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Cellist David Finckel and Pianist Wu Han Return Feb. 28

February 4, 2020

Concert Will Feature World Premiere of a Newly-Commissioned Work

A man with a cello and a woman at the piano, dressed in blue

Middlebury, VT—The Middlebury College Performing Arts Series’ 100th anniversary season continues on February 28 with a visit from two of its most prolific performers, cellist David Finckel and acclaimed pianist Wu Han, for a program including Beethoven, Debussy, Mendelssohn, and Chopin. Dubbed “chamber music’s busy power couple” by the New York Times, Finckel and Han will also perform the world premiere of Ephemeral Objects, a new work by Vermont-raised, prize-winning composer Pierre Jalbert, commissioned by the series to mark this special occasion.

In addition to his many Performing Arts Series performances, David Finckel also has close personal ties to Vermont, having spent his early summers at Point Counterpoint, the Lake Dunmore music camp founded by his father—composer, educator, and jazz musician Dr. Edwin Finckel.


About the Artists

a man and a woman sit together in a rustic wooden roomAmong the most esteemed and influential classical musicians in the world today, David Finckel and Wu Han are recipients of Musical America’s Musicians of the Year award, one of the highest honors granted by the music industry. Highlights of their 2019–20 season include a new CD release, a national PBS television special, and a busy international tour schedule, including multiple performances with the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (CMS) in the United States, Taiwan, and Columbia.

Finckel and Han are currently in their third term as Artistic Directors of CMS. Under the auspices of CMS, the pair lead the LG Chamber Music School, which serves dozens of young musicians in Korea each year. They are also the founding Artistic Directors of Music@Menlo, a chamber music festival and institute in Silicon Valley, and, in 2011, were named Artistic Directors of Chamber Music Today, an annual festival held in Korea. Finckel serves as Professor of Cello at The Juilliard School, as well as Artist-in-Residence at Stony Brook University. Wolf Trap appointed Han to serve as Artistic Advisor of its Chamber Music at the Barns series, and this season, she is Montclair State University’s Artist in Residence.

a man and woman dressed in black and white stand togetherIn 1997 Finckel and Han launched ArtistLed, classical music’s first musician-directed and Internet-based recording company. The pair have also overseen the establishment of the acclaimed CMS Studio and CMS Live labels, as well as the much lauded Music@Menlo LIVE label.


“David Finckel and Wu Han are chamber music royalty… a beguiling pleasure from the first gentle, springy notes to the last wild fugue.” —The Washington Post


“The pureness of his tone means that, when a melody starts on the cello but ends on the piano, it is not always clear where he ends and she starts…Their marriage of over 30 years translates into a magical stage presence and acute ensemble awareness that makes the music mesh wonderfully.” —Third Coast Review


a man sits with a stack of sheet musicAmerican composer Pierre Jalbert grew up in northern Vermont. Following undergraduate studies in piano and composition at Oberlin Conservatory, Jalbert earned a PhD in Composition at the University of Pennsylvania. Among his many honors are the Rome Prize, BBC Masterprize, Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center’s Stoeger Award, and an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

Jalbert’s music has been commissioned and performed by orchestras across the US and worldwide. He received two Meet the Composer grants, including one for its “Magnum Opus Project.” Jalbert served as Composer-in-Residence with the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, California Symphony, and Chicago’s Music in the Loft. His discography features recordings by Finckel and Han, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and many others.

Jalbert is Professor of Composition and Theory at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music, and currently serves as Co-Artistic Director of Musiqa, a locally based contemporary chamber ensemble.


Performance Details

David Finckel and Wu Han will perform on Friday, February 28 at 7:30 P.M. at the Mahaney Arts Center (MAC), Robison Hall. Associated events include a free pre-concert lecture by composer Pierre Jalbert at 6:15 P.M., and a free post-concert reception to toast the artists; the audience is invited to both. The MAC is located on the campus of Middlebury College, at 72 Porter Field Road in Middlebury, just off Route 30 south/S. Main Street. Free parking is available curbside on Rt. 30 or in the Center for the Arts parking lot, in rows marked faculty/staff/visitors. Reserved seating tickets are $30 for the general public; $25 for Middlebury College faculty, staff, alumni, and emeriti; $10 for youth; and $6 for Middlebury College students, and are on sale at (802)443-MIDD (6433) or




Photo credits:

Cellist David Finckel and pianist Wu Han, award-winning husband-and-wife musicians, will give a highly-anticipated concert at the Mahaney Arts Center February 28. Photo Lisa Marie Mazzucco

Mahaney Arts Center
Middlebury College
South Main St./Route 30 South
72 Porter Field Rd.
Middlebury, VT 05753
(802) 443-3168 phone
(802) 443-2834 fax