News Releases

Thaler Violin Series Will Bring Exciting New Performer to Ithaca College

ITHACA, NY — Violinist Elena Urioste and pianist Michael Brown will give this year’s Louis K. Thaler Concert Violinist Series performance at Ithaca College on Friday, Sept. 10. The free concert will begin at 8:15 p.m. in Ford Hall in the James J. Whalen Center for Music. The program will include music of Janáček, Fauré, Beethoven and Hubay.

In addition to the public performance, Urioste will give a master class at noon on Saturday, Sept. 11, in the Hockett Family Recital Hall. The series was established in 2002 to honor Louis Thaler’s lifelong love of the violin.

Elena Urioste, featured on the cover of “Symphony” magazine as an emerging artist to watch, has been hailed by critics and audiences alike for her lush tone, the nuanced lyricism of her playing and her commanding stage presence. Elena's debut performances with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra earlier this year were praised by three separate critics for their “hypnotic delicacy,” “expressive poise” and “lyrical sensitivity.” Since first appearing with the Philadelphia Orchestra at age 13, she has made acclaimed debuts with major orchestras throughout the United States. In Europe, Urioste appeared with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Hungary’s Dohnányi Orchestra Budafok. She debuts with the Würzburg Philharmonic Orchestra in the 2010-11 season.

Hailed as a “vividly characterized” and “free-spirited” player by the “New York Times,” pianist and composer Michael Brown recently performed Beethoven’s First Piano Concerto with New York Philharmonic music director Alan Gilbert and the Juilliard Orchestra in Alice Tully Hall. He performed at the memorial concert for American composer George Perle at Merkin Hall and has been heard in recitals at the Caramoor Music Festival, NY Ethical Culture Society, the Chapel at St. Bartholomew’s, Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium at the Metropolitan Museum and the Mostly Mozart Festival at Avery Fisher Hall. Brown has been invited to tour with “Musicians from Ravinia,” to Music@Menlo in 2010 and to the Marlboro Music Festival in 2011.

The Louis K. Thaler Concert Violinist Series was established in the Ithaca College School of Music by the Thaler/Howell Foundation. Ani Kavafian inaugurated the series in October 2002; subsequent performers were Elmar Oliveira and Jaime Laredo. Louis’s son Manley H. Thaler and his immediate family provided the impetus for this gift. Before his death in 1979, Louis Thaler had a long and successful career as an Ithaca attorney and was the founder and senior partner in the Thaler and Thaler law firm. In addition to his professional and civic activities, Louis Thaler was an amateur violinist.

In 1927, Thaler married the former Rachel Shulman, a native Ithacan who studied piano at the Ithaca Conservatory of Music. Louis and Rachel Thaler were devoted supporters of the Friends of Ithaca College. The Rachel S. Thaler Concert Pianist Series, established in 1991, along with the creation of the Louis K. Thaler Concert Violinist Series, honor the Thalers’ love of music and their support of the College and the School of Music.

The Thaler/Howell Foundation, through the efforts of Manley H. Thaler, endowed both series to recognize and honor Rachel and Louis Thaler and to ensure that outstanding violinists and pianists would always perform for the Ithaca College community and the residents of the surrounding area.

For more information, contact Erik Kibelsbeck in the School of Music at (607) 274-3717 or

Photo provided by Jonathan D. Nimerfroh, JDN Photography