Mito Chamber Orchestra Members

Profile

Viola

Maureen GALLAGHER

Maureen GALLAGHERBorn in Grants Pass, Oregon, Gallagher started learning the viola at the age of ten. When she was 16, she studied under the assistant of Ivan Galamian during her summer vacation. She later entered Indiana University, where she studied under David Dawson. After graduating, she served for two years as assistant to the Cleveland Quartet at the University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Gallagher then moved to New York City, where she joined the Orpheus String Quartet as principal violist thanks to the recommendation of Naoka Tanaka. Besides her solo and chamber performances, she keeps herself busy as a member of several orchestras. In addition to being a member of MCO, Gallagher is co-principal violist of the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, and principal violist of the New York City Ballet Orchestra. She has also appeared as guest performer in various string quartets worldwide, including the Tokyo String Quartet and the Emerson String Quartet. Gallagher has also been engaged in educating future generations of musicians as an instructor at Columbus State University, Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, Columbia University, and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She now teaches viola and chamber music at Carnegie Mellon University. In her performances, Gallagher uses a violin made in Milan in 1743 by Paolo Antonio Testore.


Viola

Masao KAWASAKI

Masao KAWASAKIAfter graduating from the Toho Gakuen Music High School and the Toho Gakuen College of Music, Kawasaki went abroad to study at The Juilliard School, and has lived in the United States ever since 1973. He has been active as a soloist and chamber musician in North America, Europe and Japan. He has performed with orchestras in Japan and elsewhere, including the NHK Symphony Orchestra, and with such chamber orchestras as the Juilliard String Quartet, the Tokyo String Quartet, and the Emerson String Quartet. Kawasaki has also been invited to perform at such music festivals as the Aspen Music Festival, the Casals Festival, the Spoleto Festival, and the Mostly Mozart Festival, performing with many prominent musicians. In Japan, besides serving as a member of MCO, Kawasaki has performed and given master lessons at the Miyazaki International Music Festival and at Viola Space in Tokyo, devoting himself to the training of young performers. His recordings have appeared under such labels as EMI, CBS Sony, Nonesuch, and Orange Note. Since 1981, Kawasaki has been a professor at The Juilliard School, and has also been a visiting professor at the University of Cincinnati since 1983. Currently, he teaches at three universities in the United States, including those two just mentioned, also serving as coordinator of strings at the Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music. Besides his work as a university instructor, he has been invited to serve as a judge at international competitions and as a teacher of master classes at universities across the United States and elsewhere. In 2004, he was awarded a prize for recognition as an excellent teacher by the U.S. Department of Education. In the spring of 2010, he led the 38th International Viola Congress in Cincinnati to great success, with more than 50 prominent violists from around the world participating.


Viola

Yoshiko KAWAMOTO

Yoshiko KAWAMOTOKawamoto won the highest prize (2nd prize without any 1st prize being awarded) in the Viola Division of the 1992 Geneva International Music Competition, as well as the Muramatsu Award in 1996. In 1997, she received the 7th Nippon Steel Music Award for Fresh Artists. After having served as a principal player of the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, she is currently active both as a soloist and chamber music player. Besides performing as a violist in MCO, she also belongs to the Kyoto Alti String Quartet and the AOI Residence Quartet, as well as participating regularly in the Saito Kinen Orchestra, the Seiji Ozawa Ongaku-juku, and the Argerich Music Festival, among others. To date, she has studied violin under Toshiya Etoh and Aiko Suzuki, and chamber music under Yasuo Sueyoshi and Koichiro Harada. She has been lauded for her solo performances as well, having received favorable reviews for her November 1995 recital, the 59th installment of the Nippon Steel's Promising Artist Series, as well as for her one-year recital series— called the "Haseko Classic Special—Yoshiko Kawamoto, The Violist"—starting in July 1997 at the Casals Hall in Tokyo. Kawamoto now teaches at the Tokyo University of the Arts as adjunct instructor.


Viola

Mazumi TANAMURA

Mazumi TANAMURABorn in Kyoto, Tanamura started learning the violin at the age of six, later studying under Yuji Tohgi, Saburo Sumi, and Toshiya Etoh. Having won awards at various competitions, including the Student Music Competition of Japan and the Music Competition of Japan, he graduated from the Toho Gakuen College of Music. He moved to Italy in 1976, where he studied under Piero Farulli, violist of the Italian Quartet. Tanamura later came to the attention of the conductor Riccardo Muti, becoming principal violist of the Orchestra del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino in Florence. He placed 2nd in the Viola Division of the 1977 Geneva International Music Competition. Until his return to Japan in 1984, Tanamura was active throughout Europe as a soloist and chamber music player, having been invited to perform at many music festivals, including the Fiesole Music Festival and the Geneva Music Festival. He also toured Europe with the Kiri Quintet. Having returned to Japan in 1984, Tanamura became solo violist with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra. He has served as principal violist of the NHK Symphony Orchestra since 2001. In June 2011, he was specially appointed as principal violist of the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra. Meanwhile, he has also performed as soloist with the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, the NHK Symphony Orchestra, the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Sapporo Symphony Orchestra, and the Orchestre de Chambre Jean-François Paillard, among others. Tanamura also regularly appears as a performer in such music festivals as the Saito Kinen Festival, and the Kirishima International Music Festival, and belongs to the Saito Kinen Orchestra and MCO. In addition, he has performed in the Viola Space festival. As one of Japan's representative violists, Tanamura carries out a broad range of activities as chamber musician and soloist, and has released many CDs. Currently, he serves as professor at the Tokyo College of Music, and as special professor at the Toho Gakuen College of Music.

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