May 3, 2025 at 8:00 pm


With a history of more than fifteen years, the Orion Chamber Ensemble has developed a

robust repertoire of widely known piano trios and lesser-known gems.  As a special feature for this concert, the group welcomes violinist Irina Muresaun and violist Noriko Futagami as guest artists.

Needham Concert Society artistic director Ronald Lowry is principal cellist of the Boston Pop Esplanade Orchestra and the Boston Ballet Orchestra, and performs frequently with the Boston Symphony. He has presented solo recitals at Jordan Hall and at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and he has been a guest artist with the Boston Chamber Music Society, the New England Conservatory, and the Muir String Quartet. Mr. Lowry teaches at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School, Walnut Hill School for the Arts, and the Rivers School Conservatory.

Pianist Randall Hodgkinson has performed as a soloist with major orchestras.  He is an artist member of the Boston Chamber Music Society, and also performs the four-hand and two-piano repertoire with his wife, Leslie Amper. Mr. Hodgkinson is a faculty member of the New England Conservatory, Wellesley College, and the Longy School of Music of Bard College in Cambridge.  As a young artist, he won the International American Music Competition and the Tanglewood Music Center’s Cabot Award.

Violinist Peter Zazofsky has appeared as soloist with many great orchestras, including the Boston Symphony, the Berlin Philharmonic, Amsterdam Concertgebouw, and the Philadelphia Orchestra. As first violinist of the Muir String Quartet, Mr. Zazofsky is proud to have performed many complete cycles of the Beethoven quartets and to have promoted new works by American composers. He is a faculty member at Boston University and also teaches at New England Conservatory Preparatory School.

Romanian violinist Irina Muresanu is known for her elegant and passionate performances that stretch the boundaries of classical music, and as a compelling interpreter of contemporary music. As a faculty member of the University of Maryland, she has documented worldwide variations in violin technique, and she is engaged in development of AI technology for use in violin instruction. Ms. Muresanu plays an 1849 Giuseppe Rocca violin with an Étienne Pajeot bow.

Violist Noriko Futagami performs with the Radius Ensemble, Boston Musica Viva, Emmanuel Music, Cantata Singers, and Winsor Music. She is principal violist for Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and section violist with Rhode Island Philharmonic and Portland Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Futagami performs regularly with the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Odyssey Opera Orchestra, the Monadnock Festival Orchestra, Boston Pops, Boston Ballet, and Boston Landmarks Orchestras. She is a faculty member at Brown University.