A Homecoming Concert: Eduard Schimieder Returns to Beaumont
Internationally renowned musician and pedagogue Eduard Schmieder will return to Beaumont after an absence of 25 years to give a concert at 7 p.m. April 7 at Temple Emanuel, 1120 Broadway, in Beaumont.
Schmieder, currently the Carnell Distinguished Professor of Violin at Temple University in Philadelphia, returns “home” to Beaumont to honor his many friends and colleagues from his years of teaching at Lamar University, the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University and Southern Methodist University, and as concertmaster of the Symphony of Southeast Texas.
Schmieder, his wife, Laura, and their 4-year-old daughter, Hanna, first came to Beaumont in the sweltering summer of 1980, when he accepted a position as professor of violin at Lamar University. Only a few months previously, they had emigrated from the Soviet Union to Chicago, bringing with them only $90, a few clothes and pieces of furniture, and an ordinary violin and piano, having been forced to leave their fine instruments behind. They spoke virtually no English, but they brought their fine educations, knowledge, skills, and great musical gifts with them.
The Beaumont, Lamar, and Temple Emanuel communities opened their individual and collective arms to the young family, welcoming them and granting them assistance. They remained in Beaumont for three years, after which time Schmieder accepted a position with Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. Since that time, the Schmieders have achieved global success, but they have never forgotten Beaumont’s kindness, and they have always held a special place in their hearts for this Southeast Texas community. It has been Eduard Schmieder’s dream to return to their first American home to give a concert in thanksgiving for the warm welcome their family found here.
That dream will become a reality April 7 at Temple Emanuel as Schmieder performs with two of his Temple University students, Catharina Chen and Daniel Turcina, to present an evening of violin music. The program will include Sonata in G Minor, Op. 3, No. 8, by George Frideric Handel; Sonata in C Major from the Musical Offering, by Johann Sebastian Bach; Sonata No. 3 in D Minor, Op. 27 “Ballade,” by Eugene Ysaye, and Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 28, by Camille Saint-Saens.
“Coming back to Beaumont will be like coming home,” Schmieder said. “I believe Beaumont played a very important role in the entirety of my life. In Beaumont, I was at the right place at the right time; if I had not come, my career would have taken an entirely different course. Beaumont was the one place in the United States where, almost every day, I felt euphoric, practically worry-free—comfortable, hopeful, inspired.”
The concert is free and open to the public. Directions to Temple Emanuel can be found at www.emanuelbeaumont.org.
About Eduard Schmieder: Internationally renowned musician and pedagogue Eduard Schmieder, born and educated in Russia, has been characterized as an “extraordinary musician of the late 20th century” (Henry Roth). Schmieder maintains a concert schedule as conductor and violinist and teaches an internationally selected class of students.
Schmieder is one of the most highly regarded violin pedagogues of his generation. In addition to his current appointment at Temple University and his first posts at Lamar and Rice University, he has also occupied the Distinguished Algur H. Meadows Chair of Violin and Chamber Music in the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University andhas served as tenured Professor of Violin at the University of Southern California, the position formerly held by Jascha Heifetz. Schmieder’s students consistently win top prizes at prestigious international competitions, perform as soloists and chamber musicians, and hold leading positions in orchestras in Europe, Asia, and the United States.
Schmieder has received numerous awards for his accomplishments as a musician and teacher and his contributions to culture. He has given master classes in virtually every prominent conservatory in the world, and performs and teaches in major music festivals such as Aspen, Interlochen, Idyllwild, and others. Since 2004, he has served on the faculty at the Mozarteum Summer Academie, Salzburg. He frequently serves as a jury member at leading international competitions, including the Queen Elisabeth, Sibelius, Paganini, and Mozart.
As a violinist, chamber musician, and conductor, Schmieder has peformed in the world’s major concert halls, including Carnegie Hall, the Grand Philharmonic Hall in St. Petersburg, the Crown Hall in Jerusalem, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, and Disney Hall in Los Angeles. He has collaborated with musicians such as Ida Haendel, Brooks Smith, Nathaniel Rosen, Eric Friedman, and many others. In 1996, Schmieder performed a recital in Genoa on Paganini’s famous Guarneri del Gesu “Il Cannone” violin. This rare occasion marked a posthumous International Peace Prize ceremony given by the Italian government to Yitzhak Rabin.
The founder and music director of iPalpiti chamber orchestra since 1991, Schmieder conducted the ensemble to sold-out and critically acclaimed performances in prestigious venues such as Concertgebouw, Mozarteum Grosse Hall in Salzburg, Disney Hall, and Carnegie Hall. iPalpiti has been invited as ensemble-in-residence to festivals all over the world.
Schmieder has been featured in books by Henry Roth in Violin Virtuosos: From Paganini to 21st Century and Margaret Campbell in The Great Violinists, as well as in three articles in Strad magazine. He and his wife, Laura, are the founders of Young Artists International, an organization “dedicated to the continuity of the great tradition of classical music through artistic promotion and career development of exceptionally gifted young professional musicians.”
About Catharina Chen: Born in Oslo, Norway, in 1985, Catharina Chen began studying violin at age five with her father. Since the age of eight she has soloed with all major orchestras in Norway, including the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra, and others. Well-known to Norwegians through television and radio broadcasts, Catharina is the recipient of numerous awards and the youngest musician in Norway ever to be awarded the highly respected and prestigious Oslo City Culture Prize. She has given solo and chamber concerts in Norway, Italy, China, Malaysia, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, France, and South Africa and has made solo appearances with the Shanghai, Beverly Hills, and Dallas Symphonies. She is currently studying with Professor Schmieder in the Artist Diploma program at Temple University. She will be a featured soloist with iPalpiti Orchestra at their upcoming Disney Hall concert July 26, 2008.
About Daniel Turcina: Born in 1983 in Dolny Kubin in Slovakia, Daniel Turcina began violin lessons at age seven. Since 1997, he has continued violin studies at the State Conservatory of Music in Bratislava. As a prize-winner in the Slovak Conservatories Students’ Competition, he soloed with the symphony orchestra of the Conservatory in Bratislava and with the Bohdan Warchal Slovak Chamber Orchestra. In 2003, Daniel joined the faculty of the Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Bratislava. He regularly performs solos and ensembles in music festivals and special events in Slovakia and has been featured as soloist with the State Philharmonic Orchestra of Kosice, as well as the State Chamber Orchestra. In January 2007 Daniel was accepted into Dr. Schmieder’s class at Temple University. Concurrently, he is a member of the Bratislava Chamber Soloists and the Solistes Europeens, Luxembourg.