Meet the Ezra Duo, a viola and piano duo with Jacob Clewell and Sasha Bult-Ito!
Formed at the Glenn Gould School in 2016, the Ezra Duo quickly established itself as a performing ensemble of the highest caliber. The duo racked up a string of early performances, including Britten’s Lachrymae in a masterclass for violist Hsin-Yun Huang, and Hindemith’s Rhapsodic Sonata Op. 11, No. 4 for the Arts and Letters Club of Toronto and again in Mazzoleni Hall at the Royal Conservatory of Music.
Ezra made its debut in Koerner Hall with the same sonata, performing in a prelude concert for the Royal
Conservatory Orchestra. The duo has had the opportunity to play for distinguished artists such as Leon Fleisher, James Ehnes, Richard O’Neill, James Dunham, David Louie, and John Perry. Jacob and Sasha have represented the Glenn Gould School in an outreach recital for members of Baycrest Hospital, and were featured in a Koerner Hall postlude recital for Nicola Benedetti and the Venice Baroque Orchestra. This summer, Ezra appeared at the Scotia Festival of Music in Halifax, Nova Scotia, performing on the Young Artist recital Series. Most recently, Ezra was announced the first-prize winner of the Golden Classical Music Awards (USA) and Grand Prize Virtuoso (Austria) competitions. Upcoming concerts feature programs highlighting women in music, including sonatas by Jennifer Higdon, Libby Larsen, and Rebecca Clarke, among others, in a reengagement at the Arts and Letters Club of Toronto, as well as on recitals in Toronto, Atlanta, Santa Fe, and New York City.
Meet the beautiful and talented Julia Mirzoev!
Born in 1996 in Toronto, Canada, Julia Mirzoev playing violin at the age of two and a half years with her father. Shortly after, she began studying with renowned pedagogue Jacob Lakirovich up until she began her undergraduate education with Jonathan Crow, the Concertmaster of the Toronto Symphony at The University of Toronto, where she holds principal positions as well as Concertmaster in the University of Toronto Symphony orchestra and the University of Toronto Opera orchestra. A winner of multiple first prizes across national and provincial competitions; including first and grand prizes at the Canadian Music Competition and the esteemed President's Trophy award at Toronto Kiwanis, Julia has also received the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra concerto competition first prize, granting her a series of solo concerts with the Toronto Symphony orchestra. Julia has also performed solo with the Scarborough Philarmonic, Sinfonia Toronto, and the Canadian Sinfonietta. Julia is an avid orchestral, chamber, and solo musician, as well as a participant in international music festivals, such as the Orford music festival as well as the Aspen Summer Music Festival this past summer. She is currently a fourth year student at the University of Toronto.
In her free time, Julia enjoys quality time with friends, sunny beaches, racquet sports, and fishing with her father (even though she is allergic to fish...)!
It was so nice to meet the talented and adorable Naoko Sakata!
Naoko is pursuing her undergraduate studies in piano performance at the Conservatoire de Musique de Québec in the class of Suzanne Beaubien. She has won awards from numerous music festivals and competitions. Earlier this year, she was awarded the Beaudoin Trophy and the Violons du Roy Prize, which will enable her to perform as a soloist with the Violons du Roy next season. In the realm of chamber music, last year her duo received the Southern Ontario Chamber Music Institute Prize which enabled them to participate in the Rolston/Szekely Program for Young Musicians at the Banff Centre on full scholarship. Previously, she was a full-scholarship student at the Taylor Academy of the Royal Conservatory of Music under Li Wang.
Naoko is also the founder and executive director of Musicians’ Dream Aid, a charity which offers financial aid to young musicians. In her spare time, she also enjoys performing at local senior homes and hospitals.
You've probably already heard this name as well as his swoon-worthy violin playing: here are a few pictures with Boson "Bossman" Mo!
Winner of Third Prize at the 2013 Michael Hill International Violin Competition, Boson Mo was named as one of Canada’s “30 under 30 Top Classical Musicians of 2015” by CBC Radio-Canada. As the only Canadian candidate at the 2015 International Tchaikovsky Competition, he was awarded the “Prix Joseph-Rouleau” at the 2010 Montreal International Violin Competition and is a recipient of Canada’s prestigious Sylva Gelber Foundation Award. Additionally, he is a two-time winner of Canada Council for the Arts’ Musical Instrument Bank loan. Boson has also competed at other major International Violin Competitions such as the Queen Elisabeth (Brussels), Menuhin (Beijing), Indianapolis, and Singapore.
A graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music, Boson is completing a Doctoral degree at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University under Paul Kantor. Boson currently performs on a violin by Carlo Antonio Tononi (1757), graciously on loan from the Canada Council for the Arts.