In The Press

Praise for the Taos Chamber Music Group!

"One of the great treasures of Taos" -The Taos News
"Big magic...silken ensemble playing"
-Albuquerque Journal
“A remarkable concert of juxtaposed styles”
-Horse Fly
“Depth, vitality and inventiveness”
-Spencer Beckwith, KUNM
Press Release
Taos Chamber Music Group presents "Cello Chicks!"
Saturday and Sunday, May 26 & 27 at the
Harwood Museum of Art

The Taos Chamber Music Group will bring back a TCMG audience favorite of music played by multiple cellists for the final concerts of its twenty-fifth anniversary season. Saturday and Sunday, May 26 & 27, 5:30 p.m. at the Harwood Museum of Art, four female cellists will be featured in “Cello Chicks.” Music ranges from Bach and Vivaldi to Gershwin and Metallica. Cellists are Sally Guenther, Lisa Donald, Dana Winograd and Carole Whitney.

The brainchild of long-time TCMG member and outstanding cellist Sally Guenther, “Cello Chicks” will be the third TCMG program that has been performed by several cellists. The first was a gathering of five cello luminaries from around the world to commemorate the hundredth birthday of a beloved teacher at Juilliard, and then a group of New Mexico’s best cellists got together in 2013.

Guenther said the combination of TCMG’s twenty-fifth anniversary and the current sociopolitical climate made the idea of “Cello Chicks” one whose “time had come.” TCMG Director Nancy Laupheimer jokingly chimed in to say that “there are typically lots of biker chicks in town Memorial Day weekend, so we are adding a few cello chicks into the mix.”

Guenther continues, “In the tradition of ‘cello power’ at TCMG we present a powerful group of cellists, this time all women, celebrating our achievements as cellists and as women. The cello is a wonderful instrument which has come into its own, particularly in the last 50 years, popularized in the 20th century by the great young cellist, Jacqueline du Pré, and nobly presented throughout the world by Zara Nelsova. Many amazing women cellists have emerged in the last 20 years, and we honor and admire them.”

Guenther has played with TCMG since 2006, often contributing to repertoire ideas. Prior to moving to New Mexico she served as principal cellist of the Bergen Philharmonic in Norway where she also taught and toured with a contemporary music ensemble, BIT 20. In NM she has played with the Santa Fe Opera and Santa Fe Pro Musica orchestras as well as with many chamber music groups around the state.

The other cellists in Taos this weekend include a long-time TCMG member Dana Winograd who appeared in the previous two cello programs. She is principal cellist of the Santa Fe Symphony and also plays with the New Mexico Philharmonic as does cellist Lisa Donald, a newcomer to TCMG. Another TCMG first-timer, Carole Whitney comes from Colorado to New Mexico every summer to play with the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra. In Colorado she performs with the Colorado Symphony, Colorado Bach Ensemble, Colorado Ballet, Opera Colorado, and as principal cellist with the Pro Musica Colorado Chamber Orchestra.

Guenther and her fellow cellists have put together a program that begins with a short arrangement of a Haydn String Quartet, followed by a set of Bach Chorales and a Vivaldi Concerto. The Romantic period will be covered with works by Julius Klengel, Fritz Kreisler and Edward Elgar. Then fast forward to the world of pop and jazz with George Gershwin’s “Embraceable You,” Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal,” and Matt “Walker’s “Squaretet.” TCMG flutist Nancy Laupheimer will join Guenther for a piece by the Venezuelan-born American composer Efrain Amaya whose duo was commissioned for a couple’s 50th wedding anniversary and uses South American dance rhythms. Guenther describes it as “a something for everyone” program!

Although this marks the end of its season, TCMG’s 26th concert series at the Harwood Museum will begin on September 22 and 23. A special Contributors Thank You Concert with pianist Gelb Ivanov is planned for August 12 at a private home. Details will be announced soon.

For tickets and more information, visit or call the Harwood Museum, 238 Ledoux Street, 575-758-9826, where there is a discount for Museum members. A dinner discount is being offered to concert goers after the performances from Doc Martin’s, Martyrs, the Gorge Bar & Grill and Lambert’s restaurants.

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