Fall Into Spring Master Class Artists

2017 Master Class Artists

January 14          Brian Sweigart, Head of the Eurhythmics department, Cleveland Institute of Music
January 15          Connie Heard, violinist with Blair Quartet, Vanderbilt University



2016 Master Class Artists

January 18          Daniel Laufer
January 18          David Nesmith
February 7          Nick Curry
April 18               Brad Ritchie

Daniel Laufer

Daniel Laufer is the Associate Principal Cellist of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Born in Israel, he studied with his father, Wolfgang Laufer, cellist of the Fine Arts Quartet, before attending the North Carolina School of the Arts where he studied with Robert Marsh. Daniel won a position with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra on his eighteenth birthday, making him the youngest musician ever hired by that orchestra. After two years in Dallas he joined the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra in the position he now holds. Daniel has given recitals in Milwaukee, Dallas, Boston, and Atlanta as well as two live recitals for radio on WFMT in Chicago. He has also performed at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival and the Kfar Blum Chamber Music Festival in Israel, and as soloist with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, and the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. Daniel has also collaborated with the Fine Arts Quartet and guest artist Pinchas Zukerman on programs in France, Atlanta, and Milwaukee. He is a founding member of the Emory Chamber Music Society of Atlanta.


David Nesmith

David Nesmith is a professional musician, a licensed Andover Educator, and a certified teacher of the Alexander Technique. He has a private teaching practice in Columbus, Ohio, and is on the faculty at Denison University. He works with a diverse group of students including, but not limited to, musicians, actors, dancers, athletes, computer users, artists, and pregnant women.





nickcurryNick Curry

Dr. Nick Curry was appointed Assistant Professor of Cello at the University of North Florida in 2007. He is a founding member of Trio Florida, with violinist Simon Shiao and pianist Gary Smart, featuring new compositions as well as timeless classics. From 2004–2007, he served as the Assistant Professor of Cello and the cellist in the Rawlins Piano Trio at the University of South Dakota.

He was born in Atlanta, Georgia, where he studied cello with David Starkweather from the University of Georgia. Nick received his Bachelor of Music from Vanderbilt, where he studied with Grace Mihi Bahng. While at Vanderbilt, he served as Professor Bahng’s teaching assistant and was the recipient of the Jean Keller Heard Award for Excellence in string performance. Nick then served as Hans Jorgen Jensen’s teaching assistant for five years at Northwestern University, where he earned his Master of Music and Doctoral degrees. He also was the teaching assistant to Professor Jensen at the Meadowmount School of Music for four summers. While at Northwestern, Nick performed as a soloist with the Northwestern Philharmonic Orchestra and won the Northwestern Chamber Music Competition.


Brad Ritchie (cello)

Brad Ritchie (cello) is from Portland, Oregon and is in his seventh season with the Atlanta Chamber Players and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. He received his Bachelor of Music degree from Indiana University, where he studied with Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi and Janos Starker. His graduate degree was earned at the Hochschule für Musik in Freiburg, Germany, where he studied with Adriana Contino. As a member of the Felici String Quartet, Mr. Ritchie was a winner of the Kuttner String Quartet Scholarship at Indiana University and subsequently played in Japan, France and Germany. Prior to coming to Atlanta, he was a member of the New World Symphony in Miami Beach, Florida. He has twice performed chamber music on Japanese TV and recorded a CD in Tokyo, Chocolate Fashion. In the spring of 2001, he was featured in an ACP performance of the Beethoven Triple Concerto with the DeKalb Symphony Orchestra. Over the past five seasons, Mr. Ritchie has also collaborated with performers in Mammoth Lakes, Ca. as part of the Chamber Music America Rural Residency Program.