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Artists-in-Residence to perform at Weill Hall

  • SSU Artists-in-Residence S├Žunn Thorsteinsdottir, Elizabeth Joy Roe, Carol McGonnell.(Photo courtesy of SSU)

When members of Trio Ariadne perform at Green Music Center on Friday, they'll be sharing their talents with the public. But most of their time at Sonoma State University is spent on the other side of the stage.

As the school's inaugural Weill Hall Artists-in-Residence, Elizabeth Joy Roe, Carol McGonnell and Saeunn Thorsteindottir are breaking trail, developing a program that teams working artists with undergraduate students.

Over the course of the school year, they will serve as mentors, coaches, teachers and role models, while also maintaining their own careers as working musicians. Their first public performance begins at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11 in Weill Hall.

“We were drawn to the program because we wanted to play together, and it sounded like an exciting opportunity,” said McGonnell, a Dublin-born clarinetist who attended the University of Belfast. She is a founding member of the Argento Chamber Ensemble and now is a doctoral candidate and teaching assistant at Stony Brook University.

Roe is a pianist from Chicago whose solo debut was at the Lincoln Center. She now performs with fellow pianist Greg Anderson in the Anderson & Roe Piano Duo.

Roe and McGonnell met six years ago in a two-year fellowship at The Academy, a program of Carnegie Hall, The Juilliard School and the Weill Music Institute. They have performed together ever since.

Cellist Saeunn Thorsteindottir, a native of Iceland and the youngest of the group, also had a fellowship at The Academy and joined the trio in 2010. She is pursuing her doctorate at Stony Brook University while juggling two jobs — the SSU residency and chamber music coach at Mannes College, The New School university's music conservatory on Manhattan's Upper West Side.

At SSU, the women are the first to benefit from a program made possible by Sandy Weill, a donor to both the Green Music Center and Carnegie Hall.

Elizabeth Roe conducts a student performance.

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