Guest Artists

Stephen Burns

Stephen Burns

Trumpet virtuoso, conductor, and composer Stephen Burns is the Founder and Artistic Director of the Fulcrum Point New Music Project in Chicago, Illinois. With his dynamic, expressive style and multimedia performances, Mr. Burns has been acclaimed on five continents for his dramatic interpretations, innovative programming, and imaginative musicianship. Winner of the Young Concert Artists International Auditions, Mr. Burns is an Avery Fisher Career Grant recipient and Maurice André International Competition 1st Grand Prix Lauréat. He has performed in the major concert halls of New York, Boston, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Hong Kong, Quebec, Tokyo, Paris, and Venice. Mr. Burns has been a featured guest on NPR’s All Things Considered and Performance Today, NBC’s Today Show, and at the White House. He has guest conducted at the Aspen Festival, the National Arts Center Orchestra of Canada, Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s MUSIC NOW ensemble, Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León, Birmingham Contemporary Music Group, and the Orquesta Sinfónica Simón Bolívar, among others. As Artistic Director of Fulcrum Point, and its sibling organization The American Concerto Orchestra, Mr. Burns is a champion of new art music that is influenced by popular culture, art, dance, literature, religion, and social dynamics.

He has given numerous premiers of works by American composers (Ned Rorem, David Stock, Gunther Schuller, Robert Xavier Rodriguez, Philip Glass, Julian Wachner, and Mischa Zupko) as well as composers of international renown (Louis Andriessen, Magnus Lindberg, Somei Satoh, Aulis Sallinen, and Karlheinz Stockhausen). Committed to new music, Mr. Burns has composed works for electronic music, chamber music, and symphony orchestra. The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago commissioned him to compose “Wake Up, Y’all” as part of their Allora/Calzadilla installation. “Fanfare for Humanity” was commissioned for the Chicago Humanities Festival. His composition “Reflections,” created in collaboration with choreographer Ruby Shang, was premiered at Lincoln Center. “Cat and Rat: the Legend of the Chinese Zodiac” is a feature work for pipa virtuoso Yang Wei, and is based on the children’s book by Caldecott Award winning author and illustrator Ed Young.

His recordings include Telemann for Trumpet with the American Concerto Orchestra, on Dorian Recordings; The Complete Sonatas for Brass by Paul Hindemith, on Helicon Records; The Complete Brandenburg Concerti with Helmuth Rilling, on Hänssler Classics; and Trumpet Voluntary, on ASV Records. He has also recorded for Kleos, Naxos, Musical Heritage Society, Delos, Classical Masters, Essay and Grammavision.

Originally from Wellesley Hills, Massachusetts, Mr. Burns studied under Armando Ghitalla, Gerard Schwarz, Pierre Thibaud, and Arnold Jacobs at the Tanglewood Music Center, the Julliard School (Bachelor of Music and Master of Music, 1981-1982), as well as in Paris and Chicago for post-graduate studies. Sought after internationally for master classes, Mr. Burns is a former tenured Professor of Music at Indiana University and Visiting Lecturer at Northwestern University, the Merit Music School, and the Amici della Musica in Firenze, Italy.

He resides in Chicago with his wife, school psychologist, Katherine Neisser, their twin sons, Edward and Isaac, along with Thibaud their French bulldog.

Manuel Blanco Gómez – Limón

Manuel Blanco Gómez – Limón

Born in 1985 in Daimiel (Ciudad Real), Manuel Blanco began his trumpet studies very early with Martin Baeza Rubio and Jose María Ortí Soriano. He is also currently receiving musical advice from the international concert artist Reinhold Friedrich, showing these three masters a special interest in his human and professional preparation.

He has won several competitions such as the Ciudad de Xátiva, Villena, Calviá, Moixent, Jeju (South Korea)… Since 2006 he has been the main trumpet of the spanish National Orchestra. His great international achievement came after winning the 1st prize at the prestigious ARD Music Competition in Munich 2011, earning the highest rating in the competition’s history. This award has only been awarded to two other trumpeters in 62 editions before Manuel Blanco, Maurice André being the first to win it in 1963. Blanco is considered his rightful heir.

He has worked as a trumpet soloist in first class orchestras such as Concertgebouw of Amsterdam, Gewandhaus of Leipzig, Philharmonic of Radio France, Gustav Mahler Jugend Orchester, European Youth Orchestra, Berlin Staatsoper, Philharmonic Arturo Toscanini, Mozart Bologna Orchestra, Orchestra Teatro alla Scala Milán, Orquesta Santa Cecilia of Rome…. together with directors such as Claudio Abbado, Mariss Jansons, Rafael Frübeck de Burgos, Lorin Maazel, Christoph Eschenbach, Zubin Mehta, Daniel Barenboim, Yuri Temirkanov, Semyon Bychkov, Riccardo Chailly, Gustavo Dudamel, Andris Nelsons, Josep Pons, Juanjo Mena, David Afkham,Pablo Heras-Casado, George Pehlivanian, Markus Bosch, Antonio Méndez, Andrés Salado, Martin Baeza-Rubio, Charles Olivieri-Munroe…

As a concert performer, he has played with the Bavarian Radio Orchestra, Munich Radio Orchestra, Munich Chamber Orchestra, Budapest Chamber Orchestra, Jeju Philharmonic Orchestra, Camerata XXI, Philarmonisches Orchester Würzburg in Mozarfest, Capella Symphonic Orchestra (St. Petersburg), Hofer Symphoniker, Niederrheinis Sinfoniker, Norddeutsche Philharmonie Rostock, Mining Symphony Orchestra, National Orchestra of Spain, Navarre Symphony Orchestra, RTVE Symphony Orchestra, Bilabao Symphony Orchestra or the Municipal Orchestra of Valencia, among many others.

Juan Carlos Matamoros Cuenca

Juan Carlos Matamoros Cuenca

He is the Principal Trombone of the Spanish National Orchestra since 2007, at the age of twenty. He began his career being awarded in various national and international competitions such as Xativa, Castellnovo, Ruperto Chapí, Valencia City, Intercentros, Musical Youth, Lindberg CGConn, Lieksa Brass Week (Finland), Brass Jeju (South Korea) and Ard of Munich.

He has collaborated with orchestras as the Berlin Philharmonic, SWR Baden-Baden and Freiburg, Frankfurt Opera, Spanish Radio Television, Madrid, Community of Madrid, Liceo of Barcelona, Cordoba, Granada, Castilla y León and Valencia, among others. Additionally, he has been a member of Youth Orchestras such as Valencia University Philarmonic Orchestra, Youth Orchestra of the Generalitat Valenciana, Castellon Symphony Youth Orchestra, JWWO, National Youth Orchestra of Spain, of HOLSTEIN, etc.

As a soloist, he has performed with the Bayerischer Rundfunk Orchestra of Munich, Munich Chamber Orchestra, Joensu City Orchestra, Jeju Philharmonic Orchestra, Camerata XXI, Spanish Radio Television Orchestra, Orchestra of the University of Valencia and the Orchestra of the Conservatory of Madrid.

He is also member of 2i2quartet trombone quartet (awarded in the Contest of  Juventudes Musicales de España), the Mediterranean Chamber Brass Quintet (awarded in Festivals of Jeju in South Korea, Lieksa Brass Week in Finland and Jan Koetsier of Munich) and Professor at Trombone Academy Madrid-Stomvi.

Steven Mead

Steven Mead

Steven Mead is known as one of the world’s leading brass soloists, having played with many of the world’s finest wind and brass bands and orchestras.

As a professional euphonium soloist Steven continues to win admiration the world over, with over seventy five solo performances a year. He is Professor of Euphonium at the Royal Northern College of Music and also teaches at several specialist schools across Europe including Augsburg University, Osaka College of Music and the Alicante Brass Academy. His remarkable solo career followed on from success he achieved as a member of several of the UK’s leading brass bands, including Sun Life, Desford, GUS and CWS Glasgow.

He has also given concert tours and recorded with several leading professional chamber ensembles in Europe, including Sound-Inn-Brass, Classic Quintet, Trombonisti Italiani, London Brass, Spanish Brass Quintet. He is a founder member and principal euphonium of the Brass Band of Battle Creek (USA).

As an innovator for the low brass world in general, he has been the Artistic Director of all six of National Tuba/Euphonium Conferences held in the UK and was Artistic Director of the ITEC in Linz, Austria 2012. He is currently Artistic Director of the Jeju International Wind Festival Festival (South Korea).

His innovation is also evident with his premiere performances of over 350 new concerti and major works. 

He has been described as one of the world’s most recorded solo brass artists with over 70 CDs to his credit. 

Steven has been an artist, designer and clinician with Besson for many years.

José Luis Sogorb Jover

José Luis Sogorb Jover

José Luis Sogorb, born in Pinoso (Alicante, Spain), is currently 3rd horn of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam. He previously held the position of low horn in the Arnhem Philharmonic Orchestra and principal horn at Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia. He completed his studies with Herman Jeurissen at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague, where he will join as a teacher as of September 2018. Along with his position in the RCO José is very a very active chamber music player and gives Masterclasses to students all over the world.

Alfonso Viñas Ramos

Alfonso Viñas Ramos

Born in Barakaldo in 1986. In 1999 he entered the Conservatory “Juan Crisóstomo Arriaga” of Bilbao, finishing his studies in 2005 with honors. In 2005 he entered the Conservatory of Music of Salamanca, taking classes with Jose Manuel Redondo, and graduated in 2009 with honors and winning the Special Award of Honor Thesis in 2010. During the year 2008-2009 he studied at the “Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt” in Weimar, Germany, under the tutelage of Walter Hilgers and David Cribb .

He has taken courses with renowned tuba players like David Llácer, Vicente López , Pedro Castaño, Miguel Navarro and Roger Bobo.

In the educational field, he has been teacher of tuba and euphonium at the “Municipal School of Music” of La Bañeza during 2006-2007 and 2007-2008 seasons, and the “Municipal School of Music” of Astorga 2007-2008 season. He has been teacher of tuba and euphonium at the “XVIII International Music Course Astorga” in 2011, as well as the “Mediterranean Brass Festival Moncada” (FESMON) during the years 2011, 2012 and 2013. He was also teacher of tuba, euphonium and chamber music at the “Conservatory of Music” in Oviedo during the year 2012-2013.

In 2007 he won the “Young Musician Competition” of the Junta de Castilla y León and the “Fundación Siglo”, performing as soloist with the “Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León” (OSCYL).

In summer of 2013 he obtained the 2nd prize at the “3rd International Tuba Competition” during the ” Lieksa Brass Week” festival in Finland.

In the field of chamber music is founding member of the “Mediterranean Chamber Brass” quintet, wining the 1st Prize at the ” V International Competition for Brass Quintets Jeju ” (South Korea) in 2008; the 3rd Prize at the ” International Competition for Brass Quintets Jan Koetsier ” in Munich (Germany) in 2008 and the 1st Prize at the ” International Brass Quintet Competition” of the Lieksa Brass Week (Finland) in 2009.

He has been member of numerous youth orchestras, including the “Youth Orchestra of Euskadi”, “International Youth Orchestra City of Oviedo” and the “National Youth Orchestra of Spain”.

He is an habitual collaborator of orchestras across the Spanish territory, as the Orquesta Sinfónica de Navarra “Pablo Sarasate” (OSN), Orquesta Nacional de España (ONE), Orquesta Sinfónica de Bilbao (BOS), Orquesta Sinfónica de Euskadi (OSE), Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León (OSCYL), BIOS Orchestra , Orquesta de la Fundación Caja Duero “Gerard Caussé”, etc.

He also collaborates with other type of musical agroupations like wind bands or groups of contemporary music, such “Banda Municipal de Bilbao” or “Proyecto Veinte-21”.

Verónica Cagigao

Verónica Cagigao

Verónica Cagigao is one of the most representative figures of the marimba in Spain. Her next concert as a soloist with renowned marimba player Keiko Abe and the Orchestra Sinfonica de Tenerife in June 2016, is a fact that demonstrates the high artistic and musical level of this young percussionist.

She currently combines his international performing career with teaching percussion at the Aragon Music Conservatory in Spain (Conservatorio Superior de Musica de Aragon).

Born in A Coruña, Spain, Verónica moved to Santa Cruz de Tenerife to finish her higher education studies in percussion with Juan Francisco Díaz Martín. In 2010 she graduated with Honours. She continued her studies in Belgium at Luca School of Arts with a master’s programme in marimba with the internationally renowned soloist Ludwig Albert, finishing her first Master’s in marimba in 2012. In 2014, she completed her second Master’s in marimba and a Master’s in chamber music, obtaining a Summa Cum Laude Distinction in both with the congratulations of the Board of Examiners. She has received master classes from N. J. Zivkovic, V. Mendoza, N. Zeltman, E. Sejourne, N. Woud and J. Putsjens, among others. In 2016, she took a specialised course in marimba at the Toho School of Music in Tokyo with the world-class marimba player Keiko Abe.

Veronica has received awards in several international competitions: Giornatte de la Percussione (Italy, 2009), Marimba Universal Competition and Chamber Music (Belgium, 2011), Premios María Orán (Spain, 2013) and Premio Injuve de la Creación Joven (2011, Spain) with the Tak-Nara Percussion Group.

She has given performances over different cities in Spain, Italy, Belgium, Poland, Germnay, Croatia, Slovenia, Usa, Tokyo, etc.

She was member of Spain’s National Youth Orchestra and currently collaborates with the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra.

Since 2008, she has been a founding member of the Tak-Nara Percussion Group and has performed with them in various countries, including Spain, Italy, Slovenia, Germany, Serbia, Belgium and USA, participating in festivals such as the Ksilodrum Percussion Festival in Slovenia, the Perkutafest Festival, the International Percussion Festival in Valencia, the Contemporary Music Festival in Tenerife, PASIC 2013 in Indianapolis and IPEW 2014 in Croatia. Since 2010 she has been a sponsored artist for Adams Musical Instruments, and in 2011 she released her first album named TAK-NARA.

Veronica has given lectures and master classes in percussion and marimba for different percussion courses in various Spanish cities like Castellón, Valencia, Madrid, Tenerife, La Palma and Galicia.

She has been a percussion teacher specialising in mallet instruments at the Aragón Music Conservatory (Conservatorio Superior de Música de Aragón) in Spain since the year 2013 and is currently a ambassador of Southern Percussion products in Spain.

Luis Miguel Abello

Luis Miguel Abello

Luis Miguel Abello Blanco was born in Oviedo in 1977. He is a Superior of Piano and Superior Professor of Chamber Music by the Conservatory of Music of Castilla y León with the highest grades. He is also in possession of the Degree in Orchestra Direction and Choir Direction by the Universität für Musik in Graz, Austria. Trained as a pianist with maestro Leonel Morales, he has been a guest soloist and offered recitals for solo and chamber music in important halls both in Spain and abroad. He has also performed with certain as a Redemptorist of great soloists highlighting especially his work as a contemporary music interpreter with many premieres and recordings.

Since 1997 he has been a teacher, with an intense work as accompanist and repertorist pianist. Repertory Professor with Piano at the RCSM of Madrid (2008-2014) and Director of the International Music Course “Ciudad de Astorga” (2006-2014) as well as coordinating various CFIE teacher training activities in Castilla y León and the Ministry of Education. Since 2014 he is a teacher and director of the Conservatory and Municipal School “Manuel de Falla” of Alcorcón. He has conducted in Austria among others the Sinfonietta Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra of the University of Graz, the Sinfonisches Bläserorchester des KUG, the Ensemble of Contemporary Music and the Choir of the KUG as well as the Mondo Musicale Choir and in Hungary the Györ Philharmonic Orchestra .

In Spain, in addition to several stage productions, he has conducted the Ciudad de León Symphony Orchestra “Odón Alonso”, the Extremadura Symphony Orchestra, G.I. JONDE, JOS “City of Salamanca”, the Iberian Orchestra and the Band and the Orchestra of the CIM Ciudad de Astorga. He has been a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Spain (JONDE) and Director of the Ensemble Contrastes and the Ragtime-Ensemble company as well as the Astorga Municipal Music Band since 2006.

Sergio Gutiérrez Rodríguez

Sergio Gutiérrez Rodríguez

Sergio started his musical studies at Conservatorio Miranda de Ebro, and later on he continued at Conservatorio Superior “Jesús Guridi” of Vitoria-Gasteiz, obtaining the “End of Bachelor´s Honour Piano Award” in 1998 and the same award in Composition in 2002.

He studied under the tutelage of the piano teachers Juncal Ruiz, Ángela Vilagrán and Albert Nieto, and at the same he coursed his harmony studies, counterpoint and composition with Dionisio Díez Sáez, José L. Ruiz de Gordoa, Antonio Lauzurika, Zuriñe F. Gerenabarrena and Alfonso García de la Torre. He perfected his piano studies with Luiz de Moura Castro, Christopher Elton, Elza Kolodin, Frederic Gevers, Aquiles delle Vigne, Tibor Szasz, Luca Chiantore, Ramón Coll and Marta Gulyas; he also participated in several composition courses with Gabriel Brncic-Isaza, Cristóbal Halffter, Mauricio Sotelo, Toshio Hosokawa, Tomás Garrido, Juan J. Olives, Silvia Fómina, Juha T. Koskinen, Francisco Lara, Uljas Pulkkis, Mercedes Zavala, Beat Furrer, Mario Lavista, José Manuel López López, Salvatore Sciarrino and Jean Pierre-Dupuy.

In 2000 he participated in the composition of the arrangements and recording of the Cancionero Alavés for the City-Council of Vitoria-Gasteiz. In 2001 and 2002 he was selected for the “reading panel” of the composition meetings of the Injuve (Institute of Youth). He was in charge of the composition of the CDMC in 2003; he also received an Honorable Mention in the XXIV “Frederic Mompou” composition contest in 2004 and the “Francisco Guerrero Marín” Prize in the SGAE contest for young composers in 2005. In 2006 he obtained the position of piano teacher and he had worked at the Conservatories of Vitoria-Gasteiz, Salamanca, Burgos and Palencia.

Sergio regularly participates as a pianist and composer in the national and international tours of the Ensemble Espacio-Sinkro of contemporary music: Bernaola Festival, Sinkro Festival, Circuito de Música Contemporánea, Musikaste, Mostra sonora, etc. He has recorded several albums for the Sinkro-Record label with works by Carmelo Bernaola, Felix Ibarrondo, Guillermo Lauzurika, as well as his own works (“Job”, “Intermezzo to the death of Count Ugolino”, “Wind, crystal and bronze”). His last recording was the album Poeta (2017), with works by Eduardo Moreno. Moreover, he has made presentations for the teacher training in Palencia: “Studies for contemporary piano” and “Divertimento for the collective class” (Palencia, 2009), “Harmonization and arrangements of melodies of oral tradition” (Palencia, 2016). During the last years he has worked intensely on the Castilla oral traditional music, developing a great amount of didactic materials on the songs of Federico Olmeda, Guzmán Ricis, Agapito Marazuela, Miguel Manzano, Joaquín Díaz, etc.