Julian Schwarz was born to a multigenerational musical family in 1991. Heralded from a young age as a cellist destined to rank among the greatest of the 21st century, Julian’s powerful tone, effortless virtuosity, and extraordinarily large color palette are hallmarks of his style.
After making his concerto debut at the age of 11 with the Seattle Symphony and his father Gerard Schwarz on the podium, he made his US touring debut with the Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra in 2010. Since being awarded first prize at the inaugural Schoenfeld International String Competition in 2013, he has led an active career as soloist, performing with the symphony orchestras of Annapolis, Boise, Bozeman, Buffalo, Charlotte, Columbus, Des Moines, Hartford, Jacksonville, Louisville, Memphis, Modesto, Omaha, Puerto Rico, Richmond, Rochester, San Antonio, Sarasota, Seattle, Syracuse, Toledo, Tucson, Virginia, West Virginia, Wichita, and Winston-Salem, among others. Internationally, he made his Australian debut with the Queensland Symphony, his Mexican debuts with the Boca del Rio Philharmonic in Veracruz and the Mexico City Philharmonic with frequent collaborator Jorge Mester, and his Hong Kong debut at the Intimacy of Creativity Festival. He has also appeared at the Salzburg Mozarteum, and the Verbier festival in Switzerland.
As a chamber musician, Mr. Schwarz performs extensively in recital with pianist Marika Bournaki. In 2016 the Schwarz-Bournaki duo was awarded first prize at the inaugural Boulder International String Competition’s “The Art of Duo”, and subsequently embarked on an extensive 10-recital tour of China in March 2017. Mr. Schwarz is a founding member of the New York based Frisson Ensemble (a mixed nonet of winds and strings), and the Mile-End Trio with violinist Jeff Multer and Ms. Bournaki. He performs frequently at Bargemusic in Brooklyn with violinist Mark Peskanov, on the Frankly Music Series in Milwaukee with violinist Frank Almond, as a member of the Palladium Chamber Players in St Petersburg FL, and has appeared at the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival, Orcas Island Chamber Music Festival, and the Seattle Chamber Music Festival. In addition, he is the co-coordinator of chamber music at Eastern Music Festival, running programming for the Tuesday evening chamber music series.
Julian Schwarz is an ardent supporter of new music, and has premiered concertos by Richard Danielpour and Samuel Jones (recorded with the All Star Orchestra for public television in 2012, subsequently released as a DVD on Naxos). In the 17-18 season, he gave the world premiere of Lowell Liebermann’s first Cello Concerto with a consortium of six orchestras. Other premieres include recital works by Paul Frucht, Scott Ordway, Jonathan Cziner, Gavin Fraser, Alex Weiser, Ofer Ben-Amots, and the US Premiere of Dobrinka Tabakova’s Cello Concerto. On record, he has recorded Bright Sheng’s “Northern Lights” for Naxos, the complete cello/piano works by Ernest Bloch for the Milken Archive of American Jewish Music, and an album of concertos with the Seattle Symphony.
A devoted teacher, Mr. Schwarz serves as Assistant Professor of Cello at Shenandoah Conservatory of Shenandoah University (Winchester, VA) and on the artist faculty of New York University (NYU Steinhardt). He spends his summers teaching and performing at the Eastern Music Festival (Greensboro, NC). Past faculty appointments include artist-in-residence at the Lunenburg Academy of Music Performance (Nova Scotia, Canada), faculty teaching assistant to Joel Krosnick at The Juilliard School, and artist-In-residence at the pianoSonoma Festival.
Born in Seattle, WA, Mr. Schwarz studied at the Academy of Music Northwest and the Lakeside School. He continued to the Colburn School in Los Angeles under Ronald Leonard, and then moved to New York City to study with mentor Joel Krosnick at The Juilliard School (BM 14, MM 16). Other influential teachers include the late David Tonkonogui, the late Toby Saks, Lynn Harrell, Neal Cary, and chamber music mentors Andre Roy, Arnold Steinhardt, Jonathan Feldman, Toby Appel and Paul Coletti. Julian plays a Neapolitan cello made by Gennaro Gagliano in 1743 and multiple American bows made by the late Paul Martin Siefried. He is an active contributor to Strings Magazine’s Artist Blog, edits cello editions for Carl Fischer Publishing, and sits on the music committee of the National Arts Club. A Pirastro artist, he endorses and plays the "Perpetual" medium and edition sets of cello strings. Julian also proudly endorses Melos Rosin.
Since performing as a concerto soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra at age 18, cellist Nicholas Finch has established himself as an artist of great depth and diversity, both within and beyond the classical genre. This season, Finch will lead the second year of the Derby City Chamber Music Festival as its Artistic Director, featuring some of the best chamber musicians from Louisville and around the country, including members of the Escher String Quartet, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, the Manhattan Chamber Players, and many more. This year Finch recorded his debut album "Nou Edition" with the NouLou Chamber Players, featuring three world-premiere cello concertos written for him by composers Lev “Ljova” Zhurbin, Alyssa Weinberg, and Dorian Wallace, to be released in the spring of 2024. He served as a secondary soloist with cellist Yo-Yo Ma in Teddy Abrams' 'Mammoth', and performed by the Louisville Orchestra in Mammoth Cave National Park, and performed the American premiere of Kelly-Marie Murphy's concerto for cello and harp with the Skagit Symphony in Mt. Vernon, Washington. He served as cello artist-faculty at the Eastern Music Festival in the Summer of 2022, and will return in this role the summer of 2023.
In recent seasons, Finch has collaborated with musicians from the Louisville Orchestra and others in the role of conductor, in works by Copland, Glinka, Saint-Saens, Elgar, Dvorak, and more. Just months prior to the onset of COVID-19, he appeared as cello soloist in Richard Strauss's "Don Quixote" with the Louisville Orchestra.
Finch was appointed Principal Cellist of the Louisville Orchestra during the 2013-2014 season by music director Teddy Abrams. He has appeared with the Boston-based chamber orchestra ‘A Far Cry’ on numerous concerts and recordings, one recording having been nominated for a Grammy Award. He has additionally appeared numerous times with the Jupiter Chamber Players in New York City.
A native of Boston, Finch began his cello studies at the age of 12. He attended Harvard, Juilliard, the University of Michigan, and the Mannes College of Music, studying the cello with Andrew Mark, David Soyer, Harvey Shapiro, Richard Aaron, and Marcy Rosen. He has studied orchestral conducting with Markand Thakar, Kenneth Kiesler, and with Michael Jinbo and Ludovic Morlot at the Pierre Monteux School. During the 2023-24 season, Finch will attend the University of Michigan again, this time to earn a Masters Degree in Orchestral Conducting.