Andrew Crust, conductor
Andrew Crust has developed a versatile international career as a conductor of orchestral, opera, ballet and pops programs. Currently serving as the Associate Conductor of the Vancouver Symphony in Canada, Andrew conducts a large number of subscription, pops, educational and contemporary concerts with the VSO each season. Andrew is the newly-appointed Music Director of the Lima Symphony Orchestra beginning in the 20/21, where he programs and conducts the Grand Classics, Pops and Educational series, featuring such soloists as Awadagin Pratt, Amit Peled and Kathrine Jolly.
In the current and upcoming seasons Andrew will debut with the Arkansas and Vermont Symphonies as Music Director finalist, and with the San Diego Symphony and Calgary Philharmonic as a guest conductor. Other recent engagements include performances with the Winnipeg Symphony, Memphis Symphony, Hartford Symphony, Bozeman Symphony and l’Orchestre de la Francophonie in Québec.
Andrew is a 2020 winner of the Solti Foundation US Career Assistance Award. In 2017 he was awarded first prize at the Accademia Chigiana by Daniele Gatti, receiving a scholarship and an invitation to guest conduct the Orchestra di Sanremo in Italy. He was a semi-finalist for the Nestlé/Salzburg Festival’s Young Conductors Award competition, and was selected by members of the Vienna Philharmonic as a winner of the Ansbacher Fellowship, with full access to all rehearsals and performances of the Salzburg Festival.
Andrew is equally at ease in the pit, having conducted ballet with Ballet Memphis and the New Ballet Ensemble, and opera with Opera McGill, College Light Opera Company, Boulder Opera Company, and others. As a Pops conductor, Andrew has collaborated with such artists as Rufus Wainwright, Steven Page, Michael Bolton, Cirque de la Symphonie, and the United States Jazz Ambassadors. Andrew has also established himself as a conductor of films with orchestra.
Andrew served as Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra from 2017-2019 where he conducted around forty concerts each season. He stepped in last minute for a successful subscription performance featuring Bernstein’s Serenade with violinist Charles Yang. Andrew also served as Conductor of the Memphis Youth Symphony Program. As the Assistant Conductor of the Portland Symphony Orchestra in Maine from 2016-2018, he conducted a variety of concert series, helped coordinate the orchestra’s extensive educational programs, and helped lead a program for concertgoers under 40 called “Symphony and Spirits”.
Crust was the Assistant Conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of the USA (NYO-USA) in the summers of 2017 and 2018, assisting Michael Tilson Thomas on an Asian tour, as well as Giancarlo Guerrero, Marin Alsop and James Ross at Carnegie Hall and in a side-by-side performance with the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has also served as Cover Conductor of the Kansas City Symphony, San Diego Symphony and Nashville Symphony, Assistant/Cover Conductor of the Boulder Philharmonic and Assistant Conductor of Opera McGill.
Abroad, he has led concerts with the Orchestra Giovanile Italiana in Italy, Hamburger Symphoniker at the Mendelssohn Festival in Germany, the Moravian Philharmonic in the Czech Republic and the Orquesta Sinfónica de Chile in Santiago.
As an arranger/orchestrator, Andrew is currently working with Schirmer to make orchestrations of a set of Florence Price’s art songs, has orchestrated works by Alma Mahler and Prokofiev, as well as many pops and educational selections.
Andrew is dedicated to exploring new ways of bringing the classical music experience into the 21st century through innovative programming and marketing, creating community-oriented and socially-sensitive concert experiences, and utilizing social media and unique venues. Andrew is a firm believer in meaningful music education, having produced and written a number of original educational programs with orchestras.
David Lakirovich, violin
David Lakirovich was born in Brisbane, Australia, and started his violin studies at the age of three with his father, Jacob Lakirovich. David has taken part in various master classes with renowned violinists such as Felix Andrievsky, Nelly Shkolnikova, Jose-Louis Garcia, Pinchas Zukerman, Victor Tretyakov, Maurico Fuks, Haim Taub, Pavel Vernikov, and Michael Frischenschlager. His teachers have included David Zafer in Toronto, Arkadij Winokurow and Boris Kuschnir in Vienna, Vadim Gluzman and Shmuel Ashkenasi in Chicago, and William Preucil in Cleveland.
David has performed in many recitals and concerts in Australia, USA, Canada, Israel and Europe, including solo performances in Weill Recital Hall in Carnegie Hall, Bronfman Auditorium in Tel Aviv, Stradivari Museum in Cremona, Italy, along with solo performances with the Calgary Philharmonic, Scarborough Symphony, York Symphony, and Chicago College of Performing Arts Symphony Orchestra.
An avid chamber musician, he has collaborated with Peter Salaff, Shmuel Ashkenasi, Ilya Kaler, Mark Kosower, Atar Arad, William Wolfram and Vadim Gluzman. In 2014, his quartet at the Cleveland Institute of Music won “Quartet of the Year” in the Hvide Sande Festival in Copenhagen, Denmark. David has participated in and achieved top honours in numerous violin and chamber music competitions around the world. He was a participant at the Keshet Eilon International Violin Mastercourse in Israel for two summers, as well as the Pinchas Zukerman Young Artist Program in Ottawa.
David completed his Undergraduate Degree at the Chicago College of Performing Arts at Roosevelt University in 2013 with Shmuel Ashkenasi and Vadim Gluzman, and his master’s degree at the Cleveland Institute of Music in 2015 with William Preucil. He previously served as the Associate Concertmaster of the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra in Columbus, Ohio, and played three seasons with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra (2 years as Tutti 1st Violin, and 1 year as the Assistant Concertmaster). He was also invited to perform as guest Associate Concertmaster with the Jalisco Philharmonic during the entire summer of 2015 in Guadalajara, Mexico, as well as guest Concertmaster of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra in April and November 2019.
David joined the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra as the new Assistant Concertmaster at the beginning of the 2018/19 season. Due to a generous gift by an anonymous donor in Boston, David plays on a 1920 Stefano Scarampella violin.
Jae-Won Bang, violin
Violinist Jae-Won Bang received her Bachelor of Music and Master of Music in Violin Performance from the Colburn School and Yale School of Music respectively, and Master of Music in Historical Performance from the Juilliard School. In 2012, she was featured on the NEXT Young Artist series on CBC Radio Two with pianist Ryo Yanagitani, as the first artist to be heard on both baroque and modern violins.
Jae-Won has collaborated with Clive Greensmith, Gil Kalish, Ronald Leonard, Rachel Podger, Arnold Steinhardt, and has performed in Weill Hall and Stern Auditorium at Carnegie, David Geffen Hall, Kennedy Centre, Alice Tully Hall, the Greene Space at WQXR, and le poisson rouge. She has also appeared as a Young Artist with Da Camera Houston for the 2015/2016 season. Her teachers include Gerald Stanick, Robert Lipsett, Ani Kavafian, Laurie Smukler, and Cho-Liang Lin on violin and Robert Mealy, Cynthia Roberts and Monica Huggett on baroque violin.
Yi Zhou, violin
Yi Zhou began her violin studies at the age of 6 in Mainland China. After completing her Bachelor’s Degree in Violin Performance at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, Yi received a full scholarship to continue her violin studies with Alice Schoenfeld at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.
After receiving her Master’s degree and advanced performance diploma from USC, she regularly performed with Los Angeles Opera, San Diego Symphony, San Diego Opera and Chamber Orchestra, Pacific Symphony, and Long Beach Symphony. She has also performed at the prestigious Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival and toured Germany, Holland, Finland, Denmark, Latvia, and Estonia.
In 2003 and 2004, she was invited to coach and teach as a member of the String Quartet residency program at the Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival. When moving to Vancouver in 2006, Yi became a member of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra and CBC Orchestra. In 2009, she joined the first violin section in the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
When not performing, Yi Zhou loves teaching, traveling, cooking and spending time with her family in the beautiful city of Vancouver.
Ann Okagaito, violin
A Toronto native, Ann Okagaito started studying violin with the Suzuki method at the Royal Conservatory of Music. Her principal teachers while growing up were Atis Bankas and Alec Hou.
She went on to get her Bachelor of Music at Northwestern University where she studied under Almita and Roland Vamos and her Master of Music at the Cleveland Institute of Music, where she studied with Paul Kantor. While at Northwestern, she appeared as a soloist with the Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra as a result of being a Concerto Competition winner.
Before joining the VSO, Ann was a fellow of the New World Symphony in Miami Beach. In the summer, Ann is a member of the Colorado Music Festival in Boulder, Colorado.
Andrew Brown, viola
Andrew James Brown is the Associate-Principal violist of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and was a member of the CBC Radio Orchestra for over eighteen years. An enthusiastic chamber musician, he has worked extensively with Vancouver’s leading musical organizations, including the Vetta Quartet, Curio, the Vancouver New Music Ensemble and Masterpiece Players. Andrew performs with violinist Mary Sokol Brown and cellist Ariel Barnes in the ensemble Trio Accord (www.trioaccord.ca). Their debut recording of Bach’s Goldberg-Variations has just been released by Skylark Music and is available in the VSO gift shop!
Andrew has performed throughout North America, Korea, China and Japan, and recently spent three months with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra. He enjoys the eclectic musical environment in Vancouver where his engagements have ranged from intimate chamber music performances to rock and roll at the Coliseum with members of Led Zeppelin.
A former member of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra, Andrew earned his Bachelor and Master of Music degrees at The College Conservatory of Music, University of Cincinnati – studying with Donald McInnes, Paul Coletti, Gerald Stanick and Masao Kawasaki.
Jacob van der Sloot, viola
Jacob van der Sloot started playing violin under the instruction of his mother and father, Daphne and Michael van der Sloot, when he was 5. He then switched to viola with his Father when he was 13 and was accepted to the Juilliard school to study with Steven Tenebom, where he would earn his Bachelors degree in 2019. Shortly after his undergraduate studies, Jacob became the youngest member of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra at age 22.
Growing up in Victoria BC, Jacob had the opportunity to solo with the Sidney Classical, Sooke Philharmonic and the VCM Senior string orchestras, being praised for his “..deep, rich sound with flying colours.” (Times Colonist, Canada) Jacob has gone on to perform in halls around the world such as Carnegie Hall, David Geffen Hall and Alice Tully hall in New York City, and the Bejing Conservatory Concert Hall, among others. Jacob also made his solo Carnegie debut in 2019 playing the Brahms E-flat Major viola sonata as part of Julie Jordan’s “International Rising Stars” concert series.
An avid chamber musician, Jacob was part of the Noctis Quartet, which won second place at the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition and the WDAV Young Artists Competition. Jacob’s passion for chamber music also carries into music outreach, playing chamber music all over New York City in hospitals, prisons, retirement homes, schools and psychiatric facilities as part of Juilliard’s “Gluck” Fellowship program and through GroupMuse concerts. He also enjoys private teaching, and has served on faculty of the Victoria Summer Strings Academy.
Jacob’s orchestral journey began with the Greater Victoria Youth Orchestra. He has since played with the Juilliard Orchestra, the Juilliard Lab Orchestra, the National Arts Centre Orchestra and Principal Violist of both the Sidney Classical Orchestra and the New York Concerti Sinfonietta. Jacob joined the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra in 2020 and is incredibly happy to call Vancouver his home.
Zoltan Rozsnyai, cello
Zoltan Rozsnyai was born into a musical family. Both his parents and grandparents were professional musicians. He studied piano and violin, before taking up the cello at the age of six. He joined the Windsor Symphony at 15, then left to attend the University of Toronto two years later.
While in Toronto, he studied with Vladimir Orloff and Daniel Domb. Zoltan also took masterclasses at the Banff School of Fine Arts, studying with Aldo Parisot, Tsuyoshi Tsutsumi, and Janos Starker. He played for many years in the Canadian Opera Company and National Ballet orchestras, as well as performing as soloist and chamber musician throughout Ontario. Zoltan also spent a year in India with his electric cello, traveling and collaborating with musicians. In 1999 he joined the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and has been the Assistant Principal cellist since 2001.
Zoltan maintains an active and varied musical life in Vancouver, and lives with his wife and young son.
Luke Kim, cello
A member of the Vancouver Cello Quartet, Luke Wook-Young Kim completed his undergraduate studies at UBC where he received the Catherine-Cooke Topping Memorial Medal for musical excellence. Then, he finished his Master of Music degree as a full scholarship student at UCLA. His teachers include Antonio Lysy, Joseph Elworthy, Eric Wilson, John Friesen, and Kenneth Friedman. Luke participated in masterclasses with Lynn Harrell, Janos Starker, Aldo Parisot, and Paul Katz. He also attended the Aspen Music Festival and the Early Music Vancouver Programme (baroque cello). Besides cello, he enjoys playing the viola da gamba.
Luke has appeared in various concert series and recitals throughout Greater Vancouver. In addition, he has performed as a soloist with various orchestras such as the Seoul Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra, the Polish Czestochowa Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Busan Neo Philharmonic (Korea). In spring 2015, Luke was featured as a soloist for Friedrich Gulda’s Concerto for Cello and Wind Orchestra with the UCLA Wind Ensemble. He also performed Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante with the West Coast Symphony in 2019.