Brooklyn Baroque debuted in the fall of 2000, when cellist David Bakamjian joined the long-standing duo of Baroque flutist Andrew Bolotowsky and harpsichordist Rebecca Pechefsky. Since then, the group has performed frequently in the New York area and has been invited to play in other states across the country. Brooklyn Baroque is the ensemble-in-residence at the eighteenth-century Morris-Jumel Mansion, where it performs in a yearly series. (Check out the Mansion at www.morrisjumel.org) In July 2015 Andrew Bolotowsky announced that he would be leaving the ensemble. Coremembers Pechefsky and Bakamjian frequently collaborate with the finest early-music specialists in the New York area.
Brooklyn Baroque specializes in the music of J.S. Bach and his contemporaries, but its concerts often range further back into the 17th century or as far forward as Beethoven. The ensemble's debut CD, Northern Lights (Quill Classics), a program of German Baroque works, won critical acclaim, as did its second disc, The Pleasures of the French (Quill Classics).
The American cellist, David Bakamjian, earned his B.A. from Yale where he studied with Aldo Parisot and his Master’s and Doctorate degrees at SUNY Stony Brook where he studied with Timothy Eddy and Bernard Greenho.
David Bakamjian performs regularly as a recitalist, ensemble player, and recording artist. In addition to appearances in New York's premiere concert halls, he has appeared several times on National Public Radio and WQXR, and was a winner or finalist in four international chamber music competitions. As a member of the Casa Verde Trio, he completed six critically acclaimed national tours and a month-long tour of China. He has performed as soloist with the Allentown Symphony, Philharmonia Virtuosi, Beijing Symphony, Bachanalia Festival Orchestra, Musica Bella, and the Lehigh University Philharmonic, and has served as principal cellist for several orchestras including the Berkshire Opera, New York Grand Opera, Bachanalia, the High Mountain Symphony in New Jersey, and the Miss Saigon theater orchestra on Broadway. Bakamjian is a member of the Simon String Quartet (named after its first violinist Fiona Simon of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra) and performs on Baroque cello with Concert Royal, the American Classical Orchestra, the Ensemble for Early Music and the Long Island Baroque Ensemble. This season, in addition to a recital appearance at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, he was featured at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Evocations of Armenia, a specially conceived program that he co-wrote with actress Nora Armani for solo cello and spoken word. By special invitation, they took the program to Armenia in April. In May, he was featured in a concerto by Boismortier on Baroque cello, performing with the Ensemble for Early Music in New York. He was on the faculty of Lehigh University for eight years and he is in great demand as a chamber music coach, serving as founder and director of the Summer String-In in New Jersey, and as director and faculty member at the Princeton Play Week chamber music workshops in three cities.
The American harpsichordist, Rebecca Pechefsky, graduated as a piano major from Juilliard’s four-year Pre-College program before earning her undergraduate degree at Barnard College, followed by an Master of Arts degree in harpsichord from Queens College and an MPhil in musicology from the CUNY Graduate Center. Her piano teachers included Seymour Lipkin; she later studied harpsichord with Louis Bagger, Kenneth Cooper, and Raymond Erickson, with master-classes from Olivier Beaumont, Kenneth Gilbert, and Colin Tilney.
Well known in the New York area, Rebecca Pechefsky has performed in such venues as Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall, Merkin Hall, and the Morris-Jumel Mansion. She has also been heard in concert series of the Miami Bach Society and the Harpsichord Center in Pasadena and Brentwood, California, as well as in fringe concerts of the Boston Early Music Festival and the Berkeley Festival. Recent European engagements include recitals in London (Handel House), Milan (Sforza Castle), Bologna, Amsterdam, Berlin, and Basel. Among her recordings for Quill Classics are the complete harpsichord music of François d’Agincour; Bach and His Circle (JPF Music Award, Best Classical Solo Album); J.S. Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1, praised in Fanfare as “excellent to the highest degree”; and Johann Ludwig Krebs @ 300. As part of the Krebs 300th birthday celebrations in Germany, she was invited to perform in Zwickau and Altenburg in October 2013. Also committed to contemporary music, she has premiered works by Mary Inwood, Mark Janello, Graham Lynch, Frank J. Oteri, Louis Pelosi, Johnny Reinhard, and Ben Yarmolinsky, and can be heard on Beth Anderson’s new CD, The Praying Mantis and the Bluebird (MSR Classics). In July 2014 she began recording the second book of J.S. Bach ‘s Well-Tempered Clavier for Quill Classics, tentatively slated for 2016.
Currently organist at Redeemer Lutheran Church in Glendale, Queens, she lives in Brooklyn with her husband, Erik Ryding, with whom she coauthored Bruno Walter: A World Elsewhere, winner of an ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award