Conversations with Ensembles

In these conversations with Rob Kennedy, distinguished musicians talk about their new recordings, their art, and much more. These musicians love what they do and are most eager to share their art with everybody. Let your family and friends know about these conversations, which they can listen to or download anytime. You can also listen to these conversations on our apps.

Black Oak Ensemble

The Black Oak Ensemble comprises of Grammy-nominated violinist Desirée Ruhstrat, cellist David Cunliffe of the acclaimed Lincoln Trio, and violist Aurélien Fort Pederzoli, a founding member of the groundbreaking Grammy-nominated Spektral Quartet.

“There is no faulting this debut album by the Chicago-based Black Oak Ensemble: rhythmically tight and, like the best trio recording, conveying a sense of a fuller ensemble.”…The Strad

The ensemble’s debut album, Silenced Voices, is a deeply personal program dedicated to mid-20th-century Jewish composers, most of whom lost their lives during the Holocaust. Rob Kennedy spoke with members of the ensemble about Silenced Voices.

Photo: Yaka Sano

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Carr-Petrova Duo

From their website: “Carr and Petrova began playing together during their years at the Juilliard School and the Manhattan School of Music, and have since performed together across Europe, the Middle East and North America, in venues ranging from Carnegie’s Weill Recital Hall to soup kitchens and food pantries in New Orleans. Their debut album Novel Voices was released on Melos Records in October 2019 to critical acclaim.

“One of the most exciting ensembles I have encountered…intelligence, passion and precision, communicating the music with an immediacy and virtuosity that is irresistible…”…Lowell Lieberman

Rob Kennedy spoke with Molly Carr and Anna Petrova about Novel Voices.

Photo: David Beyda

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Cavatina Duo

“Moliner and Ruhstrat play with such close ensemble that they might as well be one person”…The Flute Quarterly

Eugenia Moliner, flute and Denis Azabagic, guitar, are the Cavatina Duo. Rob Kennedy speaks with them about their recording Folias and Fantasias.

Photo: Jayati Saha

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Gloriae Dei Cantores

From their website: “Gloriæ Dei Cantores Schola presents The Chants of Angels. Using the ancient melodies and texts of the early church, each Gregorian chant depicts a new aspect or story of these heavenly guardians, guides and friends, from the most intimate plea to our own guardian angels, to the great announcement made to the Virgin Mary by the Archangel Gabriel. For those who are new to Gregorian chant and for seasoned scholars, The Chants of Angels allows listeners to simply close their eyes, and be surrounded by these songs of prayer and comfort — just as they are surrounded by angels.” In this conversation, Rob Kennedy speaks with Jim Jordan and Sister Chris about their CD of Gregorian chant.

Photo: Stu Rosner

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The Miró Quartet

From their website: “The Miró Quartet is one of America’s most celebrated string quartets, having performed throughout the world on the most prestigious concert stages. For twenty-five years the Miró has performed a wide range of repertoire that pays homage to the legacy of the string quartet while looking forward to the future of chamber music by commissioning new works and collaborating with some of today’s most important artists.”

“profoundly satisfying music-making” -Gramophone

Rob Kennedy speaks with members of the quartet about their recording of all the Beethoven string quartets.

Photo: Michael Thad Carter

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Neave Trio

From their website: “On this recording, the Neave Trio captures Piazzolla’s rich legacy through arrangements by one of Piazzolla’s long time colleagues, José Bragato (Las Cuatro Estaciones Porteñas) and by a younger protégé, Leonardo Suárez Paz (select songs). Mezzo-soprano Carla Jablonski joins the trio for the Piazzolla songs as well as an original work by Paz. Celebrating Piazzolla was produced by Alan Bise, mastered by Bruce Egre, and recorded at Sauder Hall, Goshen College.”

The members of the trio speak with Rob Kennedy about their recording.

Photo: Mark Roemisch

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Patterson/Sutton Duo

From their website: “Praised by The Strad magazine for their “wit and imagination”, the trailblazing Patterson/Sutton cello and guitar duo continue to be in demand as they bring the rich cello and guitar repertoire to audiences around the world.”

Rob Kennedy speaks with Kimberly Patterson and Patrick Sutton about their CD Still Life.

Photo: Kyle Hodges
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Verona Quartet

“a dramatically charged performance…the listening experience was pure pleasure”…Oregon Arts Watch

Elizabeth Elliott speaks with The Verona Quartet about their early years, community engagement, and some memorable performances.

Photo: Dario Acosta
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