Romantic Strings

Merc Playhouse | February 18 at 7:00 pm

Kevin Krentz, Artistic Director

2017 Valentine Concert Program

From Our Hearts

Chase away the mid-winter chill with exciting, vibrant chamber music mixed with the traditional and romantic. A classical string quartet with the addition of marimba promise to make for a memorable evening.

The program kicks off with two works—a marimba solo and a duet for violin and vibraphone. Both are composed and performed by percussion virtuoso Mark Goodenberger. Later in the program, a third contemporary piece for string quintet and marimba explores the acoustic possibilities of all the instruments.

Franz Schubert's powerful and moving string quartet Death and the Maiden and the lyrical Romance from Sergei Rachmaninov's unfinished first quartet will round out the evening.

Artist Director Kevin Krentz, cello, will be joined by returning Festival artists Grace Park, violin, and Amber Archibald, viola. Mark Goodenberger and award-winning Serbian violinist Ervin Luka Sešek will make their debut in the Methow at this concert.

—Kevin Krentz, Artistic Director

Sat 2/13/2016

7:30 pm   Concert, hosted by Verne Windham of Spokane Public Radio

Schism, for Solo Marimba

Mark Goodenberger (1959–)

Phantom Train, for Violin and Vibraphone

Mark Goodenberger (1959–)

Romance, from String quartet No. 1 (unfinished)

Sergei Rachmaninov (1873–1943)

LigNEouS 1 for Marimba and String Quartet

Andy Akiho (1979–)


Haiku/Limerick Competition

read by Verne Windham

  • Back by popular demand! Last year's many witty, artistic, funny, and cute limericks and haikus were a blast so we're doing it again! Grab your pencil and paper when you get to the show or increase your chances of winning one of our fabulous local prizes by bringing your best work from home. Our delightful host, Verne Windham will be there to read the poems that make the cut!

String Quartet No.14 in D minor, D.810 -"Death and the Maiden"

Franz Schubert (1797–1828)

  • Allegro
  • Andante con moto
  • Scherzo
  • Presto



Grace Park, violin | Luka Sesek, violin | Amber Archibald, viola | Mark Goodenberger, marimba and vibraphone | Kevin Krentz, cello

Grace Park, violin

Grace Park, violin

Grace Park is a dynamic violinist, dedicated chamber musician, and passionate teacher. Her diverse career has carried her from the world’s foremost concert halls to inner-city schools as a soloist, collaborator, coach, and multi-disciplinary educator. Currently in residence at Carnegie Hall as part of The Academy–Carnegie Juilliard Weill program, Grace pairs her elite musicianship with a fervent commitment to community engagement.

As a soloist, Grace has been the featured artist at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC; Walt Disney Hall in Los Angeles; Jordan Hall in Boston; Carnegie Hall in New York; the Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York; the Rudolfinum in Prague; and Glinka Hall in St. Petersburg. She is a laureate of the National Symphony Orchestra’s Young Soloist Competition.

Grace has performed with chamber ensembles around the world. She performed the world premiere of Samuel Carl Adams’ String Sextet and a Carnegie Hall–commissioned work by Andy Akiho. Grace has been recognized for her work in the Vitas Quartet, her chamber collaborations at Trinity Wall Street’s “Concerts at One,” and for performances at the Yellow Barn Music Festival, Music@Menlo, IMS Prussia Cove, and the Perlman Music Program’s Chamber Music Workshop.

Ervin Luka Sesek, violin

Ervin Luka Sešek, violin

Known for his rich and vibrant tone, violinist Ervin Luka Sešek brings passion, energy and a great sense of communication to his audience. Originally from Belgrade, Serbia, and raised in Slovenia,  Luka has won several top prizes in international competitions including the Republic of Slovenia Competition for Young Musicians, the Petar Konjović Competition in Serbia, and others in Italy, Croatia and the Czech Republic.

Rising internationally as a soloist, Luka has performed with several orchestras in eastern Europe including the St. George Orchestra in Serbia and the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra.  A sought after chamber musician, he recently collaborated with principal cellist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Robert deMaine. He was a fellowship student in chamber music from 2012 to 2014 at the Burgos International Summer Music Festival in Spain as well as the 2013 Summit Music Festival in Purchase, New York.  

Amber Archibald, viola

Amber Archibald, viola

Amber Archibald has been praised for her bold and vivacious playing that matches her personality. ARTS! Houston Magazine exclaimed that her technique was “seemingly effortless…precise,” and that she was “a natural in every sense.” As a soloist, her career highlights include performances at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig, Germany and with the Seattle Symphony. Her collaborative career has allowed her to perform at major venues and festivals throughout the United States and Europe such as Benaroya Hall, Kimmel Center, University of Washington World Series, Raleigh Chamber Music Guild Series, Methow Valley Music Festival. Amber was a member of the Young Eight string octet, an all Afro heritage ensemble devoted to spreading a positive message through classical and hip-hop music to underserved communities. Keeping her career diverse, Amber regularly plays with the Seattle Modern Orchestra, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber Orchestra, and Auburn Symphony.

Amber is married to violinist Ervin Luka Sešek and is the violist of the Burgos Ensemble. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, watching documentaries, and cheering for the Seattle Seahawks.

Kevin Krentz, Cello

Kevin Krentz, Cello

Kevin Krentz is a cellist, teacher, and inventor. A native of Atlanta, Georgia, he briefly began his musical life as a cellist at 12, only to foolishly stop playing until college, eventually going on to earn his doctorate.

A devoted chamber musician, Kevin is Artistic Director of the Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival. He has been a winner in the Fischoff National, Zinetti International, and Greenlake National Chamber Music Competitions. His piano trio, Finisterra Trio, has performed throughout North America and Europe and awarded a place in the top five classical recordings of 2010 with their album of the piano trios of Daron Hagen. Dr. Krentz also has many inventions to his credit involving string instruments and their accessories. His private and Seattle University students are frequent award winners.

Mark Goodenberger, marimba

Mark Goodenberger, marimba

Mark Goodenberger, percussionist and composer, is the Director of Percussion Studies at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, WA. As a specialist in Symphonic and Chamber music, he has worked with composers such as Steve Reich, Libby Larsen, Chen Yi, George Crumb, Karlheinz Stockhausen,Elliott Carter, Lou Harrison, Zhou Long, Tomas Svoboda, Forrest Pierce, Mark Polishook, and Chinary Ung, premiering many new works. He is also active as a baroque specialist, performing the kettledrums with the Portland Baroque Orchestra, Seattle Baroque, and Trinity Consort. As a concert recitalist, he performs many pieces of his own, written for a wide variety of instruments. His compositions range from solos to works for mixed ensembles, to pieces that join elements of theater, dance and vaudeville into the diverse world of percussion. In 2013, he was awarded the Outstanding Faculty Artistic Achievement Award by Central Washington University's College of Arts and Humanities. He is a Yamaha performing artist, a member of the Vic Firth Education team, and is proud to endorse the Goodenberger G-LINE Mix marimba mallets made by Amy Putnam Mallets. He holds a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Lewis and Clark College and a Masters of Music in Performance degree from the University of Michigan.

Verne Windham, host of the 2013 Methow Valley Chamber Music Festival

Verne Windham, host

Verne Windham came to Spokane in 1971 to become principal hornist of the Spokane Symphony, having played in the orchestra while in high school in the 1960s. At the same time he became French horn instructor at Washington State University.

While playing in the symphony, Verne founded many music groups, which played everything from baroque to modern music. Two highlights were RSVP, a trio that played classical music in Henny's bar, and the Spokane Falls Brass Band, famous for ragtime and other American music.

In the 1980s Verne began announcing for the fledgling public radio station KPBX, becoming its music director in the early 1990s and, more recently, its program director.

In 1996 Verne found his dream job, as conductor of the freshest, most exciting and second-best orchestra in the region, the Spokane Youth Orchestra. Verne had previously conducted the Spokane Symphony on educational tours and at the Festival at Sandpoint. He has also conducted for Spokane Opera and Spokane Ballet.

Verne is married to the soprano Susan Windham. Their children sing and play drums and tuba.

2016 Board of Directors

  • Sandy Mackie, president
  • Dave Chantler, vice president
  • Jane Orme, secretary
  • Howard Johnson
  • Delene Monetta
  • Anne Peck
  • Carolanne Steinebach
  • Liz Johnson, Executive Director

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