Bios: Concert IV

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Madeline Adkins, violin

Madeline Adkins joined the Utah Symphony as Concertmaster in September 2016. Prior to this, she served as Associate Concertmaster of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (BSO) since 2005, and Assistant Concertmaster of the BSO from 2000-2005.

Adkins has served as guest concertmaster of the Hong Kong Philharmonic, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, the Oregon Symphony, and the Grant Park Symphony Orchestra in Chicago, where she was featured in Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis. She has been a guest artist at numerous summer festivals including the Sarasota Music Festival, the Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival in South Africa, Music in the Mountains, the Grand Teton Music Festival, and the Sewanee Summer Music Festival, as well as a clinician and coach at the National Orchestral Institute and the National Youth Orchestra.

A sought-after soloist, Adkins has appeared with orchestras in 15 US states, Europe, Asia, and Africa. During her time with the BSO, she was featured semi-annually and has performed over 25 works with that orchestra. Her CD of the complete works for violin and piano by Felix Mendelssohn with pianist Luis Magalhães on the TwoPianists label was released to critical acclaim in August, 2016. She subsequently embarked on a concert tour of South Africa to celebrate the disc’s release.

A champion of early music, Adkins has been active in baroque performance on period instruments since the age of 11. She has been a member of the Handel and Haydn Society, Boston Baroque, the Dallas Bach Society, and Pro Musica Rara of Baltimore. With the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Adkins appeared as conductor and soloist in several baroque programs of her own design, as well as hosting concerts on the Casual Series.

The daughter of noted musicologists, Adkins is the youngest of eight children, six of whom are professional musicians. The siblings, who included titled players in the National, Dallas, and Houston symphonies, joined together to form the Adkins String Ensemble. She performed on viola and violin with this unique chamber ensemble for over 15 years, and the group has made numerous recordings, including Schoenberg’s Verklärte Nacht.

Adkins received her Bachelor’s summa cum laude from the University of North Texas and her Master’s degree from the New England Conservatory where she studied with James Buswell. While a student, she served as concertmaster of the Tanglewood Music Center Orchestra under Seiji Ozawa and won first prize in a number of competitions, including the Stulberg International String Competition, the ASTA National Solo Competition, and the New England Conservatory Concerto Competition. She was also a second prize winner in the Irving Klein International String Competition.

Adkins performs on the “ex-Chardon” Guadagnini of 1782, graciously loaned by Gabrielle Israelievitch to perpetuate the legacy of her late husband, former Toronto Symphony concertmaster, Jacques Israelievitch (1948 – 2015).

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Matthew Johnson, cello

Cellist Matthew Johnson was recently appointed to the position of Associate Principal Cello of the Utah Symphony. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California, where he studied with Ron Leonard and Andrew Shulman. Prior to his appointment with the Utah Symphony, Matthew was a member of the Kansas City Symphony for six seasons. While in Kansas City, Mr. Johnson was an active chamber musician as a member of the Bach Aria Soloists and the cello quartet, CelloRondo. In addition to maintaining a private teaching studio, Matthew was a faculty member of the Kansas City String Quartet Program. He has also participated in music festivals such as the Sarasota Music Festival and the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival in Germany, where he served as principal cellist.

A musician with Utah roots, Matthew moved to Salt Lake City from Massachusetts when he was twelve years old. He was a student of Richard Hoyt and Utah Symphony cellist, John Eckstein. While attending Skyline High School, he performed with many ensembles led by musicians of the Utah Symphony. In 1997, Matthew was featured as a soloist with the Utah Symphony, after winning the Symphony’s Youth Guild competition.

Mr. Johnson is married to violinist and former Kansas City Symphony member, Tina Cho Johnson. They have a six-month old daughter, Ella.

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Vedrana Subotic, piano

Pianist Vedrana Subotic has won international acclaim from critics and audiences for her refined interpretations, rich tonal palette, and supreme levels of technical and musical mastery. Her debut solo performance at age nine was broadcasted on national television in her native country, the former Yugoslavia. Upon winning the top prize in Yugoslavia’s National Piano Competition, Vedrana moved to the United States. She has since been active as a soloist and a chamber musician in the Americas and Europe. She performs in dozens of concerts a year, combining concerto appearances, solo recitals, chamber music collaborations, and orchestral performances.

Vedrana’s more recent performances include concert tours in Puerto Rico, the Utah premier of Alban Berg’s Chamber Concerto, appearing as a soloist in Beethoven’s fifth piano concerto with the Dubrovnik Symphony, and Prokofiev’s third piano concerto at the Chautauqua Festival in New York, as well as chamber music concerts at the International Chamber Music Festival in Nis, Serbia, the Dubrovnik Summer Festival, the Chautauqua Festival, the American Festival for the Arts in Houston, and Intermezzo and Temple Square Concert Series in Salt Lake City, Utah. She has collaborated in recital with such artists as Joseph Silverstein and Paul Neubauer, and is a member of the Porter-Subotic Duo with her husband, Utah Symphony violinist David Porter. Vedrana has also performed concerts in Bratislava, Prague, Belgrade, London, and Venice, as well as throughout the United States and Canada. Vedrana’s artistry and extensive concert activity has attracted the attention of the Director of the Worldwide Concert and Artists division at the Steinway corporation in NY. In 2003, she was invited to join the distinguished roster of Steinway Artists.

In addition to faculty recitals and lectures, Vedrana performs regularly in local concert venues, and has appeared as a soloist with the Utah Symphony, Utah Chamber Orchestra, and the Weber State and Snow College Orchestras. Vedrana is a founding member and Music Director of the Intermezzo Chamber Music Concert Series, hailed by the Salt Lake Tribune, in its first year (2003), as one of the top ten musical events in Utah.

Vedrana has taught piano at Indiana University, Hartford Conservatory, and the Chautauqua Institution in NY where she was also Head of the Instrumental Accompanying from 1995-2001. In 2003, she founded the piano program at the Horne School of Music at Snow College (UT), an all-Steinway school, and directed it until 2008. An active clinician and adjudicator, Vedrana has served on the Gina Bachauer International Junior Piano Competition Jury, and is a frequent guest as a master-teacher at the Utah Symphony’s Youth Guild masterclasses. She has presented lectures on a variety of pedagogical and performance topics for the Utah Music Teachers Association and the Suzuki Piano Association.

An avid admirer and dedicated champion of the piano traditions from the days of the “old-world” performing legends, Vedrana has been trained by internationally acclaimed pedagogues and performers who continued the legacy of Arthur Schnabel, Rosina Lhevinne, Robert Goldsand, Rudolph Serkin, and Vladimir Horowitz. In addition to her University of Utah piano studio, Vedrana maintains a private studio of gifted young students in Salt Lake City. Her students have continued their musical studies at leading music schools in United States and Europe and have won awards in numerous competitions.

Vedrana graduated from the former Yugoslavia’s State Music Conservatory at age fifteen, and received  Bachelor of Music degree from Belgrade University four years later. She has since earned a Master of Music from Michigan State University, and an Artist Diploma and Doctor of Music from Indiana University. Her teachers have included Menahem Pressler, Arbo Valdma, Leonard Hokanson, Peter Frankl, Ralph Votapek, Gyorgy Sebok, Byron Janis, Janos Starker, and Josef Gingold.