Recently selected as the New England Conservatory's newest Professional Trio-in-Residence, Trio Gaia is dedicated to offering audiences dynamic, personally relevant experiences inside and outside the concert hall. The trio served as an Honors Ensemble at the New England Conservatory (NEC) and has been recognized for sharing classical music in the community, receiving both the 2018-19 and 2019-20 Ensemble Fellowship from NEC’s Community Performances & Partnerships initiative. Through the fellowship, they presented a series of concerts at venues ranging from the historic Boston Public Library and Massachusetts Institute of Technology to local schools and senior homes. In 2019, the trio placed in the Plowman National Chamber Music Competition, where they won the Vianello Family Audience Prize and were runners-up in their division. Later that year, Trio Gaia was invited to Carnegie Hall’s Audience Engagement Intensive—presented in collaboration with Ensemble Connect—which allowed the trio to reach audiences across New York City with accessible, interactive performances for elementary school students and seniors alike.
The trio's 2019-2020 season was scheduled to include recitals in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont, as well as a residency at the Virginia Arts Festival and many educational and community performances across greater Boston—the COVID-19 pandemic had other things in mind! Fortunately, Trio Gaia was able to perform live for Boston’s outdoor Experience Chinatown! festival, present a number of virtual performances, and collaborate with Opus Illuminate, an organization dedicated to showcasing music by composers underrepresented in classical music. The 2021 season will inaugurate an adventurous audience-interactive-music initiative through their project Commission: Engage, which will be shared in a series of recital and community engagement experiences. Other virtual concerts include performances for Music for Food, NEC's Black Student Union, and Massachusetts Peace Action.
As individuals, violinist Grant Houston, cellist Yi-Mei Templeman, and pianist Andrew Barnwell have established performing careers that have taken them to nine countries for a range of solo and collaborative opportunities. Together, the trio has performed in a masterclass with pianist Inon Barnatan and has studied extensively with renowned artists Vivian Hornik Weilerstein, Merry Peckham and Max Levinson. Their additional mentors include cellists Lluis Claret and Sæunn Thorsteinsdóttir, and pianists Victor Rosenbaum and Orli Shaham. Currently, the trio members are working towards or have graduated with degrees from the New England Conservatory in Boston. When not rehearsing or performing, you can find Trio Gaia shopping for new outfits or cooking together.