Violinist Hilary Castle will be joined by cellist Ani Kalayjian and pianist Milos Repicky at La Grua Center on Saturday, Jan. 29.

Photo courtesy La Grua Center

STONINGTON — Violinist and Stonington native Hilary Castle, whose love of music started at the age of five when she asked her parents for a violin, will join cellist Ani Kalayjian and highly acclaimed pianist/conductor Miloš Repický Saturday for a Music Matters concert at La Grua Center called "Hilary Castle & Co."

Christopher Greenleaf, the Music Matters artistic advisor and program editor, said Hilary Castle & Co. is the "series' most frequent returning chamber ensemble."

With Repický "playing our newly restored Mason & Hamlin grand," and making his La Grua début, Greenleaf said, "we can offer you no warmer or more appealing antidote to the deep chill of our New England January!"

The trio will perform Haydn Piano Trio in G "Gypsy," Jennifer Higdon Piano Trio No. 1 (2003) "Color Through" and Beethoven Piano Trio No. 5 in D “Ghost."

The program, with "Beethoven's beloved 'Ghost" (Geister) piano trio and Haydn's charming, whimsical 'Gypsy' piano trio," will launch this year's monthly concerts, Greenleaf said.

"Between these perennial favorites, we'll hear a movement of here-&-now composer Jennifer Higdon's terse, evocative first piano trio, a harmonic prism parsing the spectra of visible light," he said in a statement.

Castle, who maintains an active schedule as a soloist, ensemble musician and teacher, has performed with a wide range of ensembles and artists, including the New Haven Symphony Orchestra, String Orchestra of New York City and Distinguished Concerts International New York Orchestra. In 2016, she made her Broadway debut on stage with Steve Martin as the fiddle understudy in “Bright Star,” a musical by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell.

Most recently, she cofounded a popular concert series Called "Mozart for Munchkins" for children and families, which is now in its second season. In 2020, she joined the faculty of Bow and Heart, a program dedicated to providing ensemble opportunities to students in New York City through "thoughtfully curated monthly zoom and in-person seminars, workshops and master classes."

Kalayjian, hailed by the Los Angeles Times as “representing the young, up-and-coming generation,” and a “superb cellist with a large, expressive, singing tone, and passionate musicianship," enjoys a prolific career as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician and educator that has taken her to Japan, Australia, Canada, the Middle East, and throughout Europe and the United States. Newly appointed the artistic director at the Woman's Club of Englewood, she founded a brand new chamber music series, Carriage House Concerts, whose mission is "to connect the community through the art."

An avid teaching artist, she is the head of the cello department at the Elisabeth Morrow School and on the faculty at Dwight-Englewood School in Englewood, N.J., and enjoys giving masterclasses to musicians around the country.  

Repický, a pianist and conductor, was born in Bratislava, Slovakia, and raised in France and Canada. He is on the music staff of the Metropolitan Opera, where he has played harpsichord continuo for "Le nozze di Figaro," and has led the musical preparation of "Jenufa," "Anna Bolena," "The Death of Klinghoffer" and "Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk," among many other operas. He has collaborated with the Cleveland Orchestra on productions of "Pelléas et Mélisande" and "The Cunning Little Vixen," with the Lincoln Center Festival on "Daphne," and with the Joffrey Ballet on "Bluebeard's Castle" and "The Miraculous Mandarin." He has also worked with the Canadian Opera Company, Houston Grand Opera, Orquesta Nacional de Galicia, Royal Opera House Muscat in Oman, San Francisco Opera, the Spoleto Festival and the Kennedy Center's World Stages Festival, and is co-artistic director of Music for Montauk.

— Nancy Burns-Fusaro

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