ISABEL ESCALANTE, Co-Founder / Violin
A versatile Venezuelan violinist, Isabel Escalante is an interdisciplinary artist who balances classical music and mainstream genres seamlessly. She has received numerous awards in several competitions including 3rd place in the Emil Friedman Violin Competition and 1st place in the 2007 William T. Gower Competition. She was a semifinalist in the Sphinx Competition and the Lennox International Young Artist Competition. Ms. Escalante made her solo debut at age 9 with the Carabobo Youth Orchestra and has appeared as a soloist with the University of Southern Mississippi Orchestra.
Ms. Escalante had the honor to perform in the White House at the Chinese State Dinner for President Barack Obama and Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang in 2015. She has performed with a number of orchestras in the U.S. including Houston, Sphinx, Stamford, and New World Symphony Orchestras. An avid chamber musician, Ms. Escalante performs regularly with the Sphinx Virtuosi and is a founding member of ALKALI, a groundbreaking ensemble with whom she held a two-week long residency in Curacao to expose children to classical music for the first time. Isabel also ventures in genres such as soul, gospel, rock, pop, and latin to name a few. Significant performances include, the 2015 American Music Awards Ceremony with Nicki Minaj; Il Volo, Placido Domingo, Disturbed, Patti LaBelle, and the Legendary Black Women’s A Cappella Ensemble Sweet Honey in the Rock. She has performed in some of the world’s finest halls including The Royal Concertgebouw, BBC Proms, Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, Royal Albert Hall, and the Staples Center.
Isabel Escalante is a 2018 recipient of the Sphinx MPower Grant for $14,000 which has allowed Together in Music to follow through with its mission of collecting donations to help relieve the shortage of medicine and food impacting Venezuela. If it was not for this grant, this project would not be possible. Thank You Sphinx!
ALEX ROSALES GARCÍA, Co-Founder / Bassoon
Alex Rosales Garcia, Mexican-born and San Francisco raised, is a dynamic bassoonist living in Los Angeles, California. An active musician in Southern California and Nevada, Alex has performed with various groups including the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Las Vegas Philharmonic, Hollywood Chamber Orchestra, New West Symphony, Brevard Music Center Orchestra, Golden State Pops Orchestra, the Southeast Symphony Orchestra, and as Principal Bassoon with the Debut Orchestra from 2013 to 2016. He has played under many notable conductors including JoAnn Falletta, Gustavo Dudamel, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, Bramwell Tovey, Carl St. Clair, Keith Lockhart, Christoph König and Matthias Bamert.
Along with the other members of his sextet, Cardinal Winds, Alex was awarded the Grand Prize at the 2015 Plowman Chamber Music Competition held in Columbia, Missouri. That same year they were also named semi-finalists in the Fischoff Chamber Competition and finalists at the Coleman Chamber Competition. The group was also honored with a Max H. Gluck fellowship and performed various community engagement concerts on a weekly basis within underserved communities in greater Los Angeles.
A passionate educator, Alex is also an acclaimed teaching artists for the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s signature ‘El Sistema’ program – YOLA (Youth Orchestra Los Angeles) He is currently the Double Reed specialist at the HOLA site (Rampart District). Internationally, Alex has taught in Mexico City with the Gustavo Dudamel Foundation in 2018 Americas Encuentro where he excelled in teaching both english and spanish. Most recently, he collaborated with El Sistema Korea in Seoul as part of the LA Phil 100 Anniversary tour. Alex also maintains a vibrant and active bassoon studio and is proud of his many students who have won positions in local youth orchestras and obtained full-ride scholarships to various music schools.
CATHERINE BAKER, MARKETING AND DESIGN / Flute
Catherine Baker, a Houston native, has most recently been named the First Place Winner and Murray Panitz Memorial Award Winner of the 2018 Flute Society of Greater Philadelphia Young Artist Competition. She has also been named as a finalist and received honorable mention at the 2018 San Diego Flute Guild Young Artist Competition. Catherine has served as the Principal Flute of the American Youth Symphony, Principal Flute of YMF Debut Orchestra, and the Piccolo of the Young Artists Symphony Orchestra of LA. Ms. Baker has performed in orchestras throughout the country including the Brevard Music Center, the Hot Springs Music Festival, the Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra, the South Dakota Symphony, the Southeast Symphony, the Tanglewood Music Center, and the Texas Music Festival. Currently, she is a Finalist and substitute for the New World Symphony in Miami, Florida.
Catherine regularly teaches young aspiring flutists, passionately developing the students’ abilities to produce a strong sense of musicianship, beautiful sound, and fluent technique. Currently, she is the flute teacher at the Neighborhood Music School, Young Musicians Foundation Teaching Artist, Harmony Project Paramount, the Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
Outside of her musical endeavors, Catherine has fused her interest for graphic design with music by designing posters, invitations, and programs. She has worked with flutist and teacher, Dr. Timothy Hagen, by illustrating for his recent publications by Owl Glass Music: The Scientific Method of Practicing, From Theory to Practice: An Analytical Performance Guide for Flutists and NarrEtudes. She also enjoys baking pies and exercising on a regular basis.
HUNTER BERMÚDEZ, MARKETING AND MEDIA
Hunter grew up in Miami, FL, a dual citizen of the US and Venezuela, always surrounded by music. In 2010, he moved to Los Angeles and earned a bachelor's degree in Film and TV Production from the University of Southern California. Since graduating, he has worked as a freelance video editor, collaborating with other creatives on documentaries, short films, music videos, and commercial campaigns. He has worked with well known labels and agencies such as Interscope Records, Universal Music Group, United Entertainment Group and Disney Digital Network. As the content creator for Together in Music, he gathers and shares videos and photos of concerts and other Together in Music events to raise awareness and expand the community.
"Together in Music means a lot to me. The sociopolitical and humanitarian crisis has affected and continues to affect so many families in Venezuela. As I watched my family become a part of a continuously growing Venezuelan diaspora around the world, my heart ached to do something with the resources I have. Together in Music intertwines my love of music, performance, and my cultural heritage. As soon as I heard about it, I knew I had to be a part of it."
rachel van amburgh, grant writing / Oboe
Rachel Van Amburgh is a dynamic and versatile oboist, educator, and producer, based in Los Angeles. She holds a Doctorate from USC and has performed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Downey Symphony, Hollywood Chamber Orchestra, Bakersfield Symphony, LA Jewish Symphony, and Pasadena Master Chorale, among others. As an educator, Rachel teaches at Glendale Community College and has a private oboe studio, previously working with students at USC, the Esperanza Azteca Orchestra, Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles, and The Harmony Project. She directs the chamber music series Classical Revolution: LA, and co-produces the Femme Frequencies music festival.