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Release: Nov. 8, 2002


Playing in the Maia Quartet is only the beginning for Timothy Shiu. The second violinist of the string quartet in residence at the University of Iowa School of Music also plays chamber music in other settings -- such as the string duos and trios, and the quartets for piano and strings, that he and several friends will present at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 22, in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.

The concert, in which Shiu will play with the Maia’s cellist, Hannah Holman, as well as violist Suzanne Wagor and pianist Mansoon Han, is the first of two concerts for unusual chamber combinations that Shiu will play this year. The second, scheduled for May 6, 2003, will feature the three string players without the piano.

The program for the Nov. 22 concert comprises music from the Renaissance to the 19th century: Nine Fantasies by Thomas Morley, arranged for violin and viola by Arnold Dolmetsch; Three-Part Inventions by J.S. Bach, arranged for string trio; Mozart’s Piano Quartet in G minor, K. 478; and Robert Schumann’s Piano Quartet in E-flat major, op. 47.

“Modern string players rarely perform music before the Baroque period,” Shiu said. “Suzanne (Wagor) and I have discovered a delightful arrangement of short pieces by the English Renaissance composer, Thomas Morley, which we thought would make a refreshing opening to the concert. There is a cleansing purity to this music, and also to the Bach Inventions,

“The Bach pieces, by the way, might be considered a prelude of things to come in the May concert, when we will perform the Russian violinist Dmitri Sitkovetsky’s string trio arrangement of Bach's monumental ‘Goldberg’ Variations.

“The Mozart and Schumann Piano Quartets are of course staples of the literature, and I am thrilled to have this chance to play them with my good-friend colleague from Hope College, pianist Mansoon Han.”

A founding member of the Maia Quartet, Shiu joined the UI faculty with the other members of the quartet in 1998. He has concertized extensively throughout the United States, as well as in Europe and Asia, and has collaborated with violinist Peter Zazovsky of the Muir Quartet, violist Michael Tree of the Guarneri Quartet, the late flutist Samuel Baron and other renowned chamber musicians. He has been a member of the Canton (Ohio) Symphony Orchestra and the Acadiana Symphony Orchestra in Louisiana, where he held the position of Principal Second Violin.

Before joining the UI faculty, Shiu taught chamber music at the Peabody Conservatory of Music and has also served at the Juilliard School as teaching assistant to Joel Smirnoff of the Juilliard Quartet. His summer teaching engagements include the Interlochen Arts Camp’s Advanced String Quartet Institute and Colorado Music in the Mountains.

Shiu began his violin studies at the age of three and a half, and during his high school years he attended the Pre-College Division of the Juilliard School. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Yale University, where he also received the T. Whitney Blake Prize for scholarship in English and excellence in Music. He has received a master’s degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music and has held fellowships at the Peabody Conservatory of Music and the Juilliard School.

Wagor leads a full and varied performing and teaching career. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Oberlin Conservatory and a performance diploma from the Guildhall School of Music in London, England, with additional studies at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Her principal teachers include UI emeritus faculty member William Preucil.

An avid chamber musician, she has appeared in performance with members of the Peabody Trio, the Tokyo String Quartet, The Nash Ensemble and Red Cedar Chamber Music. During the 2000-01 season she served as principal viola of the Cedar Rapids Symphony and maintained a full studio of violin and viola students at the Cedar Rapids Symphony School and at Coe College. Wagor spent last season continuing her studies at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music and has now returned to Iowa City, where she continues her work as chamber musician and private instructor.

Holman, who served as principal cello with the Cedar Rapids Symphony in 2001-02, joined the Maia Quartet in the summer of 2002. She is also assistant principal cello of the Eastern Music Festival Orchestra and the American Sinfonietta, Previously she served as principal cello of the Jackson (Mich.) Symphony and assistant principal of the Greater Lansing Symphony and Michigan Chamber Orchestra. She also was assistant principal of the Richmond (Va.) Symphony.

Always an active chamber musician, she was a founding member of the Beaumont Piano Trio, performing recitals in several states as well as on tour in England, and was a founding member of Quadrivium, a music ensemble in residence at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. As soloist she played with orchestras in Michigan, Virginia, and Georgia, and was invited to the Pablo Casals Cello competition in Germany and the Luis Sigall Cello Competition in Chile.

Holman has served on the faculties of the Worcester College in England, Michigan State University Community Music School and Virginia Union University. Holman studied at the Eastman School of Music and Michigan State University, where she completed her Bachelor of Music Degree. She obtained her master’s degree at the New England Conservatory in 1993.

Mansoon Han began her piano studies at the age of six in Seoul, Korea. She has won numerous competitions, including the Yook Young Competition and the Nan Pa Music Competition. After receiving her bachelor’s degree from Seoul National University she moved to the United States to study with renowned concert pianist Ann Schein at the Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, where she received both master’s and doctoral degrees. She won a number of awards at Peabody, including the Clara Ascherfeld accompanying award and a Peabody Scholarship.

Han has also participated in the Aspen Music Festival, the Orford Arts Center and the Kent Blossom Summer Chamber Music Festival. Currently teaching piano at Hope College in Holland, Mich., Han leads an active performing career. An avid chamber musician, she has collaborated with members of the Maia Quartet; with Peter Landgren, Principal French Horn with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra; and with soprano Hyunah Yu, 1998 Naumberg Competition finalist.

The School of Music is part of the Division of Performing Arts in the UI College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

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