Violinist Sally McLain received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees with High Distinction from Indiana University, where she studied with and was assistant to James Buswell. Critically hailed as a “violinist with lots of style” (Washington Post), she has performed as soloist to critical acclaim in a variety of venues that include the Clarice Smith Center’s Gildenhorn Recital Hall, the Kennedy Center’s Terrace Theater, the Library of Congress, Lisner Auditorium, National Gallery of Art, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. She was a member of the Theater Chamber Players, as well as the Potomac String Quartet, which recorded the complete quartets of David Diamond and Quincy Porter for Albany Records. She is a founding and current member of the Left Bank Quartet, which has been praised for its “brilliant focus and timbral variety” (Gramophone magazine). She is also an adjunct chamber music faculty member at the University of Maryland. She was the concertmaster of the Washington Chamber Symphony for ten seasons and is currently concertmaster for Washington Concert Opera. This is Sally’s seventh season with Chamber Dance Project.
Photo by Geoff Sheil
Violist Jerome Gordon enjoys a diversified career as an orchestral, chamber, and studio musician. Prior to moving to Washington, D.C. Mr. Gordon lived in Los Angeles, CA where he performed regularly with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Santa Barbara Symphony, and Pacific Symphony. He has performed and recorded with numerous artists and continues to work in Los Angeles recording soundtracks for television shows and films.
He was a fellow with the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, FL under the direction of Michael Tilson Thomas. During his tenure in New World he toured Europe performing in concert halls in France, Italy, and Spain. He also performed chamber concerts throughout Italy, and collaborated with members of the Orion String Quartet and the Vienna Philharmonic. In 2014 Mr. Gordon relocated to Washington DC and began playing with the National Philharmonic, Maryland Symphony, Alexandria Symphony Orchestra, and Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
As a studio musician Mr. Gordon has recorded soundtracks for numerous TV shows, video games, and motion pictures, including such notable titles as Lost, Call of Duty, Star Trek Into Darkness, The Help, Green Book, Frozen 1 & 2, the new live action Lion King, and Minions 2.
On stage Mr. Gordon has performed and recorded with popular artists such as Earth, Wind & Fire, Usher, Jennifer Hudson, Carrie Underwood, Stevie Wonder, and Celine Dion, among others. He recently completed an 8-year run with Celine Dion as a violist in her production in Las Vegas, NV at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. After the residency he served as the violist in her string quartet and has been touring with Ms. Dion since 2018.
Mr. Gordon received his Bachelor of Music degree and Certificate in Music Business from Northwestern University working primarily with Mr. Roland Vamos. He continued his training at University of Southern California earning a Master of Music degree with Mr. Donald McInnes. This is Jerome’s third season with Chamber Dance Project.
A classically trained musician, Karin Kelleher has had a varied and successful career in the symphonic world, playing with the Milwaukee Symphony, Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra and Knoxville Symphony, and holding concertmaster positions with the Woodstock Mozart Festival, Washington Opera Society, the Prairie Ensemble, and Racine Symphony.
Currently she performs with local Washington, DC arts organizations, including the Annapolis Symphony, Maryland Symphony, Washington Concert Opera Orchestra, and the National Philharmonic, to name but a few.
In 2015, Karin released her debut album, Melange, independently created, performed and produced with her husband, Mike Kelleher. Classical and jazz influences come together in Mike’s charts to form a unique style that reflects their personal and musical life. An active educator, she enjoys working with young performers. She teaches privately, coaches master classes, and participates in school educational programs all over Maryland. This is Karin’s third season with Chamber Dance Project.
Benjamin Wensel is a native of Western New York, and earned degrees from the Cleveland Institute of Music and Eastman School of Music, where he served as assistant to renowned pedagogue Alan Harris. He has performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony Orchestra, ProMusica Chamber Orchestra, Rochester Philharmonic, Syracuse Symphony, and has been a member of The U.S. Army Strings, Orchestra and String Quartet since 2003. Dedicated to the creation and promotion of new music, he has performed the world premieres of more than 20 works written by established and emerging American composers as a founding member of the Tarab Cello Ensemble and participated in the ensemble’s residencies at Princeton University, Stetson University, and the University of South Florida. Benjamin performs regularly as the cellist of the Mellifera Quartet. This is his second season with Chamber Dance Project.
Header Photo: Sally McLain, Karin Kelleher, Jerome Gordon, and Benjamin Wensel
Photo by David Moss