ASMI Chamber Ensemble

BIOGRAPHY
Born during the COVID-19 pandemic, the ASMI Chamber Ensemble performs as a collaboration between ASMI’s world renowned faculty and up-and-coming young artists. The Altschuler Summer Music Institute launched in 2019 at the Istituto Superiore di Studi Musicali “G. Lettimi” in historic Rimini, Italy. ASMI was conceived with the educational purpose of improving musicians of all levels and ages that desire to develop their technique and artistry, through participation in masterclasses, private lessons, chamber music, and orchestra, taught by world renowned artists. The institute creates high level musical opportunities for all of the participants: students, teachers and professionals. It is a diverse, inclusive, and immersive program, with an intense yet fun atmosphere, that inspires the growth and development of the students during the year.

After their most recent concert at the Portsmouth Athenaeum Chamber Music series, concert presenter Bill Wieting wrote: “Their listeners soon learned that the trio had an instinct, a genius, for weaving a dynamic tapestry that bespoke their shared musical ideas.”

This trio performance includes: pianist Thomas Pandolfi, cellist Allison Eldredge, and violinist Emil Altschuler. Please read their individual biographies below.

Thomas Pandolfi began his music career early on at The Juilliard School (BM & MM) where the young prodigy caught the influential ears of Vladimir Horowitz, who would become his mentor, and legendary composer, Morton Gould. Since then he has been an audience favorite, selling out the world’s most prestigious stages, including Lincoln Center Alice Tully Hall, Strathmore, The Kennedy Center, Kiev Opera House, Bucharest’s Romanian Athenaeum, London’s Cadogan Hall, and many others. In addition to being hailed as one of the greatest interpreters of Polish masters such as Chopin and Paderewski, this versatile pianist has received accolades from every thing from Bach to Gershwin, with Morton Gould saying, “It’s the finest performance of Gershwin I have heard since the composer himself.” His original and virtuosic transcriptions of works such as West Side Story and Phantom of the Opera, are one- of-kind, jaw-dropping, and dramatic encores that keep audiences of all ages returning to his performances again and again. Maestro Pandolfi is a Steinway Artist and when he is not on tour, resides in Washington, DC.

Internationally-renowned concert cellist, Allison Eldredge was born in New York City of Japanese and American parents. Allison Eldredge appeared as soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at age 12 and with the New York Philharmonic and Music Director, Zubin Mehta at age 15. Ms. Eldredge took First Prize in the national Bronislaw Kaper Award Competition and performed as soloist with Andre Previn and the Los Angeles Philharmonic at age 16.

Ms. Eldredge was awarded an Avery Fisher Career Grant, a National Grant awarded to American musicians demonstrating exceptional ability and Musical America named Ms.Eldredge “Young Artist of the Year”. She released her Debut Album on Pony Canyon Classics of Romantic Cello Works and the Lalo and Saint Saens cello Concerti with Hans Vonk and the Royal Philharmonic in 1989. Allison Eldredge gained further international attention when she made her debut with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra performing the Elgar Cello Concerto under the baton of Daniel Barenboim. Ms. Eldredge was heralded as “a cellist afraid of nothing” - Chicago Sun Times, and “a musician of remarkable gifts” - Chicago Tribune. The performances marked Daniel Barenboim’s first public performances of the Elgar Concerto since performing the work with his late wife, Cellist, Jacqueline Du Pre.

As soloist, Ms. Eldredge has performed with the world’s leading orchestras in Great Britain, Germany, Russia, Switzerland, France, the Netherlands, Israel, Ukraine, Japan, China, Poland, Canada, Uruguay, Scotland, Mexico and Czechoslovakia with the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields and the Royal Philharmonic in London, the Moscow Virtuosi, the Berlin, Montreal, Budapest, Utrecht, Netherlands, Ukraine National State, Cyprus, Uruguay and Polish Radio Symphonies; and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Royal Flanders Philharmonic, Warsaw Philharmonic, Sinfonia Varsovia, National State Orchestra of Mexico, the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, Puerto Rico Symphony and others. In Asia, she has appeared with the Osaka Philharmonic, Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony, China National Symphony, New Osaka Philharmonic and Tokyo Philharmonic.

Allison Eldredge has toured the U.S., Europe and Israel with the late legendary Polish composer Krzysztof Penderecki at the baton, performing Krzysztof Penderecki’s Viola Concerto transcribed for cello and orchestra and Penderecki’s Concerto Grosso No. 1. For 3 Cellos as first cellist with the Philharmonic of Kraków, Warsaw, Łódź and Opole. Ms. Eldredge toured North America with Maestro Penderecki and made her Carnegie Hall debut as soloist with the Warsaw Sinfonia to a sold-out crowd.

Allison Eldredge studied at the Pre-College and College of the Juilliard School. Her teachers have included Harvey Shapiro, Yo-Yo Ma, Eleonore Schoenfeld, Joan Lunde, Felix Galimir, Ardyth Alton, and Mstislav Rostropovich. She serves on the Cello Faculty of New England Conservatory Preparatory School (2000-current), Boston String Academy and Altschuler Summer Music Institute and maintains a private studio in Boston and in Connecticut.

Acclaimed violinist, Emil Altschuler, performs with incredible technique, magnificent expression and a profound artistry across a wide-ranging repertoire. The Boston Globe writes “top notch” of Altschuler’s performance. The Strad praises “Passion and portamento from a young American violinist”, and The Whole Note writes “There’s a decidedly old-style feel to...very reminiscent of Heifetz.” Erick Friedman, master violinist and protégé of the legendary Jascha Heifetz, wrote “...a truly outstanding violinist of his generation...and sound and accuracy of intonation that are truly extraordinary.”

He received his Bachelor of Music from The Juilliard School under Dorothy DeLay and Naoko Tanaka and his Master of Music from The Yale School of Music under Erick Friedman. He has performed in Lincoln Center, San Francisco’s Helen Von Ammon’s Emerging Artist Series, The Aspen Music Festival, and Italy’s Teatro Galli. Mr. Altschuler maintains an active career as a soloist, chamber musician, and serves as concertmaster of the Wellesley Symphony Orchestra, where will perform Saint-Saëns Violin Concerto No.3 this season.

Extensively involved in music education, he has served at New England Conservatory as Head of Strings for the Festival Youth Orchestra, chamber music coach at the School of Continuing Education and Preparatory School, and instructor at Northeastern University. He was also an instructor at Community Music Program at Tufts University as well as violin coach for the Tufts Youth Philharmonic.

Most recently, he has been invited to join the Artist Management by arrangement with Jack Price. Emil lives with his wife and daughter in Boston, MA, where he maintains an active private studio and teaches online. In his free time, he enjoys reading and investing. For more information, visit www.emilaltschuler.com.

QUOTES
"First, thank you for a brilliant concert yesterday - it was energetic, edifying, eclectic, entertaining, and in every way excellent!  I - and the entire audience, I'm sure - found your performance simply amazing, even without taking into consideration how little time you all had to pull your artistic conceptions together.  You and Allison are sympatico and obviously used to each other, but you will do well to make use of Thomas Pandolfi again.  He is a sure musical anchor for any chamber group. Thanks again for a truly memorable and most enjoyable concert!"

- Bill Wieting, presenter at Portsmouth Athenaeum Chamber Music