The Sphinx Virtuosi
with the Catalyst Quartet
Bryan Hernandez-Luch, violin
Karla Donehew-Perez, violin
Christopher Jenkins, viola
Karlos Rodriguez, cello
and special guest
Elena Urioste, violin
"A top-notch ensemble... tightly woven sound and palpable zest"
The 2012–2013 Fortas Chamber Music Concerts season opens with Music of the Americas, a concert devoted to performances by the laureates and top alumni of the internationally recognized Sphinx Competition for Young Black and Latino String Players. The Sphinx Organization is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to building diversity in classical music and providing access to music education in underserved communities.
A conductorless ensemble of soloists, The Sphinx Virtuosi displays "all the hallmarks of a first-rate string ensemble" (The New York Times). "Its tone was warm and varied, it moved with unity and fluidity, and its textures were appealingly transparent." Members of the Sphinx Virtuosi have completed and continue to pursue their studies at the nation's top music schools, including Juilliard, Curtis, Eastman, Peabody, Harvard, and the University of Michigan.
They are joined by the Catalyst Quartet, which was praised by the New York Times as "invariably energetic and finely burnished… playing with earthy vigor." The quartet has held residencies both domestically and abroad, and serves as principal faculty at the Sphinx Performance Academy at Oberlin College and Roosevelt University in Chicago.
Also performing on the program is violinist Elena Urioste, who has been acclaimed for her "hypnotic delicacy," "expressive poise," and "lyrical sensitivity." Since first appearing with the Philadelphia Orchestra at age thirteen, she has made acclaimed debuts with major orchestras throughout the United States. As first-place laureate in both the Junior and Senior divisions of the Sphinx Competition, she debuted at Carnegie Hall in 2004 and has returned annually as a soloist. Urioste was featured on the cover of Symphony magazine as an emerging artist to watch.