April 25, 2018

The English Concert in America (TECA), the US-based non-profit organization supporting the Stateside activities of The English Concert (TEC), the preeminent London-based chamber orchestra, has announced the recipients of the fifth annual TECA Fellowship, an annual grant and opportunity for professional training and experience that is awarded to a select number of graduates in the field of historical performance who have demonstrated exceptional talent and musical growth. The 2018 TECA Fellows are violinists Sarah Kenner and Alana Youssefian, violist Stephen Goist, bassoonist Joseph Jones and double bass player Hugo Abraham.

The TECA Fellowship was conceived by TECA’s board of directors together with TEC Artistic Director Harry Bicket, who comments, “The selection of these talented musicians and the opportunities provided to them through the TECA Fellowship is a natural extension of The English Concert’s commitment to nurturing the next generation of early music performers. In the Fellowship’s first five years, we have gathered a veritable chamber orchestra consisting of strings, winds and continuo. It’s rewarding to be able to help these graduates develop artistically and give them opportunities at a time when they are embarking on their professional careers.”

Board President Judith Smith adds, “The Fellowship program is a fitting component of TECA’s mission to foster appreciation and knowledge of early music in the United States and perpetuate the musician’s craft for the future. It is a privilege to witness how each of TECA’s Fellows continues to develop artistically through their interactions with the superb musicians of The English Concert.”

As with the previous fellowships, the 2018 Fellows have been chosen in conjunction with The Juilliard School, New York. The selection of Fellows is based on recommendations from Juilliard's Historical Performance faculty in consultation with Harry Bicket and musicians of The English Concert. Benjamin D. Sosland, Administrative Director of Juilliard’s Historical Performance Program, remarked, “The previous classes of Fellows received a great boost—personally, professionally, and on purely musical terms—from this unique opportunity, and we are thrilled to be extending the collaboration for the fifth year in a row. Every appearance by The English Concert in the United States is a highlight, and we are delighted that our graduates continue to learn from and play with musicians who represent the highest level of achievement.”

Special consideration has been given to students who have potential to make a significant contribution to the field of early music and benefit from hands-on professional experience as they embark on their performing careers. TECA Fellows selected in previous years are violinists Annie Gard, Jeffrey Girton, Augusta McKay Lodge, Adriane Post and Jude Ziliak; violist Kyle Miller; cellists Keiran Campbell, Caroline Nicolas, Oliver Weston and Beiliang Zhu; oboists David Dickey and Caroline Giassi; bassoonist Kamila Marcinkowska-Prasad; lutenist Kevin Payne; and harpsichordist Ignacio Prego.

The main elements of the TECA Fellowship are:
• Professional development and career guidance, including master classes with members of The English Concert
• Acting as ambassadors for TECA and participating in TECA-sponsored events
• The opportunity to perform with The English Concert during the orchestra’s appearances in the U.S.
• A cash prize

* * * * *

All media enquiries, interview and image requests: Melanne Mueller, melanne@musiccointernational.com, +1 917 907 2785 or +44 (0) 7788 662 461

For more information about The English Concert in America, please visit http://tecinamerica.org/fellowship

Meet the 2018 TECA Fellows
A native of New Jersey, baroque and modern violinist Alana Youssefian has forged a reputation as an engaging and spirited soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral musician. Hailed for her “incredible poise,” “sensitive dynamics,” and “plangent emotional involvement” (The Boston Musical Intelligencer), as well as performances that are “utterly convincing” (Early Music America), Youssefian has performed internationally as a concertmaster and soloist and in engagements at such venues as the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The Mann Center, Carnegie Hall, and Alice Tully Hall.

Youssefian studied with Marilyn McDonald at Oberlin Conservatory of Music and earned a master’s degree at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music with Kenneth Goldsmith. She will complete her master's degree in Historical Performance at the Juilliard School in spring 2018. A winner of the 2017 Juilliard Historical Performance concerto competition, she performed Vivaldi's Il Grosso Mogul concerto with Juilliard415 and Nicholas McGegan. She has appeared with Juilliard415 as concertmaster and soloist on several occasions, including the ensemble’s recent tours of India and New Zealand. She has also performed with Ars Lyrica Houston, Bach Society Houston, Mercury Houston, New York’s Trinity Baroque Orchestra, the Sebastians, New York Baroque Incorporated, and Les Arts Florissants at Dans les Jardins de William Christie, Thiré, France. She is a founding member of the baroque ensemble les soûls d’amour and enjoys its residency at Seabury Academy of Music and the Arts at St. Paul’s on the Green, Norwalk, Connecticut.

Hugo Abraham began his involvement with music as a child, playing the violin and the viola da gamba. His passion for jazz led him to switch to the double bass. After completing his undergraduate studies in Paris, he moved to the United States in 2014 to undertake a master’s degree in double bass performance at the New England Conservatory, Boston. He is currently finishing his masters in the Historical Performance program at the Juilliard school. In Europe, Abraham has performed with Ensemble Ictus, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre National de l’Opéra de Paris, and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, among others, working with leading conductors in major festivals and concert halls. He has also been a member of the Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester, the Verbier Festival Orchestra, and the Orchestre Français des Jeunes.

At Juilliard, Abraham has worked with esteemed figures in the historical performance field, including Masaaki Suzuki, Rachel Podger, and William Christie. He has toured with Juilliard415 and other U.S. baroque ensembles, such as ACRONYM and Ruckus, meanwhile exploring his ever-expanding curiosity for contemporary and yet-to-come practices.

Born and raised in New Rochelle, New York, violinist Sarah Jane Kenner is currently based in New York City. Kenner has performed with a number of ensembles, including Aspen Opera Theater Center, Trinity Baroque Orchestra, Sacred Music in a Sacred Space, and Juilliard415, the school’s primary period-instrument ensemble. As a winner of Juilliard's Historical Performance concerto competition in 2018, she was a featured soloist with Juilliard415 at Lincoln Center. She has also appeared as concertmaster and principal second violinist of the ensemble and joined it on tours throughout the U.S., in Europe, India, and New Zealand. Kenner has served as concertmaster of the Manhattan School of Music Chamber Sinfonia and the Texas Music Festival Orchestra, and she has held principal positions in Temple University Symphony Orchestra. Engagements in the summer of 2018 include a tour to Leipzig with Juilliard415 and Masaaki Suzuki and performances at the festival Dans les Jardins de William Christie in Thiré, France.

In spring 2018 Kenner will complete her graduate studies in baroque violin in the Historical Performance program at Juilliard, where she currently studies with Cynthia Roberts and Elizabeth Blumenstock. She holds a Bachelor of Music from Temple University’s Boyer College of Music and a Masters of Music from the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied respectively with Hirono Oka and Lucie Robert.

Joseph Jones began studying the bassoon at age twelve, when his piano teacher suggested, “Joey, you might be good at the bassoon.” Several years and many concerts later Jones has performed with ensembles across the U.S. He is a recent graduate of the Historical Performance program at the Juilliard School. As a member of Juilliard415 he performed under the direction of Masaki Suzuki, Stephen Stubbs, Nicholas McGegan, Rachel Podger, William Christie, Robert Mealy, and Monica Huggett, and participated in an exciting program of both eighteenth- and twenty-first-century music on tour in India.

Among the ensembles he has worked with are American Bach Soloists, Early Music New York, the Bach Society of Charleston, Flying Forms, Bermuda Philharmonic, Merce Cunningham Dance Company, and Oratory Sacred Bach. He has appeared as a soloist with Lyra Baroque Orchestra and Juilliard415. Jones has been praised for his "warm singing tone" and a performance that “proved he could easily break the four-minute mile without missing a note" (Minneapolis Star Tribune).

Before moving to New York, Jones lived in Minneapolis, where he was principal bassoonist for the Minnesota Sinfonia and conductor of the 100-year-old St. Paul Postal Band. In 2013 he was awarded a grant from the Next Step Fund, supported by The McKnight Foundation, which helped him purchase his first baroque bassoon, thus beginning his adventures in historical performance practice. He is an alumnus of the University of Minnesota and Utah State University. His academic honors include appointments as a Berneking Fellow at the University of Minnesota and a Morse Teaching Fellow at Juilliard, teaching music appreciation lessons to New York public school students. His principal bassoon teachers have been Dominic Teresi, John W. Miller, Norbert Nielubowski, and Dennis Hirst.

A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, violist Stephen Goist holds a Master of Music degree in Historical Performance from the Juilliard School as well as Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in viola performance from the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). Active as both a historical and modern musician, he has performed throughout the United States, Europe, India, and New Zealand. At Juilliard, Goist studied baroque viola and violin with Cynthia Roberts and Elizabeth Blumenstock, viola da gamba with Sarah Cunningham and Annalisa Pappano, and viola with Catharine Carroll Lees and Masao Kawasaki. In addition to freelancing and teaching in the New York area, Goist is a member of the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra in Columbus, Ohio, and the Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra.

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