Chiu-Yuan CHEN, Clarinet
Gilbert SAK, Violin
Sophia YANG, Piano
Milhaud Suite for Violin, Clarinet & Piano, Op. 157b
Introduction et Final
Khachaturian Trio for Clarinet, Violin & Piano
Andante con dolore, con molto espressione
Bartók Contrasts for Violin, Clarinet & Piano
Verbunkos (Recruiting Dance)
Sebes (Fast Dance)
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Chiu-Yuan CHEN, Clarinet
Taiwanese clarinetist Chiu-Yuan Chen has been praised by the New York Times as “zesty”, “energetic”, and “capturing the music’s spirit” after her performance at Juilliard Chamber Festival. She has performed internationally as a soloist, chamber music artist, and as an orchestral player. As a soloist, Dr. Chen gave her Carnegie Hall debut recital at Weill Hall in 2008, as the winner of the Artist International Presentation in New York. She also won the first prize in the National Music Award for Solo Clarinet in Taiwan. She was awarded the special prize of “The Best Performance of Contemporary Chinese Work" in the “Universal Chinese Concerto Competition of the 21st Century”, and as a prize winner, she got to go on tour with the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, performing the Clarinet Concerto of the renowned contemporary Taiwanese composer, Yu-Chou Chen.
Equally versatile in orchestral and chamber music, Dr. Chen has been involved many times in the “Chamber Gems” series at the Hong Kong University, “Lunchtime Chamber Concert” series of Hong Kong Sinfonietta, and “Musica del Cuore” series at the Citibank Plaza. She has participated with full scholarship in the Pacific Music Festival in Japan, Focus! Festival, Juilliard Chamber Festival, and Leipzig International Summer Academy. During her studies, she performed as principal clarinet, E-flat and bass clarinet in the Juilliard Symphony Orchestra, the New Juilliard Ensemble, National Taiwan Normal University Orchestra and Wind Symphony.
Dr. Chen received her bachelor’s degree with high honors in music performance and education from National Taiwan Normal University, where she was a student of William Chen. She received her Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School, under the tutelage of Charles Neidich and Ayako Oshima Neidich, and Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the City University of New York. She has been a member of the Hong Kong Sinfonietta since 2008, serving as second clarinet, E-flat and bass clarinet player. As a teacher, besides keeping a private studio, Dr. Chen has taught in the Junior Division of the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, and is currently teaching in Marymount Primary School, HKU Graduate Association Primary School, and Christian Alliance International School.
Gilbert SAK, Violin
As the first Hong Kong native to have received a doctorate in violin performance, Gilbert Sak started learning the violin from Mr. Ngai Ho Chau at the age of 8. He then furthered his studies in Germany, England and the U.S.A., under the tutelage of a number of world famous violinists and pedagogues including Michael Goldstein, Albert Markov, Petru Munteanu, Yfrah Neaman, and Dr. John Bauer. He has participated in master classes with Werner Scholz, Stefan Georghiu and David Kim, and has received coaching from members of the Guarneri Quartet, Orion String Quartet and American String Quartet.
Dr. Sak has held principal positions in a number of orchestras in the U.S.A. His participation in international music festivals and concert tours has brought him to countries like China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Malaysia, Italy, Germany, Sweden, Finland and the Switzerland. Upon his return to Hong Kong in 2000, he has been sought after and active as a chamber musician, giving recitals frequently in various chamber ensembles, performing on both the violin and viola. From 2001 to 2014, he held the position of 2nd Violin Principal and subsequently Co-Leader with the City Chamber Orchestra of Hong Kong. He has performed under the batons of such maestros as Kurt Masur, Lorin Maazel, Sir Neville Marriner, Yan-Pascal Tortelier and Myung-Whun Chung, just to name a few. In a duo partnership with his wife Winty Wan, they have been invited by the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office to perform in Stockholm and Helsinki. They have also recorded for Radio 4 of RTHK, performed in HKUST Arts Festival, Musica del cuore, and Hong Kong Museum of Art Concert series.
As a teacher, Dr. Sak has taught violin, viola, string pedagogy, performance studies and chamber music at the Hong Kong Baptist University, the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, the Hong Kong University, the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the former Hong Kong Institute of Education. Many of his students are holders of diplomas of various levels, and graduates of such institutions as the Royal College of Music, Trinity College, Royal Northern College of Music, and the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. He has been invited frequently by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department to give lectures and pre-concert talks on string music. In 2009, he was appointed as Hong Kong Consultant in Strings by Trinity Guildhall of London.
Sophia YANG, piano
Since her debut solo recitals in 2001 at Hong Kong City Hall Theatre and Taipei National Recital Hall, Dr. Yang has appeared as soloist in various concerts in Hong Kong, Taipei and Mainland China. Her concert engagements had brought her to Shanghai Grand Theatre, National Taipei Concert Hall, Hong Kong City Hall Concert Hall, and National Taichung Theatre, among others. She has performed as a soloist with Evergreen Symphony Orchestra (Taipei, Taiwan) and Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra (China) and has been collaborating in many chamber music concerts with distinguished leading musicians from Hong Kong Sinfonietta, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, City Chamber Orchestra of Hong Kong, and Taipei Symphony Orchestra.
Dr. Yang has appeared in many notable concert series presented by Hong Kong Leisure and Cultural Service Department, including "Chopin Bicentenary" in 2010, "Debussy Sesquicentennial" in 2012, "Our Music Talent" in 2014, and "City Hall Virtuosi" in 2016. In 2018, Yang was invited to perform in one of the Debussy Centenary Series concerts at Music at Hill in London, and at Chung-Shan Tang Concert Hall in Taipei. This year in March she appeared in a chamber music recital for Elebash Recital's Music in Midtown Series.
A native of Taiwan, Dr. Yang obtained her Bachelor's and Master's degrees from Manhattan School of Music, majoring in piano performance before her Doctoral of Musical Arts degree from the City University of New York. Her teachers include Christine Yao, Zong-Kai Kuo, Arkady Aronov, Agustin Anievas, Marc Silverman, Vera Wills, and Joel Lester. She was invited to record live concerts for Hong Kong Radio Television 4 and has been serving on the jury for several international and local piano competitions in Hong Kong. Dr. Yang is currently an adjunct lecturer in the music department at the Hong Kong Baptist University, teaching piano and chamber music.
Presented by HKUST Center for Education Innovation and Center for the Arts