I am a Japanese native who picked up violin at the age of 4. When I moved to Oregon as a foreign exchange student at 15, I found freedom in music. My choice of music was restricted to classical in Japan but in the US, I was introduced to pop, rock and soul by my American brothers.
I went to Berklee College of Music majoring in audio engineering and violin performance. I learned jazz (including improvisation) but outside of school, I was exploring genres like folk rock and Celtic music. During that time, I also started arranging strings for band projects and playing electric violin. After graduating, I attended the Henry Mancini Institute summer program at UCLA. I was one of a few violinists who could improvise so I was soloing with jazz combos and coaching other classical string players.
I’ve been in Los Angeles nearly 20 years. I’ve worked with artists ranging from classical, jazz, bluegrass, metal, and hip hop. I’ve performed on stage and in the studio with major
artists, arranged strings for over 1,500 songs, and I’m regularly in the studio recording myself and others.
I perform acoustic on standard violin and viola. I also play electric violin (5-string) and an acoustic 5-string (hybrid violin/viola).
Violinist Anna Kostyuchek has appeared as soloist, chamber musician, and orchestral player throughout the United States, South America, and Europe.
She has been a member of the Philharmonie der Nationen under Justus Frantz and the Stuttgart Bach Academy under Helmuth Rilling, where she served as Associate Concertmaster and Principal Second Violin, and with whom she performed in the greatest concert halls of South America and Europe, including the Berlin Philharmonie, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, the Kultur- und Kongresszentrum Luzern, and the Teatro del Lago in Frutillar, Chile. As an orchestral musician she has performed under the batons of such renowned conductors as Michael Tilson Thomas, John Williams, George Mester, Grant Gershon, and David Newman.
As a recording artist she has recorded for numerous television and motion picture soundtracks, including Star Trek, Dexter, Fear Factor, Grey’s Anatomy, Survivor, Batman Returns, American Idol, The Voice, Dancing with the Stars, and had an onscreen role in the TV shows The Big Bang Theory and Shooter. Anna has also appeared in concert with Barbra Streisand, Andrea Bocelli, Tony Bennett, Burt Bacharach, Stevie Wonder, Black Eyed Peas, and Harry Connick, Jr.
As soloist, she has appeared with the Mozart Classical Orchestra and Santa Cecilia Orchestra. She is a member of the Los Angeles Master Chorale Orchestra, Santa Barbara Opera Orchestra, and is Associate Concertmaster of Riverside Philharmonic.
Clement Chow has studied at Rice University and Cleveland Institute of Music where he received his Bachelor and Master of Music. He has been to music festivals around the world which include the Aspen Music Festival, Pacific Music Festival in Japan, as well as Schleswig Holstein Music Festival in Germany. He made his solo debut with the Houston Symphony at the age of 16. He has also studied with some of the greatest chamber music groups around the world. The groups include Tokyo, Cleveland, Alban Berg, and Amadeus String Quartets.
NEAL STULBERG has conducted many of the world’s leading orchestras, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Atlanta, Houston, Saint Louis and San Francisco Symphonies, Netherlands Radio Symphony, West German Radio Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic, St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra and Moscow Chamber Orchestra. He has appeared as opera and ballet conductor with New York City, San Francisco and Netherlands Ballets, Long Beach Opera, Norwegian National Ballet and Hollands Diep Opera Company. His performances of Mozart concertos conducted from the keyboard are uniformly praised for their buoyant virtuosity. For West German Radio, he has recorded orchestral and solo piano works of Lazare Saminsky, Alexander Veprik and Mikhail Gnessin. Formerly assistant conductor of the Los Angeles Philharmonic under Carlo Maria Giulini and music director of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra, he is a recipient of the Seaver/National Endowment for the Arts Conductors Award, America's most coveted conducting prize. A native of Detroit, Mr. Stulberg is a graduate of Harvard College, the University of Michigan, the Juilliard School and the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome. Since 2005, he has served as professor and director of orchestral studies at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music.
Benjamin Loeb is an accomplished conductor, soloist, accompanist, arranger, educator, arts administrator and entrepreneur. As a conductor, Loeb has lead orchestras across the US and around the world including in China, Argentina, Czech, Ukraine, and Bulgaria. His widely varied projects range from concerts of Beethoven and Bruckner Symphonies and Mahler song cycles to recordings with Yo-Yo Ma of Italian 16th century madrigalists to tours with popular rock musicians to world premieres of the most cutting-edge avant-garde contemporary music.
His piano performances have been heralded by the Boston Globe: “[his] vigorous, cogent playing signaled the kind of equally weighted partnership, plus competition, plus mutual quest, etc. that [makes] this music live.” He has soloed with the Boston Pops Orchestra at the invitation and under the direction of former New York Philharmonic Music Director Alan Gilbert. He has also collaborated as concerto soloist with many other conductors including JoAnn Falletta, Carl St. Clair, and Rossen Milanov.
Some memorable recent performances include the complete Brahms Violin Sonatas with Chicago Symphony Orchestra Concertmaster Robert Chen and the complete Beethoven Violin Sonatas with violinist Jennifer Frautschi. At the invitation of United States Department of State, Loeb toured Argentina and Uruguay as an Artistic Ambassador, performing recitals of the music of Scott Joplin and giving master classes and workshops with youth orchestras and young musicians. He has recorded for Naxos (both as soloist and collaborative pianist), CBC and the DSCLabel. He holds a Graduate Performance Diploma from the Peabody Conservatory in Conducting, as a student of Gustav Meier, a Master in Music from the Curtis Institute and a Doctor in Musical Arts from the Juilliard School in Accompanying and a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard University.
As an administrator, he has served as Executive Director of the Quad City (Iowa) Symphony Orchestra and the Greater Bridgeport Symphony and as Music Director of the 2011 New Hampshire Music Festival. As Associate Conductor of the El Paso Symphony Orchestra, Loeb founded and served as both Executive and Music Director of the El Paso Symphony Youth. He is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the International Conducting Workshop and Festival, now in its twenty-second year.
He lives in Plano, TX with his wife, Quyen, his 16-year-old daughter, Anna Sofia Uni, his 14-year-old, Lulu Ladybug, and 12-year-old son Ryan “Taco”. Loeb’s far-ranging interests do not limit him to music; he is a proud Rotary Paul Harris Fellow, has directed plays, cooked gourmet meals for 65, tutored over 500 people in test preparation for the Princeton Review, and played and enjoyed almost every sport. Moreover (or most important), he is a lifetime Dallas Cowboys fan.
As a soloist, Julia Heinen has performed hundreds of concertos and recitals around the world including recent performances in Italy, Belgium, Hungary, Poland, France, El Salvador, the Czech Republic, Spain and Portugal.
Ms. Heinen has adjudicated countless competitions including chairing the jury of the 9th International Mercadante Clarinet Competition in Noci, Italy and serving on the jury for the 2nd Biannual International European Clarinet Competition in Ghent, Belgium.
Since 1995, Ms. Heinen has been Professor of Music at California State University, Northridge. She has been a member of the International Clarinet Association since 1978 and served as the co-artistic director of ClarinetFest® 2011 the annual international conference of this organization. She continues her work with the ICA as the National State Chair Coordinator and state of California Chair of the International Clarinet Association. She holds degrees from the University of Michigan, Northwestern University and the University of Minnesota, studying clarinet with J. Cloyde Williams, Herbert Blayman, and Robert Marcellus.
Ms. Heinen is committed to participation in the arts being available to all and works diligently to advocate for this goal. Her research and leadership projects focus on underrepresented constituencies and she works to make sure everyone who wishes to participate in the arts as a vocation or avocation has the opportunity to do so.
Julia Heinen is a Buffet Crampon, D’Addario and Silverstein Performing Artist and performs exclusively on Buffet clarinets, D’Addario reeds, and Silverstein ligatures.
Mike Bolger’s many recording/writing credits and vast performance experiences occurred because he stayed true to one thing throughout his career- playing music on the street. Street performance (or busking as it’s called in Europe) has opened many more doors than the more typical networks of music college and auditions. Busking got him a house-band gig on NBC, spots in feature films, countless recording sessions, and tons of freelance gigs. Busking has also helped Mike cultivate his sound and musical philosophy- jazz is urban folk music. Mike’s music career is directly linked to the accordion. He took up accordion in high school-
not to play polka gigs but as an acoustic alternative to bulky vintage keys. He applied his musical knowledge as a pianist to the accordion and figured out the button system. At UCLA Mike worked out playing accordion and trumpet simultaneously. This became his act and he
soon took to the streets of Westwood to supplement his college budget. He passed out cards and his career started to grow. The accordion became a “musical passport.” Mike learned music styles from all over the world. Mike has toured the world playing Mexican folkloric music, Cumbias, rock en espanol, salsa, jazz, and originals. When bands hire him to play trumpet or keys he always brings the
accordion along. Mike’s seen the world as a busker and it has taught him a lot. In addition to his multi-instrumentalist skills, Mike has cultivated an emotive/soulful style that connects with an audience. He maintains a vast international repertoire. He makes jazz fun, not academic. Mike teaches at the Silverlake Conservatory of Music where he directs the “Hollywood Highsteppers” marching band. He accompanies dance classes for CDI at public schools in LAUSD including Carthay Elementary and Carson-Gore. Mike earned a BFA in Jazz trumpet Performance from CalArts in 1997.