Music takes center stage at Heights Arts in February

Close Encounters chamber series performs at the historic Dunham Tavern. [photo courtesy GM Donley]

As an antidote to the winter doldrums, Heights Arts has planned three free music performances during February in the nonprofit's gallery on Lee Road, plus the second concert of its popular Close Encounters series, which features members of The Cleveland Orchestra performing programs of their own design.

On Saturday, Feb. 11, at 8 p.m., the public is invited to join No Exit New Music Ensemble for an intimate evening of music that will spotlight three of the ensemble’s musicians: violinist Cara Tweed, percussionist Luke Rinderknecht, and pianist Nicholas Underhill. These virtuosi will be performing as a group and as soloists, bringing to Heights Arts the engaging performances that Clevelanders have come to expect from No Exit. Included on the program will be music from early-American avant-garde composer, pianist and inventor George Antheil, and the world premiere of a new work by Emily Koh.

The Cleveland Cello Quartet, a dynamic new ensemble dedicated to promoting the cello as a versatile and eclectic instrument, takes the gallery spotlight on Saturday, Feb. 18, at 7 p.m. Performing a genre-bending fusion of classical, jazz and pop music, the group, only in its second season, is quickly establishing itself in the Cleveland music scene. Quartet members Anna Hurt, Carlyn Kessler, Sophie Benn and Andris Koh met as students at the Cleveland Institute of Music (CIM), and serve as an ensemble-in-residence at The Music Settlement.

Budding young musicians have a chance to shine during a piano master-class performance with acclaimed piano soloist and CIM faculty member Shuai Wang on Sunday, Feb. 19, at 10:30 a.m. Master classes are open to the public for observation. Northeast Ohio students in grades six through 12 are welcome to apply for inclusion in the master class via the Heights Arts website,through Feb. 5.

"Slavic Strings, From our Sleeve to Yours" heats up the landmark Dunham Tavern Museum on Euclid Avenue as part of Close Encounters season 11 on Sunday, Feb. 26, at 3 p.m. The lively program features contemporary and 19th-century works, including Martinu’s Madrigals for Violin and Viola, Widmann’s Etude for Solo Violin, and the delightful Dvorak Viola Quintet, with JinJoo Cho, Peter Otto and Isabel Trautwein, violins; YuJin and Kirsten Docter, violas; and Tanya Ell, cello. Advance tickets are available online, by phone, or at Heights Arts.

Heights Arts gallery concerts are free and open to all, and are supported by the Paul M. Angell Foundation. For more information, visit or call 216-371-3457.

Mary Ryan

Mary Ryan is on staff at Heights Arts, a nonprofit community arts organization.

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Volume 10, Issue 2, Posted 6:24 PM, 01.30.2017