|March 13, Sam Ou and Chi-Chen Wu, Classical
Sam Ou, Cello and Chi-Chen Wu, piano
Praised for his "impassioned performance" (Boston Globe) and playing "with remarkable ease and clarity, while maintaining a graceful—if vociferous—line that fit well into the narrative" (The Boston Musical Intelligencer), cellist Sam Ou enjoys an active musical life in the Greater Boston area. A recipient of the Rosemary Scales Prize for best cello concerto performance at the Kingsville International Young Performers Competition, Ou has performed at several prestigious summer venues including Tanglewood, Sarasota, Musicorda, Santa Fe, and La Jolla music festivals.
Ou came to the United States from Taiwan at age 4, and began his cello studies at age 9. He has been a pupil of several renowned cello teachers, including Gretchen Geber, Eleanore Schoenfeld, and Aldo Parisot. After completing his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Music degrees in New York from Columbia University and The Juilliard School in their double degree program, Ou moved to Boston to study with Laurence Lesser at NEC, where he graduated with a Doctorate of Musical Arts. His dissertation was entitled "In Felix's Footsteps: An Examination of Fanny Mendelssohn Hensel's Approach to Her Chamber Music."
A faculty member and assistant string chairperson at NEC's Preparatory School, Ou also maintains a private teaching studio, and in the summer, he teaches in Belmont, MA at Music on the Hill, a chamber music program for young musicians. During this past summer, he additionally taught at the Walnut Hill Music Festival in Natick, MA, Youth & Muse Music Festival at the Boston Conservatory, and Point Counterpoint in Leicester, VT. In 2012, Mr. Ou released his first CD, With String & Pipe, in which he collaborated with organist Harry Lyn Huff. He was also featured in Larry Bell's CDs entitled In a Garden of Dreamers, where he collaborated with recorder player Aldo Abreu and harpsichordist Paul Cienniwa. For more information, please visit his website at samweiou.weebly.com.
Pianist Chi-Chen Wu has appeared as recitalist, chamber musician and concerto soloist in the United States, Canada, France, Spain, Japan, Taiwan, the Mayfest Chamber Music Festival, and Aspen Music Festival among others. Her concerts have been broadcast on NPR-WVIA's Simply Grand Concert Series and NPR-From The Top in Boston. Musicians and conductors with whom she has concertized include Karl-Heinz Steffens, Jonathan McPhee, members of the Julliard String Quartet, musicians from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and members of the Boston Symphony as well as New York Philharmonic orchestras.
A native of Taiwan, Wu came to the United States in 1999 for graduate study and received two master's degrees, piano performance and collaborative piano, and a doctorate from New England Conservatory, where her teachers have included Jacob Maxin, Irma Vallecillo, John Moriarty, Kayo Iwama, John Greer and Vivian Weilerstein. She has also worked with Thomas Quasthoff, Martin Katz, Kim Kashkashian, Lawrence Lesser, and Gabriel Chodos. Immediately upon her graduation from NEC with Academic Honors and Distinction in Performance, she was appointed Assistant Professor at National Taiwan Normal University, an institution with the highest ranked music department in the country. In addition to her teaching duties at NTNU, she also served as coordinator of collaborative piano study and developed the graduate program's curriculum.
Wu has recorded Haydn Lieder on a replica of Walter fortepiano with soprano Andrea Folan for Musica Omnia label, and her recording of the complete Schumann sonatas for violin and piano with Nicholas DiEugenio is currently in post-production. Her duo recital with DiEugenio and discussion on piano collaboration are featured on DVD Performing the Score released in 2011.
Wu currently serves full-time on the faculty of Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania where she teaches solo piano, collaborative piano, piano literature and music history survey. Her recital highlights of 2012 include a piano recital in Chicago and a chamber concert at Eastman School of Music with Roger Tapping, former violist of Takács String Quartet.