Susan Shaw, Artistic Director
Malina Rauschenfels, baroque cello
Vocalist, baroque cellist and violinist, as well as co-director of Burning River Baroque, Malina Rauschenfels has been praised by the Boston Musical Intelligencer as “spellbinding” and for her “powerful clarion tones and crisp articulation. ” She has also been commended by clevelandclassical.com for her “exceptional vocal range, strong acting abilities, gripping theatricality, and commanding gestures, both musical and physical.” Equally comfortable with early music and contemporary music, Malina has recorded with The Newberry Consort, Duo Mignarda, Quire Cleveland, Marble Sanctuary Choir and Toby Twining Music. Additionally she performs with El Fuego, North Carolina Baroque Orchestra, Contrapunctus, and Trinity Chamber Singers. A few of her more recent life changing festivals include Cello Springs Festival, a solo recital with organ and opera performances with Venice Opera Projects, rehearsing and performing next to Emma Kirkby with the Three Bridges Festival, and premiering a new work by Rachel Devorah Trapp at the Opera from Scratch Festival.
Malina currently teaches violin, viola, cello, flute and piano in her home in Cleveland Heights, travels frequently for performances, and just released her first solo CD: In D – Solo Cello Through the Ages.
Karin A. Cuéllar Rendón, baroque violin
A native of Bolivia, Karin A. Cuéllar Rendón, baroque violin, has performed extensively with several orchestras, including the American Bach Soloists, ARTEK, the National Symphony Orchestra of Bolivia and the YOA Orchestra of the Americas. As an orchestral musician, she has worked under the baton of such prominent conductors as Helmuth Rilling, Valery Gergiev, Carlos Miguel Prieto, Placido Domingo, Gustavo Dudamel and Benjamin Sanders, and performed at such diverse international venues as the Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, Saint Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican, and Carnegie Hall in New York. Karin earned her Bachelor of Music degree in Violin Performance from Montclair State University and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Historical Performance at Case Western Reserve University under the tutelage of Julie Andrijeski.
Gabriel Benton, harpsichord
Gabriel was born in Dover, Pennsylvania, where he began taking piano lessons at the age of seven. He began studying organ in the eighth grade and in high school also took violin lessons and played oboe and french horn in his school’s band. Following his senior year, Gabriel presented a piano recital featuring Bach’s complete “Goldberg Variations” at York College of Pennsylvania, however his growing interest in early music and historical performance led him to transfer to Oberlin Conservatory in 2011 to study harpsichord with Webb Wiggins. He was awarded the prestigious Harold Hunt Scholarship by the American Guild of Organists in 2009 and also recently won the York Symphony Orchestra’s Young Artist Concerto Competition. Gabriel has attended numerous masterclasses and workshops, including with Edward Parmentier, Arthur Haas and Ton Koopman, and plans to continue focusing on historical performance at the Juilliard School of Music.
Susan Shaw, baroque flute
A native of Buffalo, New York, Susan earned a Bachelor’s degree in History at the University of Buffalo before moving to Vienna, Austria to pursue advanced studies in music performance at that city's prestigious Hochschule für Musik und darstellende Kunst. As a performer on the "modern" or Boehm-system flute her experience comprises a wide-range of North American and European venues, notably the Chautauqua Summer Music Festival, the Raimund Theater Orchestra (Vienna), the S.E.M. ensemble (New York City) and the Fort Dodge Symphony. A desire to unite her background in history with a growing passion for baroque music and for the “baroque” or one-keyed flute led her to recommence formal music studies at Oberlin Conservatory, where she completed the Master of Music in Historical Performance degree (2012) and was a recipient of The Dean’s Talent Award. An active soloist and chamber musician, Susan can be heard in a variety of venues in and around Cleveland. In addition to regular performances with Ensemble Belvedere, she has appeared with Burning River Baroque, Cantate Singers, and Musica Felice. She is also a dedicated teacher, maintaining both a private studio and offering lectures, demonstrations, and workshops on historical performance, baroque flute, and music history. Susan is a frequent participant in early music festivals and workshops--among them the Baroque Performance Institute in Oberlin, Ohio and the Early Music Festival in Vancouver, British Columbia--and has had lessons with and performed at masterclasses for Barthold Kuijken, Wilbert Hazelzet, Jed Wentz, and Christopher Krueger. In her free time, Susan enjoys spending time with her family, hiking, reading, and a good cup of coffee. She also enjoys watching basketball and is a die-hard fan of the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Eva Lymenstull, baroque cello
Eva Lymenstull completed a Master’s degree in baroque cello at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague in 2014, where she was a student of Jaap ter Linden. As a baroque cellist and violist da gamba, Ms. Lymenstull has performed with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Holland Baroque Society, Symphonie Atlantique, Mercury, and with various ensembles at the 2013 and 2014 Utrecht Early Music Fringe Festivals, and was a member of ensembles selected to be semi-finalists in the International Biber Competition 2013 and the Van Wassenaer Competition 2014.
She has presented research findings on historical chordal continuo realization practices on the cello, and has received several grants, including the Theodore Presser and Wagoner Foundation awards, to pursue studies in historical performance. Ms. Lymenstull also holds a Master’s degree in modern cello from Rice University, where she studied with Desmond Hoebig, and a Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan, with Richard Aaron, where she graduated with highest honors.
A versatile and all-rounded violinist who specializes in period performance, violinist Alan Choo's playing has been described by The Straits Times Singapore as “an intoxicating brew of poetry and dare‐devilry.” He has performed as a soloist with orchestras such as the Tafelmusik Winter Institute Orchestra, Case Baroque Orchestra, Baltimore Baroque Band, St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra and Singapore Symphony Orchestra, and in July 2017 will tour with Apollo’s Fire as a soloist to the Tanglewood Music Festival and Ravinia Music Festival. A recipient of the Excellence in Early Music Award and Grace Clagett Ranney Prize in Chamber Music from Peabody Conservatory, he is also a founding member of the piano trio Trio Phoenix, and released a new music album entitled “SG Inspirations” with pianist Lin Hengyue in 2015. A graduate of the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music in Singapore and Peabody Conservatory under the principal guidance of Alexander Souptel, Victor Danchenko and Risa Browder, Alan is currently pursuing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Historical Performance Practice under Dr. Julie Andrijeski at Case Western Reserve University.
David Estéban Escobar, viola da gamba and baroque cello
David Estéban Escobar, viola da gamba, hails from Medellín, Colombia. During his years as an undergraduate student at Baylor University, he became acquainted with the baroque cello and the viola da gamba. He then went on to obtain a Master’s of Music degree in Historical Performance from the Oberlin Conservatory, concentrating in baroque cello under the instruction of Catharina Meints. Now in his final year in the doctoral program at Case Western Reserve University, David continues to work with Ms. Meints on the viola da gamba, with René Schiffer on period cello, and with Julie Andrijeski on chamber and orchestral ensembles.
Jason Aquila, harpsichord
Jason holds a Master of Music degree in Collaborative Piano and Chamber Music from the Cleveland Institute of Music. He also has considerable experience on the harpsichord and organ, including serving as a staff accompanist at the Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute since 2007. In addition to his work with Ensemble Belvedere, Jason currently coaches chamber music and serves as a staff accompanist and vocal coach at the Baldwin-Wallace Conservatory of Music. He also serves as organist and bell choir director at Church of the Redeemer in Westlake.
Michael Tweed-Kent, baroque cello
Michael Tweed-Kent teaches cello at Skyline Music and the Oberlin Community Music School, as well as privately at his studio in Shaker Heights. He recently completed his Master of Music in Cello Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy at the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with Dr. Melissa Kraut. Michael received his Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, studying with Uri Vardi. Michael has performed in master classes for Timothy Eddy, Steven Doane, Alban Gerhardt, Joel Smirnoff, the Jupiter Quartet, and the Borromeo Quartet. Michael has also performed with the Madison Symphony Orchestra and is a member of CityMusic Cleveland. In addition to his musical studies he is training to become a practitioner in Feldenkrais, a body-awareness method.
Qin Ying Tan is currently a doctoral student specializing in early keyboards and baroque dance at the Cleveland Institute of Music, Case Western Reserve University. She holds degrees from Peabody Conservatory of Music, Johns Hopkins University and has performed in Singapore, Malaysia, Shanghai, Germany, France and the United States. Top-prize winner of the International Young Artists' Piano Competition 2010 in Washington D.C., Ying was invited to perform in the State Department the same year. Ying has performed at the Boston Early Music Festival, Kent Music Festival, Hopkins Arts Festival, the Berkeley Early Music Festival and the Singapore Embassy in Washington D.C. Ying has also given a series of concerts, lectures, and masterclasses back home in Singapore about early music and period performance practice at various colleges. She currently serves as organist and pianist at United Methodist Church East Shore in Euclid City.
Ying hopes to spread her passion for music through teaching and performing. In her free time, she loves to create new recipes in the kitchen and hike around beautiful Cleveland.
Rebecca Landell Reed enjoys a varied career performing on multiple instruments and playing music from the Renaissance to the 21st century. Although her Bachelor and Master degrees focused on cello performance, she became interested in viola da gamba and baroque cello while studying at Oberlin Conservatory with Darrett Adkins. She developed her early music skills with Catharina Meints and with Michael and Maria Brüssing in the Czech Republic. While at Rice University studying with Norman Fischer, she connected with the Crumhorn Collective, an eclectic outreach band of Renaissance multi-instrumentalists. Through outreach and acting coaching, she continued to push her boundaries to include staged productions, like her participation with Studio Theatre’s rendition of An Iliad. Ms. Reed enjoys finding new ways of using music to enrich her local community. She currently lives in the Cleveland area teaching private lessons and performing with Akron Symphony and Apollo’s Fire.
Alcee Chriss III, harpsichord
Alcee Chriss III recently garnered top prize at several international and national organ competitions, including First Prize and Audience Prize at the Miami International Organ Competition in 2014 and top prize at the Albert Schweitzer National Organ Competition in 2013. He has appeared at such diverse venues as the Myerson Symphony Center, the Kennedy Center, and the Cathedral Shrine de Guadalupe, and recently performed as a “Rising Star” at the Summer 2014 American Guild of Organists National Convention in Boston. As a harpsichordist, Alcee has performed with the Oberlin Chamber Orchestra and served as staff accompanist at the Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute. Concurrently pursuing degrees in Organ Performance and Historical Keyboard at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, his teachers past and present include James David Christie, Olivier Latry, Marie-Louise Langlais, Webb Wiggins and Hank Knox. In addition to his full-time studies, Alcee serves as Minister of Music at the historic Euclid Avenue Congregational Church in Cleveland, Ohio and is active as a conductor and jazz pianist.
Kathie Stewart, baroque flute (guest artist)
Kathie Stewart, called "stellar" by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, is a founding member of Apollo's Fire: The Cleveland Baroque Orchestra. She is a faculty member of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where she serves as Teacher of Baroque Flute and Curator of Harpsichords in the Historical Performance Department. In addition to performing around the country on traverso and recorder with Apollo's Fire, she has also appeared with the Cleveland Orchestra, Cleveland Opera, ARTEK, the Oberlin Baroque Ensemble and Turn the Corner Irish Band. Stewart has performed at the Aspen and Ojai Music Festivals, the Boston Early Music Festival, the New World Symphony's Baroque Festival in Miami, Oberlin College Artist Series, the National Academy of Sciences, the Library of Congress and the Dumbarton Oaks series in Washington, D. C. In addition she has performed to sold-out crowds with Apollo's Fire in Cleveland's Severance Hall.
Stewart appears on thirteen recordings with Apollo's Fire, including solo performances in Brandenburg Concerto No. IV by J. S. Bach (Electra), and Concerto in E Minor for Flute and Recorder by G. P. Telemann (Koch). An accomplished Irish flute player, she can also be heard on Scarborough Fayre: Traditional Tunes from the British Isles and the New World, and on Apollo's Fire's newest CD, Come To The River: an Early American Gathering.
Stewart studied modern flute with Joyce Catalfano at West Virginia University, where she received a Bachelor of Music degree, and at the Manhattan School of Music with Thomas Nyfenger, receiving the degree of Master of Music. She completed the doctoral coursework at the University of Cincinnati as a student of George Hambrecht, and participated in Eiji Hashimoto's Baroque Ensemble, where she began to explore the baroque flute. Fascination with the traverso led her to Oberlin's Baroque Performance Institute, where she studied baroque flute and recorder with Chris Krueger and Michael Lynn.
Ensemble Belvedere © 2013