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The Flagler name has long been associated with great music. Henry and Mary Lily Flagler frequently hosted musical performances in Whitehall's elaborate Music Room furnished with a 1,249 piper J.H. & C.S. Odell & Co. organ and a Steinway upright grand piano. Flagler's son, Henry Harkness Flagler, was chairman of the New York Philharmonic Society. One of Flagler's granddaughters, Jean Flagler Matthews, founded the Flagler Museum, restored Whitehall's elaborate Odell organ and in 1969 brought the New York Philharmonic, conducted by Leonard Bernstein, to South Florida for a Museum benefit concert. Another of Flagler's granddaughters, Mary Flagler Cary, amassed a large collection of original music manuscripts now at the Morgan Library.

The association between the Flagler name and great music continues today in the form of the Flagler Museum Music Series, making it possible to experience chamber music, as it was intended, in the gracious and intimate setting of the Museum's West Room. Regularly featured on National Public Radio, the Flagler Museum Music Series features acclaimed musicians performing music composed prior to 1930 in what critics have described as the finest chamber music venue in South Florida. Audience members are treated to a rare opportunity to meet performers during a champagne & dessert reception following each concert.

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Poulenc Trio

Poulenc Trio
January 6, 2009
7:30 p.m.

Combining brilliant 21st-century vibrancy with the best of European instrumental tradition, the Poulenc Trio's performances leap beyond the ordinary concert experience, transporting audiences into a world of beautiful sonorities, playful rhythms, and dramatic excitement. The Trio brings together three uniquely gifted virtuosos, oboist Vladimir Lande, bassoonist Bryan Young, and pianist Irina Lande.

The Poulenc Trio is a international favorite, winning praise from Chamber Music Magazine, and the Double Reed Journal. The group has been called "virtuosos of classical and contemporary chamber music" in one profile for Russian television.

The ensemble's precision and versatility heighten the lyricism of Poulenc, the virtuosity of Rossini, the wit of Jean Francaix and the jazzy elegance of Andre Previn. As the best of a select few professional wind trios, the Poulenc Trio is committed to expanding the repertoire through the discovery of old masterpieces and new works.

The Trio's busy touring schedule has included recent tours of Russia with Hilary Hahn, Italy at the Ravello and Ville Vesuviane Festivals, the Islands of the Caribbean, and multiple appearances in every region of the United States. Highlights have included performances at the Kennedy Center in Washington and the Hermitage State Museum in Russia.

On April 27, 2009, National Public Radio's Performance Today broadcast the Poulenc Trio's performance of "Jaunty" from Andre Previn's Trio for Oboe, Bassoon and Piano from their concert at the Flagler Museum on January 6, 2009.

Concert Reviews:

Palm Beach Daily News: Poulenc Trio delivers fascinating program, fine virtuosic technique at Flagler Museum -
By Ken Keaton

The Palm Beach Post: Poulenc Trio, plus one, make beautiful music -
By Charles Passy

Palm Beach ArtsPaper: Poulenc Trio Offers Skill, Variety -
By Greg Stepanich

The Prima Trio

Prima Trio
February 3, 2009
7:30 p.m.

Pianist Anastasia Dedik, clarinetist Boris Allakhverdyan, and violinist/violist David Bogorad, joined forces while students at the Oberlin Conservatory. The Prima Trio soon triumphed at the 2007 Fischoff Chamber Music Competition, beating out 138 entries from around the world. In just one year since winning the Fischoff award , the Trio has performed more than 20 concerts worldwide, to great critical acclaim.

The Prima Trio actually plays four instruments, since Mr. Bogorad plays both violin and viola on the same program. Their repertoire ranges from beloved chamber music standards to exotic gems. The Prima Trio¹s performances throughout the United States include both the Kennedy Center and Dumbarton Oaks series in Washington DC, and the Cleveland Chamber Music Society.

"A superb ensemble of three quite talented and mature artists. The trio performed music that was unfamiliar to most of those in the audience, and kept the listeners in rapt attention." - Bruce Tyler, the Cleveland Chamber Music Society.

On Tuesday, March 24, 2009, National Public Radio's Performance Today broadcast the Prima Trio's performance of Mozart's Trio for Clarinet, Viola and Piano in E flat, K. 498 "Kegelstatt" from their concert at the Flagler Museum on February 3, 2009.

On Tuesday, June 14, 2009, National Public Radio's Performance Today broadcast the Prima Trio's performance of Peter Schickele's "Serenade for Three" from their concert at the Flagler Museum on February 3rd, 2009 February 3, 2009.

Concert Reviews:

Palm Beach Daily News: Prima Trio improves in second half of concert at Flagler Museum -
"It's always a pleasure to attend chamber music concerts in the Flagler Museum Music Series. This is real chamber music: a performance by a small ensemble in an actual room that is smaller and more intimate than a concert hall." - By Ken Keaton

Palm Beach ArtsPaper: Prima Trio offers revelation at Flagler concert -
By Greg Stepanich

The Santa Fe Guitar Quartet

Sante Fe Guitar Quartet
January 20, 2009
7:30 p.m.

The Santa Fe Guitar Quartet from Santa Fe, Argentina, is an innovative guitar ensemble whose repertoire ranges from Baroque works to modern tangos. The group is strongly committed to the performance of Latin American music, having presented exciting new works to a large audience worldwide.

Their full sound is similar to a small string orchestra and was praised by the Washington Post as "big, warm, round and clear." The quartet's addition of the six-string contrabass along with the occasional use of other instruments and percussive effects broaden the range and sound palate of the typical guitar ensemble.

Combining the individual talents of two Argentineans and two North Americans, the group has been touring internationally since 1989. The Santa Fe Guitar Quartet has performed for sold-out houses throughout North and South America including Lincoln Center and Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.

In 1997, the Argentinean Institute for Excellence (Instituto Argentino de la Excelencia) awarded the Santa Fe Guitar Quartet the prestigious First Prize of Excellence.

The ensemble's recordings continue to receive enthusiastic reviews worldwide. Their latest recording, a collection of music representing the diverse expression of composers living throughout the Americas, further demonstrates that the Santa Fe Guitar Quartet is a living example of the merging of the Americas through music.

"From Heaven by way of Santa Fe". "As guitarists, they are as good as you can get...they play like Angels." – Washington Post.

On Friday, March 20, 2009, National Public Radio's Performance Today broadcast the Santa Fe Guitar Quartet's performance of Piazzolla's Spring, from Cuatro estaciones portenas from their concert at the Flagler Museum on January 20, 2009.

Concert Reviews:

South Florida Classical Review : Santa Fe Guitar Quartet bring Latin warmth to Flagler Museum -
By Sharon McDaniel

Palm Beach Daily News: Santa Fe Guitar Quartet's cautious reading shades supreme musicianship -
By Marcio Bezzera

Tempesta di Mare

Tempesta di Mare
March 3, 2009
7:30 p.m.

Tempesta di Mare performs baroque music on baroque instruments with what the Philadelphia City Paper describes as "zest and virtuosity that transcends style and instrumentation." Tempesta di Mare is named for baroque master Antonio Vivaldi's concerto meaning "storm at sea," a title reflecting composers' belief in the power of their music to evoke drama.

Hailed by the Philadelphia Inquirer for its "off-the-grid chic factor," Tempesta's Greater Philadelphia Concert Series has enjoyed a rapid rise to prominence since its launch in 2002, with press endorsements from Philadelphia to Paris. With an emphasis on breaking new ground, Tempesta di Mare is one of just three baroque orchestras nationwide to receive the National Endowment for the Arts Artistic Excellence Award in 2007, and again with two more Artistic Excellence awards for 2008.

Tempesta di Mare has toured from Oregon to Prague, with praise ranging from "the energy of a rock solo and the craft of a classical cadenza" (Washington Post) to "an experience of intimate dialogues" (Lidové Noviny, Prague). National broadcasts of performances include Performance Today, Sunday Baroque, and Harmonia.

"The musicians of Tempesta di Mare brought the nearly 300-year-old score to life with a zest and virtuosity that transcended issues ofstyle and instrumentation. At the close of this performance of Clori, Tirsi and Fileno, there was that sublime sensation of the suspension of time that great theater can convey. If this production by Tempesta di Mare was a way of testing the baroque operatic waters, then one can only hope that they dive all the way in for future seasons."— Philadelphia City Paper

A feast for the ears. — The Baltimore Sun

Concert Review:

Palm Beach Daily News: Tempesta di Mare delivers fine Baroque concert of Handel, others at Flagler Museum -
By Greg Stepanich

Yi-Jia Sussane Hou

Yi Jia Susanne Hou 000
February 19, 2009
7:30 p.m

Internationally celebrated violinist Yi-Jia Susanne Hou has left her mark in music history by being the first violinist ever to capture 3 Gold Medals with unanimous decisions at international violin competitions: Concours International LONG-THIBAUD (France, 1999), LIPIZER International Violin Competition (Italy, 1999) and SARASATE International Violin Competition (Spain, 1997). Hou was also the first ever violinist to win the Canada Council for the Arts Instrument Bank Competition for a 2nd time.

For two seasons Hou has been a lead violinist with BOWFIRE, the highly acclaimed production led by Lenny Solomon. Hou has also been seen on PBS and the TODAY SHOW amongst the top virtuoso violinists and fiddlers in each genre of modern string playing. Never short on praise, Hou's "sound is strangely strong yet delicate; her technique near flawless . . ." The Strad magazine. She was the subject of a CBC video documentary: "Shanghai Sensation", revisiting her childhood in Shanghai, with her father, Alec Hou, a renowned violin pedagog in China. She can also be heard performing the violin solos in the Atom Egoyan film "Adoration", featuring music composed by Mychael Danna.

Born into a musical family, she attended the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto and received scholarships and fellowships at the Aspen Music Festival for nine summers, as well as The Juilliard School where she received her Bachelor of music as a student of Dorothy DeLay and Naoko Tanaka in 2000. She then went on to do a 1-year Masters program.

"She's absolutely phenomenal..." — Lord Yehudi Menuhin

"It sometimes seems that the world is mass-producing great instrumentalists. What sets Yi-Jia Susanne Hou apart from her many brilliant contemporaries is a style of playing that combines the executant skill of today's best with the expressiveness of violinists 50 to 150 years ago...I cannot recall hearing a violinist in a live performance who could coax as big a tone out of a violin; she can also draw a fine-spun pianissimo." — Robert McColley, Fanfare Magazine USA.

On Thursday, March 19, 2009, National Public Radio's Performance Today broadcast Susanne Hou's performance of Fritz Kreisler's Syncopation from her concert at the Flagler Museum on February 19, 2009.

Concert Reviews:

Palm Beach Daily News: Violinist Yi-Jia Susanne Hou gives knockout performance at the Flagler Museum -
By Joseph Youngblood

Palm Beach ArtsPaper: Violinist Hou exceptional at Flagler concert -
By Greg Stepanich