Jenny Oaks Baker
America’s Violinist, Jenny Oaks Baker, is a Grammy Nominated, Billboard No. 1 recording artist, and performer. Whether her music is experienced live or through one of her many recordings, it is impossible to escape the magic of her artistry.
Jenny began playing the violin at age four, and made her solo orchestral debut in 1983 when she was only eight years old. She received her Master of Music degree from the renowned Juilliard School in New York City and her Bachelor’s degree in violin performance from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.
Jenny Oaks Baker has released twelve albums as a Shadow Mountain Artist, having sold nearly half a million copies since 1998. Her album “Wish Upon a Star: A Tribute to the Music of Walt Disney” earned a nomination at the 54th GRAMMY Awards for Best Pop Instrumental Album. Jenny’s albums consistently chart on Billboard, with her 2010 album “Then Sings My Soul” hitting the #1 spot on the Top Classical Albums chart two weeks in a row. Her next project, “Noël: Carols of Christmas Past” was produced and arranged by Emmy award winning composer Kurt Bestor and features former “Celtic Woman” star Alex Sharpe. Her most recent CD, “Classic: The Rock Album” has also been met by critical acclaim and is yet another Billboard chart-topping album.
Jenny Oaks Baker’s performance career is equally impressive. She has performed as a soloist at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Strathmore Hall, the Library of Congress and as a guest soloist with the National Symphony, Jerusalem Symphony, Pittsburgh Symphony, San Diego Symphony, Utah Symphony, and the internationally acclaimed Mormon Tabernacle Choir. She has also been featured in television and radio broadcasts nationwide. Her “In Performance” BYUTV Special Silver Screen Serenade, features Jenny performing music from her album of the same name. Over the years Jenny has collaborated with such luminaries as Gladys Knight, Kurt Bestor, Alex Boye, Marvin Hamlisch, and the former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Jenny’s emotionally stirring music has been featured on the soundtracks of many films, including Helen Whitney’s 2007 PBS Documentary, “The Mormons”, TC Christensen’s films, “17 Miracles”and “The Cokeville Miracle” , and alongside music by “The Killers” in Mitch Davis’ new film, “Christmas Eve”. Additionally, Jenny will be making her acting debut as the violinist character, Mandy in “Christmas Eve”, a film starring Patrick Stewart to be released in Dec 2015.
Recently, Jenny teamed up with Director Danny Drysdale to create music videos to enable more people throughout the world to experience the thrill of her artistry. These videos, filmed throughout the world, are exclusively available on Jenny’s YouTube Channel.
With her extensive performing and recording careers in addition to her superlative education, Jenny is an esteemed expert and served as a judge for the 2007 Stradivarius International Violin Competition. In April 2008 Governor Jon M. Huntsman Jr. of Utah awarded her the Governor’s Mansion Artist Award for excellence in artistic expression.
For seven years, Jenny Oaks Baker performed as a first violinist in the National Symphony Orchestra before resigning in 2007 to devote more time to her young family. Jenny, her husband, and their four children reside in Salt Lake City, UT.
Pianist Vedrana Subotic has won international acclaim from critics and audiences for her refined interpretations, rich tonal palette, and supreme levels of technical and musical mastery. Her debut solo performance at age nine was broadcasted on national television in her native country, the former Yugoslavia. Upon winning the top prize in Yugoslavia’s National Piano Competition, Vedrana moved to the United States. She has since been active as a soloist and a chamber musician in the Americas and Europe. She performs in dozens of concerts a year, combining concerto appearances, solo recitals, chamber music collaborations, and orchestral performances.
Vedrana’s more recent performances include concert tours in Puerto Rico, the Utah premier of Alban Berg’s Chamber Concerto, appearing as a soloist in Beethoven’s fifth piano concerto with the Dubrovnik Symphony, and Prokofiev’s third piano concerto at the Chautauqua Festival in New York, as well as chamber music concerts at the International Chamber Music Festival in Nis, Serbia, the Dubrovnik Summer Festival, the Chautauqua Festival, the American Festival for the Arts in Houston, and Intermezzo and Temple Square Concert Series in Salt Lake City, Utah. She has collaborated in recital with such artists as Joseph Silverstein and Paul Neubauer, and is a member of the Porter-Subotic Duo with her husband, Utah Symphony violinist David Porter. Vedrana has also performed concerts in Bratislava, Prague, Belgrade, London, and Venice, as well as throughout the United States and Canada. Vedrana’s artistry and extensive concert activity has attracted the attention of the Director of the Worldwide Concert and Artists division at the Steinway corporation in NY. In 2003, she was invited to join the distinguished roster of Steinway Artists.
In addition to faculty recitals and lectures, Vedrana performs regularly in local concert venues, and has appeared as a soloist with the Utah Symphony, Utah Chamber Orchestra, and the Weber State and Snow College Orchestras. Vedrana is a founding member and Music Director of the Intermezzo Chamber Music Concert Series, hailed by the Salt Lake Tribune, in its first year (2003), as one of the top ten musical events in Utah.
Vedrana has taught piano at Indiana University, Hartford Conservatory, and the Chautauqua Institution in NY where she was also Head of the Instrumental Accompanying from 1995-2001. In 2003, she founded the piano program at the Horne School of Music at Snow College (UT), an all-Steinway school, and directed it until 2008. An active clinician and adjudicator, Vedrana has served on the Gina Bachauer International Junior Piano Competition Jury, and is a frequent guest as a master-teacher at the Utah Symphony’s Youth Guild masterclasses. She has presented lectures on a variety of pedagogical and performance topics for the Utah Music Teachers Association and the Suzuki Piano Association.
An avid admirer and dedicated champion of the piano traditions from the days of the “old-world” performing legends, Vedrana has been trained by internationally acclaimed pedagogues and performers who continued the legacy of Arthur Schnabel, Rosina Lhevinne, Robert Goldsand, Rudolph Serkin, and Vladimir Horowitz. In addition to her University of Utah piano studio, Vedrana maintains a private studio of gifted young students in Salt Lake City. Her students have continued their musical studies at leading music schools in United States and Europe and have won awards in numerous competitions.
Vedrana graduated from the former Yugoslavia’s State Music Conservatory at age fifteen, and received Bachelor of Music degree from Belgrade University four years later. She has since earned a Master of Music from Michigan State University, and an Artist Diploma and Doctor of Music from Indiana University. Her teachers have included Menahem Pressler, Arbo Valdma, Leonard Hokanson, Peter Frankl, Ralph Votapek, Gyorgy Sebok, Byron Janis, Janos Starker, and Josef Gingold.
Soprano Melissa Heath enjoys a varied career of opera, concert and recital work. Hailed as a “soaring, sparkling soprano” with “vivacious stage presence,” recent opera roles include Countess in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Nanetta in Verdi’s Falstaff, Micaëla in a concert version of Bizet’s Carmen with the Concerts at the Presidio series in San Francisco, and Gilda in Verdi’s Rigoletto, with La Musica Lirica in Novafeltria, Italy. Ms. Heath’s recent concert work includes Carmina Burana with Ballet West, Beethoven’s Symphony no. 9 with the Lyceum Philharmonic and Sterling Singers, and Carl Nielsen’s Symphony no. 3 with the Utah Symphony, under the direction of Thierry Fischer. In March of this year, she sang Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem with the Temple Square Chorale and Orchestra at Temple Square, and in April, she was the soprano soloist with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in their Easter production of Handel’s Messiah. She is a district winner in the Metropolitan Opera’s National Council Auditions, and in 2012 and 2014 was a regional finalist in the National Association of Teachers of Singing’s biennial art song competition. Ms. Heath holds a Bachelor’s degree in voice from Brigham Young University, and her Master of Music and Doctorate of Musical Arts degrees in voice from the University of Utah.