Co-founder, Executive Director
John Michael Vaida
A versatile musician, violinist and violist John Vaida performs regularly as a soloist, recitalist, chamber musician, and orchestral player. He is a dedicated teacher, serving on the faculty at Mansfield University and Wilkes University, and Artist-in-Residence at the Wyoming Seminary College Preparatory School. During the summers he is on the faculty at the Killington Music Festival. An avid chamber musician, he is the executive director and co-founder of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Chamber Music Society, an organization dedicated to fostering the growth of chamber music in the Northeastern Pennsylvania region.
He has given performances in the United States and Europe, most notably at venues such as Weill Hall, Steinway Hall, Merkin Hall, and the Tenri Institute in New York City; the Eastman Theatre in Rochester, New York; the Goodrich Theater in Oneonta, New York; and the Kirby Center for Creative Arts in Kingston, Pennsylvania. He has appeared on numerous occasions on radio and television including most recently on WVIA FM’s Simply Grand concert series.
Mr. Vaida has collaborated with renowned artists such as Daniel Phillips of the Orion String Quartet, Randolph Kelly of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, and violinist Sergiu Schwartz. He has performed as a member of numerous groups and festivals including the Florestan Piano Quartet, the Terrace Piano Quartet, the Eastman Chamber Music Society, the Manchester Chamber Orchestra, Tangueros De Ley (an Argentinian Tango ensemble), the Killington Music Festival, Ash Lawn Opera Festival, Scranton Bach Festival, the Sunflower Music Festival, the Meadowmount School of Music, the Waterville Valley Music Festival, and AIMS Festival in Graz, Austria. An advocate of new works, in recent years he has premiered compositions such as Three Little Lights by Baljinder Sekhon and the Viola Sonata no. 2 by Hwaen Ch’uqi, both of which were written for him.
Mr. Vaida’s principal teachers have included Charles Stegeman, Daniel Phillips, and Zvi Zeitlin. He holds a B.M. from Duquesne University and a M.M. degree in Performance and Literature from the Eastman School of Music, and has studied chamber music with Randolph Kelly, Jean Barr, Richard Killmer, and members of the Ying Quartet.
Co-founder, chief of operations
Having given solo and ensemble performances to critical acclaim in over a dozen countries across five continents, Amy Iwazumi enjoys a diverse career as a musician, web developer and graphic designer, and the co-founder and chief of operations of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Chamber Music Society.
She has performed in major venues in the United States such as the Isaac Stern Auditorium, Zankel Hall, and Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall; Avery Fisher Hall (now David Geffen Hall), Alice Tully Hall, Rose Theater, and Peter Jay Sharp Theatre at Lincoln Center; Harris Hall and the Bayer-Benedict Music Tent in Aspen, Colorado; and the Terrace Theater at Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Abroad, she has given performances at notable venues such as the Wigmore Hall in London, UK; Salle Cortot in Paris, France; Seoul Arts Center in Seoul, Korea; and Suntory Hall in Tokyo, Japan. She has also made TV and radio appearances on WQXR, NPR and CNN in the United States; Viva La Mañana and Tu Mañana in El Salvador; TeleClub in Costa Rica; KBS in South Korea; and NHK Radio in Japan.
She has performed at several music festivals including the Aspen Music Festival in Colorado, Festival Ljubljana in Slovenia, Great Mountains Music Festival in South Korea, Holland Music Sessions in the Netherlands, La Jolla Summerfest in California, Pablo Casals Festival in Puerto Rico, Salzburg Sommerakademie in Austria, and the Taipei International Arts Festival in Taiwan.
Ms. Iwazumi is also a recipient of the Asian Cultural Council Fellowship Grant which supported a four-month cultural research residency in Japan where she furthered her studies playing the Shamisen, a three-stringed traditional Japanese instrument, and her practice of Omotesenke school of tea ceremony.
At age eight she was accepted as a scholarship student to the Juilliard Pre-College Division studying violin with the late Dorothy DeLay and composition with Eric Ewazen. She continued her studies with Ms. DeLay at The Juilliard School receiving her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees, and studied chamber music with Martin Canin, the late Jacob Lateiner, the late Seymour Lipkin, and Joel Smirnoff.
- Rick Hoffenberg
- Mark Laubach
- James Ruck