Formed in 2017, the CK Ensemble artists were brought together by shared artistic commitments and curiosities. The ensemble's passion for classical music, historical knowledge, and fresh perspectives fuel their imaginative programming, dynamic collaborations, and memorable performances.
The CK Ensemble will be sure to leave an imprint on listeners' hearts. Meet the artists of the CK Ensemble below.
ARTISTIC DIRECTOR & CELLIST
Recognized for her "poignant lyricism, scope and bigness of her sound and expressive gestures," Cherry Kim has performed in the US and internationally as a recitalist and chamber musician, and as a soloist with the Plano Symphony Orchestra, Cathedral Bluffs Symphony Orchestra and the Fall River Symphony. As the artistic director and cellist of the CK Ensemble, their "Once Upon A Starry Night" program was presented at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and the Norton Museum of Art in Florida. Dr. Kim is also the cellist of the Arcada String Quartet and performs regularly with many orchestras in the New England region such as the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Vermont Symphony Orchestra, and Symphony New Hampshire. She has served as principal cellist with the Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, Waltham Philharmonic Orchestra and Symphony by the Sea among others.
Dr. Kim holds degrees from the New England Conservatory, Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music, Rice University, Longy School of Music of Bard College, and Boston University. She has performed at the Tanglewood Music Festival, Park City International Music Festival, Orford Festival, and Westben Music Festival, and has worked with many world-renown performers and pedagogues. Besides performing, Dr. Kim cultivates a vibrant studio called the Boston Cello Academy, and her simultaneous passion in the visual arts keeps her inspired. Her past works have won several prizes including one that was exhibited at the Dallas Museum of Art.
A native of Poland, Elżbieta Brandys-O'Neill is a musician who molds elegant tone, artistic sensibility and a solid mastery of flute technique. She gives recitals internationally and performs with the South Florida Symphony Orchestra, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Landmarks Orchestra, Atlantic Symphony Orchestra, Freisinger Chamber Orchestra, Claflin Hill Symphony, Cape Ann Symphony, Marsh Chapel Collegium, and Cantata Singers. She has performed in prestigious venues such as Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall and Town Hall, the Kennedy Center, Boston’s Symphony Hall, and Meyerson Symphony Center in Dallas. After graduating from the Music Lyceum in Tarnów, Poland, Dr. Brandys-O'Neill received her Bachelor of Music from Southern Methodist University, Graduate Performance Diploma and Masters from Boston Conservatory and Doctorate of Musical Arts degree from Boston University.
Pianist Ai-Ying Chiu has been invited to perform at many renowned concert halls all over the world, including Town Hall in NYC, Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall at Benaroya in Seattle, Rachmaninoff Concert Hall in Tambov and Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. Her third album “ America” was released summer of 2019, and has been nominated for a Grammy Award.
In pursuit of her Master’s degree and Graduate Performance Diploma, she won a full-tuition scholarship to study with Michael Lewin at The Boston Conservatory where she was the winner of the H. Wilfred Churchill Piano Scholarship Competition in 2006. Ms. Chiu was also an Award recipient at the Chinese International Piano Competition in New York City and Arlington Young Artist Competition. She has performed as a soloist with Sinphonia Perusina, conducted by Enrico Marconi, and The Boston Conservatory Orchestra, conducted by Bruce Hangen. As a pianist, Ms. Chiu enjoys collaborating with other musicians and artists. She is the founding member of Voyage Piano Trio, Kaohsiung Chamber Music Ensemble and Chiu-Villafranca Duo. She also holds a teaching position at the New School of Music in Cambridge.
Daesik Cha, a native of South Korea, has been establishing himself as a ‘renaissance’ musician, whose professional work encompasses concertizing, directing, teaching and music scholarship. He appeared as pianist in numerous prominent concerts in Korea and across continents. In the US he performed with the Irving Fine Society at Harvard’s Sanders Theater, appeared as soloist in the Franz Liszt Bicentennial celebration at Brandeis University, as a musical artist at the Covington Art Club in KY giving lectures and recitals as well as at MIT's Emerson recitals and the Frederick Historical Piano Center. Other highlights include organ/piano recital at the Historical Shirley Meeting House, several guest pianist recitals at the 2007 Lucca Opera Festival in Italy, solo recital at the Bechstein Hall's Master Musician Series in Bilthoven, Holland in 2000 and concert tour in Europe with the Dutch tenor Wil van Leysen. Dr. Cha holds a PhD degree in musicology from Brandeis University and two Master degrees in music history and literature and in piano performance. His scholarly interests include the German instrumental aesthetics and literature of the Classical and Romantic eras, and Renaissance vocal polyphony. He taught at Brandeis University as a teaching fellow and is currently teaching and working as a music instructor and staff pianist at MIT.