2023–2024 Season: In Quotes

“Without memory, there is no culture.” — Elie Wiesel


Beauty and poignancy, loss and redemption. A musical journey shared through the lens of Jewish and African American history and culture. Works by Margaret Bonds, Paul Schoenfield, Sergei Prokofiev, Srul Irving Glick, and Adolphus Hailstork.

Margaret Bonds (1913–1972)Troubled Water
Srul Irving Glick (1934–2002)Old Toronto Klezmer Suite
Adolphus Hailstork (b. 1941)Three Spirituals for String Trio
Sergei Prokofiev (1891–1953)Overture on Hebrew Themes, Op. 34
Paul Schoenfield (b. 1947)Trio for Clarinet, Violin & Piano
James Shieldsclarinet
David Felbergviolin
Mariama Alcântaraviolin
Ruben Balboa IIIviola
Amy Levine-Tsangcello
Andrea Beyerdouble bass
Michelle Schumannpiano

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Friday Intimate Concerts take place at KMFA 89.5. Friday night tickets are only available in advance and include drinks and light bites during a post-concert reception with the artists. Saturday Synchronism Concerts take place at the First Unitarian Church. Subject to availability, $12 Student Rush (with student ID), $33 General Admission, and $48 Premium tickets may be purchased at the box office starting at 6:30 PM on the evening of the Saturday night concert.

Pre-Concert Performance

Romanian Folk Dances | Béla Bartók (1881–1945)

  • Buciumeana (Horn Dance)
  • Brâul (Sash Dance)
  • Jocul cu bâta (Stick Dance)

ACMC Student Pre-Concert Performance by Akins High In-School String Quartet
Pedro Salas & April Saldana, violins | Layne Bernier, viola | Hailee Rowley, cello  


Overture on Hebrew Themes, Op. 34 | Sergei Prokofiev (1891–1953)

Three Spirituals for String Trio | Adolphus Hailstork (b. 1941)

  • We Shall Overcome
  • Kum Ba Yah
  • Great Day

Trio for Clarinet, Violin & Piano | Paul Schoenfield (b. 1947)

  • Freylakh
  • March
  • Nigun
  • Kozatske


Troubled Water | Margaret Bonds (1913–1972)

Old Toronto Klezmer Suite | Srul Irving Glick (1934–2002)

  • Kensington Market
  • Roselawn Cemetery
  • United Baker’s Dairy Restaurant
  • The Rabbi’s Wedding at the Palmerston Street Shul

James Shields, clarinet | David Felberg & Mariama Alcântara, violins | Ruben Balboa III, viola | Amy Levine-Tsang, cello | Andrea Beyer, double bass | Michelle Schumann, piano

Approximate music run time: 65 minutes

James Shields

James Shields joined the Oregon Symphony as Principal Clarinet in 2016. He previously served as principal clarinet of the Canadian Opera Company and the New Mexico Philharmonic. During the summer, he can be heard as principal clarinetist and soloist of the Music in the Mountains festival in Durango. A graduate of The Juilliard School, James studied with Ricardo Morales. James has appeared as a soloist with the Oregon Symphony, New Mexico Philharmonic, Interlochen’s World Youth Symphony Orchestra, and the Albuquerque Philharmonic, and as guest principal clarinet with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival, and Santa Fe Pro Musica. James is the co-artistic director of Chatter, an Albuquerque-based chamber music organization that presents over 125 concerts per year.

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David Felberg

Praised by The Santa Fe New Mexican for his “fluid phrases, rich focused tone, rhythmic precision, and spot-on intonation,” violinist David Felberg, an Albuquerque native, is the co-founder and artistic director of Chatter, a groundbreaking series exploring both new and old music. David is concertmaster of The Santa Fe Symphony and performs with Santa Fe Pro Musica. He has been a featured soloist with several ensembles, including the New Mexico Philharmonic and Palo Alto Philharmonic. He specializes in contemporary solo violin music, and recently gave a recital for Oregon Bach Festival Composers Symposium. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from the University of Arizona and a Master of Music degree in conducting from the University of New Mexico, and has taken advanced string quartet studies at the University of Colorado with Takács Quartet.

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Mariama Alcântara

Hailed by Gramophone UK Magazine and Concerto Magazine as “unmissable” and “impactful,” Brazilian violinist Mariama Alcântara leads a multifaceted career as a performer and educator. Her debut album Brazilian Landscapes: Music for Solo Violin from Brazil, released by the Italian-Japanese label Da Vinci Classics, has earned international recognition for her artistry.

Mariama grew up in a musical family, making her solo debut at the age of 12 with the Paraiba Symphony Orchestra. Presently, she is a member of the Austin Symphony, Austin Opera, Artisan String Quartet, and Iris Chamber Orchestra. She has given solo recitals in Brazil, Austria, France and the United States. Passionate about improving equality and diversity in classical music, Mariama worked as a researcher with the Boulanger Initiative, an advocate of women composers based in Washington D.C. She was also a Performer Fellow at the Gabriela Lena Frank Creative Academy of Music. A strong advocate for music education, Mariama serves as an ACMC faculty member, and has conducted masterclasses at Conservatório Jose Siqueira (Brazil), Universidade Federal da Paraíba (Brazil), and the University of Colorado Boulder.

A 2019 recipient of the prestigious Dorothy Delay Starling Foundation Fellowship, Mariama earned a Doctorate of Musical Arts from the University of Colorado Boulder as a student and teaching assistant of Professor Harumi Rhodes and Ed Dusinberre of the Takács Quartet.

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Ruben Balboa III

Dr. Ruben Balboa III currently serves as Assistant Director of the University of Texas at Austin String Project, Adjunct Faculty at The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and an Assistant Professor at Southwestern University where he teaches viola and conducts the orchestra. A strong advocate for music education, Balboa has presented at the American String Teachers Association National Conference and the Best Practices Teaching Sessions hosted by the National String Project Consortium. Most recently, he was invited to give a masterclass for the American Viola Society Festival & 47th International Viola Congress in Columbus, Georgia.

Beyond his work as an educator, Balboa has a multifaceted career as a performer and enjoys working with a variety of musical ensembles, including Austin Camerata, Abilene Philharmonic, Austin Opera, Celtic Thunder, Evanescence, Il Divo, Las Colinas Symphony, Lindsey Sterling, Mid-Texas Symphony, The Dallas Opera, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Miró Quartet, among many others. Balboa later became a founding member of the Favola String Quartet, which won both the Grand Prize and First Place awards at the 2020 Coltman Chamber Music Competition.

One of Balboa’s biggest joys is presenting recitals of works for viola, voice, and piano with his wife, Dr. Samantha Balboa.

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Amy Levine-Tsang

Cellist Amy Levine-Tsang enjoys an active career as a chamber musician and teacher. Ms. Levine-Tsang has collaborated with many ensembles including the Brentano, Cassatt, Colorado, and Meridian String Quartets; and the New Jersey Chamber Music Society. She is a former member of the Richardson Chamber Players and the award-winning Laurel Trio. Ms. Levine-Tsang has performed at many festivals including the Marlboro Music, Gerhart Chamber Music, Portland Chamber Music, and Cactus Pear Music Festivals; as well as Music in the Vineyards and Laurel Festival of the Arts. She formerly taught cello at Princeton University and now teaches privately in Austin. Her most dedicated students have gone on to major in cello performance at schools such as Boston Conservatory, Cleveland Institute, Eastman School of Music, Northwestern University, TCU, UNT, and UT-Austin.

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Andrea Beyer

Double bassist Andrea Beyer is an avid performer, teacher, and advocate for music as a tool for social growth. A member of the New World Symphony from 2017-2020, Andrea’s primary focus as a performer is in orchestral music. Her highlights include performances with artists such as Yo-Yo Ma, James Ehnes, and Emmanuel Ax, and under the batons of renowned conductors including John Adams, Michael Tilson Thomas, and Osmo Vanska.

Andrea holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Oberlin Conservatory where she studied with Thomas Sperl and a Master’s Degree from Yale University where she studied with Don Palma.

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Michelle Schumann

Hailed for her “sensitive, flexible, and tempestuous dexterity” (Fanfare Magazine), pianist Michelle Schumann has built a reputation for evocative and moving performances. Since 2006, Michelle has served as Artistic Director of the Austin Chamber Music Center, where she “is fearlessly expanding our definition of chamber music” (Austin-American Statesman). Her brand of performance includes an enthusiastic interplay with audiences, bringing diverse music together under a narrative blanket. She was named “Best Classical Musician” in the Best of Austin 2019 Readers Poll by the Austin Chronicle.

Schumann is Professor of Piano at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor. She received a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin and additionally holds a Performance Diploma from the Vienna Conservatory.

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