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“Mendelssohn and Miyazaki”

February 12 @ 7:00 pm - 7:40 pm

Free – $20



Reservations: www.jaschicago.org or email kono@jaschicago.org

In order to reserve your space for this event please register below. Only fully registered guests will receive ZOOM information. 


About the Event 

The young Mendelssohn embarked on his first solo trip abroad at age 20 when he travelled from his native Germany to England, Scotland and Wales, whose countryside and people later inspired many of his most beloved works, including the Scottish Symphony and the Hebrides Overture.  During this significant trip Mendelssohn completed his beautiful string quartet op. 12 which will be featured in this program alongside the music from Miyazaki’s film Howl’s Moving Castle by the renowned Japanese composer Joe Hisaishi which portrays another journey – that of Sophie aboard the young Howl’s fantastic flying castle! 

Please join the Italian-Japanese-Chinese- American Scimemi family on this poetic musical journey! 



Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy (1809-1847)

Quartet no. 1 in E flat major, op. 12 (1829)                        

I. Adagio non troppo. Allegro non tardante 

II. Canzonetta: Allegretto 

III. Andante espressivo

IV. Molto allegro e vivace


Quartetto Scimemi

Gabrielle Shek, violin

Tommaso Scimemi, violin

Ettore Scimemi, viola

Pietro Scimemi, cello


Joe Hisaishi (1950 – )

“Merry-Go-Round of Life“ from Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)

arranged for 3 violins, viola and cello by E. Scimemi/G. Shek


Gabrielle Shek, Tommaso Scimemi, Akiko Scimemi, violins

Ettore Scimemi, viola

Pietro Scimemi, cello


About the Performers


Gabrielle Shek, violinist of Chinese-Japanese origin, was born in San Francisco where she began playing the violin at the age of four. After earning a B.A. summa cum laude in music from Yale University, she obtained a M.M. with honors in violin performance from the New England Conservatory of Music. A scholarship from the Beebe Fund permitted her to study in London with David Takeno. She was a member of the Zürich Tonhalle Orchestra and principal 2nd violin of the Zürich Opera Orchestra. After moving to Italy, she was invited by Claudio Abbado as a violinist of his Orchestra Mozart. She has performed chamber music with Martha Argerich, Mischa Maisky, Mario Brunello, Renaud Capuçon and Sonig Tchakerian. She collaborates often with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe and is leader of SŌNO.




Born in Padova, Italy, Ettore Scimemi obtained his violin diploma at the age of 17. Winner of a Fulbright scholarship, he furthered his studies at Yale where he studied chamber music with the Tokyo String Quartet. In the US he attended the Aspen and Sarasota Music Festivals, where he studied with Dorothy Delay, Naoko Tanaka and James Buswell. He has toured extensively with Europa Galante and was concertmaster of La Camerata Musicale and the Serenissima Chamber Orchestra. He has recorded for Denon Italiana, Sony, Mozarteum, Opus111 and RAI. Ettore is the founding director of SŌNO and performs often both as violinist and violist. As a conductor, he has studied with Ennio Nicotra, Isaac Karabtchevsky and Vassily Sinaisky. He is a partner at Gianni, Origoni & Partners, one of the top law firms in Italy, and is Professor of Commercial and Corporate Law at the University of Padova.




Born in New Haven, Connecticut in 2000, Tommaso Scimemi began playing the violin at the age of three under the guidance of his mother and Teresa Ratcliff. At sixteen, he earned his diploma from the Pollini Conservatory of Music in Padova studying with Sonig Tchakerian and Glauco Bertagnin. He furthered his violin studies with Ilya Grubert in Portogruaro and with Wonji Kim at the Mozarteum in Salzburg. He was the first prize winner of many national and international competitions and has participated in summer courses with Igor Ozim, Phillip Draganov, and Kurt Sassmanshaus. Currently Tommaso studies Classics at King’s College of Cambridge University, where he is co-leader of the Cambridge University Orchestra and first violinist of the Arco String Quartet and performs widely in Italy as violinist of the Trio Antenore.




Born in Padova, Italy in 2002, Pietro Scimemi began to play cello at the age of four under the guidance of Susan Moses. At age six, he was admitted into the cello class of Luca Simoncini at the Venezze Conservatory of Music in Rovigo, where he obtained his diploma at the age of 15 with honors. He furthered his studies with Marianne Chen and was first-prize winner in numerous national and international competitions. He has participated in masterclasses with Jens Peter Maintz, Giovanni Sollima, Christophe Coin, Wenn-Sin Yang and Rafael Rosenfeld and he is a founding member of the Antenore Piano Trio. In 2020 he had the honor to become a member of the European Union Youth Orchestra. Pietro is currently a student at the Tito Livio Classical Lyceum in Padova and attends the Stauffer Academy in Cremona with Antonio Meneses.





Born in Padova, Italy in 2006, Akiko began to study the violin at the age of three with her mother and subsequently with Antonella Nicolini and Vito Prato. She was first prize winner at the “Premio Crescendo” Competition in Florence and the “Adopt a Musician” Competition in Forlì.  At the age of 8 she began piano studies with Sofia Sacco. In the summer she attended the Wienerwald Music Seminar and the Swiss International Music Academy as a violin student with Wonji Kim. Alongside the violin, Akiko studied classical ballet for six years at the Petits Pas School of Dance in Padova and attended masterclasses of the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Lugano, Switzerland and Moscow, Russia. Akiko is currently a student at Tito Livio Classical Lyceum in Padova.

Add to Calendar
2/12/2021 7:00 PM
2/12/2021 7:30 PM
“Travels with Mendelssohn and Miyazaki” -Quartetto Scimemi



February 12
7:00 pm - 7:40 pm
Free – $20
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