"It's all just music! - Classic, Klezmer, Jazz" - a musical soiree with Susanne Ortner (clarinets, sax), David Benett (Cello), and Daniel May (piano) performing beautiful Jewish-inflected Classical pieces by composers such as Max Bruch, Ernest Bloch, and Joachim Stutschevsky, as well as unique renditions of Gershwin-tunes and traditional Klezmer pieces in unusual arrangements.
Susanne Ortner: German clarinetist Susanne Ortner is internationally acclaimed both as a soloist and as a member various chamber music, jazz, and klezmer ensembles. The German Newspaper Augsburger Allgemeine states that she is “a musician par excellence, capable of moving you deeply“. Susanne is a graduate of the Leopold Mozart Conservatory, and the University of Augsburg (MA in Music and German literature). Following an invitation by the University of Pittsburgh in 2006, she has been accompanying Pittsburgh area Holocaust Survivors at schools and Universities creating the musical framework for their stories. Susanne is a serious researcher of Eastern European music, and offers Klezmer Workshops. Besides master classes and lectures at the University of Pittsburgh, and Duquesne University, she instructed the klezmer band at the Agency for Jewish Learning, was the interim director of the Carpathian Ensemble at The University of Pittsburgh, and has been coaching the CMU/Hillel klezmer band. She currently holds an adjunct teaching position at Washington & Jefferson College. Susanne has arranged and composed music for many theatrical productions including “Mazel” by Amy Hartman (Jewish Theatre Pittsburgh), “Our Class” by Tadeusz Slobodzianek (Pittsburgh Irish And Classical Theatre), and the complete score for “Weihnachtsgeschichte” for the Augsburger Puppenkiste. She appears on several CDs, including “A Trip To America” and “Hot World Chamber Music” (Ortner-Roberts Duo), “A Tribute to Teenie Harris” (Manchester Craftsmen’s Guilde), “Khosn Kale Mazl-Tov” (Sing Your Soul), and has done book and film projects. She is the subject of the recent book “Living the Dream” – Für die Musik nach Amerika” (Wissner Verlag Augsburg, 2011), written by German Television journalist Helge Fuhst.
David Benett, Cello: David studied cello with Shirley Trepel at Rice University, and also with Henry Elman of the Royal Philharmonic. He performs locally with
the duo, Cello Cello, the Rosewood Trio and with Daniel May at the Fairmont Hotel.
Daniel May was born into a very musical family- both of his parents were music teachers. He plays piano and viola and he holds a Doctorate in Music Composition from Cornell University. For over 20 years, Daniel May worked in Los Angeles as a composer for feature films, television, and, most notably, IMAX films. Career highlights include his score to the award-winning IMAX film "Everest." In his film scores, Daniel has collaborated with George Harrison ("Everest"), Sting ("The Living Sea" and "Dolphins"), Lindsay Buckingham ("Adventures In Wild California') and The Moody Blues ("Journey Into Amazing Caves"). Additionally, Daniel May is a noted jazz pianist and has played and recorded with some of the world's foremost jazz artists. In 2006, Daniel and his family relocated to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where he owns and operates Maywood Studios, a state-of-the-art recording
studio. Daniel recently composed the musical score for Medieval Times, a live show featured in venues throughout the United States and Canada. Daniel had the privilege of hearing his “Alligator Songs” performed by the Florida Young Artists Orchestra at New York’s Carnegie Hall. Daniel has produced and recorded more than 50 CD projects, most notably
for Somerset Entertainment (Toronto, Canada). He is currently the Co-Music Director of the Fairmont Pittsburgh Hotel.