Featured Guest Artists for 45th season
Washington Symphonic Brass
September 20, 2015
The Washington Symphonic Brass is comprised of some of the finest professional musicians in the Washington/Baltimore area. While the members are in constant demand for orchestral, solo, and chamber music performances, they have assembled to play some of the great literature written for large brass ensemble. Individually, the members of the WSB have performed with many of the nations best orchestras, such as The National Symphony, The Baltimore Symphony, and The Philadelphia Orchestra, among other illustrious institutions. The WSB performs throughout the Washington and Baltimore metropolitan area, appearing at some of the great performance spaces on the east coast
Sunrise String Quartet
November 15, 2015
The Sunrise String Quartet has performed regularly at the National Gallery of Art since its debut in 1995. In addition to standard quartet repertoire, the group presents rarely heard masterpieces of chamber music. They have been recognized with a Chamber Music America residency at the Duke Ellington School of the Arts as well as with residencies at Concerts at the Beach in Delaware and the Davies Concert Series in Camp Springs, Maryland. In 2009 the quartet collaborated in concert with the renowned chamber musician and pianist Menahem Pressler, playing music by Mozart and Schumann, and in 2011 the ensemble appeared on the Millennium Stage of the Kennedy Center.
Destiny Ann and the Corral Quartet
February 7, 2016
Violist Staff Sergeant Sarah Hart joined The Presidents Own United States Marine Chamber Orchestra in January 2009. Staff Sgt. Hart began her musical training at age 6. After graduating in 2002 from Rosati-Kain High School in St. Louis, she earned a bachelors degree in biology and minors in music and chemistry in 2006 from Truman State University in Kirksville, Mo., where she studied with Dr. Sam McClure. In 2008, SSgt Hart earned a masters degree in viola performance with an additional focus in pedagogy from Indiana University in Bloomington, where she studied with Atar Arad, former member of the Cleveland Quartet. In 2015 she earned a doctorate from the University of Maryland in College Park where she studied with Dan Foster, principal viola of the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C. She also has studied with Dr. Catharine Carroll at the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado.
Prior to joining The Presidents Own, Staff Sgt. Hart performed at the Pacific Music Festival in Sapporo, Japan, and as a member of the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic and the Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra in Indiana.
She was a featured viola soloist for the Bohuslav Martinu Rhapsody Concerto with the Marine Chamber Orchestra in May 2011.
Violinist Alexandra (Sasha) Mikhlin was born in Vladivostok, Russia. Her family moved to Novosibirsk when she was 12 to further her musical studies with a highly regarded violin teacher. Sasha was inspired—musically as well as personally—by her father Mikhail Solomon, who was also a violinist and a conductor. The family immigrated to Cleveland in 1991, where she studied at the Cleveland Institute. She completed her graduate studies in violin performance at Yale University. Sasha has been the Amadeus Orchestra concertmaster since 2013.
Sasha teaches at the esteemed Levine School of Music, where two of her students recently won 1st prizes in the highly regarded Marlin-Engel competition. In addition, she serves as an adjunct professor of Russian at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis. Sasha regularly plays with the National Philharmonic, substitutes with the Baltimore Symphony and the Washington National Opera (most recently in Wagners Flying Dutchman) and recently won a permanent position with Annapolis Symphony.
Violinist Destiny Ann Mermagen, formerly Destiny Ann Hoyle, is enjoying a successful career as a soloist, chamber musician and teacher in the musical arts. A native of Rapid City, South Dakota, Destiny Ann performed regularly with the Black Hills Symphony and Chamber Orchestras. During the summer of 2002, Destiny Ann was selected on full-scholarship to participate in the National Symphony Orchestra’s Summer Music Institute. She was featured as soloist at the 2003 American String Teachers Association Convention in Columbus, Ohio with the Rapid City Central Chamber Orchestra, which was the only chamber orchestra in the nation to be selected for participation. She has been involved in various musical and educational productions throughout the world, including those with the National Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Richmond Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Virginia Chamber Orchestra, Amadeus Chamber Orchestra, Peabody Conservatory, University of Maryland School of Music, and The Catholic University of America.
As the winner of international competitions and performance awards, Destiny Ann has had the pleasure of performing in prestigious venues such as Washington, D.C.s Kennedy Center Concert Hall, Opera House, and Millennium Stage; Marylands Strathmore Hall; New York Citys Carnegie Hall and many others across the United States, Europe and Russia. Destiny Ann has worked in conjunction with Dream Works and Paramount Pictures for Joe Wrights movie, The Soloist
. She is also featured in the PBS Documentary Partisan Pictures film, Defiant Requiem: Voices of Resistance
, both from the 2006 performance in Terezín, Czech Republic, and in the chamber music soundtrack recorded in 2012. In 2011, Destiny Ann was featured as soloist at the 65th Annual International Midwest Clinic in Chicago, IL, with the ASTA Grand Champion winners Rapid City Central Chamber Orchestra. She was also a featured guest performer at the 2013 IDRS Conference in Los Angeles, CA, where she performed Paganinis Duos for Bassoon and Violin.
During her time in Washington, D.C., Destiny Ann received her Master of Music Degree on full-scholarship with distinguished violinists & Professors Jody Gatwood & Luis Haza. Her studies also included working with the esteemed Elisabeth Adkins, Associate Concertmaster of the National Symphony Orchestra. Other notable teachers include Espen Lilleslåtten, who served as Concertmaster for 15 years of the Bergen Filharmoniske Orkester, as well as summer studies at the Aspen Music Festival with renowned teachers Paul Kantor and Sylvia Rosenberg.
In praise of her cowgirl roots, a recent successful and barn-burner of a performance of Francks Sonata for Violin and Piano was quoted in the Washington Post as endearingly coltish. She has a fiery passion for chamber music and loves performing with her husband, cellist Michael Mermagen.
Destiny Ann is an avid proponent of arts education. She teaches at several schools in the Capitol region and across the United States; She is also faculty violin instructor for the string program of the Coastal Youth Symphony of Georgia. Destiny Ann currently plays with her favorite Horseshoe bow made by the distinguished bowmaker Donald M. Cohen of Alexandria, VA.