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Inspired by Clara Schumann

Sunday, February 4, 2024 at 3:00pm


Inspired by Clara Schumann

Sunday, February 4, 2024 at 3:00pm


Inspired by Clara Schumann

Sunday, February 4, 2024 at 3:00pm


Small Space Series

Hear our talented musicians up close in intimate settings near you


First Presbyterian Church of New Canaan, 178 Oenoke Ridge Road, New Canaan


75 minutes with an intermission

Join us for a glass of wine during intermission, courtesy of Bill and Cate Leach

Sunday, February 4, 2024 at 3:00pm

About this performance

Clara Schumann, wife of Robert, dear friend of Brahms, duo partner of violinist Joseph Joachim and champion of Mendelssohn and Chopin. Her influence was significant as a performer, teacher and composer and during her long career she changed the format and repertoire of the piano recital by lessening the importance of purely virtuosic works. In an era where women did not have careers, her unbelievable perseverance as both a composer and a devoted wife and a mother to eight children, made her an extraordinary role model for her time.

Deborah Buckviolin
Orli Shaham, piano

Musical Program to include

Clara Schumann Three Romances for Violin and Piano, Op. 22

Amanda Maier Sonata for Violin and Piano

Johannes Brahms Scherzo (F-A-E Sonatensatz)

Clara Schumann Romanze, Op. 21

Robert Schumann Sonata No. 1 for Violin and Piano, Op. 105

This concert has been generously sponsored in part by:

Deborah Buck violin

Described by Strad Magazine as “Particularly impressive for her surpassing degree of imagination and vibrant sound,” violinist Deborah Buck has built a strong musical career as chamber musician, concertmaster, soloist, professor, and artistic leader.

For the past five years, Ms. Buck has led the Stamford Symphony (CT) as it’s Acting Concertmaster.  She has held concertmaster positions with the Brooklyn Philharmonic, St. Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra (L.A.) and the Los Angeles Opera Guild as well as many other noteworthy ensembles in the New York City area. As recitalist, Ms. Buck has performed at the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., over the airways for the Dame Myra Hess Series in Chicago/WFMT, “Sunday’s Live” in Los Angeles for KKGO, and at the Brooklyn Museum of Art. She has been featured as soloist with Lincoln Center’s Little Orchestra Society, Brooklyn Philharmonic, and most recently, the Stamford Symphony. In 2019, Ms. Buck received two commissions: one for solo violin by John Harbison called DeBut, and another for violin and piano called Fantasia on Beethoven’s Spring Sonata by Bruce Adolphe. In October (2021) Ms. Buck recorded the Suite for Solo Violin by John Harbison with Grammy winning producer, Silas Brown.

As a chamber musician, Ms. Buck enjoyed seventeen years of extensive concertizing, commissioning, and recording as a member of the Lark Quartet. The Lark actively pushed the boundaries of what a traditional string quartet could do by being one of the first quartets to commission new works that feature added percussion, clarinet, voice, and piano. The Lark has an extensive discography that include many of America’s most celebrated and prize-winning composers works.

A native of Los Angeles, Ms. Buck recorded for the motion picture and television industry. Her violin solos for television helped breathe life back into the re-mastered American Silent Film classic, “The Scarlet Letter” (Turner Classic Movies). Her National television debut came by way of a feature guest spot on the Family Channel’s, “It Takes Two” hosted by Dick Clark.

For twenty summers, Ms. Buck has taught at the Kinhaven Music School in Vermont where she and her husband have had the honor of serving as the Co-Executive Directors for the past eleven years. Since 2015, Ms. Buck has served as Assistant Professor of Violin and Head of Chamber Music at SUNY Purchase. Ms. Buck was a Starling Scholarship recipient at the Juilliard School as a student of Dorothy DeLay. She earned a Master’s Degree from the University of Southern California where she studied with Robert Lipsett, and was awarded the Jascha Heifetz Violin Scholarship.

Orli Shaham piano

A consummate musician recognized for her grace, subtlety and brilliance, Orli Shaham has established an impressive international reputation as one of today’s most gifted pianists, in demand for her prodigious skills and admired for her interpretations of both standard and modern repertoire. The New York Times called her a “brilliant pianist” and The Chicago Tribune referred to her as “a first-rate Mozartean.” She has performed with most of the major orchestras in the United States and with many ensembles across five continents, given recitals on stages from Carnegie Hall to the Sydney Opera House and appeared at music festivals around the world. Highlights of Ms. Shaham’s 2022-2023 concert season include the world premiere of a concerto written for her by David Robertson with the Orlando Philharmonic; Must the Devil Have All the Good Tunes? by John Adams with the Finnish Radio Symphony; and Beethoven’s “Triple” Concerto with Pacific Symphony. She is the first Artist-InResidence at Vancouver Symphony (USA), performing Schumann’s Piano Concerto and curating and performing in chamber music concerts with members of the VSO. Ms. Shaham continues to serve as the Artistic Director, host and featured performer for Pacific Symphony’s chamber music series in Costa Mesa, California, a position she has held since 2007. She is also Artistic Director for the interactive children’s concert series, Orli Shaham’s Bach Yard, which she founded in 2010, with performances in New York City in the 2022-2023 season. As part of her multi-disc Mozart recording project, Orli Shaham released Volume 2 and 3 of the complete piano sonatas by Mozart in 2022; the remaining volumes are released in 2023. Volume 1 of the piano sonatas, and a recording of Mozart’s Piano Concertos K.453 and K.491 with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra are already available. Her discography includes a dozen titles on Deutsche Gramophone, Sony, Canary Classics and other labels. Ms. Shaham is on faculty at The Juilliard School, and serves on the juries of both the Cliburn and Honens International Piano Competitions in 2022. She is a major presence on public radio coast to coast: she is Co-Host and Creative for NPR’s “From the Top”, and was host of “America’s Music Festivals,” and “Dial-a-Musician,” a radio feature series she created, all of which were broadcast nationally. In addition to her musical education at the Juilliard School, Orli Shaham holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Columbia University and pursued a master’s degree in musicology from Columbia. She is winner of the Gilmore Young Artist Award and the Avery Fisher Career Grant, and is a member of the board of trustees of Kaufman Music Center, serving as chair of the board through 2023. Orli Shaham has been a Steinway Artist since 2003.

*artists and programs subject to change