A romantic afternoon with Mezzo-Soprano Diana Tash, Violist Ruth Kahn, Pianist César Cañón, Chef Mark Furr.
- Viola -
A graduate of The Juilliard School and native of the San Francisco Bay Area, violist Ruth Ellen Kahn, has performed extensively on both coasts. Her chamber music experience includes performing with such eminent artists as, Cynthia Phelps, Shmuel Ashkenazi, Maurice Bourgue, the Miro String Quartet, and the Colorado String Quartet among others. She has received numerous awards, prizes and critical acclaim, as well as invitations to perform for such organizations as the New York Viola Society and at Hertz Hall in Berkeley, California. She has also performed as soloist with the Mexico City Philharmonic and the New England Symphonic Ensemble.
Ruth has been artistic director of two chamber music series in both New York and New Jersey, one of which resulted in a recital in Carnegie Recital Hall. Ms Kahn performed with the New York City Ballet Orchestra for nearly 20 years, before relocating back to the Bay Area. Among the many other orchestras with which she has played are the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, the New York City Opera Orchestra, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Los Angeles Opera Orchestra, the Carmel Bach Festival, and the San Francisco Opera Orchestra. Ruth is also an accomplished violinist, and the co-concertmaster of The Russian Chamber Orchestra of the Bay Area.
Internationally, Ruth has toured with the New England Symphonic and New York Chamber Ensembles to Morocco, Israel and Jordan, where they performed for the Royal Families. In addition, she has been invited numerous times to attend the Spoleto Festival in Italy and Charleston, N.C.
Ms. Kahn is very active in the area of viola and violin pedagogy and has been the assistant to Paul Doktor at the Juilliard School, taught master classes and has maintains a private studio in Marin County CA.. She has been on the faculty at U.C. Berkeley, The Marin Waldorf School and San Domenico. She is currently on the viola faculty at Interharmony Music Festival in Italy.
Her teachers have included Karen Tuttle, Paul Doktor, Heiichiro Ohyama, Louis Kievman, and the world-renowned violist, William Primrose.
“The viola recital by Ruth Kahn showed off the naturally rich sound of her instrument..Kahn let loose with a welter of secure technical passages and produced double-stops that were vibrantly in tune, Kahn sunk into the dark sound of her viola and pulled the harmonies out with full color.”
-Paul Somers, Classical New Jersey
- Mezzo-Soprano -
American Mezzo-Soprano Diana Tash appears in both operatic roles onstage, and as a featured soloist, gain- ing popularity in recital with renowned pianist Armen Guzelimian. Recent performances include a recital with NY Philharmonic principal violist Cynthia Phelps in Los Angeles and a performance at the Boston Court with the California String Quartet in May 2016. March 4th, 2016 Ms Tash performed as the mezzo soloist with the Los Angeles Dream orchestra in Rossini’s Stabat Mater. September 30, 2014, Tash along with famed countertenor Brian Asawa released their new baroque recording, “Spirits of the air.” Her varied career has spanned both the soprano and mezzo repertoire. Performances in 2014 include the role of Annina in La Traviata with the Pacific Symphony and as well as a tour to Guadalajara to perform The Baroque Project pro- gram in concert with countertenor Brian Asawa at the Festival de Mayo. Preceding this, includes performing two new songs by Composer Ian Krouse with the Debussy Trio and performing the World premiere “Sacred Transitions” with LA Philharmonic violinist Mitchell Newman by composer Russell Steinberg . Past perfor- mances include a 2013 Collegiate Tour in Tennessee and Mississippi with award winning composer Maria Newman; singing the alto solos with The Santa Barbara Chorale Society in Handel’s Messiah in December 2012; with Long Beach Opera In Medea in 2011 and at Sacramento Opera as Medoro in Orlando in No- vember 2010.
Solo performances (with Guzelimian at the piano) include her Carnegie Hall Recital in 2008, and her Los Angeles recital at Zipper Hall in 2006, a live recording of which was released as the full-length CD “Diana Tash In Recital” in March 2009 with LML Records. In 2012 Tash performed along with Guzelimian and NY Philharmonic principal violist Cynthia Phelps at MAHMA in Malibu, CA and in a recital with Guzelimian for Santa Barbara Opera in December 2011. In September 2011, Ms Tash was joined by countertenor Brian Asawa and pianist Armen Guzelimian in a Duo Recital at the Colburn School , and in October 2011, a mini tour of The Baroque Project was performed in San Francisco and Los Angeles with countertenor Brian Asawa.
Her mezzo stage work has been hailed as “radiant” by the LA Times, “stylish” by the San Diego Union and “skillful” by the NY times. She is a Southern California radio favorite, having recurred for many years (as both mezzo and soprano) on “Sundays Live at LACMA” on KCSN 88.5FM. The Japanese Website, Opera Japonica, calls Diana’s singing “honeyed” and “colorful.”Solo work in ‘09 has included Mendelssohn’s Elijah with LA Master Chorale at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, and a rare performance of Leonard Bernstein’s Jeremiah (for mezzo- soprano and orchestra) with The Akron Symphony in Ohio. She has performed the Mozart Requiem in ’09 and ’08, and the Bach Magnificat in ’07, all with the Santa Barbara Chorale Society, and covered the mezzo role in John Adam's El Niño for the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2005. Mezzo roles include Mercedes in Carmen at LA Opera, conducted by Placido Domingo in’04. With Long Beach Opera ‘03, she sang Ariadne in Milhaud’s L'Abandon d'Ariadne, and Mastrilla in Offenbach’s La Peri- chole. Other credits include The Magic Flute, at both San Diego Opera and Opera Pacific. In a pair of trousers, audiences have seen her as Hansel, in Hansel und Gretel at San Luis Obispo Opera ‘06, and as Os- car in Un Ballo in Maschera with LA Opera ‘93.Diana’s past soprano work includes roles in: Elektra, Der Rosenkavalier, Le Nozze di Figaro, Die Entfürung aus dem Serial, L'Italiana in Algeria and Cosí fan Tutte—all performed during her years as a resident artist with LA Opera. At the Alderburgh Festival in Suffolk, England, she sang soprano roles in Elegy for Young Lovers (English Libretto) and in Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia. Work at the Aspen Music Festival included Mozart's Idomeneo, with Lawrence Foster conducting, and Coronation Mass, with Joel Revzen conducting. Her soprano work in Lukas Foss' Song of Songs with the LA Jewish Sym- phony won critical reviews from the LA Times, who remarked that she sang “with point.”
Diana is a graduate of USC's Thornton School of Music, was a winner at the Metropolitan Opera's Western Regional Auditions, and has a Masters Degree from the Manhattan School of Music in New York.
- Piano -
Pianist César Cañón alternates his activity as a concert pianist with vocal coaching and conducting. He has performed in his native Colombia, and Brazil, Canada, Italy, Mexico, and the United States. A participant in the 2017 Merola Opera Program, he was also featured in San Francisco Opera’s Schwabacher recital series, in which he performed Brahms’ Die Schöne Magelone alongside baritone Christian Pursell and soprano Felicia Moore.
Cañón’s collaborations encompass formats that span from piano-voice duo to full symphony orchestra. Committed to introducing audiences to Spanish and Latin American Zarzuela and art song repertoire, he created and curated University of Michigan’s “En Español: Sounds of the Hispanosphere,” a week-long festival dedicated to music of the Spanish-speaking nations of the world. A current Adler Fellow with San Francisco Opera, he has been part of the music staff for productions of Cavalleria Rusticana and Tosca. He will be music director for Pocket Opera’s production of The Elixir of Love in 2019, as well as assistant conductor for La Finta Giardiniera and Suor Angelica with Accademia Europea dell’Opera next summer in Lucca, Italy.
Cañón holds a bachelor’s degree in piano performance from Universidad Nacional de Colombia and a Master of Music degree in collaborative piano from the University of Michigan, where he also completed his doctorate under Martin Katz.
Ruth Kahn, Artistic Director | Mark Furr, Culinary Director
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