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Artistic Directors

IMG_1689Maia Jasper White

Artistic Director

Maia is a chamber musician, teacher, orchestral and studio musician, and musical entrepreneur. This versatility and the variety it brings enrich her musical life.

Outside of Salastina, Maia’s chamber music performances have brought her around the world. Highlights include trips to Portugal, the Netherlands, France, Israel, Canada, and Turkey.

Maia is on faculty at the Colburn School of Performing Arts and Chapman University. She has also taught at the Luzerne Music Center and both CalArts and CalTech.

Maia is a member of both the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the Pacific Symphony. She twice served as Concertmaster of the Crested Butte Music Festival Orchestra. Her orchestral work also includes scoring for motion pictures and television. She’s contributed to scores by John Williams, Danny Elfman, Tom Newman, and Alexandre Desplat, among many others. (Scoring is also how she met her husband, composer Philip White.)

Maia received her Bachelors degree with honors from Yale. She received her Master’s degree as a fellowship student at USC’s Thornton School of Music, with further study at the Paris Conservatory. She is a recent graduate of the Center for Nonprofit Management‘s Certificate Program. She is working towards her PhD in Human Behavior from the (sadly unaccredited) University of Armchair.

Festival highlights include the Canandaigua Lake Music Festival, the Keshet Eilon Violin Mastercourse, the International Holland Music Sessions, the Banff Centre Chamber Music Residency, the Juilliard Quartet Seminar, and the Music Academy of the West.

In her free time, Maia enjoys playing with her dog Knudsen.  Her husband’s cat Linus is another story. An avid cook and baker, she once worked for Martha Stewart. In an alternate universe, she might have been a journalist. (She once worked for Charlie Rose, too.) One full marathon was enough for her. She ran several half marathons with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training Program. She also loves tennis and the outdoors.

Kevin Kumar

Artistic Director

A recent performance “allowed Kumar to demonstrate that, in addition to making an utterly beautiful sound, he is a born leader, and the performance responded to every last facet of a work gigantic in stature.” (Bernard Jacobson, Music-Web International) Also praised by press for his “obvious communicative powers”, “sense of sheer enjoyment”, and having “the precision and tonal richness of a virtuoso”, violinist Kevin Kumar has appeared as soloist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, among numerous other orchestras.

Kumar has also been active as an orchestral player, serving as Concertmaster of the Schleswig-Holstein Festival Orchestra under Valerie Gergiev and Semyon Bychkov in tours throughout major European cultural centers. He was personally invited by Sir Georg Solti to participate in the Solti Project at Carnegie Hall.

As a devoted chamber musician he has performed in various ensembles and festivals throughout the United States, Europe, and Central America and participated in numerous radio and television broadcasts, including a featured appearance on a primetime NBC sitcom. Kumar has given the world premieres of chamber music and solo works by composers such as Grammy-nominated composer Javier Navarrete, Daniel Catan, R.I. Gordon, and Jeremy Cavaterra.

At the outset of his concert career, Kumar was forced to spend an extended period away from the violin due to injuries; during this time he became involved with songwriting and production for musical artists in the U.S. and in East Asia. Since his return to the stage, he has participated in a variety of activities; appearing as soloist with a number of orchestras in Southern California, including St. Matthew’s Chamber Orchestra and the Riverside Philharmonic, and performing chamber music across the nation. He is also the violinist of the Catgut Trio.

In addition to attending Columbia University and the Manhattan School of Music, Kumar received the Jascha Heifetz Scholarship and his Advanced Studies in Music Diploma from the University of Southern California and Bachelor of Arts degree from Stanford University. He has studied with Alice Schoenfeld, Viktor Tretyakov, Linda Rose, and Gennady Kleyman and benefited from masterclasses with Dorothy Delay and other musical luminaries.