Asi Matathias & Karen Joy Davis with Martin Hetzer

November 20, 2016

Asi Matathias with Martin Hetzer - November 20, 2016

Asi Matathias

Violinist Asi Matathias is already recognized as one of the most celebrated talents of his generation. He made his debut at the age of 14 with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Zubin Mehta, displaying a musical maturity and inspiration far beyond his years. This success was immediately followed by another invitation from Maestro Mehta to play with him in the following season.

Matathias has since performed as a soloist with numerous orchestras around the globe with many distinguished conductors including Gunter Kahlert, Leon Botstein, Mendi Rodan and Yaron Traub. He has recorded for BBC, WQXR, IBA and ORF (The Osterreichischer Rundfunk). He is a frequent recitalist and has performed extensively throughout Europe, USA, Asia and Israel.

As an enthusiastic chamber musician, he has collaborated with renowned international artists such as Yefim Bronfman, Frans Helmerson, Nobuko Imai, Wolfgang Laufer and Christian Altenburger. He has performed in Festivals such as the Jerusalem International Chamber Music Festival, The Con Anima Festival in Austria, Vienna Bezirk Wochen Festspiele, and Prussia Cove in England.

Matathias started playing the violin when he was six. In Israel, he studied with Chaim Taub, and at the Universitat fur Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna as the youngest student enrolled. He continued his studies with violinist Aaron Rosand. He was awarded a scholarship and a certificate of merit, and has been supported by the AmericaIsrael Cultural Foundation since 1997.

Currently, Matathias is studying with the famed Pinchas Zukerman and his teaching associate Patinka Kopec at the Manhattan School of Music where he received the Joe Lewis Jefferson and the Ambrose Monell awards.

Karen Joy Davis

A native of the Washington, DC area, Karen Joy Davis made her debut with the National Symphony Orchestra playing the Mozart Concerto K.467 when she was 12. After attending high school at Interlochen Arts Academy and North Carolina School of the Arts, she continued her piano studies at The Juilliard School, during which time she won numerous awards, including first prize at the National Society of Arts and Letters Competition as well as the Bartok Competition, the Baldwin Competition and the Inter-American Festival Competition. She was also a finalist in the Naumburg Foundation Competition and the Clara Haskil International Piano Competition.

Davis studied with Ylda Novik, Irwin Freundlich, Arminda Canteros and with two former students of Artur Schnabel: Maria Curcio (in London) and the renowned pianist Leon Fleisher. She has performed in recital and with orchestras throughout the US, Canada, South America and Europe at such venues as the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, Heinz Hall, Wigmore Hall, the Strathmore Center, TRSI and the Kravis Center. She has appeared as a soloist with the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI, the Fairfax Symphony, the Washington Chamber Orchestra, the McLean Symphony, the National Symphony, Orchestre National de Toulouse, Orquestra de Camara Fortaleza, the Sao Paulo Symphony and the Redlands Symphony. On the occasion of her London debut, The London Times declared her “a pianist to reckon with…played with sparking brilliance and technical accuracy and displayed a profound musical understanding.”

Davis is also an avid chamber music player, and has performed at numerous festivals around the world, including the Aspen Festival, Spoleto festival, Friends of the Arts Beethoven Festival and the Accademia Chigiana in Siena, among others. From 2003-2006, she played with the prominent Tango group Quintango, and in 2013 and 2014, she was featured in the well-received programs about Chopin and Schumann on WFMT Chicago produced by Jon Tolansky. Davis participates in the Juilliard National Council and is the Executive Producer of the Salk Science & Music Series.

Martin Hetzer
Professor, Molecular and Cell Biology Laboratory
Jesse and Caryl Philips Foundation Chair

Martin Hetzer, the Jesse and Caryl Philips Foundation Endowed Chair, is a professor in the Molecular and Cell Biology Laboratory, and director of the Waitt Advanced Biophotonics Center. His research focuses on developmental changes and pathological perturbations in the organization and functions of cells and organs. Fundamental biological processes such as cell division and differentiation are crucial to human development and aging. Disruptions in these processes have been linked to many forms of diseases including cancer and neurodegenerative disorders.

All human cells have a nucleus, which contains the genetic information in the form of chromosomes that transmit genetic traits to further generations and control cell function. Dr. Hetzer is examining how the nuclear genome is propagated through the process of cell division and how the genetic information stored in DNA molecules is retrieved in a controlled and orderly fashion. Since defects in the expression of genes are often altered in pathological conditions and age-related decline, Dr. Hetzer’s research will also provide insights into the molecular mechanisms underlying various human diseases.

Dr. Hetzer and his laboratory represent a growing research focus on how the nuclear genome is organized in human cells, which could lead to a wider perspective on how malfunctioning cells may contribute to the growth of tumors and the age-associated decline in tissue and organ function.