Locally, Persin has received numerous awards and has been featured in a live radio broadcast on the Performance Pittsburgh Series as winner of the Pittsburgh Concert Society Major Auditions. She won the Duquesne University, Westmoreland Symphony and Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Concerto Competitions, as well as the PADESTA Solo Competition and Duquesne Young Artist Competition. Persin made her solo debut with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra in Heinz Hall in 1997. In addition, she has also made solo appearances with the Pittsburgh and Westmoreland Youth Symphonies and was most recently invited to solo with the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra, performing the Mozart “Sinfonia Concertante” in collaboration with Austin Hartman. Persin will return home on November 4 to perform with the Biava Quartet as part of Seton Hill’s 2006 – 2007 Concert Series. The Biava Quartet will present “Best of Biava” in Cecilian Hall at 7:30 p.m. Tickets for the Biava Quartet are $10 general admission (Seton Hill students free with ID), and are available by calling 724-830-4626.

Mary Persin is a recent Artist Diploma recipient and graduate of Yale University, where she also served as a teaching assistant to the Tokyo Quartet. Ms. Persin is the former principal violist of the Westmoreland Symphony, Cleveland Institute of Music Symphony Orchestra, Pittsburgh Youth Symphony and Chautauqua Youth Symphony Orchestra. She has performed solo recitals in Cleveland, Boston and Pittsburgh and has been invited to perform as a guest artist at both Chautauqua Institution and the Rockport Chamber Music Festival. Persin has participated as a scholarship recipient at the Aspen Music Festival, Chautauqua Institution and Encore School for Strings, where she spent four summers and was twice awarded the Kay Logan Chamber Music Award for excellence in chamber music performance. In addition to her international concertizing and teaching as violist of the Biava Quartet, Ms. Persin maintains a keen interest in the business aspect of music and arts advocacy. She serves as the operations coordinator for the Biava Quartet and has been invited to be a guest lecturer and presenter at a variety of schools throughout Ohio and Pennsylvania as a music educator. Ms. Persin is a graduate with highest honors from the Cleveland Institute of Music where she was a student of Robert Vernon, Principal Violist of the Cleveland Orchestra. She attended the New England Conservatory for further studies, earning a Master’s Degree in Chamber Music and Viola performance as a student of Martha Katz. Other former teachers and coaches include Thomas Dumm, James Dunham, Jeffrey Irvine, Stephanie Tretick and Hong-Guang Jia, as well as members of the Emerson, Guarneri and Juilliard Quartets.

The Biava Quartet, winner of the 2003 Naumburg Chamber Music Award, is recognized as one of today’s top young American quartets. Having established an enthusiastic following in the United States and abroad, the Quartet captured top prizes at the 2005 Premio Paolo Borciani and 2003 London International String Quartet Competitions, impressing audiences with its sensitive artistry and communicative powers. The members of the Biava Quartet - violinists Austin Hartman and Hyunsu Ko, violist Mary Persin and cellist Jacob Braun - are recent recipients of Artist Diplomas from the Yale University School of Music. The Biava Quartet has performed at major music halls throughout the world including Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, Jordan Hall, the Library of Congress and London’s Wigmore Hall. The Quartet has also appeared at the Aspen, Isaac Stern, Itzhak Perlman, Mostly Mozart and Norfolk Chamber Music Festivals and the ProQuartet Academie in France. Internationally, the Quartet has made concert tours to England, France, Italy, Japan and South Korea. The Biava Quartet has been featured in “Strings” and “Strad” magazines and in newspapers throughout the world. They have been heard on London’s BBC Radio 3 and numerous national radio broadcasts and will complete a Naxos recording of the Mozart Concerti for Piano and String Quartet in collaboration with pianist Robert Blocker this year. This season will also include the Chicago debut of Stacy Garrop’s Second String Quartet “Demons and Angels” with upcoming CD release in the spring of 2007. The Biava Quartet is honored to take its name from Maestro Luis Biava, who has been a mentor and inspiration to the quartet since its inception. To learn more about the Quartet, visit www.biavaquartet.com. The Biava Quartet’s appearance at Seton Hill is presented in collaboration with the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra.