Hannah Addario-Berry grew up in British Columbia, Canada, and fell in love with the cello at age nine. Now based in the San Francisco Bay Area, Hannah is sought after as a soloist, chamber musician, and teacher. She has been an invited guest performer at music festivals worldwide, including the Other Minds Festival, Switchboard Music Festival, Kneisel Hall, Casalmaggiore Music Festival, Sarasota Music Festival, Domaine Forget Music Academy, and Music by the Sea.
A fierce advocate of the music of today, Hannah has been a core member of contemporary music ensembles in Montreal and San Francisco and has worked with many of the great composers of the 21st century, including Peter Sculthorpe, Per Norgard, Kui Dong, Chou Wen-Chung, Chinary Ung, Pawel Mykietyn, and Chris Jonas. In March of 2006, she was a featured soloist in the Blueprint New Music series for the American premiere of Brian Cherney’s cello concerto “Apparitions”.
From 2006 to 2010, Hannah was a member of the renowned Del Sol String Quartet. During that time, the quartet performed more than 50 premieres, played in such venues as the Library of Congress and National Gallery of Art in Washington, Symphony Space in New York, and the Lensic Theater in Santa Fe, created large-scale intermedia collaborations such as GARDEN, Stringwreck, Divide Light, and Ghost Opera, and recorded two highly acclaimed albums, “Ring of Fire- Music from the Pacific Rim” and “First Life- String Quartets of Marc Blitzstein”.
A passionate and versatile chamber musician, Hannah performs regularly with many of the Bay Area’s ensembles. Together with violinist Elizabeth Choi, Hannah founded the Navitas Ensemble, which has performed across the US and Canada. In addition, she has worked with many renowned artists such as Menahem Pressler, Marc Destrubé, Catherine Manson, Jean-Michel Fonteneau, Ian Swensen, Paul Hersh, Jodi Levitz, Marcus Thompson, Joan Jeanrenaud, Stephen Kent, and Wu Man.
Hannah brings her love of music beyond the concert stage, performing at bars and cafes as a member of Classical Revolution, and as the founder and host of Cello Bazaar, a popular and eclectic cello series at her neighborhood café. She can be found making beautiful and strange sounds during impromptu improvisation sessions. She also has an active teaching studio for cello and chamber music, and has been a coach for the Chamber Musicians of Northern California and at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.
She has a Masters Degree in Chamber Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, a Bachelors Degree in Cello Performance from McGill University, and diplomas in performance and pedagogy from the Victoria Conservatory of Music.
Stephen John Brown was born in 1948 to working class parents in Nottingham, England. Due to the shortage of pilots at the beginning of World War II his father was able to become a RAF fighter pilot, training in Canada and Oklahoma. After the war, in order to better their fortunes, the family immigrated in 1952 to Montreal, Canada. His father was employed as a salesman of typewriters, and later, when the family move to Kitchener, Ontario in 1958, of office supplies and time equipment. Brown's parents purchased him an electric guitar when he was 13, and when he turned 16 he left school to further his musical career. He became a furniture mover.
Moving to Toronto that same year Brown eked out a living working various menial jobs and occasionally traveling throughout North America. When he turned 21 he became a taxi driver. This occupation helped support him, along with private music teaching and playing piano in traditional New Orleans style jazz bands, for the next 20 years. As an adult he attended the Royal Conservatory of Music of Toronto and graduated with diplomas in both composition and theory. In order to better his fortunes Brown moved in 1990 to Sidney, British Columbia. He became a furniture repairman.
He began teaching at the Victoria Conservatory of Music in 1993 and became head of the Theory and Composition Department in 1996. He has had two marriages and has four children.
Brown is an Associate of the Canadian Music Centre. He is a senior marker and examination designer for the Victoria Conservatory of Music and a senior examination designer for the Royal Conservatory of Music of Toronto. He has twice served as a juror for the British Columbia Arts Council (performance & composition) and is a clinician and adjudicator.
His compositions include a symphony, a piano concerto, three song cycles, two overtures, two suites for orchestra, a canticle for soprano, chorus and string orchestra, an elegy for soprano and string orchestra, a missa brevis, and many chamber and solo works. Recently Brown completed a piano quintet, a 17 movement work for solo piano, and his second and third suites for solo cello. He has taken a particular interest in pedagogical works, writing seven books of student pieces for piano, as well as, a book each for violin and flute. He has had many works performed at orchestral and solo concerts.
Performances include those by Erich Kunzel and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver and Victoria Symphony Orchestras and the Sidney Classical Orchestra in Sidney, British Columbia, of which he is the artistic director and conductor.
Besides his love of classical music, he takes an active interest in early jazz, country, and blues, singing and playing piano and guitar with Stephen Brown and the Bastion Band in Victoria, British Columbia.
"Takkakaw Falls was originally commissioned in 2003 as a five minute piece for solo flute to be played at a memorial service at the falls in the Canadian Rockies. Janet Bazett, who commissioned the work in memory of her brother, Martin Yonge, wished it to have a East Coast/Celtic sound and also to evoke the Rockies. Hmmm. I did some fiddle music research and became very excited about the project, writing in the end, a four (five) movement (Air, Strathspey & Reel, Slow Waltz, and Jig), 17 minute work using the style of traditional fiddle dances for the movements. Also, Canadian folk songs and fiddle music weave their way through the work making appearances in the Air, Strathspey, and Slow Waltz. The theme used in the Air is a Newfoundland Outport song Who is at My Window Weeping. It was collected in Stock Cove in 1952 by Kenneth Peacock and sung by Mrs. Lucy Heaney. That Christmas, 2003, cellist Hannah Addario-Berry, was home (Victoria, BC) for the holidays (she also was principal cello for the Messiah concerts I conducted) and took an interest in the work. We noodled around, she suggested some key changes and we discussed ranges and possibilities. She convinced me to arrange it for solo cello and preformed the premiere in Victoria, BC in May, 2004."
World premiere performance, Thursday, May 20, 2004 at the Gibson Auditorium, Camosun College, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
1. Air 5:08 • 2. Strathspey & Reel 5:22 • 3. Slow Waltz 3:05 • Jig 3:43 Total time: 17:18
Stephen Brown 904 Dunsmuir Road, Victoria, BC, Canada V9A 5C3
Swan House Victoria SJB 1309CD © Stephen Brown 2004