Chamber Orchestra Award - China

In true “East meets West” fashion, an exciting exchange of ideas and talents occurred this summer between Bowling Green State University and the Sichuan Conservatory in Chengdu, China. One of the most notable outcomes was establishing the groundwork for an exchange program of faculty and students from the Conservatory with BGSU.

Vasile Beluska, professor and coordinator of strings at Bowling Green State University and Robert Satterlee, coordinator of graduate studies at BGSU, traveled to the Sichuan Conservatory in May through an invitation by Ao Chang-qun, president of the Conservatory. While in Chengdu, Beluska performed with Yuanyuan Zhou, a Sichuan Conservatory piano professor and 2007 BGSU masters degree graduate. Beluska also worked with the Chengdu Chamber Orchestra and was awarded an honorary advisor position from the ensemble. In addition, he and Robert Satterlee gave master classes and met with the administration, faculty and students from the conservatory.

Chengdu, the fifth most populous city in China with over 11 million people, is in the midst of a cultural transition as the city continues to become more industrialized. It is quickly becoming the financial hub for West China and is known for its many tea houses and hospitality.

The Sichuan Conservatory, founded in 1939, features music, art, theatre and dance divisions and is housed on two large campuses in Chengdu. It has a student population of over 18,500 undergraduate and graduate majors.

Beluska is a graduate of Liceul de Muzica and Conservatural de Muzica in Cluj, Romania, Southern Methodist University and was a member of the Class of Jascha Heifetz in Los Angeles. He has won numerous competitions and awards and is a chamber music performer throughout the United States and Europe. He has been a member of various ensembles including The International Trio, American Arts Trio, the Mozart Fortepiano Duo and has performed extensively with the Guarneri Duo. Beluska has served as a visiting professor of violin at the Academy of Music in Cluj and professor of violin at the Chautauqua Institution. He has presented lectures on new approaches to pedagogy at national and international conferences, as well as universities throughout the United States and Europe.

Satterlee holds degrees in piano from Yale University, Peabody Conservatory and the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory of Music. He has developed a reputation as an accomplished and versatile solo recitalist and chamber musician. Satterlee appeared in the Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concerts in Chicago, San Francisco’s Old First Concert Series, the Schubert Club in St. Paul and MTNA national conventions. He can be heard on radio broadcasts nationwide, most notably on Minnesota Public Radio. Satterlee also teaches at the Interlochen Arts Camp and collaborates with members of the Chicago, Cleveland and Detroit Symphony Orchestras in chamber music performances. Most recently he has been touring with the group Bach Four, performing Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier.