Biographies

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A truly international ensemble (Finnish, American, Dutch and Rumanian), the Orpheus Quartet has met with international acclaim since its founding in 1986.   It has given tours through North America, Europe, and Asia both as a unit and as collaborator with many of the world’s finest chamber musicians, including  pianists Menahem Pressler, Homero Francesch, Pavel Gililov, Ralf Gothoni and Ulrich Koella, and clarinetists José Luis Estelles and Sharon Kam.  The Orpheus Quartet also works toward commissioning and playing contemporary music and looks to all possibilities for broadening the standard repertoire with unusual and sometimes forgotten compositions. The quartet is currently preparing a recording of works by German composers Woldemar Bargiel and E. E. Taubert, along with one of César Franck and Claude Delvincourt. READ MORE

Emile Cantor was born in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands, and he started to play the viola, fascinated by its tonal beauty, at the age of 14. He went on to study at the National Conservatory of Paris as a student of Professor Serge Collot, who proved very influential to his stylistic and cultural development. Mr. Cantor was viola-soloist in the Netherland Chamber Orchestra of Amsterdam (under Szymon Goldberg and David Zinman), in the Philharmonic Orchestra of Copenhagen, and in the Orchestre National du Capitole de Toulouse (under Michel Plasson). READ MORE


Violinist Mark Gothoni started his musical training at the age of six at the Sibelius-Academy in Helsinki and subsequently became a pupil of Ana Chumachenko in Munich. Additionally, he received important impulses from Shmuel Ashkenasi in Chicago and Sandor Vegh in Salzburg. As a winner of several international competitions, among others the Brahms Violin Competition in Hamburg, he was honored in 1991 as “Debut-of-the-Year” at the Jyvâskylâ Arts Festival, Finland. Since then he has performed as a soloist with well known orchestras and conductors of high international rank and appeared in most important concert halls like the Berliner Philharmonie, the Casals Hall Tokyo, the Osaka Symphony Hall and the Teatro Municipal of Rio de Janeiro. READ MORE

Laurentiu Sbarcea (Violoncello): Born in Rumania, he studied at the “Ciprian Porumbescu” Conservatory in Bucharest under S. Antropov after winning several awards in youth competitions. After his studies he received tuition from D. Shaffran and M. Gendron and won prizes as a cellist in international competitions such as Marktneukirchen und Colmar. He has lived in Germany since 1984 and is second solo cellist of the Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra. His teaching is as varied as his activities include audition preparation and coaching of talented young musicians. He currently teaches at the Köln Hochschule, department Aachen. READ MORE

Violinist Timothy Summers is co-director of the Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival, which he also co-founded in 2000, and is second violinist of the celebrated Orpheus String Quartet. He is also a member of the first violin section of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra since 2009, and has performed on violin, viola, and occasionally mandolin with the orchestra at venues across the world. As a chamber musician, Mr. Summers has recently appeared in concert at the Wiener Festwochen (performing the Lyric Suite for its festival of Alban Berg), the Schumann Festival in Düsseldorf (for Schumann’s 200th anniversary), at the Berlin Philharmonie, at Schloss Elmau in Germany, and at Ferrara Musica in Italy. READ MORE