Originally a chamber group based in San Francisco, CA, the NEW CENTURY STRING QUARTET celebrates 12 seasons at the Christel DeHaan Fine Arts Center, University of Indianapolis, 1400 Hanna Avenue, Indianapolis, IN 46227.
Highly regarded by California and Indiana critics, NCSQ concerts are also consistently voted as “Best Bets” by local Arts Calendar editors. The NCSQ has also been featured in the Indianapolis Star, WFYI “Art of The Matter” for its distinctive programming, commissions and performances. Selections of its performances can be heard on WICR and WFIU as well. Their awards include a project grant from the Arts Council of Indianapolis in 2003 for their concerts “Ripples of Asian and African Roots” featuring Debussy, Puccini and Dvorak, and a Creative Renewal Arts Fellowship 2005-2006 for “The Glorious Viola, a Chamber Music Journey 1500-present, I & II”.
Violinist Dean Franke made his solo debut at age 15 with the Toronto Symphony. A winner of the CBC Network Talent Search and Second Prize at the CBC Festival, he also performed throughout Canada. He studied at IU (Bloomington) and at Juilliard and as a fellow at Tanglewood, Yale and Banff with major teachers including Franco Gulli, Stanley Ritchie, the Juilliard and Tokyo Quartets. An assistant concertmaster of the Indianapolis Symphony since 1990, he has held the same position in the Oakland Symphony and performed in the San Francisco Opera, the San Francisco and the Toronto Symphonies. An adjunct faculty member at UIndy since 1997, Franke has participated in many recitals there and is cofounder of the NCSQ (previously the Accord CMS), and has been a guest of the Ronen Ensemble, Scott Chamber Players, IU Faculty Recital Series (Bloomington), Composers Inc. (San Francisco) and Princeton University New Music Series (NJ).
Violinist Louise Alexander was born in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. She began her study of the violin at age three and later earned degrees from McGill University in Montreal and the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with Stephen Rose and Stephen Majeske at the latter institution. Before joining the second violin section of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra in March 2006, she played in the New World Symphony (Florida), the Orquesta Sinfonica de Galicia (Spain) and the Winnipeg Symphony (Canada). She has quickly acclimated to her new home through appearances with the Ronen Chamber Ensemble, Scott Chamber Players, Canale String Quartet and the New Century String Quartet. Away from music, she enjoys cooking, reading and yoga.
Violist Susan Chan is artistic coordinator/cofounder of the NCSQ, formerly Accord CMS (San Francisco). She has performed in Europe, Asia and in the US, at festivals such as Tanglewood, Grand Tetons, IHEM (Switzerland), MIM (CA) and at concert series in CA, New York, Princeton University, Miami University (OH), IU (Bloomington) premiering many chamber works and performing on original instruments at “Tage Alter Musik” in Regensburg, Germany. She has collaborated with the Ronen Ensemble, Scott Chamber Players, Oxford Quartet, Rostislav Dubinsky and bassoonist Kim Walker. She appears frequently with the Indianapolis Symphony and served as Principal Viola under Seiji Ozawa and Gunther Schuller while a fellow at Tanglewood. She studied with Walter Trampler, Abraham Skernick and the Juilliard Quartet, holds a M.M. from IU, Bloomington and was an Associate Instructor in Viola there. She is a 2005-06 Creative Renewal Arts Fellow, awarded by the Arts Council of Indianapolis. In April, 2009, she was a featured performer in the “Taipei International Festival of 20th Century Lyricism”, promoting chamber works by German-Austro composers banned by the Nazis.
Cellist Dennis McCafferty is a graduate of Indiana State and Butler Universities. He attended the Chicago Musical College of Roosevelt University as a cello student of Karl Fruh, the Banff School of Fine Arts, the Aspen Music Festival and also studied chamber music with the members of the Juilliard and Cleveland Quartets. Currently, he is on the faculty at the University of Indianapolis. He has appeared frequently with the Indianapolis Chamber Players, the Faulkner Chamber Players, Suzuki and Friends Chamber Series, the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, the Linden String Quartet, the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra and is a recording studio musician. Reviews have described Mr. McCafferty”s playing as “thrilling” with “remarkable sensitivity”. His Faculty Artist Series Performances have consistently received high praise from area critics, from sonatas of Beethoven and Brahms to Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time. He also earned a “Best of ‘93” citation from the Indianapolis Star for his performance of Martinu’s 2nd Sonata.