The Prokofiev Sonatas, for violin and piano
Jan 27, 2024, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Wightman Chapel at Scarritt Bennett, 1110 19th Ave S, Nashville, TN 37212, USA
Christina McGann, Violin
Heather Connor, Piano
Originally from Lancaster, Pa., Steinway Artist Heather Conner is Chancellor's Chair of Precollege Piano and co-chair of the Keyboard Department at the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt University. Prior to this appointment, she was Professor of Piano at The University of Utah School of Music, where she served on the faculty for 14 years.
As a recitalist, Conner has performed in many prestigious venues such as Steinway Hall in New York City. She has also presented solo recitals in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, New Haven, Moscow, Salzburg, Seoul, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada, Greenville (S.C. and N.C.), Stillwater and Oklahoma City, (Okla.), Tuscaloosa and Montgomery, (Ala.), Murfreesboro and Salt Lake City.
Conner has won grand prizes at several international and national competitions, including the first Hilton Head Island International Piano Competition and the Kingsville International Young Performers Competition, and has performed on numerous occasions as a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra. In 2010, she performed a solo recital at the Zwischen den Jahren festival in Antweiler, Germany. In 2006, she appeared as recitalist and artist teacher at several venues in Seoul, South Korea. She has recorded commercially for the Naxos and Centaur labels and has been heard on NPR’s Performance Today, WQED in Pittsburgh, WFLN in Philadelphia, and KCSC in Oklahoma City. Her performances can also be heard online at instantencore.com.
An avid chamber musician, Conner has appeared in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall and the Glenn Gould Studios in Toronto. She has performed as a soloist and chamber musician at the Niagara International Chamber Music Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada, and is currently an artist performer with America’s Dream Chamber Artists both at Symphony Space in New York City and on tour nationally. She performs every year on the Intermezzo and Nova Chamber Music Series, both based in Salt Lake City, and has performed as a guest artist on the Brightmusic Chamber Music Series in Oklahoma City.
Two of Conner’s students have been MTNA Regional winners. Anastasia Magamedova competed as one of 24 competitors at the First Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition. Luke Turner was a participant at the Second Cliburn International Junior Piano Competition, and performed as soloist with the Nashville Symphony as a winner of the Curb Concerto Competition. Conner’s high school students have been accepted as scholarship students at Juilliard, Eastman, New England Conservatory and Oberlin Conservatory of Music.
Conner completed her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in piano performance at the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with Arkady Aronov and received the Helen Cohn award for most promising doctoral graduate. Under the guidance of renowned pianist Peter Frankl, Conner received her Master of Music degree from the Yale University School of Music. She received her Bachelor of Music degree from the Curtis Institute of Music in 1997, where she studied with distinguished piano pedagogue Eleanor Sokoloff for five years.
Christina McGann has been a featured performer at the Kennedy Center, the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center, New York City’s Merkin Hall, Symphony Space, and Bargemusic, and at various venues throughout the U.S., Korea, El Salvador, and Europe. She has also performed concertos with orchestras including the National Symphony Orchestra, the Richardson Symphony, Musica Bella Orchestra in New York, the Moldovan Chamber Orchestra, the National Chamber Orchestra in Washington D.C., Ohio University New Music Ensemble, and the St. Petersburg Academic Symphony in Russia.
McGann has been awarded prizes at the Johansen International Competition, the National Symphony Young Soloist Competition, the Lennox Competition, the Ackerman Chamber Music Competition with Trio Artica, Chamber Music Yellow Springs with the iO Quartet, and the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition.
McGann holds both B.Mus. and M.Mus. degrees in violin performance from The Juilliard School, where she was accepted with Presidential Distinction. Her foundational teachers include Ronald Copes, Victor Danchenko, Robert Mann, and Donald Weilerstein. She also completed her doctoral degree at SUNY Stony Brook under the guidance of Soovin Kim, Philip Setzer, Hagai Shaham, and Nicholas Cords.
Also an avid educator, McGann began her teaching career in New York as a Juilliard Morse Fellow, a program that brings Juilliard students extensively trained as artist-educators into public school classrooms on a weekly basis throughout the school year. In addition to private teaching experience, McGann taught as part of Juilliard’s Instrumental Music Program, has been on faculty at Brooklyn College Preparatory, coached chamber music as a graduate assistant at SUNY-Purchase, received her Suzuki pedagogy training through all books at New York City’s School for Strings, and has served as Artist in Residence at Ohio University School of Music.
McGann is currently Visiting Assistant Professor of Viola and Violin at the Blair School at Vanderbilt University. In addition to chamber music and recital engagements, she is Concertmaster of the Nashville Opera Orchestra and the violist of the Blair String Quartet.
Program notes coming soon!