• Dennis Hourcade
  • May 31, 2021

Bach to the Future

Chart-Topping Pianist Michael Silverman Takes Classical Music into the Modern Age with BACH TO THE FUTURE!

Imagine the classics – Bach, Beethoven, Mozart – performed in exciting new ways… modern jazz, African, and Latin rhythms. Bach to the Future brings an exciting, whimsical approach to the most beloved music of all time, and some of the most interesting cutting-edge instruments you will ever see. How about a Drum-itar? A 6-string electric violin that sounds like Jimi Hendrix.

All four players are world renowned performers, best-selling authors, and highly acclaimed composers. This is a show you will not want to miss! Bach to the Future – The Bach that Rocks!

Bach to the Future will perform a selection of their hits with the Gateway Festival Orchestra 7:30 PM, Sunday July 10, Washington University Brookings Quadrangle.

Brent Stater, Baritone

“The baritone performed in the demanding title role of Felix Mendelssohn’s Elijah over the weekend and pushed himself through the difficult task in the manner Kenyans conquer 26.2 miles—with ease. Stater’s voice was powerful enough and his musical-acting strong enough that Elijah’s conviction was not only believable, but it was also inspiring.” —Tribune Review, Pittsburgh, PA.

As a classical vocalist and multi-instrumentalist, Brent Stater has enjoyed a career as a professional performer for 40 years. As an operatic baritone, he has been a featured soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C., as well as the Pittsburgh, Virginia, Johnstown, Nittany Valley, Pennsylvania Center, Canton, Greensburg, and Edgewood symphonies. The baritone has also performed as a soloist with the Pittsburgh Opera, Opera Theater of St. Louis, Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, Dayton Opera, Microscopic Opera, Canton Civic Opera, Illinois Opera Theater, Illinois Repertory Theater, Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh, Bach Choir of Pittsburgh, University of Pittsburgh Collegium Musicum and Chatham Baroque. The baritone has created several operatic roles including Edward Biddle in Jeremy Beck’s The Biddle Boys and Mrs. Soffel, Harry Cooper in Todd Goodman’s Night of the Living Dead, and King Ferdinand in Leonardo Balada’s Muerte de Colon. His performance of Muerte de Colon can be heard on the Naxos Label. Mr. Stater has had the pleasure of studying the voice with many singers from the golden age of opera. His voice teachers have included Sherrill Milnes, Evelyn Lear, Dolora Zajick, Mildred Miller, Nick Divirgilio, William Warfield, Lorenzo Malfatti, Thomas Paul, Edward Zambara, and Diana Walters. Over the years, he has enjoyed a parallel career as a rock musician, performing primarily on the electric and acoustic guitars, as well as keyboards and organ. As the owner of his own rock school, he and his students have shared the stage with such legendary rock acts as KISS, Kansas, Ace Frehley, Charlie Daniels, Ted Nugent, Survivor, Third Eye Blind, Buck Cherry, Puddle of Mud, and many others. Mr. Stater is an honors graduate of the Interlochen Arts Academy in Northern Michigan and holds a Bachelor of Music (honors) in Vocal Performance from the University of Illinois School of Music. Mr. Stater also studied composition at the University of Illinois with Sal Martirano, Scott Wyatt, and Herbert Brun. He has been teaching voice, piano, guitar, set drumming, trumpet, music theory, and various other instruments for 37 years. Many of his students are working professional musicians and his voice students have attended such prestigious institutions as the Juilliard School in NYC.

Mr. Stater will perform selections from Showboat by J. Kerns and O. Hammerstein II with the Gateway Festival Orchestra 7:30 PM, Sunday July 17, Washington University Brookings Quadrangle.

Mary Weber, Trumpet

Mary Weber is in demand throughout the St. region, including performances with the St. Louis Symphony, MUNY, St. Louis Philharmonic, Gateway Festival Orchestra, Edison Theater, The Rep, American Kantori, and the Bach Society, among others. Mary is actively engaged in recordings, competitions, recitals, and lectures while managing the Clarion Brass, a professional brass quintet.

Previously Principal Trumpet with the New Orleans Symphony, Mary’s virtuosity and enthusiasm has brought her performance opportunities with such notables as Mannheim Steamroller, Mel Tormé, Luciano Pavarotti, William Warfield, and The Temptations. She has toured with the St. Louis Symphony throughout Europe and played twice at Carnegie Hall.

As a soloist, Mary has been featured with the Wash U Wind Ensemble, Compton Heights Concert Band, St. Louis Civic Orchestra, Alton Symphony, St. Louis Philharmonic, and the Saint Louis Brass Band. She also performed a solo recital tour through Scotland in fourteen different towns. In 2017, Mary presented a Faculty Trumpet recital, with colleague Sandy Coffin, in both New York City and Washington University: “The Development of the Trumpet Concerto/Sonata”. In October 2019, she performed with the St. Louis Civic Orchestra playing Joseph Neruda’s Concerto in Eb for Trumpet and Orchestra.

Early in her career, she was privileged to attend the Tanglewood Institute as a Leonard Bernstein Fellow, under the Maestro’s baton. In addition, she performed at the Spoleto Festival (both U.S. and Spoleto, Italy) and Classical Music Festival (Eisenstadt, Austria).

Mary holds a Bachelor of Music Performance degree from University of Miami, and a Master of Music Performance degree from Syracuse University. She is Adjunct Faculty at both Washington University and recently joined SIUE, teaching Trumpet. She was also Adjunct Professor at St. Louis University, teaching a wide variety of classes: Development of the Orchestra, Music Appreciation, Bio-Musicology and Music Theory. Mary also enjoys teaching private trumpet lessons with students from ages 10 – 94! She is deeply grateful for the many wonderful opportunities of playing with so many fantastic musicians and groups, and truly owes this to her mother, many Teachers, and great colleagues who have supported her throughout her career.

As founder and manager of Clarion Brass, Mary produced the group’s first Holiday CD, “Sleigh Ride ~ Over the Top!” to exciting reviews. More information about Clarion concerts and their CD can be found at www.clarionbrass.org

Gateway Soloists 2021

Dana Hotle, Clarinet

Dana Hotle, clarinet, can be heard performing in both her home state of Missouri and in Illinois. She is principal clarinet with the Illinois Symphony Orchestra and performs with Winter Opera St. Louis. Dana is a former member of the Equinox Chamber Players and the Cedar Rapids Symphony (now Orchestra Iowa). She performs as a regular substitute musician with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis .

Ms. Hotle holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Illinois at Champagne-Urbana and Master of Music from the Manhattan School of Music where she studied with David Krakauer. She is a member of the instrumental music faculty of Washington University and of the Community Music School of Webster University.

Ms. Hotle performed Concertino for Clarinet by C. M. von Weber with the Gateway Festival Orchestra,
7:30 PM, Sunday July 11, St Louis Music Park at Centene Community Ice Center.

Benedetta Orsi, Mezzo-Soprano

Italian mezzo-soprano Benedetta Orsi is one of the 2018 nominees for Outstanding Achievement in Opera by St. Louis Theater Circle for her performance as Carmen.

Ms. Orsi is one of only a few contemporary mezzo-sopranos to have performed all three of Donizetti’s Tudor Operas. Recent performances also include Adalgisa in Norma with Winter Opera St. Louis, the title role of Carmen with Winter Opera St. Louis and with the Boulder Symphony Orchestra, Mamma Lucia in Cavalleria Rusticana with the New Jersey Festival Orchestra, Ulrica in Un Ballo in Maschera with the Miami Lyric Opera and Maddalena in Rigoletto with Amore Opera.

Her first album “Christmas Around the World” won the Double Silver Medal at the Global Music Awards in Los Angeles. Her latest, “La Voix de l’Amour,” won the Gold Medal as Best Album.

Along with concert appearances at Carnegie Hall in New York City and throughout Italy, England, the United States and Spain, Ms. Orsi’s performance credits include roles in Verdi Rigoletto, Trovatore, Bellini Norma and La Sonnambula, Rossini L’italiana in Algeri and Il Turco in Italia, and Massenet Werther.

​Benedetta is a first prize winner of the Barry Alexander International Voice Competition (IVC) and first prize and Star Performer award in the American Protégé IVC; third prize winner of the Roschel IVC, and Audience and Orchestra Award in the Boulder Music Institute IVC. In her homeland, she received the Audience Award and Special Prize of the Italian Music Federation during the 28th Piero Boni International Singing Competition.

​Ms. Orsi received her bachelor’s degree in music and voice from Modena’s Istituto Musicale Pareggiato Orazio Vecchi. Later, she received her master’s degree in voice at the Regia Accademia Filarmonica di Bologna.

Ms. Orsi performed Vocalise by S. Rachmaninoff, Pensa alla patria by G. Rossini, and I Dreamed a Dream by C-M. Schoenberg with the Gateway Festival Orchestra, 7:30 PM, Sunday July 11, at St Louis Music Park at Centene Community Ice Center

Cathleen Woelbling-Paul, Oboe

Cathleen Woelbling-Paul, oboe, English horn, oboe d’amore, is a native St. Louisan. She received a Bachelor of Music Education and Performance degree from Lindenwood University and a Master of Music degree from Northern Illinois University. She is currently Adjunct Professor of Oboe at Webster University, and Oboe instructor with Webster University Community Music School. Prior to joining Webster University, she taught at Washington University and Lindenwood University. Ms. Woelbling-Paul has performed Morricone’s Gabriel’s Oboe from THE MISSION with the St. Louis Wind Symphony and at the Missouri Music Educator’s Conference. She has been a soloist with Gateway Festival Orchestra, performing works by Barbara Harbach and by John Thomas. She performed Copland’s A Quiet City with the Gateway Festival Orchestra and the Webster Orchestra.

Ms. Woelbling-Paul’s prior professional experience has included: principal oboe and soloist with the Haydn Festival Orchestra in Eisenstaedt, Austria; the American Wind Symphony of Pittsburgh; the Rockford Symphony; the Illinois Chamber Orchestra; the Illinois Symphony in Springfield; Mighty Mississippi Concert Band of St. Louis; Ballet Orchestra of St. Louis; Union Avenue Opera; Winter Opera St. Louis; American Kantorei Orchestra and the Bach Society. She was a substitute player with the St. Louis Symphony, Fox Theatre Orchestra and The Muny Orchestra. Currently, Woelbling-Paul is principal oboe with the St. Louis Wind Symphony, Alton Symphony, Webster Orchestra, Webster Wind Ensemble, University City Symphony, Edwardsville (IL) Muny Band and oboe/English horn with Gateway Festival Orchestra. She performs chamber music with A Fifth Above Woodwind Quintet and The Prevailing Winds Quintet. An active freelance musician, she has performed with Josh Groban, Idina Menzel, Barry Manilow, Luciano Pavarotti, The Moody Blues, the Irish Tenors, Johnny Mathis, Linda Ronstadt and Dizzy Gillespie.

Ms. Woelbling-Paul is Treasurer of the Board of Directors of the Gateway Festival Orchestra, a member of Mu Phi Epsilon professional music fraternity, and an adjudicator for the Missouri All-Suburban Band Auditions and Alton Symphony Young Artist Competition.

Ms. Woelbling-Paul performed Gabriel’s Oboe by E. Morricone with the Gateway Festival Orchestra,
7:30 PM, Sunday July 11, St Louis Music Park at Centene Community Ice Center

Timothy Crockett, Xylophone

Timothy Crockett is an active chamber musician, freelancer, soloist and educator who has performed as percussionist all over the world. He is cofounder and member of sidexside Percussion Duo with his wife Kurena Yamaguchi. Since 2017, he has been principal timpanist of the Gateway Festival Orchestra and has also held positions with the American Wind Symphony Orchestra, the Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra, and the Chicago Civic Orchestra. Born and raised in St. Louis, MO, he began playing percussion at age 11. He earned his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. 

Mr. Crockett will perform Fluffy Ruffles by George Hamilton Green with the Gateway Festival Orchestra,
7:30 PM, Sunday July 18, at the Chesterfield Amphitheater.

Kurena Yamaguchi, Marimba

Kurena Yamaguchi is an active marimbist, chamber musician, soloist and educator who has performed throughout Japan, the United States and Europe. Before cofounding the sidexside Percussion Duo in 2013, Ms. Yamaguchi performed in many different chamber groups in Japan and Europe. From 2007-2013, Ms. Yamaguchi and Miyako Yoneshige formed the marimba duo RadiMarish. From 2006-2013, Ms. Yamaguchi and Momoko Ishikawa performed as natree, a marimba and piano duo that performed classical and pop music. An active participant in chamber music and soloist music competitions all over the world, Ms. Yamaguchi has received top prizes at the Yokohama International Music Competition, JILA Music Competition in Tokyo, Japan, and the 16th KOBE International Music Contest. In addition to performing as a chamber musician and soloist, Ms. Yamaguchi was a member of the Le Rose Marimba Orchestra from 2007-2009 in Tokyo, and a member of the American Wind Symphony Orchestra’s 2012 tour. Born and raised in Yokohama, Japan, Ms. Yamaguchi started studying piano at age 4, and marimba at age 7. She received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Musashino Music Academy in Tokyo.

Ms. Yamaguchi will perform the Marimba Spiritual by Minoru Miki with the Gateway Festival Orchestra,
7:30 PM, Sunday July 18, at the Chesterfield Amphitheater.

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