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Spotlight Talks

Spotlight Talks

Join guest presenters and special guests for a pre-concert Barnett & Company Masterworks Series lecture as we explore spotlight topics related to the night’s concert. Prior to all Masterworks Series concerts (except Opening Night) from 6:45-7:15pm  

1.25.18 - Movie Masterworks

CSO Education & Community Engagement Manager Staci Spring joins us in the Tivoli Dance Studio to take us musically to the movies. Guest artist Cahill Smith also stops in to share some special insight into the world of Mozart.  

3.1.18 - Sibelius Symphony No. 5 with Music Director Dan

Music Director Kayoko Dan, whose primary instrument is Flute, and CSO Principal Flute Kristen Holritz join us pre-concert in the Tivoli Dance Studio for a flute petting zoo and to highlight the Nielsen Flute Concerto.
A versatile conductor, Kayoko Dan is active in the fields of orchestra, ballet, and opera. Ms. Dan began her tenure as the 8th Music Director of the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera in the 2011-2012 season. Previously, she served as Assistant Conductor of the Phoenix Symphony and Music Director of Central Kentucky Youth Orchestras. She has been awarded the Karajan Fellowship for Young Conductors, as well as the David Effron Conducting Fellowship at the Chautauqua Institute. Ms. Dan has participated in numerous workshops including the Kurt Masur Conducting Seminar, International Bartok Festival, Fondazione I Pomeriggi Musicali Conducting Workshop and National Conducting Institute. Ms. Dan began her musical training in Japan at age three. After relocating to the United States, she continued her musical studies with flute and received a Bachelor in Music Education at the University of Texas, and her Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting and Master in Music Education from Arizona State University. Her principal teachers are Timothy Russell and Timothy Muffitt. She has also studied with Kurt Masur, Leonard Slatkin, Zoltan Pesko, Jorma Panula and William Reber.
Noted for her “beautiful tone and vibrato,” Kristen Holritz makes her home on stage as a remarkably versatile flutist. Ms. Holritz made her solo debut with the United States Air Force Band in 2005 as winner of the Colonel George S. Howard Young Artist Competition. In 2008 she soloed with the University of North Carolina School of the Arts Symphony Orchestra, and in spring of 2013 was featured as a concerto competition winner with the University of Georgia Symphony Orchestra, winner of the Atlanta Flute Club Young Artist Competition and received third prize in the MidSouth Flute Festival Young Artist Competition. Previous orchestral summer engagements have included the Festival Institute at Round Top, the MasterWorks Festival and National Music Festival.

Most recently, in the fall of 2013 Ms. Holritz was pleased to accept the Principal Flute position with the Chattanooga Symphony and Opera. In addition to her orchestral responsibilities, she appears with the  Chattanooga Symphony Wind Quintet in schools across Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama in effort to engage and enrich the community through music. Ms. Holritz also performs extensively with Schaafritz, a duo with her husband violinist Josh Holritz. Schaafritz has performed across the United States and went on tour to Japan twice with musicians from The Juilliard School.

Kristen Holritz holds a Bachelor Degree in Flute Performance from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and a Master Degree in Flute Performance from The Juilliard School. Her primary teachers include Tadeu Coelho, Robert Langevin and Angela Jones-Reus, with additional study with Gretchen Pusch and Carol Wincenc.

Visit Kristen’s website at

4.5.18 - Tchaikovsky & Rachmaninoff with Cahill Smith

Lee University Professor of Piano Studies joins us in the Tivoli Theatre Dance Studio to highlight Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 2.
Born and raised in rural Alabama, pianist Cahill Smith began playing at age 10. Six years later, he made his orchestral debut with a local orchestra. Cahill has given recitals in major venues in the United States and abroad, including three programs in three years at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall (2013, 2014, and 2015), the PolyTheater in Chongqing, China, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum’s Calderwood Hall in Boston, Cleveland Museum of Art, the Royal Dublin Society’s Concert Hall, Kodak Hall, Kilbourn Hall, and Hatch Halls at the Eastman School of Music, the Aspen Music Festival’s Harris Hall, Stamps Auditorium and the Britton Recital Hall in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Minneapolis’ Orchestra Hall, and Birmingham’s Alys Stephens Center. Cahill has been featured as a concerto soloist with the National Ukranian Symphony Orchestra in Kiev, the Eastman Philharmonia, the Alabama Symphony Orchestra, the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra, the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra, the Shoals Symphony Orchestra, and others. His recordings have been broadcast on WQXR – New York’s Classical Music Radio Station. Cahill’s programming of works by little-known Russian composer Nikolai Medtner has attracted the attention of audiences and critics. Cahill made his Carnegie Hall debut  in 2013 with an all-Medtner program of solo piano music, songs, and chamber music in Weill Recital Hall, and gave a lecture-recital on the composer at Yale University.  In a review of his 2015 Carnegie Hall Recital, New York Concert Review wrote, “The entire second half was devoted to a special “cause” of Mr. Smith: the piano music of Nikolai Medtner […]. Here, Mr. Smith was in his element, revealing every twist and turn, every poignant repeat of the cyclic themes, with beautiful shimmering colors I haven’t heard since Gilels played the Sonata reminiscenza in Carnegie Hall in 1980.  Of another performance in 2011, the East Hampton Star wrote, “The unexpected gems of the afternoon were two of Nikolai Medtner’s Vergessene Weisen (‘Forgotten Melodies’), played by Cahill Smith. I was not familiar with these works, but in Mr. Smith’s hands they were absolutely endearing.” Cahill completed his Doctorate of Musical Arts at the Eastman School of Music in 2014, where he served as the teaching assistant to Natalya Antonova. At Eastman, Cahill was the inaugural recipient of the Douglas Lowry award for excellence in degree recital performance. He was inducted into the honor society Pi Kappa Lambda for his academic achievements and contributions to the musical community at Eastman.  Cahill also won the Eastman Concerto Competition and was awarded the Prize for Excellence in Teaching as a graduate assistant. Cahill completed his Master’s degree at the University of Michigan with Arthur Greene, and his Bachelor’s at the University of Alabama at Birmingham with Yakov Kasman. Other influential teachers include Ann Schein, the late Betty Sue Shepherd, Ronald Shinn, and Margaret Moore. Cahill serves on the piano faculty at Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee, where he also serves as Artistic Director for the Lee University International Piano Festival and Competition in the summer ( He is an active lecturer, competition juror, and masterclass presenter. Cahill is a Yamaha Artist.

4.26.18 - Symphonie Fantastique with Douglas Hedwig

Composer and former Met Opera Principal Trumpet Douglas Hedwig joins us in the Tivoli Green Room to spotlight pieces from this finale Masterworks concert.
Throughout his long career in the musical arts, Dr. Douglas Hedwig has pursued a wide variety of expression.  As a trumpeter, he was a member of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra (27 years), privileged to perform with the greatest conductors and soloists of his generation. As an international recording artist, his trumpet playing may be heard on over 40 major albums of music ranging from chamber music to Broadway shows to jazz, including the Grammy Award winning recording of Gershwin’s “Porgy & Bess” with the Houston Grand Opera (RCA). While pursuing an active performing career in New York City, Hedwig simultaneously lectured on music history as a faculty member of The Juilliard School, and later served on the faculty of the Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music (City University of New York), where he is now Professor Emeritus.  During his time in Brooklyn, Hedwig conducted various ensembles, and created and taught special seminars in contemporary performance practice.  He also served as Commander & Conductor of the 89th Army Band, New York Guard (Major-NY, retired), having enlisted following the events of 9/11/2001, and was guest-conductor with the U.S. Army Band at West Point. Long interested in musical composition, in 2009 Douglas Hedwig was commissioned by NYC Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg to compose music for his second inauguration ceremony.  Since then, Hedwig’s musical life has centered primarily on creating multiple new works for strings, brass, percussion, organ and concert band, including the recent premiere of a commissioned work by St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Chattanooga (May 2015).  His music is published by Carl Fischer Music and TNR Music Publisher, Inc. In 2013, Doug and his wife, Mimi Jones Hedwig, moved to Chattanooga, TN.
FREE to all concert ticketholders, but limited seating.