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Beverly Hills National Auditions Winners
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The Interludes
(formerly, The Previews in Manhattan Beach)

2014-2015 Concert Series

Torrance Beach

Talented artists and ensembles are selected at the Beverly Hills National Auditions and presented monthly in the South Bay on The Interludes concert series. The concerts also are presented on the preceding Friday evenings on the Music By The Sea recital series in the Encinitas Public Library. From January through June, the concerts are presented the following Sundays on Beverly Hills' Music In The Mansion recital series in Beverly Hills' historic Greystone Mansion. Find information about the next Beverly Hills National Auditions by clicking here.

Saturday afternoons at 3:00 p.m.
First Lutheran Church & School

2900 W. Carson Street, Torrance, CA 90503
(on the south side of Carson Street just east of Maple)
For a Google map, click here.

For information, call Classical Crossroads at (310) 316-5574 or click here.

Free admission - Donations Appreciated

Click to see Beverly Hills National Auditions Winners from past seasons:
[2001-2013] [2013-2014] [2014-2015] [2015-2016]
[2016-2017] [2017-2018] [2018-2019] [2019-2020]

Saturday, September 20, 2014 at 3:30 p.m.

with Pianist

Etienne Gara, violinYoung French-born violinist Etienne Gara has already performed extensively worldwide. A 2010 laureate of the prestigious Fondation Marcel Bleustein-Blanchet, as well as a laureate of the Fifth International Chamber Music Ensemble in Boston, he is a top-prize winner of several competitions. He has been a frequent guest of international music festivals, including the Juventus Festival in France, where he met the noted French composer Éric Tanguy who wrote piece for Mr. Gara. He also attended the Perlman Music Program in New York, and joined Itzhak Perlman for the winter residency of the festival in Sarasota, Florida and a tour in Israel. A passionate chamber musician and an advocate for the arts, he has collaborated with many of today's leading artists and with The American Contemporary Ballet and the Austin Eurythmy Ensemble. He also appears on screen in the movie Broken Horses. In 2014, Mr. Gara recorded a recital program of French selections on a 1714 Stradivarius for Media Hyperium3 with pianist Sonia Achkar.

Born in Paris to a French mother and Hungarian father, Étienne Gara started playing the violin at the age of five and joined the Mozarteum University of Salzburg at age sixteen. His musical journey led him to the Musikhochschule of Cologne, Indiana University, and the New England Conservatory, where he earned his Master of Music degree under renowned pedagogue and violinist Donald Weilerstein. He recently joined the elite studio of celebrated violinist Midori at the University of Southern California Thornton School.


Saturday, October 25, 2014 at 3:30 p.m.

Two Beverly Hills Auditions Winners in One Concert


The Upside
Diana Morgan flute                                    
                      Lauren Kosty vibraphone & percussion
                                            Stephen Pfeifer double bass

"In all of my years of performing and observing concerts, I have rarly seen such a brilliant and innovative chamber group as The Upside. They are the real deal, blending music of all genres with taste and virtuosity." ~ Jim Walker, former principal flute of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and founder of the jazz quartet Free Flight

The UpsideThe Upside is one of L.A.'s premier classical/jazz crossover ensembles. Three graduates of the country's top conservatories collaborate on music from Bach to Brubeck. The Upside combines a classical sensitivity with contemporary harmonies and improvisation. Their unique timbres set them apart from a standard jazz trio. Recent appearances include the Zipper Concert Hall with guest soloist Jim Walker, the CBS sound stage, the JAM! 2013 Festival, and the Andrew Weiss Gallery in Beverly Hills.


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with Pianist

Russell Veirs, saxophoneBeverly Hills Auditions winner Russell Veirs, a California Bay-Area native, began private saxophone studies at the University of California, Davis and continued at California State University, Sacramento, where he completed his Master of Music degree. In 2007, he was runner-up in the CSUS Festival of New American Music Performers Competition, where he was a finalist the previous year. Russell recently earned his Doctor of Musical Arts degree in saxophone performance at UCLA, studying with renowned saxophonist Douglas Masek. At UCLA, he performed in numerous woodwind chamber ensembles, the Camarades string chamber ensemble, and UCLA's contemporary music ensemble, Contempo Flux. A winner of UCLA's "All-Star Concerto Competition," he appeared as a soloist with the UCLA Philharmonia in 2012.


Saturday, November 15, 2014 at 3:30 p.m.

Graduate Students at the Colburn Conservatory and the USC Thornton School


Argus Quartet
                        Clara Kim violin     Diana Wade viola               
Jason Issokson violin                         Joann Whang cello

The newly formed Argus Quartet is dedicated to challenging the musical status quo through innovative concert presentations and adventurous repertoire. The Argus Quartet's interests extend beyond the highest level of music making - education, engagement, and bridging barriers between audience and artists are at the core of the quartet's mission.

Haydn String Quartet Op.74, No1
I. Allegro Moderato

Saturday, January 24, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.

Two Stellar Singers Share a Recital

Italian Soprano
with Pianist

Elisabetta Russo, sopranoBorn in Bari, Italy, Elisabetta Russo received a Bachelor's degree in singing and Master's degree with highest honors in singing specializing in chamber music from the Conservatorio Santa Cecilia in Rome. Winner of numerous competitions, Elisabetta has performed widely in sacred music, chamber music, and operas in Italy and abroad. Her most important operatic roles include Norina in Donizetti's Don Pasquale, Fiordiligi in Mozart's Così fan tutte, Tonina in Salieri's Prima la musica poi le parole in Rome, Gilda in Verdi's Rigoletto in Milan and at the RAI Auditorium in Naples, Nannetta in Verdi's Falstaff (starring Renato Bruson) at Teatro Cilea, Reggio Calabria. In November 2011, she won the prize as "Best Female Vocal" at the Hollywood Music-in-Media Awards. Recently she has recorded the CD Brise de Mér, with Leoncavallo's arias for voice and orchestra on the Suoneria Mediterranea label. In June 2013, she sang at the Paramount Studios for the Simin Foundation with famed tenor Andrea Bocelli, David Foster, and conductor Eugene Kohn.

Paolo Tosti's a Vucchella

Vladimir Khomyakov, pianoElisabetta's collaborative pianist for the afternoon is noted Russian-born international competition winner Vladimir Khomyakov. Vladimir began his studies at Rimsky-Korsakov State Conservatory in St. Petersburg and earned a post-graduate degree from the Tchaikovsky State Conservatory in Moscow. He completed his studies with the coveted Artist Diploma from the USC Thornton School of Music, where he now serves as assistant to to his teacher Daniel Pollack.

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Mezzo Soprano
with Pianist

Karin Mushegain,  mezzo-sopranoFast-rising young American mezzo-soprano Karin Mushegain, called "superb" (The New York Times) and possessing an "ideal, dusky mezzo" (Opera Today) is captivating audiences with her exciting, energetic portrayals, dramatic poise, and a dynamic vocal sound. During the past season, Ms. Mushegain made her debut as Carmen with Opera San Luis Obispo. She also made her debut with the Virginia Symphony in Rossini's Stabat Mater, and sang the title role in La Cenerentola with Pensacola Opera.

Much in demand, Ms. Mushegain's engagements in the previous seasons included roles with Pittsburgh Opera, Lyrique-En-Mer in Belle-Ile, France, Seattle Opera, Virginia Opera, Colorado Springs Philharmonic, Annapolis Opera, New York City Opera, Festival Mozaic in San Luis Obispo, Austin Lyric Opera, New York City Opera, Ash Lawn Opera in Charlottesville, Virginia, Opera Memphis, Glimmerglass Opera in New York, Florida Grand Opera, and Los Angeles Opera, making her debut as the Novice in Puccini's Suor Angelica, under the baton of Maestro James Conlon.

Ms. Mushegain received her Bachelor's Degree from Northwestern University, and pursued her Masters at University of California, Los Angeles.

No.5 Aria from "Bachianas Brasilerias" by Villa-Lobos

Paul Romero, pianoKarin's collaborator for the afternoon is noted award-winning composer and pianist Paul Pomero, who trained at three of the world's leading music conservatories - The Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, The Paris Conservatoire, and London's Guildhall School of Music & Drama. Paul is a frequent Upbeat Live speaker for Los Angeles Philharmonic concerts.

Saturday, February 21, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.

New York City-based Pianist

His May 2011 recital was the New York Times' Choice of the Week and reviewed as "One of the coolest events in NYC to go to."

Hayk Arsenyan, pianoA native of Armenia, New York-based pianist-composer Hayk Arsenyan made his orchestral debut with the Armenian Philharmonic at the age of 11 performing his own Requiem for piano and orchestra. At the age of 17, Mr. Arsenyan made his European orchestral debut as a soloist with the Radio France National Philharmonic Orchestra, and was awarded a platinum medal by the City of Paris. He has since appeared in numerous recitals in the USA, Armenia, Russia, France, Italy, Spain, the Canary Islands, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Argentina, Uruguay, Syria, and Lebanon. His performance venues have included Carnegie Hall (New York), Palais d'UNESCO and Salle Cortot (Paris), Tchaikovsky Concert Hall (Moscow), "Petranka" House-Museum of Mozart (Prague), Auditorio de Miguel Delibes (Valladolid), Dar-Al-Assad Opera House (Damascus), and appearances at the Dame Myra Hess Concert Series in Chicago, and the Phillips Collection Concert Series in Washington DC. His live recording from Chicago's Hess Series was released under the Naxos Music Library Label.

Currently, Dr. Arsenyan teaches at New York University Tisch School of the Arts. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Iowa and a Master's degree from the Gnessin Music Academy in Moscow. In 2007 he received the full-tuition Yevgeny Kissin Award for the Professional-Studies Performance Program at Manhattan School of Music in New York. Mr. Arsenyan also studied piano in Paris at École Normale Supérieure de Musique de Paris Alfred Cortot and the Conservatoire National de Region D'Aubervillier La-Courneuve.


Saturday, March 21, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.


Benjamin Mitchell, clarinet€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€€  Michael Kaufman, cello  Brendan White, piano
Benjamin Mitchell clarinet                                                           
Michael Kaufman cello
                                                                    Brendan White piano

The Los Angeles-based Mühlfeld Trio is quickly establishing itself on the forefront of new chamber music ensembles. The Trio takes its name in honor of clarinetist Richard Mühlfeld (1856-1907), whose playing so inspired Johannes Brahms near the end of his life that he came out of retirement and composed several works for him, including the famous trio for clarinet, cello, and piano. Equally dedicated to commissioning new works as performing the masterworks from the past, Mühlfeld Trio's 2014-2015 season will include premieres by noted composers Magnus Lindberg, Matthias Müller, Chris Rogerson, and Daniel Silliman, among others.

Saturday, April 18, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.

Quartet at the Colburn School


Amber Quartet
Eduardo Rios violin                                                       
Madeleine Vaillancourt violin
                                Benjamin Manis cello
                                                                     Tanner Menees viola

The Alma Quartet was formed at the Colburn School in the spring of 2013, where it has given numerous performances including the Brahms G Major Sextet with noted past Tokyo Quartet members and current Colburn Conservatory faculty Martin Beaver, viola and Clive Greensmith, cello as part of the Colburn Chamber Music Series. The Alma Quartet has worked intensively at the Colburn School with the famed Quatuor Ebène and in summer 2014 at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival with members of the Tokyo, Emerson, Brentano, and Artis Quartets. The Alma's principal teacher at the Colburn Conservatory, in addition to Clive Greensmith and Martin Beaver, is renowned first violin Arnold Steinhardt of the now legendary Guarneri Quartet.

Saturday, May 16, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.

"…Virtuoso experience"
~ Norwegian Østlands Post


First-Prize Winner at the 2013 Schmidbauer International Young Artist Competition in Texas

Hans Kristian Goldstein, celloCellist Hans Kristian Goldstein was born in Drammen, Norway in 1988 and made his orchestral solo debut with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra after winning their concerto competition at age sixteen. He was featured in the STRAD Magazine's "Fresh Faces," named "New Artist of the Month" by Musical America (April 2010), and his solo recital was cited as one of Baltimore's ten top musical events by the Baltimore Sun.

Hans has performed worldwide in leading concert halls including Weill at Carnegie Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, and Steinway Hall in Manhattan NY, the Chicago Cultural Center, Shriver Concert Hall in Baltimore, Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and the Grieg Hall in Bergen, Norway. Winner of numerous international competitions, he received First Prizes at the Schmidbauer International String Competition (2013), Alexander and Buono International String Competition (NY 2009), National Young Artist Competition in Midland-Odessa (2009), and the Lennox Young Artist International Competition (2008). In 2014, he was among ten winners in the Beverly Hills Auditions receiving a series of recital engagements in California and was named an iPalpiti Artist.

As a soloist with orchestras in the U.S. and Europe, he has appeared with the Trondheim Symphony, Bergen Philharmonic, Aspen Philharmonic, Peabody Symphony, and Richardson Symphony, among others. As an orchestral musician, Hans has completed his internship at the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, and has been the principal cellist of the festival orchestras such as Aspen and Sarasota, and of the orchestras at Peabody and USC. Mr. Goldstein's teachers include Hans Jensen (Chicago), Amit Peled (Baltimore), Torleif Thedeén (Stockholm) and Ralph Kirshbaum (Los Angeles).

Saturday, June 20, 2015 at 3:30 p.m.

Genre-Bending Chamber Music

The Whyman Project

Ryan Whyman piano/accordion/composer,
Mary Keating and Jordan Slocum violins,
Brandon Encinas viola, Billy Tobenkin cello,
Rodrigo Moreno bass, Michael Enriquez percussion

The Whyman Project is a unique collaboration of four string players and a rhythm section. Each accomplished in their own right, these musicians are based in Los Angeles and came together to play original music and arrangements by Ryan Whyman. Crossing genres between classical, jazz, pop, rock, and film music, Ryan brings his own unique twist to everything, redefining and expanding the piano quintet and jazz genres. In May of 2014, The Whyman Project was chosen as one of the winners of the prestigious Beverly Hills Auditions.


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