Salonline 2024-05-26 Duo Violet w/Erika Gray

DONATE! Watch Salonline Previous Salonlines

Sunday, May 26 2024

— a “hybrid” event —

Kayla and Sarah first met when they shared a stand during a Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra performance in 2014. Bonding over their mutual love of baroque music, pasta, and niche fragrances, they became instant best friends. Over the years they have shared the stage in many capacities, from quartets to symphonies, operas to oratorios. Now, for the first time ever, they have put together a program of contemporary duos that feature two violins in all their trebly greatness!


“Suite for two violins” by Grazyna Bacewicz
I. Allegro
II. Andante
III. Vivo
IV. Tempo di minuetto

“Rocking Mirror Daybreak” by Toru Takemitsu 
I. Autumn
IV. Rocking Mirror Daybreak

“Sonatine” by Jerzy Fitelberg
I. Allegro Moderato

“Duetti per due violini” by Luciano Berio
Giorgio Federico

“Terzetto” by Antonin Dvorak
I. Introduzione
II. Larghetto

“Suite for Two Violins” by Grazyna Bacewicz
V. Allegro
VI. Andante — Fughetta
VII. Allegro

“A Tale for Two Violins” by Kristapor Najarian
III. Rendezvous 


Before being appointed Principal Second in the Washington National Opera Orchestra, Kayla Moffett played four full seasons as a guest violinist with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. She played on, toured, and wrote the liner notes for their Grammy-winning album with Patricia Kopachinskaja. She is also a member of the Mostly Mozart Festival Orchestra at Lincoln Center and is a regular attendee at the Lakes Area Music Festival in Brainerd, Minnesota. Kayla has regularly subbed with both the Minnesota Orchestra and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. As a student she attended several summer festivals including Yellowbarn, Tanglewood, and Lucerne Festival. She received her Masters’ from Yale University, where she studied with Syoko Aki and received the Yale Chamber Society award, and went to USC under Martin Chalifour for her BM, where she won first prize in the annual Solo Bach Competition.

Violinist Sarah Grimes joined the Minnesota Orchestra in 2016, where she is a member of the first violin section. Before her appointment in the Minnesota Orchestra, she performed as a full-time guest musician with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra from 2015-16, and as a member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago in 2014.

Raised in the Twin Cities, Grimes began studying the violin at the age of four. She received a bachelor of music degree from the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University, where she was concertmaster of the Symphony Orchestra, and worked as a freelance musician in the greater Chicago area.

Grimes appeared as a soloist with the Minnesota Orchestra in 2005 and 2010 and with the Minnesota Sinfonia in 2012, and now performs annually as a soloist with the Mississippi Valley Orchestra, where she currently serves as concertmaster. An active chamber musician in the Twin Cities, she has recently been featured in the Minnesota Orchestra Chamber Series, Liquid Music Series, the SPCO Chamber Music Series, Outpost, Bakken Trio, The Musical Offering, and at festivals around the world including Kneisel Hall Chamber Music, Chamber Music Festival of the Black Hills, Lakes Area Music Festival and Astona International.

Her principal teachers include Sarah Kwak and Almita Vamos.

Twenty-six-year old violist Erika Gray has been captivating audiences worldwide for nearly two decades, praised for her rich sound and charismatic stage presence. She is a sought-after chamber player and orchestral musician, appearing as a substitute in major orchestras across North America. She has performed internationally in venues such as the Sydney Opera House, Royal Albert Hall, Moscow Conservatory, Wiener Konzerthaus, and the Helsinki Music Centre.

In February 2017, Erika was the featured viola soloist “Sancho Panza” in the Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s performances of Don Quixote alongside her friend and colleague Oliver Herbert performing as “Don Quixote”.  She joined the National Symphony Orchestra in May 2019 for their performances of Liszt’s Dante Symphony and Rossini’s Stabat Mater in Carnegie Hall. She has appeared at the BBC Proms on the Royal Albert Hall stage with Maestro Valery Gergiev leading the National Youth Orchestra. At the Pacific Music Festival in Japan, she held the assistant principal violist position as the youngest member of the orchestra and spent winter break of 2013 at the New York String Orchestra Seminar in Carnegie Hall.

Erika spent the past two summers at Music from Angel Fire, bringing classical music to the schools in the Northern New Mexico area. She attended the Verbier Academy and Kneisel Hall chamber programs working closely with esteemed faculty members and studying the chamber music repertoire in depth. She has performed chamber music with renowned artists such as Ida Kavafian, Steven Tenenbom, Peter Wiley, and Meng-Chieh Liu.

Erika competed in the quarter-finals and semi-finals of the 2018 Primrose International Viola Competition held at the Colburn School in LA. She was a 4th prize winner at the 2015 Irving M. Klein International String Competition, finalist in the 2015 Stulberg International String Competition, and 2nd prize winner in the 2013 Salomé Young Artists Competition. Her string quartet, Quartet Stracciatella, won the gold medal in the 2012 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition junior division.

Erika is a graduate of the Curtis Institute of Music where she studied with Roberto Díaz and Hsin-Yun Huang, and held the Gerry and Marguerite Lenfest Fellowship.  In her 4th year, she rose to the position of principal viola of the Curtis Symphony Orchestra, having previously toured Europe with the orchestra as assistant principal.

She frequently subs with the Philadelphia Orchestra, the National Symphony Orchestra and the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra. She traveled to Cambodia in December 2019 as a part of Midori’s International Community Engagement Program where she taught in different outreach settings as well as performed in concerts with the ICEP quartet. In June 2022, she will be back working with the ICEP quartet, this time in Japan!

Erika performs on a 2011 Gary Garavaglia viola from the William Harris Lee shop in Chicago.

If you’d like to receive Emerson Avenue Salon invitations, you can add yourself to the invitation list HERE.