Chamber Music Madness Artistic Director The Skyros Quartet, brings a bright and inventive style to the performance stage. Passionate about the education of future generations of musicians, Skyros musicians provide coaching for students in schools through the ECCHO program, for the summer student festival, Tuned In!, and for the adult amateur members of the Chamber Music Guild. Skyros musicians offer private lessons and perform as principal players in the Seattle Collaborative Orchestra. Beyond their work in the Pacific Northwest, Skyros has concertized across the US, Canada, and China. Founded in 2010 at the University of Texas at Austin during their Masters studies, Skyros members completed a doctoral quartet residency at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. This dynamic quartet released their debut album, INTROSPECTIVE ODYSSEY, to great international acclaim in August 2015. It can be heard on the Navona label of Parma Recordings.
Sarah Pizzichemi, violinist, received her Doctorate in Musical Performance from the Glen Korff School of Music at the University of Nebraska. She has a Bachelors degree in Violin Performance and a Masters degree in Chamber Music Performance from the University of Texas at Austin. Sarah was an enthusiastic Chamber Music Madness student in her youth and made her solo violin debut with the Seattle Symphony in 2004.
Justin Kurys, violist, is a doctoral candidate in Musical performance at the Glen Korff School of Music at the University of Nebraska. He received a Masters in Chamber Music Performance from the University of Texas at Austin 2012 and his Bachelors in Music with Honours at Sir Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada in 2010. Justin also grew up on Ontario, Canada.
Willie Braun, cellist, received his Doctorate in Musical Performance from the Glen Korff School of Music at the University of Nebraska in 2015. His Bachelors degree in Cello Performance is from Arizona State University in 2010 and he has a Masters in Chamber Music Performance from the Sarah and Ernest Butler School of Music at the University of Texas at Austin in 2012. Willie and his colleagues have developed a chamber music curriculum for school orchestra students.
Guest Faculty and Former Faculty
Icicle Creek Adult Weekend Retreat
Cecellia Archuleta, violinist, has performed internationally as a soloist, chamber, and orchestral musician. She has toured in North and South America with the Orquestra de la Juventud and the Toluca Symphony Orchestra. She was also Concertmaster and featured soloist for several concerts. By special request of the First Lady of Mexico, Cecilia has performed before the President of Mexico, José López Portillo. Cecilia’s career in Los Angeles, her birthplace, brought numerous engagements, including a concert for Princess Grace of Monaco with American harpsichordist, Igor Kipnis, and a performance of the Bach Double Concerto with Jack Benny. She has also performed with Pacific Symphony Orchestra, and the Pasadena Symphony Orchestra.
In the Pacific Northwest, Cecilia is one of the most sought-after violinist for chamber music. She was the founding member of the Onyx Chamber Players, soloist with Octava Chamber Orchestra, and has performed with the Philadelphia String Quartet for 12 seasons at the Olympic Music Festival, and will be performing her third season this summer with the Friday Harbor Chamber Music Festival. Cecilia is a member of Northwest Sinfonietta, and Concertmaster with Philharmonia Northwest. She has also performed with Seattle Symphony, Auburn Symphony, and the Pacific Northwest Ballet. On period violin, Cecilia performs with Seattle Baroque Orchestra, Gallery Concerts, Intimate Baroque Series, and is a member of the Opus 20 String Quartet.
Miriam Shames, cellist, earned a BA in Literature from Yale University and a Masters degree in Cello Performance from Juilliard. She spent 12 years in arts administration, as a classical music publicist for Shuman Associates and Young Concert Artists, and then for five years as Executive Director of the Piatigorsky Foundation in New York City. As a freelance performer in Seattle since 2000, she has served as Principal cellist of Philharmonia Northwest, Assistant Principal of the Tacoma Symphony, and has played with Pacific Northwest Ballet, the Northwest Sinfonietta and Seattle Choral Company, among many other area ensembles. Currently, Miriam maintains a busy private teaching studio and is director of Carlsen Cello Foundation, a non-profit that loans fine cellos to deserving and talented students who cannot afford their own instrument. She and her husband Michael Cole, a photographer, live on Queen Anne.
Charles Enlow, pianist, has been richly praised throughout the United States and in Europe for his sensitive and virtuosic recital performances. In the Pacific Northwest, he has appeared frequently as a solo recitalist and with chamber music ensembles. Charles Enlow’s performance repertoire spans over three centuries, from Bach, Scarlatti, and Mozart to Rachmaninov, Mompou, and contemporary works by American composers. Charles has a special passion for piano music of Spain and France, with a particular interest in the solo piano music of Gabriel Fauré. A native of Idaho, Dr. Enlow pursued his musical studies at the Juilliard School and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. Dr. Enlow attended the University of Texas at Austin, where he received his Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees. He has taught at the University of Texas at Austin and Texas State University, and is currently a member of the music faculty at Shoreline College, where he teaches collaborative piano, vocal ensemble performance, and produces Shoreline Community College’s opera and Musical Theater productions.
Leslie Faye Johnson, violist, received much of her performance training at The Juilliard School, completing both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees; her Doctorate is from the University of Washington. Leslie’s doctoral dissertation on the Shostakovich Viola Sonata, published by Bärenreiter, is often used in scholarly research. Leslie performed for many years as Principal Violist/Solo Violist of the Pacific Northwest Ballet Orchestra in Seattle, the Northwest Sinfonietta, and as a substitute with the Seattle Symphony. Leslie has appeared as guest artist on many prominent Northwest chamber music series including the Olympic Music Festival, Chamber Music San Juans, and the Second City Chamber Music Series and co-founded the Bellingham Chamber Music Society. Leslie’s CD recording of the Six Bach Suites was released in 2013, and she continues to tour performing memorized programs of the consecutive six suites. In addition to maintaining a large private viola studio, Leslie coaches Seattle Youth Symphony viola sections, is summer faculty for Marrowstone-in-the-City and the Birch Bay String Teachers’ Workshop, and gives symposiums on teaching for the local chapter of ASTA. She currently performs with the chamber group a piacere da camera.
James Moat, violinist, earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts in 2017 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and hails from Toronto, Ontario. He received a Master of Music in 2009 in Classical Music Performance from the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, in Limerick, Ireland, where he studied with Mariana Sirbu. During his Masters, he performed in Paris and Amsterdam, and a carried out a research trip to visit the home of Jean Sibelius in Finland. James graduated from Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, with a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance under the guidance of Jerzy Kaplanek and members of the Penderecki String Quartet. Recently, he and the Skyros Quartet attended the Center for Advanced Quartet Studies at the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado and worked with the Jupiter, Takacs, American and Pacifica string quartets in addition to studying under Earl Carlyss, Sylvia Rosenberg and James Dunham. Dedicated to the education of future musicians, James and the Skyros Quartet, in conjunction with Chamber Music Madness, developed and now direct a chamber music in the schools program in Seattle called ECCHO. James looks forward to this new direction in music, both in performing and working in communities to share music with those that may not have had many opportunities to experience the arts.