Guest Recital, Master Class and Lecture: Tatjana Mead Chamis, viola, and Flavio Chamis, composer and conductor
Viola recital at 7:30 p.m. Monday March 11th, Recital Hall, Music Building I
Viola masterclass at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday March 12th, Recital Hall, Music Building I
*Lecture "From Ipanema to the World" at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday March 12th, Recital Hall, Music Building I
All events are free and open to the public thanks to generous support from UPAC
Violist Tatjana Mead Chamis has distinguished her career with her work as a principal violist, chamber musician, soloist, Latin Grammy-nominated recording artist, teacher and lecturer, as well as advocating for underheard or suppressed music and experimenting with new music.
Principal Violist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra for the 2018-2024 seasons, Mead Chamis has held the title of Associate Principal Viola of the PSO since 2003. Mead Chamis joined the orchestra in 1993, under the directorship of Lorin Maazel, while still a student of the Curtis Institute of Music, at age 22. She has since been featured on numerous performances as soloist with the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Pittsburgh Symphony Chamber Orchestra, often premiering or introducing pieces not yet heard in Pittsburgh, such as the Lionel Tertis transcription of Elgar's Cello Concerto, Boris Pigovat’s Requiem for the Holocaust, and Alan Shulman’s Theme and Variations. This coming season, she will perform the viola transcription of Fratres, by Arvo Pärt, with the Pittsburgh Symphony.
In 2015, Mead Chamis formed a string quartet of fellow Pittsburgh Symphony members, the Clarion Quartet, an ensemble dedicated to performing the many works of suppressed and forgotten composers. The Clarion Quartet’s debut album, Breaking the Silence, was released in February of 2018 on the TYE/Naxos label. The quartet has played at the site of the Theresienstadt concentration camp in the Czech Republic, at the Berlin American Academy, on tour in Canada, joined the great baritone Matthias Goerne in concert, and appeared on the Chamber Music Pittsburgh Series with pianist Roman Rabinovich. The quartet began in 2023, a partnership with Pittsburgh’s City of Asylum, featuring a series of concerts over two years, which reach audiences across the globe.
After a year-long sabbatical in 2012, living and performing in Brazil, Mead Chamis returned to the US with Brazilian works for viola, which became the focus of a solo recording project, including a new viola sonata written for her by the great pianist/composer, André Mehmari, which garnered a 2017 Latin Grammy nomination. The album, Viola Brasil, was released in 2022. Mead Chamis and Mehmari will perform his sonata as well as other works from this album as invited artists of the 2024 International Viola Congress, in Brazil.
Mead Chamis has performed chamber music and solo recitals in the U.S. and internationally, including various appearances at the Caramoor International Music Festival, Vail's Bravo Festival, Halcyon Chamber Music Festival, and Swananoa Chamber Festival. Apart from her solo performances with the PSO, she has appeared as soloist with the Utah Symphony, Porto Alegre and Sao Paulo Symphony orchestras in Brazil.
American born, Mead Chamis began her musical studies on the violin at age 7 while living in Germany. It was in Salt Lake City, Utah, that she switched to the viola while studying with Mikhail Boguslavsky, co-founder of the Moscow Chamber Orchestra. She continued her studies at the Curtis Institute of Music with Joseph dePasquale, former principal viola of the Philadelphia Orchestra, graduating in 1994.
Mead Chamis has been a frequent artist/lecturer and teaches orchestral repertoire at Carnegie Mellon University.
A native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, Flavio Chamis began his formal training in conducting and composition at the Rubin Academy of Music (Tel Aviv University) under S. Ronli Riklis and Zubin Mehta of the Israel Philharmonic. He continued his studies with Martin Stephani in Detmold, Germany, graduating from the Nordwestdeutsche Musikakademie.
Shortly thereafter, Mr. Chamis moved to Vienna, where he was appointed Music Director of the Villa Lobos Ensemble. While in Europe, Chamis made recordings for RIAS with the Radio Sinfonie Orchester Berlin and the Nouvelle Philharmonique de Radio France – his conducting of the world premiere of Michel Philippot’s Concerto for Violin and/or Viola has been released by the label Solstice. His European engagements have included, among many others, performances at the Musikverein (Vienna), the Wiener Festwochen and the Royal Festival Hall in London.
In 1985, Chamis was named conducting assistant to Leonard Bernstein. In this capacity, he led the Israel Philharmonic in preparation for tours of Europe, Japan and the United States, featuring performances of Mahler’s 9th Symphony. The following year, he conducted in New York the rehearsals for the world premiere of Bernstein’s Jubilee Games, later renamed Concerto for Orchestra. In 1989, he again assisted Maestro Bernstein, this time on the European tour of the London Symphony Orchestra.
Mr. Chamis returned to Brazil as Music Director of the Porto Alegre Symphony Orchestra. There he won enthusiastic critical acclaim for his performances and appearances on Brazilian radio and television. As well as having conducted all of the major orchestras in Brazil, Mr. Chamis enjoys engagements as guest conductor throughout Europe and Latin America.
Chamis has collaborated with such highly acclaimed international soloists as Mischa Maisky, Paul Badura Skoda, Ileana Cotrubas, Bruno Leonardo Gelber, Dang Thai-Son, Ransom Wilson, Antonio Meneses, Jean Louis Steuerman and Arnaldo Cohen, among others. He has also participated in numerous international music festivals, including the Tanglewood Music Festival, Bayreuther Festspiel, and Schleswig Holstein Music Festival.
As a composer, his works embrace a wide range of styles, from solo, chamber, and symphonic pieces, to jazz and Brazilian music. This versatile musician has also written the text for many of his vocal compositions. “Especiaria”, a Latin Grammy nominated CD exclusively with Mr. Chamis Brazilian Jazz compositions was released by the Brazilian label Biscoito Fino.
Flavio Chamis received the International Press Award as Outstanding Brazilian Musician based in the U.S. A frequent guest lecturer, his presentations on both Brazilian and classical music have been heard in Universities, as well as several cultural and educational organizations across the country. Mr. Chamis has been a member of the Screening Committee of the Latin Grammy. Since 2017 Chamis has been working in conjunction with the UPMC Western Psychiatric Hospital in Pittsburgh, leading a bold new approach to the intersection between music and mental health while initiating “Infinity”, a musical group of patients who performed for larger audiences during the 2018/19/20 Pittsburgh Annual Schizophrenia Conferences, and also producing “Infinity - The Role of Music in the Road to Recovery in Schizophrenia”, a short documentary about the concept.
Flavio resides in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with his wife Tatjana, acting Principal violist of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra and their three children. He speaks fluent English, Spanish, Portuguese, and German, with conversational abilities in French and Italian.
2 p.m. Sunday October 22nd, Esber Rehearsal Hall, Music Building I
7:30 p.m. Wednesday April 26th, Recital Hall, Music Building I
3:30 p.m. Friday April 14th, Room 128, Music Building II
Recital at 3:00 p.m. Sunday February 19th, Recital Hall, Music Building I
Violin, viola, and cello masterclasses 11 am to 12:30 p.m. Monday February 20th various locations
Chamber Music masterclass 2 to 4 p.m. Monday February 20th Recital Hall, Music Building I
3:30 p.m. Friday November 11th, Esber Rehearsal Hall, Music Building I
3:00 p.m. Sunday April 3rd, Esber Rehearsal Hall, Music Building I