The Conservatory Welcomes Cellist Michael Mermagen to Strings Faculty

The UMKC Conservatory is pleased to announce that cellist Michael Mermagen will begin as Associate Professor of Cello in Fall 2017. Michael Mermagen, (M.M. The Juilliard School, B.M. The Peabody Conservatory of Music), made his debut at age sixteen with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra after receiving its Young Soloist's Award. Michael began his studies at the Peabody Preparatory where he studied with Paula Skolnick-Childress and Mihaly Virizlay. Principal teachers in college were Stephen Kates at the Peabody Conservatory, and Zara Nelsova at the Juilliard School.

As the Juilliard School's concerto competition winner, he performed with the Juilliard Orchestra under Otto-Werner Mueller in Alice Tully Hall. He was soloist with the National Orchestra of New York, where he held the prestigious Emanuel Feuermann principal cello chair. Mermagen performed in the Violoncello Society of New York Master Classes lead by Yo Yo Ma, Janos Starker, and Bernard Greenhouse. He tours regularly with The Aspen Ensemble, and has toured with the American Chamber Players 1997–2003 and 1987–1995 with the Arista Piano Trio, (named Chamber Music America's Artists to Watch). He has collaborated with the San Francisco Ballet and was featured as the cello soloist for the New York premiere of two works by the renowned choreographer Mark Morris. He has joined violinist Jody Gatwood and pianist Marilyn Neeley in the Rome Trio, a resident ensemble of The Catholic University of America.

Mermagen is a faculty member at the Aspen Music Festival and School and has held the position of principal cellist of the Aspen Chamber Symphony for the past 18 seasons. He has performed chamber music in Aspen with artists including Joshua Bell, Sarah Chang, Lynn Harrell, Robert McDuffie, Susanne Mentzer, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg and The Takács Quartet; collaborated with distinguished conductors, Comissiona, Conlon, Levine, Maazel, Marriner, McGegan, Robertson, Skrowaczewski, Zinman and has given numerous recitals and master classes across North America, Europe and Asia.

Mermagen has participated in The Grand Canyon Music Festival, Prince Albert Music Festival in Kauai and the Bay Chamber Concertsin Rockport, Maine and has been heard on WQXR's Concerts Plus, WNYC's Around New York, and his performances are regularly broadcast on NPR's Performance Today. He has also performed live with Musica Sacra on A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor; performed as a substitute cellist in the New York Philharmonic, Buffalo Philharmonic, New York City Ballet, Orchestra of the Saint Lukes, 92nd Street Y Orchestra, Philharmonia Virtuosi of New York, American Symphony Orchestra, Brooklyn Philharmonic, and Long Island Philharmonic. He's recorded the Patrick Zimmerli piano trios, for the Arabesque label, after a celebrated debut of the same pieces at the Seattle Chamber Music Society. Recent appearances include the performance of the Brahms Double Concerto with violinist Livia Sohn and the Stockton Symphony and the Beethoven Triple Concerto with Elisabeth Adkins and Edward Newman and the Fairfax Symphony. He performs on a Nicolo Gagliano cello, Naples, 1774. 

Published: May 4, 2017