HCC Chamber Music Series

A diverse artist in both viola and piano, Dr. Alicia Marie Valoti brings energy to the international music scene through performance, education and research. She holds degrees from McGill University, Rice University, il Conservatorio di Firenze “Luigi Cherubini”, la Scuola APM di Saluzzo and Stony Brook University. Additionally, Dr. Valoti studied at the Scuola di Musica di Fiesole, Indiana University and RNCM.

Ms. Valoti’s performances have been widely varied; as a pianist in Carnegie Hall, in orchestra in the Egyptian Teatro Gomhouria, as a viola recitalist at Mozarte Conservatorio in Quito, Ecuador and assisting in a music rehabilitation program in an Alaskan prison, for example. She has showcased several world premieres (Mesa, Luporini) and recordings (Colonna, Beamish). Dr. Valoti was the first prize winner in the David Dalton Competition of the American Viola Society, and played in the “Rising Stars” recital series of 2016. She has developed strong connections with Ecuador, where she teaches and performs regularly.

Her current research and performances have a focus on original 19th century Italian viola compositions prevailing from the Tuscan area. Dr. Valoti recently received a grant to investigate and record the virtuosic viola works of Ferdinando Giorgetti. She has presented her original material in Italy, Portugal and the United States.

A committed educator, Dr. Valoti has held positions at Sam Houston State University, the University of Houston, Lone Star College, and Stony Brook University. She was a distinguished visiting professor at the Wuhan Conservatory and Lioacheng University (China) in 2010. Currently, Ms. Valoti is Assistant Professor of Viola at Central Michigan University.

                                    Marc Rosenberg, Guitar

                                  Zelda Faith Jones, Violin andViola

                              Rachel Shepard, Violin

                                 Vyacheslav Dobrushkin, Cello

Born and raised in Texas, Marc Rosenberg began his study of the guitar with Adam Flint and continued at the collegiate level with Chip Christ at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas, earning a BM in Guitar Performance and earning his Master's Degree at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, under Jim Ferla. He has participated in many competitions and masterclasses with such notable names as Pepe Romero, Roland Dyens, Dale Kavanagh, Bill Kanengiser, and Lily Afshar. His diverse musical background has led to performances in various productions of musicals. In 2012, he played in the ensemble for Fort Worth's regional premier of Astor Piazzolla's tango opera Maria de Buenos Aires. In 2013, Rosenberg was one of thirteen students accepted into the I Master in Classical Guitar Performance from the University of Alicante, where he studied with world renowned guitarists and musicians David Russell, Ignacio Rodes, Hopkinson Smith, Robert Aussel, Manuel Barrueco, Carles Trepat, and Nigel North, while giving several performances in the region. After his studies in Spain, Rosenberg returned to Houston, Texas, where he is establishing himself as an up-and-coming guitaris while teaching guitar lessons at the Vivaldi Music Academy, HCC Central Campus, and Lone Star College in Cy-Fair.

Rachel Shepard is the Assistant Concertmaster of the Houston Ballet Orchestra and also performs with Houston Grand Opera, Mercury Houston, and works as a substitute violin for the Houston Symphony. She works as a private violin and viola instructor, chamber music coach, and sectional coach for students ranging from elementary school through advanced high school. Rachel has participated in festivals throughout the United States and abroad including Aspen Music Festival, Roundtop Music Festival, National Orchestral Institute, and the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria. In 2014 she was selected for the YOA Orchestra of the Americas Summer Caribbean Tour, traveling to the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Jamaica to perform and provide lessons to local music students. Rachel completed her Masters of Music degree from Rice University in 2013, studying with Kenneth Goldsmith. Originally from Orlando, Florida, Rachel also holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Florida State University, where she studied under Eliot Chapo.

Zelda Faith Jones is a native Houstonian and has been performing, teaching, and coaching in Houston and other cities for over a decade. She received a Bachelor of Music from the University of Houston and a Graduate Performance Diploma from The Boston Conservatory, and was an Associate Member of the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. In the past she has been featured as a faculty performer in the InterHarmony Music Festivals in Germany, and as a faculty performer and chamber coach in the Musicagiovani music festival in Italy. She also performed with Mirror Quartet in their Italian and Austrian Summer Concert Tours. Zelda is currently a member of Opera in the Heights, a local opera company that is celebrating its twentieth anniversary, Duo Scordatura, a new music ensemble that recently celebrated its tenth anniversary and Carnegie Hall debut, and the Mud Turtle Quintet, a guitar & strings quintet that is currently in its second season in Houston and is also a regular participant in the HCC Chamber Concert Series.

Cellist Vyacheslav Dobrushkin was born in Ukraine in April 22, 1989. At the age of seven, he started his studies in the Music School of Uzhgorod. In 1997 and 1999, he obtained the first place in the Regional Competition of Violoncello. In 1998 he earned second place. From 1999 until 2007 Dobrushkin was a student of the University Institute of Fine Arts (UIFA) in Colima University, Mexico. While there, he was invited to play as a soloist with the San Luis Potosi Orchestra (2004). In 2006, he obtained First Place in the Second National Competition “Petrof-Simphony-Pearl River” for young performers. Dobrushkin has participated in several Music Festivals, academic concerts, special recitals, and various other concerts. He completed his Bachelors and Masters degrees at the Moores School of Music, University of Houston. Currently, he is the principal cellist of the Texas Medical Center Orchestra.