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Jay Pike, viola; Rachel Brown, violin

August 18, 2016 @ 8:30 pm - 9:30 pm


Suggested Donation: $10


Rachel Brown, violin

Sonata No. 2 in A minor BWV 1003 – J.S. Bach
III. Andante
IV. Allegro

Sonata No. 4 in E minor (1923) – Eugene Ysaye
I. Allemanda
II. Sarabande
III. Finale

Fire Rainbow Cloud (2015) – Jonathan Hannau


Jay Pike, viola; William McDaniel, piano

Infanta Marina, Op. 83 (1960) – Vincent Persichetti

Lachrymae (1950) – Benjamin Britten

Lament for two violas (1915) – Frank Bridge, with Sixto Franco, viola


Rachel Brown is an active chamber musician, soloist, orchestral performer, and educator. After three years as a regular member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, she is now the Associate Principal Second Violin of the South Bend Symphony Orchestra and Associate Concertmaster of the Northbrook Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. Brown is currently the Artistic Director of the Chicago-based chamber group, Ursa Ensemble, of which she is also a founding member. The group focuses on engaging unique audiences in the chamber music repertoire by working with collaborative artists and curating programs that directly involve the listener.
Rachel is dedicated to continuing the existence of art music by performing and commissioning contemporary works. She has given countless world premiers, has performed with ensembles such as Ensemble Dal Niente, Fifth House Ensemble, and Ensemble 20+, and has worked with world-renowned composers such as Augusta Read Thomas, Bernard Rands, Mark-Anthony Turnage, Rodolfo Acosta, and Mathias Spahlinger.
Extremely devoted to educating future generations, Rachel is on faculty at both Harold Washington College and Chicago Academy for the Arts, and is a coach for the Chicago Arts Initiative’s New Music Youth Ensemble. She holds a Certificate of Performance and a Master of Music degree from DePaul University’s School of Music, and a Bachelor of Music degree from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

A native of Montana, Jay Pike studied viola at the University of Montana and later at Roosevelt University in Chicago. Has has performed with many ensembles in the Chicago area including Chicago Opera Theatre, the Elgin Symphony, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago, and Ensemble Dal Niente. Some highlights include an amazing production of Bluebeard’s Castle at Thalia Hall with the New Millennium Ochestra, and performing alongside college teachers and mentors in a String Orchestra of the Rockies concert last fall.
Jay also keeps a busy teaching schedule. In addition to running Suzuki programs in Morton Grove and Lincoln Square, in January Jay started teaching for The People’s Music School’s new community music program in Back of the Yards, on Chicago’s south side.

Originally from the Washington, DC area, William McDaniel began piano studies at the age of six. He began studies with Lydia Frumkin in 1993 and continued studies with Professor Frumkin at Oberlin Conservatory, graduating in 2002 with a B.M. in Piano Performance. In addition to awards and competition prizes, he has appeared in recitals as both soloist and in chamber music across the country in such locales at San Diego, Cleveland, New York, and the Washington area, and at such venues as the John F. Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall, where he made his solo debut in 1998 as a guest of the Russian-American Music Association. William has also given performances abroad in Moscow, Geneva, and across Holland. After winning the college division of the National Symphony Orchestra’s Young Soloists’ Competition, he made his debut with the National Symphony Orchestra in July of 2000. William has also made radio appearances on WQXR in New York and WFMT in Chicago. While at Oberlin, William was extremely active as a chamber musician, performed frequently with the Oberlin Contemporary Music Ensemble, studied harpsichord and historical performance under Barbara Weiss and Lisa Goode Crawford, and made his debut as a composer. He is a founding member of the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) as pianist and composer and and first appeared with the ensemble in its Chicago premiere in January, 2002. Currently a resident of Chicago, William is a member of ICE’s board of directors.

Violist of the Kaia String Quartet, Sixto Franco, is an active performer, teacher and composer. Besides his presence in the chamber music scene, Mr. Franco has also appeared as soloist in California and his native Spain, performing works of Mozart, Bruch and other contemporary composers.
In addition to commencement with Kaia String Quartet, current projects of Mr. Franco’s include a solo performance in Madrid, Spain as well as Los Angeles featuring Orchestra Camerata Musicalis, Symbiosis Ensemble and various appearances with Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra. His past solo appearances have involved collaborations with contemporary composers such as Nick Gianopoulos, Oscar Navarro, Juan José Colomer, Javier Navarrete and Ferrer Ferran. In 2012, Jason Barabba dedicated his duet for viola and clarinet to Mr. Franco who then premiered and recorded the work June of that year in Madrid, Spain.
As a composer, Sixto Franco made his debut on February 2011 premiering his work for viola and Piano “Blanco y Negro” in a Cancer Benefit Concert promoted by the Spanish Consulate of Los Angeles and the Symbiosis Ensemble.
Sixto Franco has been a member of National Spanish Youth Orchestra, Barcelona Symphonic Orchestra, Shleswig-holstein Musik Festival Orchestra, Youth Orchestra of Netherlands and the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara, California and has performed with guests artists, Christoph Eschenbach, Lutz Kholer, George Pehelivannian, Lonard Slatkin, Herbert Blomstedt, Mikhail Pletnev among others. He currently performs with the Oistrakh Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Franco began his studies in the professional conservatory, “Rodolfo Halffter” in Móstoles, Madird, studying with Maestro Aurelio Perez de Gracia. He continued his education at the prestigious music center of ESMUC, Escola de Música de Catalunya where he obtained his Bachelor Degree in Viola Performance under the tutelage of Ashan Pillai, a Pinchas Zukerman´s alumnus. In 2008, Sixto Franco moved to Los Angeles to join Mr. Donald McInnes’ studio at the Thornton School of Music at University of Southern California where he obtained his Graduate Certificate and Master Degree in Viola Performance and was awarded the Debora Borda Scholarship, Ruth Valentine Endowed Music Scholarship and Fellowship as well as the Dean´s Scholarship.
Sixto Franco recently completed a Graduate Certificate at Northern Illinois University for the Graduate String Quartet Residency under the tutelage of the Avalon String Quartet.


August 18, 2016
8:30 pm - 9:30 pm


Narloch Piano Studio
4636 N Francisco Ave
Chicago, IL United States