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University of Iowa News Release

May 4, 2005

'Maia And Friends' Will Showcase Student Chamber Musicians May 11

The Maia String Quartet from the University of Iowa School of Music will present its annual concert showcasing student chamber musicians, at 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 11, in Clapp Recital Hall on the UI campus.

The concert will be free and open to the public.

The first half of the program will feature a student string trio of viola, cello and double bass, selected from the Maia Quartet's chamber music course in the School of Music. Performers Christina Mixemong, viola; Kevin Price, cello; and Rebecca Hooper, bass will play a recent work by Rebekah Griffin, a contemporary composer from New York.

For the second half of the concert, members of the Maia Quartet will be joined by this year's two Honors Competition winners, Mark Fitkin, an undergraduate student of Mark Weiger, and David Parks, a doctoral saxophone student of Kenneth Tse. Fitkin and Parks were chosen in a competition that was open to students in all performance areas of the School of Music -- strings, voice, keyboard, winds and brass and percussion.

Fitkin will play the Oboe Quartet in F major, KV370, by Mozart with Maia Quartet members Margaret Soper Gutierrez, violin, Elizabeth Oaks, viola, and Hannah Holman cello. Parks, the Maia members and violinist Lisa Gowdy Merrill will play the very first American performance of a recent Quintet for sax and strings by Czech composer Jindrich Feld.

"This concert is a marvelous way to showcase the student talent at the UI School of Music," Gutierrez said. "It gives members of the quartet a chance to work closely with fresh new faces."

"We were thrilled at the high level of the candidates competing this year and felt compelled to have two winners as both David and Mark were outstanding in their performances. We are looking forward to the chance to perform with them."

Founded in 1990, the Maia Quartet has established itself nationally with performances in major concert halls including Alice Tully Hall in New York, the Kennedy Center Terrace Theatre in Washington, D.C., and Harris Hall at the Aspen Music Festival. In recent years they have collaborated with other leading chamber musicians around the world, and they have had summer teaching engagements at the Interlochen Arts Academy, the Austin Chamber Music Festival, the South Carolina Governors School for the Arts and the Cedar Rapids Symphony School.

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

For information on UI arts events, visit on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Arts Center Relations, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 351, Iowa City, IA 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Peter Alexander, 319-384-0072,