The 16th annual Winter Chamber Music Festival will open the Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music’s 2011-12 season’s winter programming at Northwestern University. Other January highlights include a Jan. 21 Kids Fare concert and a Jan. 25 program featuring the U.S. Marine Band Jazz Orchestra.

The chamber festival’s six concerts, which begin Jan. 6 and run through Jan. 22, will feature world-renowned cellist Lynn Harrell, the Cecilia String Quartet, the St. Lawrence String Quartet, and the Lincoln String Quartet as well as members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Bienen School faculty.

The Kid’s Fare concert will feature selections by the university’s symphonic band aimed at a 3-to-8-year-old audience, and the U.S. Marine Band Jazz Orchestra will present a free concert comprised of a variety of jazz standards.

All programs listed below, in chronological order, are open to the public. They take place on Northwestern University’s Evanston campus at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive; Regenstein Recital Hall, 60 Arts Circle Drive; Lutkin Hall, 700 University Place; or Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, as noted.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, Preconcert Discussion with Stacy Garrop, 6:45 p.m. Friday, Jan. 6, Regenstein Recital Hall. Chicago composer Stacy Garrop, whose String Quartet No. 4 is featured on the Cecilia String Quartet’s Jan. 6 program, will discuss her work in a pre-concert talk. Garrop’s music has been performed by orchestras, chamber ensembles and choruses throughout the country. Admission is free.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, Cecilia String Quartet, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 6, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The Cecilia String Quartet– violinists Min-Jeong Koh and Sarah Nematallah, violist Caitlin Boyle and cellist Rachel Desoer — has performed around the globe, and is the Resident String Quartet at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. The ensemble won the 2010 Banff International String Quartet Competition. Their program features Mozart’s String Quartet No. 16 in E-flat Major; Shostakovich’s String Quartet No. 7 in F-sharp Minor; Garrop’s String Quartet No. 4; and Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 16 in F Major. Tickets are $22 for the general public and $10 for students with IDs.

Stephen Burns Trumpet Master Class, 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 7, Lutkin Hall. Trumpeter, composer, and conductor Stephen Burns is the founder and artistic director of Chicago’s Fulcrum Point New Music Project. He has made solo, chamber and orchestral appearances worldwide, including performances at the White House, on NBC’s “Today Show” and on NPR’s “All Things Considered.” In recent seasons he has appeared with the Atlanta Symphony, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Ensemble Orchestral de Paris, the Arturo Toscanini Orchestra of Parma, the Japan National Philharmonic and the Seattle Symphony. Admission is free.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, Bienen School Faculty and Guests, 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 8, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Bienen School faculty members will perform Penderecki’s Quartet for Clarinet, Violin, Viola and Cello; Kodaly’s Duo for Violin and Cello; and Franck’s Piano Quintet in F Minor. The concert features pianist Andrea Swan, violinists Blair Milton and Lei Hou, violist Yukiko Ogura, cellist Stephen Balderston and clarinetist J. Lawrie Bloom. Tickets are $22 for the general public and $10 for students with IDs.

Lynn Harrell Cello Master Class, 6 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 11, and 4 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12. Regenstein Recital Hall. Internationally renowned cellist Lynn Harrell continues his Bienen School of Music residency with two winter master classes featuring Bienen School cellists. Admission is free.

Lynn Harrell Chamber Music Master Class, 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12, Regenstein Recital Hall. Internationally renowned cellist Lynn Harrell continues his Bienen School of Music residency with a master class featuring Bienen School musicians. Admission is free.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, Bienen School Faculty and Guests, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 13, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The festival’s third concert will feature Bienen School faculty members and guests, including pianists James Giles and Toni-Marie Montgomery; soprano Nancy Gustafson; oboist Scott Hostetler; clarinetist J. Lawrie Bloom; bassoonist Lewis Kirk; hornist Gail Williams; violinist Gerardo Ribeiro; violist Carol Cook; cellist Kenneth Olsen and harpist Sarah Bullen. The program features Martinu’s Musique de Chambre No. 1 for Clarinet, Violin, Viola, Cello, Harp and Piano; Respighi’s Violin Sonata in B Minor; Respighi’s “Io sono la Madre,” “In alto mare” and “Nebbie” for voice and piano; and Beethoven’s Quintet in E-flat Major for Piano and Winds. Tickets are $20 for the general public and $10 for students with IDs.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, Lynn Harrell and Guests, 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 15, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Lynn Harrell will perform with special guest artists, including pianist Rieko Aizawa, violinist Robert Chen, and cellists Loren Brown, Daniel Katz, Kenneth Olsen, Jonathan Pegis, John Sharp, Gary Stucka and Brant Taylor. The program includes Villa-Lobos’ “Bachianas Brasileiras” No. 1; Menotti’s Suite for Two Cellos and Piano; Beethoven’s Sonata No. 3 in A Major for Cello and Piano; and Dvorak’s Piano Trio No. 4 in E Minor (“Dumky”).Tickets are $28 for the general public and $10 for students with IDs.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, Lincoln String Quartet and Bienen School Faculty, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 20, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The Lincoln String Quartet is comprised of current and former Chicago Symphony Orchestra members, including violinists Lei Hou and Qing Hou, violist Lawrence Neuman and cellist Kenneth Olsen. The quartet will perform with Bienen School faculty pianist Alan Chow, clarinetist Steven Cohen, hornist Gail Williams, and bassoonist Christopher Millard. The program includes Bliss’ Quintet for Clarinet and String Quartet; Janacek’s Concertino for Piano, Two Violins, Viola, Clarinet, Horn and Bassoon; and Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 6 in B-flat Major. Tickets are $22 for the general public and $10 for students with IDs.

Kids Fare, “Simply Sensational Symphonic Band,” 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 21, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The Bienen School of Music’s Symphonic Band celebrates the power and glory of brass, percussion and woodwinds, making this concert for children aged 3 to 8 and their families a memorable musical adventure. Tickets are $6 for the general public and $4 for students with IDs.

Newberry Consort 25th Anniversary Season, “Celestial Sirens,” 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 22, Alice Millar Chapel. Directed by Ellen Hargis, an ensemble of eight women’s voices will explore the music of baroque convents. Behind the cloistered walls, gifted women composed, arranged, and performed virtuoso music for their own devotional use. Featured vocalists include sopranos Ellen Hargis, Sian Ricketts, Elena Mullins and Josefien Stoppelenburg; mezzo-sopranos Tracy Cowart and Angela Young-Smucker, and altos Debra Nagy and Beverly Simmons. Organist Frances Fitch and viola da gambist Katherine Shuldiner will accompany selections composed by Benedictine nun Chiara Margarita Cozzolani, Ursaline nun Isabella Leonarda and Augustinian nun Sulpitia Cesis. A preconcert lecture will take place at 2 p.m. Tickets are $35 for the general public; $5 for students with IDs; and $28 for general-public orders made in advance of the concert.

Winter Chamber Music Festival, St. Lawrence String Quartet, 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 22, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The St. Lawrence String Quartet will conclude the festival with a program that includes Haydn’s String Quartet No. 5 in F Minor; the Chicago premiere of Golijov’s new String Quartet; and Dvorak’s String Quartet No. 14 in A-flat Major. The quartet performs more than 120 worldwide concerts annually and has been honored with the German Record Critics’ Award, Canada’s Juno Award and top honors in the Banff International String Quartet Competition. The ensemble is comprised of violinists Geoff Nuttall and Scott St. John, violist Lesley Robertson and cellist Christopher Costanza. Tickets are $26 for the general public and $10 for students with IDs.

Paul Ellison Double Bass Master Class, 6 p.m. Monday, Jan. 23, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Northwestern alumnus Paul Ellison is the Lynette S. Autrey Professor of Double Bass and chair of strings at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music as well as a visiting artist at the University of Southern California and guest tutor at England’s Yehudi Menuhin School, Royal College of Music, and Bass Club. Ellison will coach bass students from the Bienen School of Music. Admission is free.

U.S. Marine Band Jazz Orchestra, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 25, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. The Marine Jazz Orchestra is an 18-member big band drawn from “The President’s Own” U.S. Marine Band. Marine Band musicians perform more than 300 times a year at the White House and participate in more than 500 public and official performances annually. Their program will feature a variety of jazz standards. Admission is free.

Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 29, Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Part of the College Orchestra Directors Association’s 2012 Chicago Conference hosted by the Bienen School of Music, this concert will be conducted by Victor Yampolsky and feature alto Karen Brunssen and the internationally renowned Anima children’s chorus. The program will feature Mahler’s third symphony. Tickets are $12 for the general public and $6 for students with IDs.

For more information, call the Pick-Staiger Concert Office at (847) 491-5441 or visit the Pick-Staiger website, where you can also purchase tickets.

Top: Cellist Lynn Harrell

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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