Join NWS Fellows and Alex Kerr, Concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony in a discussion on how to approach your first orchestra rehearsal.
Alexander Kerr's expressive and charismatic style has made him one of the most accomplished and versatile violinists on the international music scene today. In 1996 at the age of 26, Mr. Kerr was appointed to the prestigious position of Concertmaster of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. After nine successful years at that post, he left in June, 2006 to assume the endowed Linda and Jack Gill Chair in Music as Professor of Violin at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. In addition to his teaching responsibilities in Bloomington, he maintains a busy concert schedule appearing with orchestras and in recital and chamber music performances throughout the U.S., Asia and Europe. In 2008 he began his tenure as Principal Guest Concertmaster of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and this September, he will assume his newly appointed role as concertmaster of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.
Regarded by the press as a masterful virtuoso with an elegant, old-world sound, Mr. Kerr has appeared as soloist with major orchestras throughout the United States and Europe, working with such renowned conductors as Mariss Jansons, Riccardo Chailly, Peter Oundjian, Robert Spano, Alan Gilbert, and David Zinman.
An active chamber musician, Mr. Kerr has collaborated with Martha Argerich, Leif Ove Andsnes, Emanuel Ax, Joshua Bell, Yefim Bronfman, Edgar Meyer, Truls Mørk, Vadim Repin, Mstislav Rostropovich and Maxim Vengerov in performances at festivals in Aspen, Santa Fe, Caramoor, Stavanger, and throughout Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Switzerland, Austria and the Netherlands. Highlights this year feature a series of piano quartet concerts with renowned pianist Menahem Pressler and esteemed colleagues including Lawrence Dutton, Kim Kashkashian, Lawrence Power, Paul Watkins, and Eric Kim. He has recently launched a collaboration with Mr. Kim and the Dorothy Richard Starling Foundation, showcasing the enormous wealth of talent at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. The "Starling Chamber Players," a mixture of faculty and students will tour chamber music venues throughout the nation.
Mr. Kerr's CD releases include the Dvorak Piano Quintet with Sarah Chang and Leif Ove Andsnes on the EMI label, music by Dutch composer Julius Röntgen on the NM Classics label, and the Shostakovich Romance on a series of discs including "Violin Adagios" and "Evening Adagios" released by Decca. A live DVD and CD recording of Strauss' Ein Heldenleben with Mr. Kerr, the RCO and Maestro Mariss Jansons was released in 2005 on the RCO's own label: RCOLive!
Raised in Alexandria, Virginia, Mr. Kerr began his studies at age seven with members of the National Symphony Orchestra. He went on to study with Sally Thomas at the Juilliard School, and with Aaron Rosand at the Curtis Institute of Music where he received his Bachelor of Music degree in 1992.
Zubaida Azezi is a third-year Violin Fellow at the New World Symphony. She has performed as soloist with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, Cathedral Bluffs Symphony, Columbus State Philharmonic and the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra. Also an avid orchestral musician, she has been a member of Plano Symphony, Irving Symphony, East Texas Symphony and Columbus Symphony.
Ms. Azezi holds a master’s degree from Southern Methodist University and a bachelor of music degree from Columbus State University’s Schwob School of Music, where she was the recipient of the Woodruff Scholarship. She has participated in a number of summer festivals including the National Repertory Orchestra, Youth Orchestra of the Americas, L’orchestre de la francophonie Canadienne, Bowdoin International Music Festival and National Youth Orchestra of Canada.
Ms. Azezi is passionate about music education. In 2014, with support from the Youth Orchestra of the Americas and the Ministry of Culture of Xinjiang, she founded the very first string orchestra for youth in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of China.
Born in Urumqi, China, Ms. Azezi started playing the violin at age six. In 2001 she moved to Canada with her family and began studying with Arkady Yanivker. Her primary teachers include Huang Xiaozhi, Sergiu Schwartz and Emannual Borok.
Caroline Gilbert is a third-year Viola Fellow at the New World Symphony and a native of Bloomington, Indiana. While earning her bachelors of music degree at Indiana University (IU), her teacher, Atar Arad, invited her to Keshet Eilon Mastercourse in Israel where her performance was broadcast on the radio in New York. She went on to play with the New York String Orchestra at Carnegie Hall, work with Michael Tilson Thomas as part of the YouTube Symphony Orchestra in Sydney, Australia, and toured Turkey, Spain and Germany with the Schleswig-Holstien Festival Orchestra.
While at IU, Ms. Gilbert won the concerto competition, performing Hindemith's Der Schwanendreher as a soloist with the IU chamber orchestra, and was selected to perform at the Kennedy Center as part of the "Conservatory Project" series. She was then accepted to The Juilliard School, where she completed her master’s degree studying with Samuel Rhodes and Roger Tapping. She has been a fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center for two summers, working with and performing alongside members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and this summer she was invited to Switzerland to participate in the Verbier Festival Orchestra.
Outside the classroom and performance hall, Ms. Gilbert is very involved with community outreach projects. She taught violin for four years as part of the Fairview Violin Project which brought music to a school that was failing according to the No Child Left Behind Act. She was also the violist for Ballet Next, an emerging ballet company in New York City which helped her combine her passions for music and dance, which she studied for 14 years while growing up.