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The Piedmont Duo • Guest Artist Recital

February 6, 2022 @ 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

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Ayn Balija, viola
I-Jen Fang, percussion


Audiences and Tickets

Tickets are required to attend any concert or recital in person. You must pre-register for a ticket at the link provided (eTix) prior to the event. For purposes of contract tracing, patrons must sit in their assigned seat.

Face Coverings

Face coverings that cover the nose and mouth must be worn by all patrons while inside the performance hall.


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Associate professor of Viola at the University of Virginia, Ayn Balija leads a musically rich life through performance and instruction. Maintaining a studio and coaching chamber music, she serves as the Principal Violist of the Charlottesville Symphony at the University of Virginia and violist of the Rivanna String Quartet. As a professional violist, Dr. Balija performs solo, chamber, and orchestral works around the country. She soloed with the Charlottesville Symphony and Faculty Orchestra of the Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts. While a member of the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra of Columbus, she performed classical and commissioned works, recording two CDs under the Summit label. She regularly performs with the Richmond Symphony, Williamsburg Symphony, and Roanoke Symphony, and collaborates for chamber music with the Tennessee Governors School for the Arts and Yachats Music Festival. Dr. Balija was invited to tour with the Pittsburgh Symphony on their East Coast Tour including a performance at Carnegie Hall. As a supporter and performer of new music, she was part of a consortium for Fernghetti, by Libby Larsen, commissioned and premiered Jorge Variego’s Enviaolo for viola and piano as well as performed and recorded numerous orchestral premieres.

Connecting holistically with her students and colleagues is an integral part to Dr. Balija’s teaching philosophy. Her students have pursued advanced musical degrees at the University of Maryland, University of North Texas, Eastman School of Music and Barnard College. She served as the interim viola instructor at James Madison University. Dr. Balija created Violapalooza, an annual, all-viola day, featuring guest viola artists including Kim Kashkashian, George Taylor, and Paul Neubauer. In addition to giving masterclasses and recitals, Dr. Balija presented at the American String Teachers Association, American Viola Society’s Viola Festival, International Viola Society’s 44th Congress in Wellington, New Zealand and published on the American Viola Society’s Teacher’s Toolbox page. Dr. Balija has performed and taught over the summer at Tennessee Governors School for the Arts (TN), Yachats Summer Music Festival (OR), North Carolina Chamber Music Festival (NC), Charlottesville Opera (VA), Staunton Music Festival (VA), Beyond the Notes (VA), and the Belvoir Camp for Girls (MA). Ayn Balija holds a Bachelor of Music from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Masters of Music from the Cleveland Institute of Music, and Doctorate of Musical Arts from James Madison University. Her principal mentors have been Peter Slowik, Jeffrey Irvine, and Karen Tuttle. When not studying music she can be found in her kitchen or garden.

Described as an “intrepid percussionist” by Fanfare Magazine, I-Jen Fang has a career as a solo performer, chamber musician, orchestral player, and teacher. She joined the faculty of the Music Department at the University of Virginia in 2005 and as the Principal Timpanist and Percussionist of the Charlottesville Symphony. As a soloist, I-Jen has performed as a marimba soloist in Taiwan, U.S., Austria, France, Hungary, Romania, and South Africa. She was also the featured marimba soloist with the Charlottesville Symphony in 2006 and 2010. As a chamber musician, I-Jen has performed or recorded with artists such as Keiko Abe, William Cahn, Christopher Deane, Mark Ford, Heini Kärkkäinen, Mike Mainieri, Vladimir Mendelssohn, Jan Müller-Szeraws, Diane Pascal, Minna Pensola, Carsten Schmidt, Ed Smith, Michael Spiro, Nanik Wenton, Nyoman Wenton, EcoSono Ensemble, Cantata Profana, Attacca Percussion Group, DaCapo Chamber Players, and Victory Hall Opera. She has appeared in Staunton Music Festival, Charlottesville Chamber Music Festival, Wintergreen Festival, Heritage Theater Festival, Percussive Arts Society International Convention and Regional PAS Day of Percussion.

An advocate of New Music, I-Jen is currently the director of the UVA New Music Ensemble. The ensemble has collaborated with composer/improviser George Lewis, and performed for composers such as Phillip Glass and Christian Wolff. She has also commissioned and/or premiered works by Jon Bellona, Matt Boehler, Matthew Burtner, Ted Coffey, Kevin Davis, Christopher Deane, Erik DeLuca, Aurie Hsu, Ellen Lindquist, Sarah O’Halloran, Chris Peck, Leah Reid, Judith Shatin, Brian Simalchik, Ed Smith, D.J. Sparr, Max Tfirn, Zachary Wadsworth, Kristina Warren, and Michele Zaccagnini. Born in Taipei, Taiwan, I-Jen began her musical education at age six taking piano. Taking up percussion at the age of nine, she came to the United States at age fifteen to pursue her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Percussion Performance at Carnegie Mellon University. She received her Master of Music degree from Northwestern University and her Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of North Texas where she served as a teaching fellow.

I-Jen is an Innovative Percussion and Marimba One artist.


February 6, 2022
3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
Event Categories:


Music Bldg-1-CVPA – Recital Hall (350)


Tew Recital Hall
100 McIver St
Greensboro, NC 27412 United States
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