(c) 2006 - Ruth Mitchell - all rights reserved

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