Quartetto Patagonia

Wednesday, June 7, 2023
Holsclaw Hall

  • Guillermo Uribe Holguin

    String Quartet, Op. 2, No. 19
  • Joseph Haydn

    String Quartet Op. 76 No. 2

Quartetto Patagonia:
Laura Cásarez, violin
Emily Chao, violin
Raphael Lizama, viola
Juan Mejía, cello

Laura Cásarez, violin
Originally from Houston, TX, violinist Laura Casarez moved to Tucson in 2017 and has since become an active member of the local music community. She currently holds the position of assistant principal second violin in the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and is also a member of the TSO String Quintet. She performs frequently in local groups such as True Concord Voices and Orchestra, Borderlands Ensemble, and Tucson Pops, as well as with her own chamber music group, the Oracle Piano Trio. In addition to her performing schedule, Laura runs a private teaching studio and works as a chamber music coach for Arizona Friends of Chamber Music. Laura graduated with degrees in violin performance from Rice University (BM) and University of Arizona (MM).

Emily Chao, violin
Violinist Emily Chao joined the Tucson Symphony Orchestra in 2017, and also performs regularly with Tucson Pops Orchestra and True Concord Voices & Orchestra. As a founding member of Chamberhood, she works to collaborate with local venues, commission new works from local composers, and make classical music more accessible to the Tucson community. She also volunteers as personnel manager and secretary of the board for Tucson Repertory Orchestra. Emily graduated in 2013 with a DMA from Boston University, where she studied with Lynn Chang and completed a dissertation on Karol Szymanowski’s First Violin Concerto, op 35. She holds BM and MM degrees from New England Conservatory, where she studied with James Buswell.

Raphael Lizama, viola
Raphael completed his Bachelor’s degree in Viola Performance at the Oberlin Conservatory and his Master’s degree at Bowling Green State University. His principal teachers were Peter Slowik and Ralph Fielding. As an orchestral musician, Raphael has had the honor of performing under great conductors like Sir Simon Rattle and Robert Spano. He has performed in master classes of many leading violists including Cynthia Phelps, Geraldine Walters and Carol Rodland. His chamber music experience includes playing in master classes for members of the Ying, Emerson, Shanghai, Juilliard, and Takacs string quartets. Most recently Raphael completed his DMA at the U of A. While at the University of Arizona, Raphael has frequently led the viola studio masterclasses and taught undergraduate violists. He has also performed chamber music in several faculty recitals. In 2022 he joined the viola section of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra.

Juan David Mejía, cello
Juan David Mejía is an extremely versatile cellist, experienced in playing with many different types of ensembles. From 2014 to 2016, he performed with the San Francisco Symphony’s outreach program Adventures in Music and the contemporary ensemble Opera Parallèle. Since 2016, he has served as substitute cellist for the Tucson Symphony Orchestra as well as True Concord Voices & Orchestra. He often performs chamber music concerts at the Benderly-Kendall Opera House for the Santa Cruz Foundation for the Arts in Patagonia, Arizona, where he serves as artist in residence. He sits on the board of Arizona Friends of Chamber Music (AFCM) where he co-directs multiple programs including the Tucson Adult Chamber Players (TACP) and the Chamberhood ensemble. Juan David holds a Doctorate in Music from the University of Arizona. He completed his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.


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