Karen Bogardus, flute
Ms Bogardus earned her Bachelor of Music degree from the New England Conservatory and Master of Music degree form Northwestern University. A prize winner of the Myrna Brown and the Artists International Competitions, Ms. Bogardus has appeared as soloist with the Community Symphony Orchestra of Boston, the South End Symphony (Boston), the Camarata Universitaria (Mexico), the Symphonic Youth Ensemble of the Children’s Orchestra Society, the French American Chamber Orchestra and the Orquesta Sinfonica de Aguascalientes (Mexico).
In 1986 before moving to Mexico Ms. Bogardus received her first orchestral contract with the Orquestra Gulbenkian in Lisbon, Portugal. During the eight years Ms. Bogardus lived in Mexico she held Principal Flute positions with the Orquesta Sinfonica de Aguascalientes, Sinfonietta del ISSSTE and Filarmonica de Queretaro, She held the Assisant Principal Flute position with the Orquesta Sinfonica de Xalapa.
In New York, Ms Bogardus currently performs with the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, The Philharmonic Orchestra of New Jersey, American Symphony Orchestra, Westfield Symphony Orchestra, the Columbia Festival Orchestra, and on Broadway. She recently performed chamber works by Harrison Birtwistle in the Carnegie Hall Making Music series.
In the summer of 2001 as a member of the Dorian Quintet, Ms Bogardus served on the faculty and performed at the Tanglewood Institute.
Orlando Wells, violin and viola
A native of Orange, NJ, Orlando Wells began studying the violin at the age of 9. While attending LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts, he picked up the viola. Mostly self taught in High School, he graduated winning the Behrens Foundation and B’nai Brith scholarships.
Mr. Wells attended S.U.N.Y. Purchase, and Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers. His primary teachers have included Yuval Waldman and Michael Tree.
Equally proficient on both the violin and the viola, he has held the principal viola chair with the Antara Chamber Orchestra, and the concertmaster chair with the Soulful Symphony in Baltimore, the Orchestra of the Bronx, and the Bronx Opera. He has appeared as a soloist with Antara, the Manhattan Virtuosi and the St. Peter by the Sea Orchestra.
Mr. Wells also performs with The Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic, SONYC Chamber Orchestra, The Ritz Chamber Players, Allentown Symphony, Sweet Plantain String Quartet, The Emerald Trio, and the Radio City Christmas Show Orchestra. Performing frequently on Broadway, he has played regularly with “Phantom of the Opera”, “The Producers”, “Spamalot”, “Wicked”, and was the violist on the first national tour of the Broadway show, “Little Women”.
He has collaborated with musicians of many different genres and styles. Some of the artists he has worked with are, John Legend, Mariah Carrey, Rihanna, Kanye West, Marvin Hamlish, the Akua Dixon Swing Quartet, and Sojourner Strings. Mr. Wells has recorded with artists Mary J. Blige, Joe, and Alicia Keyes among others.
Matt Castle, piano
Matt Castle enjoys a multi-faceted career as a musician and actor in New York. As a child, he studied cello and guitar, and was self-taught as a pianist and composer until he enrolled at University of the Pacific’s Conservatory of Music. After completing his bachelor’s degree in music education, he earned his master’s degree in composition from Northern Illinois University’s School of Music. He has held accompanying and teaching positions at both of these schools as well as San Joaquin Delta College, University of Iowa, New York University, and Marymount Mahattan College.
Mr. Castle has played more than 250 recitals, accompanying every standard instrument in a wide variety of classic and modern repertoire. In New York City, his career as a pianist is based mainly in musical theater, where he specializes in new works. He has served as musical director and/or arranger for shows at York Theatre Company, Signature Theatre, Tisch School of the Arts, New York Musical Theatre Festival, and many others. He has also arranged music for, and performed as featured soloist with, the Omaha and Stockton Symphonies.
As an actor, Mr. Castle recently made his Broadway debut as Peter in the 2007 Tony Award—winning revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Company. He was in the original off-Broadway casts of The Musical of Musicals and LingoLand, and has played roles at Paper Mill Playhouse, Sacramento Theatre Company, Sacramento Music Circus, Cincinnati Playhouse, and other major regional houses. Opera credits include Nemorino in The Elixir of Love, Fairfax in The Yeomen of the Guard, and Marco in The Gondoliers.
For news, reviews, and sound clips, visit www.MattCastle.com.