The celebrated Chicago-based Lincoln Trio—made up of Desirée Ruhstrat, violin, David Cunliffe, cello and Marta Aznavoorian, piano—has been described by ‘The Strad’ as “sensational…bewitching.”
Formed in 2003, the Lincoln Trio takes its name from their home, the heartland of the United States, the land of Lincoln. The trio has been praised for its polished presentations of well-known chamber works and its ability to forge new paths with contemporary repertoire. The group’s reputation as a first-rate ensemble draws an eclectic audience of sophisticated music lovers, young admirers of contemporary programs and students discovering chamber music for the first time.
Bringing together performing experience spanning the globe, each member is an artist of international renown. Violinist Desirée Ruhstrat has performed throughout the US and Europe, appearing at the White House and performing on live radio broadcast heard around the world with the Berlin Radio Orchestra; cellist David Cunliffe has performed with the BBC and Royal Scottish orchestras as well as touring as a member of the Balanescu Quartet; pianist Marta Aznavoorian has appeared with the Chicago Symphony and has performed at the Kennedy Center and the Sydney Opera House.
The trio has performed throughout the United States, including appearances at Carnegie’s Weil Hall, Ravinia Festival, the Indianapolis Beethoven Chamber Music Series, Lane Concert Series, University of Chicago, Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Series, Music in the Loft, Poisson Rouge, and in Springfield, Illinois, where the trio was chosen to celebrate the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial celebration with President Barack Obama.
Frequent guests of classical radio stations, in December of 2011 the Lincoln Trio was chosen to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of WFMT and present a LIVE world premiere broadcast from the Chicago Cultural Center. Other appearances include SiriusXM Radio New York, WQXR, WWFM and WTTW Arts Across Illinois.
Champions of new music, the Lincoln Trio has performed numerous compositions written especially for them, including premieres of seven works by members of the Chicago Composers Consortium, Ravinia commissioned works for the Lincoln Bicentennial, Mischa Zupko, and most recently an award winning work by young ASCAP winner Conrad Tao. This passion led the Lincoln Trio to their first full length recording, Notable Women released on the Cedille Label August 2011 which featured Grammy and Pulitzer prize winning composer Jennifer Higdon, Joan Tower, Lera Auerbach, Stacy Garrop, Augusta Read Thomas and Laura Schwendinger. The CD has received numerous accolades including NAXOS CD of the Month, Baker and Taylor CD Hotlist, Byzantion Recording of the month, TPR Classical Spotlighted album, WQXR/Q2 Music Album of the week, UK Observer Hidden Gems of 2011 and was listed on Alex Ross of the New Yorker Magazine “Nightafternight playlist for summer’s end.”
Staunch proponents of music education, the Lincoln Trio is an ensemble-in-residence at the acclaimed Music Institute of Chicago as well as having had residencies at San Francisco State University and in 2012 at the University of Wisconsin Madison.
Valuing the importance of cultural diversity in music, the trio are strong supporters and serve on the advisory board of the Sejong Cultural Society and the Chinese Fine Arts Society of Chicago.
Winners of the 2008 Master Players International Competition in Venice, Italy and recipients of the 2011 prestigious Young Performers Career Advancement Award, the 2011-12 season will see the trio performing throughout the US and travels to Singapore, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Germany and Colombia South America.