Jonah Kim, Robert Koenig, and Julia Rowe
We open our season with a experience that expands Blanco Performing Arts. Audience favorite Jonah Kim, the dynamite cellist, returns with his wife San Francisco Ballet Soloist Julia Rowe. Together with acclaimed collaborative pianist Robert Koenig they will present a recital that stretches the imagination by introducing ballet "in the round." On Saturday Esperanza Winery will be offering complimentary pours of their vintages. On Sunday Oro Bianco will be scooping up complimentary gelato for our audience at intermission.
The next Yo-Yo Ma
About the Performers:
Grammy winning artist Jonah Kim made his solo debut with Wolfgang Sawallisch and the Philadelphia Orchestra in 2003. The same year, he also appeared with the National Symphony Orchestra where the Washington Post music critic Joseph McLellan called him simply, “the next Yo-Yo Ma.” Mr. Kim has soloed with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Philadelphia Chamber Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, Atlantic Classical Orchestra, New Philharmonia, Orquestra Sinfônica Nacional, Orchestra Filarmonica, Symphony of the Americas and many others. He has played in prestigious venues such as New York City’s Carnegie Hall and Merkin Hall, Wigmore Hall in London, California’s Montalvo Arts Center, the Kimmel Center in Philadelphia, the Kravis Center in Palm Beach, the Adrienne Arsht Center in Miami, the Phillips Collection and the John F. Kennedy Center in D.C. where Anne Midgette of the Washington Post praised, “he flirted with the line, shaped it, wrapped it around his fingers, pulled it out in a new dimension, all with practiced ease.”
Highly sought after internationally also as a chamber musician, Mr. Kim is a founding member of the “hip, unstuffy, and malleable group” Ensemble San Francisco. He frequents festivals like the Atlantic Music Festival, Bari International Music Festival, Cactus Pear Music Festival, Chamber Music Silicon Valley, Hong Kong Arts Festival, Music in May Santa Cruz, and San Luis Obispo’s Festival Mozaic. As a fellow at the Curtis Institute, he formed a piano trio with Joel Link, currently first violinist of the award-winning Dover Quartet, and international piano sensation Yuja Wang. Coached by some of the leading musicians of their day, they explored the piano trio literature extensively. Since then, Mr. Kim has collaborated with world class artists on four continents, sharing the stage with Cho-Liang Lin, Elmar Oliveira, Jon Nakamatsu, Martin Beaver, Chee-Yun Kim and Romie de Guise-Langlois in recent seasons. In a review of his performance at Alliance Français, San Francisco Classical Voice critic David Bratman exclaimed, "this was an excellent performance, the best I’ve heard of this piece."
Pianist Robert Koenig has quickly established a reputation as a much sought-after collaborative pianist and chamber musician. He performs regularly in major centers throughout the world with many of this generation’s most renowned musicians. Recent engagements have included performances at Carnegie Hall in New York, The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, The Concertgebuow in Amsterdam, and the Louvre Museum in Paris. He has performed with many of today’s leading artists including Sarah Chang, Hilary Hahn, Pamela Frank, Roberto Diaz, Elmar Oliveira, and Aaron Rosand.
Mr. Koenig has appeared at many festivals including Aspen, Ravinia, Banff, Saratoga, Caramoor, the Seattle Chamber Music Festival, the El Paso Pro Musica, Chamber Music Northwest, the Campos do Jordao Festival in Brazil, and the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York. He is frequently heard on radio and television including ABC’s “Good Morning America” and CBS “This Morning”. Mr. Koenig was staff pianist at both The Juilliard School and The Curtis Institute of Music, and from 2000-2007 he served as Professor of Piano and Piano Chamber Music at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. With the assistance of the University of Kansas Center for Research, Mr. Koenig commissioned renowned American Composer Lowell Liebermann to write a new trio for flute, cello and piano. Beginning in the fall of 2007, he will assume his new position as Professor and Head of The Collaborative Piano Program at The University of California in Santa Barbara.
Mr. Koenig has recorded for Artek, Ambassador, Biddulph, Cedille, CRI, Decca, Eroica, and Naxos. His most recent CD of transcriptions for viola and piano by William Primrose was released in July/2006 on Naxos with violist Roberto Diaz, and was nominated for “Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (without orchestra)” at the 49th annual Grammy Awards in 2007.
Born in Saskatchewan, Canada, Robert Koenig began his formal training at the Vancouver Academy of Music with Lee KumSing and Gwen Thompson and later studied at the Banff School of Fine Arts and the Academie Musicale di Chigiana in Siena, Italy. During this time he received several awards from the Canadian Government including a Canada Council Project Grant. He completed both his Bachelors and Masters degrees in Accompanying at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia where he studied with Dr. Vladimir Sokoloff and chamber music with Felix Galimir and Karen Tuttle.
Ballerina Julia Rowe was born in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania and received her training from Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and the San Francisco Ballet School. Straight out of school in 2008, Julia joined Oregon Ballet Theatre in the corps de ballet and was promoted to the soloist rank shortly thereafter.
In 2013, she joined San Francisco Ballet, and was promoted to soloist in 2016. Julia has performed a wide variety of classical and contemporary repertory throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. With San Francisco Ballet, she has danced roles such as Princess Florine, more famously known as the Bluebird Pas de Deux in Helgi Tomasson’s The Sleeping Beauty, Cupid in Don Quixote, Russian Girl in George Balanchine’s Serenade, and Stepsister Clementine in Christopher Wheeldon’s Cinderella.
Julia has appeared in principal roles in Divertimento No.15 (Balanchine), Trio (Tomasson), Myles Thatcher’s Ghost in the Machine, Val Caniparoli’s Ibsen’s House, Tears and Lambarena, Yuri Possokhov’s Fusion, Alexei Ratmansky’s From Foreign Lands, and William Forsythe’s The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude. Additionally, she has originated featured roles in works by Myles Thatcher (Otherness), Edwaard Liang (The Infinite Ocean), and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa (Guernica). She is celebrated for creating her principal role in William Forsythe iconic Pas/Parts.
Since the pandemic, Julia has created a series of dance music videos in collaboration with her husband, the award winning cellist Jonah Kim. Their work is featured on many popular online forums including the string magazine Violinist.com and the UK-based arts station ClassicFM.
Esperanza Winery will provide refreshments on September 25
Esperanza Vineyard broke ground on March 3, 2000 in Spring Branch in the Texas Hill Country. The primary planting block was only 1 acre; planted with Merlot, French Colombard, Cynthiana and Villard Blanc. Since then, it has expanded another acre to included Sauvignon Blanc and a fruit tree orchard.
In 2012, three more acres were added to the Southern Blocks, named The Great Oak and Jeff’s Ridge The Great Oak section will be home to more Sauvignon Blanc, with Viognier being planted in 2021. Jeff’s Ridge is producing Tempranillo and will be expanded in 2021 with more vines.
Tours of the vineyard and the Spring Branch grounds are by appointment only and in advance. Availability and times depend on major vineyard functions and maintenance schedules. The Esperanza Winery tasting room is located at 115 Main St, Blanco, TX 78606.
Volunteers are always welcome to assist in planting, harvesting and general care of the vines. All who assist are rewarded with food and wine afterwards.
Oro Bianco Italian Creamery will provide refreshments on September 26
Oro Bianco Italian Creamery owns and operates the first and only water buffalo dairy and creamery in the state of Texas. We milk our herd of water buffalo at our ranch in south Texas and transport the 100% grass-fed milk to our state-inspected creamery in the Hill Country, at which we craft small-batch gelato and other dairy products.
We are chefs, ranchers and cowboys, and we proudly raise our livestock using south Texas ranching traditions that we believe enhance the animals’ well-being and sustain our soils. We strive to produce the finest gelato in Texas while being diligent stewards of our land and our livestock.