The Faculty:

  • The St. Petersburg Quartet
  • Alla Aranovskaya, violin
  • Boris Vayner, viola
  • Thomas Mesa, cello
  • Tao Lin, piano

  • The St. Petersburg Quartet

    St.Petersburg Quartet

    Alla Aranovskaya, violin
    Dr. Alla Aranovskaya, violin
    B.M.A., M.M.A., D.M.A.
    St. Petersburg Conservatory, Russia.

    Alla Aranovskaya was born in August, 1958 in St. Petersburg (then Leningrad), Russia. She started to play piano when she was two and a half years old , and violin at the age of six.

    Ms. Aranovskaya graduated the Rimsky-Korsakov Music College in 1977. In 1985 she graduated the St. Petersburg Conservatory, receiving a Master degree in 1987 and a Doctor of Music in 1989.

    She was a winner of the All-Russia Solo Violin Competition in 1985. From 1987 until 2001 she was Professor of Violin at the St. Petersburg Conservatory, Russia. Her solo appearances include St. Petersburg State Capella Orchestra, Kazan Philharmonic, Moldova National Orchestra, Ulyanivsk Philharmonic.

    As a founding member of the Saint Petersburg String Quartet Ms. Aranovskaya won First Prize at the All-Soviet Union String Quartet Competition, the Silver Medal and a Special Prize at the Tokyo International Competition of Chamber Ensembles, First Prize and both Special Prizes at the Vittorio Gui International Competition for Chamber Ensembles in Florence, Italy, and First Prize and the "Grand Prix Musica Viva" at the International Competition for Chamber Ensembles in Melbourne, Australia.

    Ms. Aranovskaya was a faculty member of the Oberlin Conservatory from (1997 to 2003).  She was a jury member of several major competitions including the 2004 Melbourne, Australia International Chamber Music Competition

    Ms. Aranovskaya's students have won numerous prizes at competitions, including the Grand Prize at the Coleman Chamber Music Competition in Pasadena, CA (Erato Quartet, Oberlin), First Prize at Germany's "Jugend  Musiziert" (Jeunesses Musicales) Competition, the Sarasate competition in Spain, the Beethoven Competition in  Austria, Corpus Christi and  Tchaikovsky competition for young musicians.

    Boris Vayner, viola
    Boris Vayner, viola
    B.M.A., M.M.A.
    St. Petersburg Conservatory, Russia
    M.M.A. New England Conservatory, Boston, MA

    Boris Vayner was born in Novosibirsk, Russia. His professional background includes Novosibirsk Music College and St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he studied with Aleksey Lyudevig. While studying, Mr.Vayner played recitals in St. Petersburg(Russia), Drammen (Norway), Berlin(Germany), and took part in the Schleswig Holstein Music Festival.

    Mr.Vayner was a founding member of the Krasny String Quartet, which received 1st prize at the Gartow Fund Chamber Music Competition in St. Petersburg in 1999, and recorded all the quartets of Vissarion Shebalin for Olympia label. As a soloist Mr.Vayner appeared with St. Petersburg Chamber Philharmonie. He also received 2nd prize in the Gartow Fund Solo Competition in St. Petersburg in 2002.

    Mr.Vayner was an assistant principal viola of the St. Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra and a principle viola of the Novosibirsk Youth Orchestra.

    Mr.Vayner moved to the US in 2003 to study at the New England Conservatory, in the class of Carol Rodland, and he earned Master of Music in 2005. He has attended master classes by Kim Kashkashian and Karen Tuttle, and played with Boston Symphony.

    Since 2005 Boris Vayner has been a viola player of the St. Petersburg String Quartet, intensively touring in US, Europe and Asia.

    Thomas Mesa, cello
    Thomas Mesa, cello
    B.M.A. Juilliard School
    M.M.A. Northwestern University

    Thomas Mesa, a native of Miami, Florida, holds a Bachelors Degree in Cello Performance from The Juilliard School (2012), and will receive his Masters Degree in Cello Performance this Spring from Northwestern University where he on full scholarship as the recipient of the Richard and Helen Thomas Fellowship. An avid chamber musician, Thomas has toured with Itzhak Perlman and Proteges both nationally and internationally, and is a member of the St. Petersburg Piano Quartet. He has performed either in ensemble or as a soloist in venues such as Carnegie Hall, Metropolitan Art Museum, Alice Tully Hall, Paul Hall, WMP Music Hall, Arsht Center for Performing Arts, Jordan Hall, and on PBSs From the Top. He performs regularly as the Solo Cellist in choral productions under Donald Nally, the most recent this past December where he performed the American premiere of "Astralis" by German composer, Wolfgang Rihm, with The Crossing Choir (winner of the 2009 and 2011 ASCAP award for adventurous programming) at the Metropolitan Art Museum in New York. He is a collaborating artist with Fonema Consort, an established new music group in Chicago, and can be heard on their debut CD which was released in May, 2014.

    Thomas' awards include First Place in the 2013 Thaviu Competition for String Performance; First Place Alhambra Concerto Competition, Ray Millete Young Artist's Award, Certificate of Merit in Music from the City of Miami; and Outstanding Musicianship Award from New World Symphony Concerto Competition. He is a principal cellist of Northwestern Symphony Orchestra and has also performed in orchestras under the batons of distinguished conductors such as James Levine, Tan Dun, David Afkham, Alan Gilbert, James Conlon, Nicholas McGegan, Ludovic Morlot, Franz Welser-Most, Joel Sachs, Benjamin Zander, and, most recently, Victor Yampolsky, Donald Nally, and Timothy J. Robblee.

    Thomas has attended Summer festivals and institutes such as the Banff Centre Masterclass Program, Perlman Chamber Music Workshop, Stowe Residency (Perlman Program), Kneisel Hall, Heifetz International Music Institute, Aspen Music Festival, Yellow Barn Young Artists Program, Kronberg Masterclasses, and Royal Danish Academy Masterclass Program, and Meadowmount School of Music where he was a teaching assistant. In Miami, Thomas was a Chamber Music Coach for Greater Miami Youth Symphony and has taught private lessons both in Miami, Chicago and New York. Thomas has studied under Hans Jorgen Jensen (Northwestern), Timothy Eddy (Juilliard), Mark Churchill (New England Conservatory), Ross Harbaugh (University of Miami), and Wells Cunningham (Miami).

    Tao Lin, piano
    Tao Lin, piano

    Described by critics as possessing “Keen musical intelligence and excellent facility” (Miami Herald) as well as “opulent and romantic tone” (Fanfare), Chinese-American concert pianist and Steinway artist Tao Lin has performed in Asia, North America, and Europe. A versatile musician, he is equally at home as soloist, recitalist and chamber musician. Born into a musical family in Shanghai, he began piano lessons at the age of four, first with his mother and later his father, both on faculty at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. The following year saw his first public performance and at the age of eight, he gained entrance to the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. As a teenager, he performed in the Chinese premiere of Bartok’s Sonata for two Pianos and Percussion, a major musical event at the time. After moving to the United States, Mr. Lin continued his active concert activities.

    As a soloist, he has performed with Moscow Chamber Orchestra, Winnipeg Symphony, Miami Chamber Orchestra, Knoxville Civic Orchestra amongst others. As a recitalist, he has performed at such prestigious venues as the Kennedy Center, National Gallery of Art, 92nd Street Y, Rockefeller University, Chautauqua Institute, Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, Minnesota Orchestra Hall, Izumi Hall (Osaka, Japan), and Edvard Grieg Museum in Norway. A devoted chamber musician, Mr. Lin has concertized throughout the United States as a member of the Berlin Piano Quartet (with Jacques Thibaud String Trio) and the Brahms Piano Quartet (with St. Petersburg String Quartet). He has also appeared in concerts with Miami, Bergonzi, Alcon, Rosalyra, and St. Petersburg String Quartets as well as distinguished musicians such as Elmar Oliveira, Roberto Diaz, William De Rosa, Charles Castleman, Eugenia Zukerman, Claudio Bohórquez and members of Metropolitan Opera, Philadelphia, St. Louis, National, Minnesota, Pittsburg, Cleveland, Atlanta, and Berlin Staatskapelle Orchestras.

    A regular guest artist at numerous music festivals, Mr. Lin has performed at the Music Festival of the Hamptons, Mainly Mozart Festival (Miami), Music Mountain Chamber Music Festival, Arts Rolla Festival, Highlands-Cashiers Chamber Music Festival, Bowdoin International Music Festival, and Festival Miami.

    Very much in demand as a pedagogue as well, Mr. Lin has given master classes and lectures at universities and conservatories in the United States, Norway, and China. Recently, he received the award for “Outstanding International Pedagogue” from Shanghai Normal University School of Music.
    Mr. Lin’s competition accomplishments have included National Society of Arts and Letters, Music Teachers’ National Association, Palm Beach International Invitational, 1st International Piano-e-Competition, William Kapell International Piano Competition and 1st Osaka International Chamber Music Competition.
    He is currently an artist faculty member at the Bowdoin International Music Festival and is a visiting professor at Shanghai Normal University Music College. A prolific recording artist, Mr. Lin can be heard on Naxos, Artek, Centaur, Romeo, Poinciana, and Piano Lovers labels. He is represented by Lisa Sapinkopf Artist Management.