A “truly communicative” (New York Times) and “impeccable and powerful soloist” (Neue Musik Zeitung), Franco-American violinist Elissa Cassini’s captivating performances explore the full expressive range of the violin. Her concerto appearances include the celebrated favorites of Beethoven, Bruch, Schumann and Sibelius, to contemporary works such as Philip Glass’s “American Four Seasons”. Her passion for new music was sparked when Pierre Boulez invited her to the Lucerne Festival in 2009. She has since collaborated with acclaimed composers such as Beat Furrer, Georg Friedrich Haas, Tristan Murail and Kaija Saariaho. Elissa’s premieres include “Conditions de Lumière” a concerto by Jérome Combier with the Argento Ensemble in New York, Ensemble Cairn in Paris, and the NEM in Montreal, Nicolas Bacri’s Concerto Op. 116, with the Orchestre de Massy in France, Anders Eliasson’s Concerto for Strings with the Arcos Chamber Orchestra at the Berlin Konzerthaus. She also gave the new York premiere of Jérôme Combier’s Anima Foglia at Carnegie Weill Recital Hall. New York audiences have also heard Elissa perform in Zankel and Merkin Halls, Miller Theatre and Le Poisson Rouge. A passionate chamber musician, Elissa is regularly invited to international festivals. Seeking to transcend the traditional recital format, Elissa has created the Duplexity Project, a series of virtuoso duos featuring innovative programming and instrumental partners including cello, harp, guitar and flute. Duplexity’s forays into dance, drama and new media promote an evolving dialogue between artists and their audiences.
Alasdair Beatson combines a career as one of the UK's most prominent chamber pianists with regular appearances as soloist in an especially varied and adventurous repertoire. Highlights of the 2018/19 season include a number of appearances at Wigmore Hall, a solo recital at Kings Place, and collaborations with Adrian Brendel, Steven Isserlis, Viktoria Mullova, Amsterdam Sinfonietta and the Doric String Quartet. His solo discography includes piano music of Mendelssohn, Ludwig Thuille, and the Opus 1's of Schumann, Grieg, Berg and Brahms; a large chamber discography includes the release on BIS of music for horn and piano, recorded on four historical pianos spanning 1815-1890, with horn player Alec Frank-Gemmill. Recent performances include as soloist with the Scottish Chamber and Royal Scottish National orchestras, Britten Sinfonia, and the Scottish Ensemble; as soloist in Messiaen's Oiseaux Exotiques conducted by George Benjamin; at festivals in Aldeburgh, Bath, Delft (Holland), Ernen (Switzerland), IMS Prussia Cove, Resonances (Belgium), Oxford Chamber Music, Plush, and West Cork (Ireland). Alasdair was a student of John Blakely at London’s RCM and Menahem Pressler in Bloomington, Indiana. From 2019 Alasdair is co-artistic director of the Swiss chamber music festival at Ernen.